Arts/Literature

Philosophers Of Patience

Philosophers Of Patience

            Fifty two years ago, on 20th August, Russian tanks moved into Prague to suppress what has passed into history as the ‘Spring of 1968’ when artists, intellectuals, public personalities and reforms-minded politicians joined hands in an attempt to secure freedom of expression. Among the sufferers was the great long-distance runner, Emil Zatopek, who was dismissed from his senior position[Read More…]

August 8, 2020 Arts/Literature
Hiroshima Spring

Hiroshima Spring

“…how beset we were with what…we had been taught….”                          –Kenneth Patchen.   A poem for voices, with shakuhachi and koto…. (Sound of shakuhachi, a wooden flute–as though the instrument itself is breathing…and crying….)   The Pilgrim Under the flush of cherry, in air as mild as breath, by the Ota’s tributary– five crooked fingers reaching into the Inland Sea–[Read More…]

August 3, 2020 Arts/Literature
Indian Matchmaking: Decoding India’s love affair with arranged marriages

Indian Matchmaking: Decoding India’s love affair with arranged marriages

Indian Matchmaking, Netflix’s recent show on arranged marriages in elite families, has spawned countless memes and conspiracy theories. It has also put the spotlight on reality shows and how they spin a particular narrative at the cost of others. The show seems to be tailor-made for a western audience and portrays arranged marriages in a positive way while underplaying issues[Read More…]

August 3, 2020 Arts/Literature
Diaries of Life, Death and Life Anew – Enduring Legacy of Bangladesh Liberation Cinema

Diaries of Life, Death and Life Anew – Enduring Legacy of Bangladesh Liberation Cinema

(This essay is in commemoration of the birth centenary this year of Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, Bangladesh’s Father of the Nation; and the fiftieth anniversary of the making of Zahir Raihan’s Stop Genocide, with which the history of short filmmaking in Bangladesh begins.) A road accident on August 19, 2011, robbed Bangladesh of its most exceptional filmmaker, and this writer[Read More…]

August 3, 2020 Arts/Literature
How the national movement influenced our art, culture and cinema

How the national movement influenced our art, culture and cinema

Today is the 30th death anniversary of legendary playback singer Mohammad Rafi. Rafi Saheb passed away on 31st July, 1980. We also remember Munshi Prem Chand doyen of Hindi writing on his 140th birthday. But there is another important day today which is the martyrdom day of Shaheed Udham Singh who was executed by the British for killing General Micheal[Read More…]

July 31, 2020 Arts/Literature
Commemorating the writings of Emily Bronte

Commemorating the writings of Emily Bronte

A common concept today about the children portrayed in Victorian literature is that they are innocent in spite of their sufferings and brutalization by the society. One can refer to an apotheosis of childhood innocence through characters like Dickens’s Oliver Twist, Little Nell in Old Curiosity Shop, and Pip in Great Expectations, or Charlotte Brontë’s Jane Eyre. During the Victorian era morality and didacticism[Read More…]

July 31, 2020 Arts/Literature
Mother Earth

Mother Earth

once i used to be complete one whole there were no parts of me but now i am mincemeat you have done this to me since millennia you are ripping me apart pulling me to shreds scratching my body with lines and cutting me into bits bits you proudly call your own but, strangely each time after you cut out[Read More…]

July 29, 2020 Arts/Literature
A Book of One’s Own: The Story of Women’s Writing

A Book of One’s Own: The Story of Women’s Writing

Human beings have always told stories. However, in the course of history, the voices of many groups fell silent, their lives — and their stories-hidden from ‘his’ story. Before the story of women’s writing can be recounted, we have to look at the term itself. Why are we still using the term Women’s Writing? Do we use the term  mens’[Read More…]

July 27, 2020 Arts/Literature
Athithi, Sayanam – Stories Of Attractive Misfits

Athithi, Sayanam – Stories Of Attractive Misfits

K. P. Kumaran made his first film, Athithi (b/w, 35 mm., 112 mins.) in 1974. I was able to catch up with it in 2017, thanks to a retrospective devoted to the veteran director at the 22nd edition of the International Film Festival of Kerala. Athithi is a tense family drama that unfolds, for the most part, within the ghostly[Read More…]

July 27, 2020 Arts/Literature
Indian Matchmaking- the ugly side that is not streaming on Netflix

Indian Matchmaking- the ugly side that is not streaming on Netflix

Netflix’s recently released web television series ‘Indian Matchmaking’ is whistleblowing a lot to the West. In its trailer, the real-life elite matchmaker Sima Taparia herself list some well-known facts about the Indian marriages: In India, the marriages, they are between two families. So the parents guide their children, and that is the work of a matchmaker. Matchmaking has become a[Read More…]

July 24, 2020 Arts/Literature
The World Around Us, 2020

The World Around Us, 2020

  We saw you coming, with dreamy eyes A resurrected year, born from the ashes Of sufferings of the past years, rechristened in The divinity of a newborn body, But then, 2020, you ushered in our lives With the fury and madness of demolition. With the rapacious monster of a virus, a deadly battle consuming our fragile flesh.   Held[Read More…]

July 22, 2020 Arts/Literature
Thank God For The Commune!

