Happy Under the Padishah – Zareer Masani

Happy Under the Padishah (Written for Outlook India Magazine)   It’s a measure of Tipu Sultan’s charisma that, two centuries on, an Australian histo­rian has spent most of her academic life studying the man and his reign. But this skimpy book (131 pages of text) does justice to neither her complex subject nor her own presumably extensive […]

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The Man who Invented Poetry – Annie Zaidi

The Man Who Invented Poetry The violence and passion of Afzal Ahmed Syed (Written for Caravan Magazine on June 1st, 2016) My first encounter with the work of the Karachi-based Urdu poet Afzal Ahmed Syed left me feeling like I’d been handed a beautiful, breakable object with jagged edges, glazed with a grief that is at once […]

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The Gallic Shrug Survives in North America – Sam Cutler

THE GALLIC SHRUG SURVIVES IN NORTH AMERICA ! How cool it is to see people talking on their mobile phones in the province of Quebec, here in Canada. The only thing that seems to be moving when Americans and Aussies talk on their cell-phones is their jaws, whereas here in Francophile Canada people are an avalanche of animation with […]

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10 Rules of Writing – Amitava Kumar

10 rules of Writing (Written for The Indian Quarterly) Illustration by Hazel Karkaria When I was promoted to the rank of professor, the library at the university where I was then employed asked me to send them the name of a book that had been useful to me in my career. I chose VS Naipaul’s […]

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A Lovely Wedding – Nayantara Sahgal

A Lovely Wedding (Written for Day of Reckoning)   There were times when words seemed to have lost their meaning. This was one of them. Vira was on the phone telling Priti about the lovely wedding she and Ranbir had attended last evening. It had been in the new seven=star hotel. The bride wore a sari […]

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Hangovers – DBC Pierre

HANGOVERS (For Independent dated December 13th, 2014) According to Shakespeare’s Seven Ages of Man Despite authorities tightening their grip on the causes of hangovers, the hangover itself enjoys halcyon days. It can only mean one thing: authorities love a hangover.   And why not? The hangover is culture.   For one thing the authorities themselves have hangovers. […]

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Anna Funder on Christina Stead

Australian genius Christina Stead showed me what a novel is for. Anna Funder   Only children can see their parents from the inside. This is what novelists never grow out of: sitting quietly in the corner pretending to read, ears aflap  getting the inside running on life. I remember my mother having some R-rated conversation […]

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Harsingar – Amitava Kumar

Harsingar Catapult – Feb 29th, 2016 “I didn’t want him to be the one who was disrobing Zeenat Aman. No one who was even half-literate in Hindi in the early seventies would have missed the short story “Bungalow Number 43.” The story’s author was Satyadev. His real name was Akhilesh Jha and he was the […]

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Requiems for a BDD chawl

Requiem for the BDD Chawls – Kiran Nagarkar

Requiem for the BDD Chawls Kiran Nagarkar (Originally pulished in The Hindu on Jan 24th, 2016) Illustration – Satwik Gade It appears that by now it’s well nigh impossible to de-link my two protagonists, Ravan and Eddie from CWD Chawl Number 17 in the public imagination. But the mother of all the chawls in Mumbai has […]

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Literature Live! Creative Writing Contest – Story and Poetry Writing

Literature Live! is excited to announce the second edition of our Creative Writing Contest – Story and Poetry Writing! Come on over and show off the writer that lives inside you. – Participants will be given on the spot prompts which have to be woven into their writing. – You must be aged 16 or […]

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On Stage – September’ 16 : Anil Dharker

In her younger days, my sister Minal Dharker was an accomplished Bharat Natyam dancer. Watching her practice, rehearse and perform with her guru, Kubernath Tanjorkar, I became reasonably familiar with the idiom of Bharat Natyam. Inevitably, the family ended up watching other dance forms too: Kathak, Kuchipudi, Manipuri, Kathakali, Mohini Attam . . . I […]

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