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Posts from the ‘Department’ Category

Visual Art

Vidya Warrier

Ruchika Kapila

Poetry

My lungs recall unfondly by Shilpa Kamat

the teacher misreads my polite, Oh
really? and gloats, Absolutely.

A Glossary of Artillery Terms by Nnadi Samuel

In the next, I want to have more crime in my name.
Pakistan’s temper veining through my wrist.

Stories of Durga: Rain by Ayesha Chatterjee

Memory, like poetry, can’t be trusted.

What Is Love In Your Language? by Suchita Senthil Kumar

and now I’m breathing in a language
I don’t know to speak a word in. 

Reviews

Two Commas and That Voice by Richik Banerjee

Raw and Innovative!

Time Regime by Jhani Randhawa, edited by Shamayita Sen

Reviewed by Sushumna Kannan 

Innovative and fresh! 

Mamaji by Elisheba Haqq

Powerful and Inspiring!

Bombay Hangovers by Rochelle Potkar

Topographic plots!

A Moveable East by Siddharth Dasgupta

A lyrical memoir of nostalgia! 

Essays & Interviews

Navigating the Labyrinth of Privilege by Arpita Gaidhane

Parts of me are powerful in society, and other parts are marginalised. All parts are scared of being unloved. The healing started from seeing this.

Chai time by Archana Ramesh

The white kids in North Carolinian suburbia, who already looked at me like I was out of place, weren’t going home to the smells of cardamom and ginger. They went home to the clean smells of peanut butter and jelly sandwiches – the smell of freedom and fitting in. And at a time when belonging seemed more important than comfort, my parent’s unswaying and painfully ethnic routines felt more like a bear trap than a lily pad.

‘Where do we belong?’: Exploring the absurdity of partition through selected short stories of Sadaat Manto Hasan by Junaid Shah Shabir

While history can only convey superficial events, art dwells deep into the human psyche to bring out truths which cannot be factualized. Manto blends facts with realistic fiction to document the depth of human suffering caused by the partition of the subcontinent in a way that historians have failed to do. 

Art

Fiction

Proper Perspective by Paromita Goswami

Below us the water from the main canal flows into the branch that feeds the paddy – first in a trickle and then in a flow. Water snakes its way through crevices and furrows. Pradeep and his team smash the operator and the screw; they throw the chain and lock in the canal. It will take a long time for the irrigation officials to repair the sluice gate.

The Missing Syllable by Veena Narayan

…So that month, when I paid my usual visit to Divakara Panikkar, I didn’t show him Sreedevi’s horoscope. Oh, Divakara Panikkar is such a soothing person. And his predictions are so accurate. Even Muktedathi goes to him I know that for a fact. She might be a red, but Lathae, when it comes to one’s own children, everyone is anxious, red or not. Whenever I get too worried, I just pick up the horoscopes and go to consult Divakara Panikkar. He’s a gem.

Dirgha Ayushman Bhava by Sumitra Shankar

 I don’t know how to tell her – when I eat her delicious cooking, all I taste is its absence in my adopted faraway land.

Another Night by Utkarsh Sharma

Roshan turned and looked outside the window again. His body seemed to be shuddering with an urgency, like at the sound of approaching footsteps that never really materialize. He thought about the time left to fill with sleep. He still had to wake up at 8 for his shift.

Editorial

Why Jaggery?

The publishing world often tries to put its writers into boxes: easily-marketable boxes. You can’t really blame them, in some sense—it’s much easier to create a shelf in the bookstore, label it ‘ethnic literature’ and then put all the ‘ethnic’ writers there, than it would be to market each complex writer individually. The big publishers want a young desi woman to write an arranged marriage novel, because they know where the market is for those books. There’s a reason they keep putting red saris on our book covers; they know what sells.

Column

Ask the Unicorns

A spoonful of hot ghee is nothing like unicorn blood; and yet it is a way of extending the life of the butter. … Now I’m going to tell you the secret to immortality.

Reviews – Fall 2013

Fasting for Ramadan by Kazim Ali

In trying to grasp and define the contours of his own spirituality, Ali comes to some of the most startling and refreshing conclusions about his own religion and selfhood.

Karma Gone Bad: Or How I Learned to Love Mangos, Bollywood, and Water Buffalo by Jenny Feldon

For an immigrant such as myself, who moved from a big city in a developing nation to battle the loneliness of living in the US, I was eager to read Jenny Feldon’s reverse experience…

The HarperCollins Book of English Poetry edited by Sudeep Sen

This anthology serves as a conglomeration of assertive, fresh voices, a long way off from the rich inherent, albeit stringent, tradition of Itihasas and Puranas.

Crossing Black Waters by Athena Kashyap

Kashyap writes of sundering, separations, crossings, reunions,and uncertain reconciliations. The break with an imagined home is never forever; return is always a possibility yet remains unsatisfying whenever it occurs.

Art – Fall 2013

Freedom Colour

… moments where the “play” that arises from the festival allows for a freedom of transgression between caste, class, and gender lines in India.

Indo-Caribbean

Indians have lived in the Caribbean since the mid-1800s, brought by the British as indentured laborers to work in sugar and rice plantations in Trinidad, Guyana, Jamaica, and other colonies.

Delhi Through the Night

…the gaze of a middle-class, academically-oriented woman from a relatively small town, who feels more comfortable and safe behind a camera as she walks anonymous through the wide and narrow, intimidating and yet liberating streets of the capital city of Delhi.

Sacred Heart

…delicate interplays between vulnerability and empowerment, intimacy and exhibitionism, and subjective and collective expressions of feminist, queer, and cultural identities.

Essays

Flying Saucers

I took the glistening black vinyl out of its sleeve, removed the dust wrap, placed it on the turntable. … Lost in the grooves of these long-playing records is the history of discography, which began in 1902 with the founding of the Gramophone Company of India.

The Cab Driver and I

The driver freezes in the middle of his three-point turn. He gazes up into his rearview mirror for a better look at me. “You’re from Pakistan, and you teach Americans?” His frown is so concentrated that he looks angry.

Bitter Honey: Sexual Violence in Desi Hip Hop

Although generally approbatory attitudes toward sexual violence in music would not necessarily lead directly to rape, they create and reinforce a culture that allows rape, facilitates woman-blaming, and disempowers women. In the context of the Delhi gang rape case and the protests that ensued, it is important to note that this culture attacks women just for being women.

Race, Class, and Gender at the Margins: Exploring My Name is Khan

Post-9/11 Islamaphobia, enveloping all brown-skinned people into one homogenizing dominant gaze, opens some room for mutual recognition of Otherness at the margins of American society.

Poetry – Fall 2013

what it’s like to be sri lankan in 2012 for those of you who aren’t

It’s going home to Jaffna if you’re young, Tamil and male and not automatically being snatched by either army. Maybe. For a moment.
It’s white vans.

Kalkatiya

she asked the emissaries, “How much
for a day’s toil?” They carried us away to a dock
and locked us down. Paid in irons, we tore our throats…

At the Dancing Square —Chowk

Not all men are tone deaf unable to hear the call
of hunger. Body, bosom, bare hips, needless to say
bare feet. She cannot afford the luxury of sleep.

Model Minority

the Punjabi slips
pungent
against my teeth, weeps
when I stumble
at its edges: arches
and whorls I cannot read.

Pickling

embalming mangoes in mulled mustard oil, she tells me
the best of the season must live longer. So each April
she carefully preserves. Pickles in glass jar churning…

Here Is a Red Cat and a White Cat

All these children with their dark glossy hair;
They sail on in their small shoes.
They are floating upward almost…