Thank God For The Commune!

The first edition of what began as the Bombay International Film Festival for Documentary & Short Films (there was no mention of animation in the naming then) was held between March 1 and 7, 1990. I had no place to stay in Bombay, yet the will to attend the festival was strong. One evening, over a cup of tea at[Read More…]

July 21, 2020 Arts/Literature
Policeman as the mighty hero: How cinema normalises violence by Policemen?

Policeman as the mighty hero: How cinema normalises violence by Policemen?

It is high time one questions the eulogization of police brutality by cinema as it justifies custodial deaths and encounters. The custodial death of Jeyaraj and Fenix had led to a lot of protests in some parts of the country but did not gain a momentum that could be seen in the protests of George Floyd’s Murder. The report by[Read More…]

July 19, 2020 Arts/Literature
The picaresque parables Federico Fellini created around lives lived on society’s margins

The picaresque parables Federico Fellini created around lives lived on society’s margins

In ‘La Strada’ and ‘Nights of Cabiria’, Fellini’s boundless formal and narrative energy is married to his profound humanism                                                  A still from ‘La Strada’ (1954) To most cinephiles, Federico Fellini’s reputation rests on his triple masterpieces from the 1960s and early 1970s– La Dolce Vita (1960), 8 ½(1963) and Amarcord (1973). Each of these later films is a[Read More…]

July 18, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Baritone of Our Renaissance:  Hemanta Mukhopadhyay (1920-1989) at 100

The Baritone of Our Renaissance:  Hemanta Mukhopadhyay (1920-1989) at 100

Part I:  The Life-Changing Rabindra-Sangeet He Revealed to Me I was born in a post-renaissance, post-independence Bengal, in the city of Kolkata (erstwhile Calcutta from colonial times), at a time when the Bengal Renaissance, which began with Raja Rammohun Roy (1774-1833) and many would argue reached its zenith with Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941), was beginning its gradual descent into mediocrity (in[Read More…]

July 18, 2020 Arts/Literature
Gunawan Kartapranata /CC BY-SA 4.0

The Story of Ram

Was Ram a Nepali, Indian or Thai Or was he from Indonesia?   Celebrated worldwide human rights   The story trumpeted with fanfare as Ravana inflamed burns evils to ashes and dust   Exquisite dances with long- nailed grace Or wayang kulit puppets elaborate stories of a hero   blue coloured ruler of democrats that to appease his protectorate questioned[Read More…]

July 16, 2020 Arts/Literature
Journeys Into Caribbean Consciousness

Journeys Into Caribbean Consciousness

“Beyond the geographic and cultural identity that defines the Caribbean, is the more complex question of a Caribbean cinema aesthetic which has captured the imagination of some writers and critics. The search for the essence of Caribbean cinema has included theories of Créolité, diversity and Negritude from Martinique and Guadeloupe; Negrismo from Cuba; Indigenisme from Haiti; and Pan-Africanism from the[Read More…]

July 15, 2020 Arts/Literature
Death In The Time Of ‘Development’

Death In The Time Of ‘Development’

In ways more than one, Quarter Number 4/11, a documentary about demolitions and displacements and resultant miseries to a defenseless but defiant working class family, is reminiscent of Anand Patwardhan’s epic Hamara Shahar, made a quarter century earlier. “Quarter Number 4/11 is a ground-zero perspective of urban real estate development, narrated through the plight of ex-factory worker Shambhu Prasad Singh,[Read More…]

July 11, 2020 Arts/Literature
The ‘Invaluable’ Bud

The ‘Invaluable’ Bud

One day, a rose bud Spoke to all the flowers In the garden ‘Let all flowers in the world blossom Let every flower live In peace and tranquility ….’ The Gardner was furious Delirious And thought ‘If this bud blossoms, It is dangerous …’ He plucked it out from the sapling Tore it apart And threw it in a heap[Read More…]

July 8, 2020 Arts/Literature
Desperation As Art: 50 Years Of  Güney’s ‘Hope’

Desperation As Art: 50 Years Of  Güney’s ‘Hope’

Yilmaz Güney’s phenomenal many-sided genius made him a force to reckon with when he came to direction after a long stint as Turkey’s most popular film hero. But in the post-Second World War history of the Turkish State and society, Güney occupies a higher place than just that of a trail-blazing film personality. His strong sympathies for the inhabitants of[Read More…]

July 8, 2020 Arts/Literature
 Colours

 Colours

Am I white, black, purple or pink?   Names given by mankind to diverse reflections of light   Names given to create borders between colours   Colours earlier that rainbow spelt Now lead only to bloodshed, violence, gore, hatred.   Where is the love that Lalon sang?   Where is the note that played on the flute harmonising black with[Read More…]

July 7, 2020 Arts/Literature
Gulabo-Shitabo In The First Place

Gulabo-Shitabo In The First Place

I am not a polyglot. I am unbeknownst to Urdu-my mother’s language for I am the unfortunate generation who learnt English as well as Urdu sonnets but without Urdu in its script and is one who can hardly scramble through Urdu in its Persian form, just by virtue of tying its tit-bits conforming ever to their orthographic details. But, I[Read More…]

July 6, 2020 Arts/Literature
Lemmings

Lemmings

(Author’s Note: Here’s a poem about US—and much of the world’s–politics in this “modern age,” in which the emphasis of our “hidden persuaders” (and, often, blatant manipulators) is not so much on what we think as on how we think—i.e., shallow thinking.  Those who dare to chart their own course, probe deeply, think for themselves,draw their own conclusions, are too[Read More…]

July 6, 2020 Arts/Literature
Flood in Assam: Watch The Documentary “Māti”

Flood in Assam: Watch The Documentary “Māti”

Co-Written by Wenceslaus Mendes and Anupam Chakravarty Torrential rains, this monsoon like every other has worsened the flood situation in Assam. This year already around 1.1 million people have been affected in 23 districts and the fatalities due to flood this year has gone up to 24 and counting. While the state administration is doing its best to tackle the[Read More…]

July 5, 2020 Arts/Literature
A view of Household belongings under the debris of demolished houses

Roses on a dump

Home! Scooped out of the bowels of solid waste, like other huts, perched on various levels of the accumulated waste that grows vertical by the hour. The typical Asian shack consists of the usual elements—the blue tarpaulin, corrugated sheets and flattened-out cardboards. Anna is proud of this piece of space snatched away from other migrants that keep on pouring. Every[Read More…]

July 3, 2020 Arts/Literature
Film And Family: Revisiting An Early Patwardhan Classic

Film And Family: Revisiting An Early Patwardhan Classic

 It has been said of Anand Patwardhan, who turned 70 on February 18 this year, that he is ‘a kind of phenomenon in that he has all along faced official apathy, disapproval and, at times, censorship and open discrimination’. Perhaps, this is the way it should be for any creative artist wanting to grapple with political abuses, social injustices and[Read More…]

July 3, 2020 Arts/Literature
Jhootan…an event of examining the conscience of India !

Jhootan…an event of examining the conscience of India !

Let me start with a real life incident of a Woman in the contemporay India.She has a habit of excessive reading from history,political science,literature and all that subjects that help her in evolution to a ‘true human being’.With the emergent field of Dalit studies she has started to read about ‘Dalit paradigms’ and learning about the  instances helped her analyse[Read More…]

June 30, 2020 Arts/Literature
Mahanagar –  Formidable Body, Pathetic Tail

Mahanagar –  Formidable Body, Pathetic Tail

In 1963, Satyajit Ray directed Mahanagar, commonly considered to be his first ‘Calcutta film’. True, there is a little of the ‘Big City’ in Apur Sansar (1959). Equally true, Parash Pathar (1958) is about an elderly Calcutta clerk who comes into a sudden fortune, only to lose it in no time. But Parash Pathar is a fantasy film, can perhaps[Read More…]

June 30, 2020 Arts/Literature
The affirmative philosophy of plagues

The affirmative philosophy of plagues

This plague, an obscure and largely-forgotten Camus spoke to me about another plague, in a Mumbai apartment. I was taken aback. Two plagues and venues varied collide in a single instant and frame, but retain their individual flavours and contours and a common dread and stench felt universally by the master race, made vulnerable, again, by a tiny virus, of[Read More…]

June 29, 2020 Arts/Literature
Captain, Beware!

Captain, Beware!

Kandari Hoonshiar  by     Kazi Nazrul Islam Unscalable mounts, impassable deserts, turbulent seas These you must conquer in freedom’s quest in the dead of night Sailors, beware! The surf rises in disquiet, the boat heaves, the boatman loses track   The sails have ripped, who will steer the course, who has the himmat? Who here is young and brave, come[Read More…]

June 29, 2020 Arts/Literature
A DREAM DEFERRED:  Healing Through Culture, Dialogues, & Sharing Our Arts

A DREAM DEFERRED:  Healing Through Culture, Dialogues, & Sharing Our Arts

What happens to a dream deferred?   Does it dry up like a raisin in the sun?   Or fester like a sore And then run?   Does it stink like rotten meat? Or crust and sugar over like a syrupy sweet?   Maybe it just sags like a heavy load.   Or does it explode? –Langston Hughes Langston Hughes[Read More…]

June 29, 2020 Arts/Literature
Nema-ye Nazdik

Nema-ye Nazdik

In 1989 an incident happened in the prosperous suburbs of North Tehran that inspired the making of a movie. The movie took exactly 40 days to shoot, edit and then release and had no functioning script. It may be the most amazing movie you will ever see, (if you have not seen it already) and could be the best 97[Read More…]

June 28, 2020 Arts/Literature
‘No More War, Never Again’: Pandemic Of Nazi Hatred-Story Of Artists

‘No More War, Never Again’: Pandemic Of Nazi Hatred-Story Of Artists

It is to pay tribute to the Artists and Painters who Lived through the Painful Horrendous span of Human History and raised their Heads above to protest and stop the rollout to Wars, Hatred and Holocaust. The occasion is Centenary Year of Modern Art being declared as ‘Degenerate Art’ by NAZIS. It is the first half of 20th century, from[Read More…]

June 26, 2020 Arts/Literature
Mr. Floyd

Mr. Floyd

My maternal grandfather’s family name is Floyd.  His mother was a Cherokee woman and Grandfather Floyd’s cousin was from the Choctaw nation.  The cousin was considered the Robin Hood of the American Great Depression and was immortalized in song by Woody Guthrie as Pretty Boy Floyd the Outlaw.  I do not know if there is a blood link between Grandpa’s[Read More…]

June 24, 2020 Arts/Literature
‘Axone’ movie review: Political insensitivity derailed a potential pathbreaker 

‘Axone’ movie review: Political insensitivity derailed a potential pathbreaker 

Axone (‘akhuni’- a fermented soy bean dish), which revolves around the quirky premise of misadventures with cooking a ‘smelly’ and ‘tasty’ delicacy and has an unusual cast, majority of being the residents of northeastern states hold promises to a niche audience. ‘Northeasterners’  or people belonging to the northeastern region of India rejoiced to finally see a film that  did not[Read More…]

June 22, 2020 Arts/Literature
Capturing ‘Walking over Water’ on canvas

Capturing ‘Walking over Water’ on canvas

My rendezvous with ‘Walking over Water’ created a fresh gush of energy outpouring inside. Here Joshy unfolds a tale about something which has no story in the conventional sense. He weaves the tapestry in the frame of a fictional game of visual discourse. The vivacity of his film and its internal design of image and sound stimulate a sense of[Read More…]

June 21, 2020 Arts/Literature
Celebrating World Music Day: 21st June: Facing Illness with Music – The Story of Claudio Abbado

Celebrating World Music Day: 21st June: Facing Illness with Music – The Story of Claudio Abbado

Human civilization is confronting illness in a way unprecedented in the recent past. Brings back the image of the little girl Sita in Ritwit Ghatak’s movie Subarnarekha, who was singing in an abandoned air-strip, and all of a sudden, Kali the mother-destroyer appeared before her. The frightened little girl realized that it is only a poor man wearing the mask[Read More…]

June 21, 2020 Arts/Literature
Kashmiri Boy Chasing Dreams in Bollywood Film Industry

Kashmiri Boy Chasing Dreams in Bollywood Film Industry

Wajahat Rafiq is a Mumbai Based Filmmaker, born in Kashmir groomed his career in Bollywood industry as an actor and flim maker.. In an interview with Ubaid Bhat, Wajahat highlighted his journey of being a filmmaker though he started his carrier as an actor .. As you belong to non Bollywood background how did you chose it as a carrier[Read More…]

June 21, 2020 Arts/Literature
GATHERING at the CENTER

GATHERING at the CENTER

This poem was originally written on request and publicly recited by then Seattle Mayor, Norm Rice (a Black American) for the reopening of Key Arena and the Founders’ Fountain at the Seattle Center on 28 October 1995.  At that time, what the poem expresses was an aspiration shared by the Mayor and me.  Norm Rice did not make a speech[Read More…]

June 20, 2020 Arts/Literature
Kali

Kali

[Inspired by renowned artist of Bengal Benimadhab’s artwork of Kali (woodcut litho print) which I received as a gift during the book launch of our anthology ‘Muffled Moans Unleashed’, done in collaboration with Green Tara Social Initiative, Kolkata, India.] The Kali in my being, a calcified truth of light overpowered by savage darkness. The Kali in my soul, a perpetual[Read More…]

June 19, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Caste Hooligans –    Part II

The Caste Hooligans –    Part II

           Kazi Nazrul Islam (1899-1976) The Caste Hooligans –    Part II – ( Jaater Naame Bajjati Shob )   Blinded even in daylight, do you see not How every moment of every day, this caste insanity In the grinding stone of its crushing mill Is pounding every one of you to pulp? The weight of your caste insanity is killing[Read More…]

June 19, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Biggest Evil

The Biggest Evil

Each war Each boundary dispute Multiplies human culture By zero It proclaims the helplessness Of literature and spiritual thoughts It answers the question why Buddhists like Lao Tzu Have forsaken the human world And withdrawn into icy silence There is no right or wrong side in War   There is no war like one for justice Since war is the[Read More…]

June 19, 2020 Arts/Literature
A Poem for Iyad Hallaq

A Poem for Iyad Hallaq

On 30 May 2020, Iyad Hallaq, a 32 year old autistic man, was killed by Israeli Police. This poem is an encapsulation and remembrance of Iyad Hallaq’s agonizing death.  In the subdued sighs of oppression I always remember you. In the craggy crevices of colonialism, I find your helpless heart pulsating in pain. From the blood beplastered barrel of gun,[Read More…]

June 16, 2020 Arts/Literature
The New World

The New World

  On the edge of annihilation, a tiny virus rimmed by an aging sun draws on the sap of bread earned by man   The conquistador of Nature, the hunter, the seeker — all have stopped The seller sadly winds his words in a lonely home   Television sets blare old shows Man depressed into unrest slowly crawls towards the rim[Read More…]

June 16, 2020 Arts/Literature
Photo By Mabutto : Sculpture by C.G. Prince - African image of Jesus,Kenya

Looking for Coffins

At my teens from Sunday church I wandered in old small town looking birds listening old band near traditional coffin workshop where many variety coffins stacked When grown up as a student Study of funerals were my interest as it was rituals and traditions show the drama of true life on earth our real live theater Witnessed looked heard read[Read More…]

June 14, 2020 Arts/Literature
Death Walk Song

Death Walk Song

On 24 March 2020, the Prime Minister of India ordered a nationwide lockdown for 21 days, suddenly limiting the movement of 1.3 billion Indians as a preventive measure against the COVID-19 pandemic. Millions of urban migrant workers lost their livelihoods and were trapped thousands of miles away from their native villages. Due to the lockdown, more than 350 deaths were[Read More…]

June 13, 2020 Arts/Literature
 Capernaum – It’s not the Heart Crying but the Anger, Shouting

 Capernaum – It’s not the Heart Crying but the Anger, Shouting

I grew up with the idea that we all are little distressed of what we are, where we live and what life does to us. Yet, since childhood, either I tried to settle this conundrum with the ancient sayings of finding satisfaction in what I have, or accepting something like “this is what God has had for you”. The meanings[Read More…]

June 10, 2020 Arts/Literature
 Death of a Salesman named Nasir

 Death of a Salesman named Nasir

“I’ve been thinking about the patience Of ordinary things, how clothes Wait respectfully in closets And soap dries quietly in the dish, And towels drink the wet From the skin of the back. And the lovely repetition of stairs. And what is more generous than a window?” – Pat Schneider We take ordinary things and ordinary days for granted. Like[Read More…]

June 10, 2020 Arts/Literature
A Renaissance Poet in the Twenty-First Century?

A Renaissance Poet in the Twenty-First Century?

Dustin Pickering in conversation with Mitali Chakravarty He talks of love and religion and writes poetry that is often critiqued by some as similar to verses from the past. And his role model is from the Renaissance — Michelangelo. To some, he is a loyal friend in need, a person who whips up essays and articles on demand. He is[Read More…]

June 7, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Caste Hooligans

The Caste Hooligans

  ( Jaater Naame Bajjati Shob ) Kazi Nazrul Islam (1899-1976)   Translation © Monish R Chatterjee 2020 The caste hooligans have long been at play Caste fraudsters gambling with human life – So touching a fellow human makes you an outcaste Is your caste, then, fragile as candy in a child’s hand? Caste hooligans playing roulette.   Hookah water[Read More…]

June 7, 2020 Arts/Literature
Minamata Pieta

Minamata Pieta

(The title alludes to the photo by W. Eugene and Aileen Smith, in which a mother bathes her crippled, twelve-year-old daughter….  A hundred people died and nearly a thousand were crippled as a result of mercury poisoning in Minamata, Japan.)   “Daughter, my daughter, I will hold you with my strong arms and let the warmth of the water enter[Read More…]

June 6, 2020 Arts/Literature
My Wretched Country

My Wretched Country

(Hey Mor Durbhaga Desh) Rabindranath Tagore Translation © Monish R Chatterjee 2020 O my wretched country For each one upon whom you have heaped insult Through insult it is, one day, you shall be their equal! Him you have denied the very rights of a human being Left standing before you, degraded, yet took not into your lap- Through insult[Read More…]

June 4, 2020 Arts/Literature
On mobs, monkeys and migrants

On mobs, monkeys and migrants

A review of Prateek Vats’ film “Eeb Allay Ooo” which revolves around the life of a migrant worker recruited as a contractual monkey repeller in Delhi. In his paper titled The Beautiful Expanding Future of Poverty, Ashis Nandy elaborated on the difference between absolute and relative poverty. While relative poverty is when one is receiving an income that is below[Read More…]

June 4, 2020 Arts/Literature
#Minnesota by Dustin Pickering

 Why?

Sometimes,   One needs to get away from the torrid darkness of words. A darkness that annihilates. Swirling, twirling a blackness laced with blood, anger, hate   Marginalised   —   Sometimes from a brutal knee Sometimes a mob or a bloody bullet kiss —   Violent Death   Drops in the ocean connect all lands called continents   Mourning Mothers’[Read More…]

June 1, 2020 Arts/Literature
I – The Parasite

I – The Parasite

What is it that you are staring at me for? With those eyes of yours that are like blank gaping holes Any sign of life, I have sucked out from those eyes long ago By naming you, shaming you, calling you a parasite, till my voice turned hoarse   I was rejoicing in the cover of protectiveness that your ‘parasitic’[Read More…]

May 28, 2020 Arts/Literature
Irrfan Khan (The Artist): A Very Personal Tribute

Irrfan Khan (The Artist): A Very Personal Tribute

“Darya bhi main, darakht bhi main … Jhelum bhi main, chinar bhi main … dair bhi hoon, haram bhi hoon … Shia bhi hoon, Sunni bhi hoon, main hoon pandit … main tha, main hoon aur main hi rahoonga” Roohdar in Haider In his piercing, shrill and slightly rough-textured voice, the words reverberate. Rare are the moments when the mainstream[Read More…]

May 27, 2020 Arts/Literature
In between Gender and nationalism: A controversy over “Nepali women” in Amazon web series Pataal Lok

In between Gender and nationalism: A controversy over “Nepali women” in Amazon web series Pataal Lok

Among many crises unfolding in the form of Corona Pandemic, Amphan cyclone, Indo-Nepal border disputes, etc, a Nepali speaking community in India is grappling with the question of nationality and racism after the recently broadcast web series Pataal Lok in Amazon Prime Video. A dialogue in the second episode of the series which used offensive a sexual and racial slur[Read More…]

May 26, 2020 Arts/Literature
 Hirak Rajar Deshe, a fable  forty years ahead of its time

 Hirak Rajar Deshe, a fable  forty years ahead of its time

 Satyajit Ray’s film is a heady cocktail of dystopia and comic fantasy                     Eleven years after Goopy Gyne Bagha Byne (‘The Adventures of Goopy and Bagha’) came its sequel, Hirak Rajar Deshe (‘The Kingdom of Diamonds’), in December, 1980. In the interregnum, Satyajit Ray had made eight full-length feature films, one television short and three documentaries, and the genres[Read More…]

May 26, 2020 Arts/Literature
Clean up after you give birth – and don’t forget your mask

Clean up after you give birth – and don’t forget your mask

One They named him Corona, it is not uncommon for babies to be named after special events, or characters in history. But that is not the point. Two One assumes giving birth is essential to the continuity of life, but birthing On footpaths? At roadsides? Under flyovers? How else does one define apocalypse? Three These women, many, too many in indignity.[Read More…]

May 26, 2020 Arts/Literature
Girasole: Sunflower (How Language Is Learned)

Girasole: Sunflower (How Language Is Learned)

1. “Girasole,” Italians say, accent on soul, “g” as in gyro, the last syllable, lay–a medieval song. In my uncle’s garden there were many (heads taller than I, taller even than the tomato plants he trained to staves heading towards trellises of overhead vines from which he squeezed–sweet!– grapes’ wine-dark blood). But these were different— golden, star-petaled…serene; yet…eerie how they[Read More…]

May 25, 2020 Arts/Literature
On your feet

On your feet

Feet of God is revered flowers offered at feet. Elders’ feet touched for paying respect. Saintly person’s feet are cleansed. Entered home with feet washed. Gurus’ feet smeared with herbal oils. Apologies offered at master’s feet. Blessings seeked at parents feet. Stand on your own feet often it is said so. On feet, clans moved nations to nations. Pilgrims gone[Read More…]

May 24, 2020 Arts/Literature
Indian contributions to British Music

Indian contributions to British Music

“In the dark times Will there also be singing? Yes, there will also be singing. About the dark times.” -Bertolt Brecht These historic lines are prophetically relevant today as we witness the forward march of right wing and reactionary forces in India and UK. These forces are destroying the multicultural mosaic of our society and all other progressive achievements of[Read More…]

May 22, 2020 Arts/Literature
Remembrances of Meeting Cult Novelist Andrzej Kusniewicz in Warsaw

Remembrances of Meeting Cult Novelist Andrzej Kusniewicz in Warsaw

HERE I AM The Polish word, jestem—‘I am’, ‘here I am’, ‘present’—seems to define the life of the writer and cult figure for a generation, Andrzej Kusniewicz. On an overcast, pollution-infested Warsaw afternoon over thirty years ago in his crowded study in a surprisingly bourgeois apartment in a quiet residential area of the capital city, the poet-novelist insisted on the Polish[Read More…]

May 22, 2020 Arts/Literature
How many –

How many –

How many people cried? How many people died? Sunderbans submerged Nearly five thousand starved Will they die of Corona Hunger or Amphan? And the animals? Biodiversity Day — what happened to them? Lakeside Gardens No water No electricity No internet Poles broken Cars shattered Distress, distress, distress. The cities are all in a mess! In Sunderban, Do they have access[Read More…]

May 22, 2020 Arts/Literature
A Weaver of Borderless Dreams: Mutiu Olawuyi

A Weaver of Borderless Dreams: Mutiu Olawuyi

Mutiu Olawuyi in conversation with Mitali Chakravarty He is a maker of dreams for writers – a man who believes in dreams that are woven in words and multimedia across the world. He connects writing with multimedia, not just by writing and YouTube screenings but also by putting upcoming writers on his television show to battle out challenging questions about how[Read More…]

May 22, 2020 Arts/Literature
 Because they looked “Nepali”: Objectifying Nepali Women in Amazon web series “Paatal Lok”

 Because they looked “Nepali”: Objectifying Nepali Women in Amazon web series “Paatal Lok”

On 2nd January 2020, India Today published news with the title “Haryana: Sisters denied passports because they “looked Nepali’” in which two sisters were denied a passport and wrote on their documents that “applicants seem to be Nepali”[1]. Not much of havoc had been seen in social media as it has become a common practice of considering Nepali as an[Read More…]

May 20, 2020 Arts/Literature, India
Walking Over Water: Do you see, what I see?

Walking Over Water: Do you see, what I see?

They say “the art of art, the glory of expression, and the sunshine of the light of letters, is simplicity.” And indeed, there is something mystic about simplicity. And watching “Walking Over Water” was a similar kind of experience for me. It was earthy and fresh. A child always gets stuck in between the never ending quarrel of parents. This[Read More…]

May 20, 2020 Arts/Literature
20 Lakh Crores Under Lockdown

20 Lakh Crores Under Lockdown

K.P.Sasi is a film maker, cartoonist, writer and activist SIGN UP FOR COUNTERCURRENTS DAILY NEWS LETTER  

May 19, 2020 Arts/Literature
Dirilis Ertugrul: Not A Turkish Game of Thrones, much less, much more

Dirilis Ertugrul: Not A Turkish Game of Thrones, much less, much more

Co-Written by Ishrat Mushtaq Malik, Sajad Hassan Khan, Sartaj Hafiz Rathore Dirilis Ertugrul (Resurrection Ertugrul) is a Turkish T.V series, produced and directed by Mehmet Bozdag, which began airing on TRT1 in Turkey in December 2014. It consists of five seasons (450 episodes of 45 minutes each on Netflix). It has been dubbed in more than twenty (20) languages, including[Read More…]

May 19, 2020 Arts/Literature
That Guy

That Guy

  1. If I come back to earth as a movie star, I want to be that guy nobody knows. You know who I mean, don’t you? As a young man, he gets slapped around by Bogie in The Maltese Falcon. He’s Sidney Longstreet’s punk and foil. He’s got a pug nose and he makes you want to rub…him… out![Read More…]

May 17, 2020 Arts/Literature
Man and Money

Man and Money

Was Man made for Money? Was Money made for Man? On which side lies the land What is the truth? Did Man for Money walk straight — From Ape to Homo Habilis 2.8 million years ago? Where was the Money, the Economy? And then came Homo Sapiens — smart, intellectual, established Money, Capitalism, Communism, Socialism, all the isms that divide[Read More…]

May 17, 2020 Arts/Literature
Rebellious Thoughts At The Café de Flore

Rebellious Thoughts At The Café de Flore

  Whether revisionists and debunkers agree or not, the Café de Flore on Paris’ Boulevard Saint Germain is a living institution. Since its founding in 1870 it has existed as a café and a second home for French-speaking writers, artists and intellectuals of the likes of Apollinaire, Camus, Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir, and frequented by Hemingway and Truman Capote.[Read More…]

May 16, 2020 Arts/Literature
‘Quarantine’ World…..!

‘Quarantine’ World…..!

Migrant workers walking home , walking … For many a kilometer No water No food No shelter No time to brood On past or future …. Economy staggering Industrial output declining Manufacture of products stopped Tools are lying untouched … Where are the workers? The ‘ real’ economic torch bearers ? Pregnant woman delivers on road  (1) And walks with[Read More…]

May 15, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Sub-Inspector’s Sambar

The Sub-Inspector’s Sambar

Sub-inspector Kuttan Pillai lived with illusions about himself. The only realistic self-analysis understood by Kuttan Pillai was that he was not an efficient or good policeman – neither to the expectations of the structure of the police machinery nor to the concerns of the people. He always felt that his uniform was a barrier for his creative search. To overcome[Read More…]

May 14, 2020 Arts/Literature
Thappad: Defying patriarchy without dismantling families?

Thappad: Defying patriarchy without dismantling families?

The movie ‘Thappad’ (translated as ‘the slap’) is not merely a movie that narrates the tales of  domestic violence and its normalization, it displays the everyday forms of gendered roles and labour that are largely invisibilized in the processes of internalization and performance of heteronormative male privilege in the institution of family. The movie is based on the story of[Read More…]

May 12, 2020 Arts/Literature
Petrol Diesel Price And COVID-19

Petrol Diesel Price And COVID-19

K.P Sasi is a film maker, cartoonist and a writer SIGN UP FOR COUNTERCURRENTS DAILY NEWS LETTER  

May 12, 2020 Arts/Literature
Emergence of Resistance Literature in Kashmir

Emergence of Resistance Literature in Kashmir

              Where there is oppression, there is resistance. Michel Foucault Kashmir, as everyone knows, has been at the onslaught of military oppression and atrocities from times aeon. It has witnessed this oppression in the form of fake encounters, mass rapes like Kunan Poshpora, crackdowns, and forced disappearances. Over the years, this oppression has given birth to its own brand of[Read More…]

May 12, 2020 Arts/Literature
Rabindranath Tagore: A Universal Bard

Rabindranath Tagore: A Universal Bard

Aruna Chakravarti in discussion with Sunil Gangopadhyay Rabindranath Tagore (1861 to 1941) was born on May 7th. He was a brilliant poet, writer, musician, artist, educator – a polymath — and of course, we all know of him as the first Nobel Laureate from Asia. His writing spanned across genres, across global issues and across the world. Today to jubilate this great[Read More…]

May 11, 2020 Arts/Literature
To Armaud, The Flame

To Armaud, The Flame

A thread in our lives That never unravels Pinching at the seam Of our civilization As an unhealed cut Bleeds, even in dribbles Pains us until We learn to ignore We can watch And not see We can see But not register Each one matters Loved ones shattered Potential lost Over before the bell A flame Might flicker A flame[Read More…]

May 10, 2020 Arts/Literature
Manufacturing Consent

Manufacturing Consent

K.P Sasi is a film maker, cartoonist and writer SIGN UP FOR COUNTERCURRENTS DAILY NEWS LETTER  

May 9, 2020 Arts/Literature
“There is a voice within me/ That will not be Still”

“There is a voice within me/ That will not be Still”

Nalini Priyadarshni in conversation with Anu Mahadev An abuse victim in the past, Anu Mahadev is a poet based in New Jersey. She is a 2016 MFA graduate of the Drew University’s MFA program in Madison, NJ. With two poetry collections to her credit, Myriad (2013) and Neem Leaves (2015) Anu is a curious reader and lifelong learner. She is passionate and outspoken about[Read More…]

May 6, 2020 Arts/Literature
The unforgettable Irrfan Khan!

The unforgettable Irrfan Khan!

Every death brings grief momentarily, but this death was different. It also brought with it an end to a stream of creativity with the uniqueness of Irrfan. Every great artist strives for the realization of his creative possibilities and is passionate about his unique identity. It was true for Irrfan Khan as well. His death was sudden and at young[Read More…]

May 4, 2020 Arts/Literature
 Online Documentary Screenings: Noam Chomsky and Mark Achbar to answer your question!

 Online Documentary Screenings: Noam Chomsky and Mark Achbar to answer your question!

Vikalkp is going online with our interactive documentary film screenings on a weekly basis till the lockdown ends. The idea is simple. Starting 1st May, Friday noon, we will provide a 48 hour YouTube or Vimeo link to a good documentary film on our Facebook page www.bit.ly/vikalpscreenings. The link, which will remain valid till Sunday noon, will point directly to[Read More…]

May 2, 2020 Arts/Literature
Monologists

Monologists

I do not find it profitable to talk to the dead! They are so single-minded! They repeat old stories over and over Until one feels like screaming: “PLEASE MOVE ON!” The dead are ventriloquists. As soon as you think they’re silent, A living soul takes up their mantle, Suddenly nudging you: “Did you hear the one about…?” (And…you’ve heard it[Read More…]

May 1, 2020 Arts/Literature
Salim Bhai Please!

Salim Bhai Please!

Salim Bhai please Get out of the house It is burning Please get out It is but one room I cannot leave It is my house After all Salim Bhai please Get out of the house It is burning Please get out It is but two rooms I cannot leave It is my neighborhood After all Salim Bhai please Get[Read More…]

April 30, 2020 Arts/Literature
Looking Back At ‘Sadgati’: An Artistic Peak Satyajit Ray Himself Touched Only Rarely             

Looking Back At ‘Sadgati’: An Artistic Peak Satyajit Ray Himself Touched Only Rarely             

                            Sadgati (1981) marked a watershed in Satyajit Ray’s career. He suffered a massive heart attack soon after Sadgati was in the can, and never recovered fully from the blow. And he was not quite the same artist ever again. You realise this as you watch Sadgati after[Read More…]

April 30, 2020 Arts/Literature
Photo by John Vetterli

Autistic Boy

The mute boy as slender as a willow sapling looks at the world with eyes big and bright by light intake and color.   He does not look at the world as others look.  He looks in his own way   His world is a world of maenad laughter.  His world is a world of confusion; a world he can[Read More…]

April 27, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Corona Chicken Farm

The Corona Chicken Farm

“They have decided to extend the lockdown by another three weeks!” said Chicken Number One, who was always the first with the news. The information set off a wave of outrage among the five thousand plus birds at the Corona Chicken Farm, the cacophony almost blowing the tin shed above their heads. “Our food supplies are dwindling, we can’t go[Read More…]

April 26, 2020 Arts/Literature
Rice for Hand Sanitiser production

Rice for Hand Sanitiser production

Between my stomach and your hands You choose to select your hands And leave my stomach aside By prioritising your scarcity over my scarcity When my stomach cries for food You choose to convert my food into your sanitiser And convince me that this is what I need it at this point of time And not something which I really[Read More…]

April 25, 2020 Arts/Literature
On the Trail of Jorge Luis Borges in Buenos Aires

On the Trail of Jorge Luis Borges in Buenos Aires

I am uneasy writing about Jorge Luis Borges (b.1899, Buenos Aires, d. 1986, Geneva). Borges wrote so much that I have not read; yet his world of myth and fantasy and magic and metaphysics has so influenced me that since I am here in his city where I can feel Borges the man rather than only Borges the artist and[Read More…]

April 24, 2020 Arts/Literature
‘ Lock?…… Down!’

‘ Lock?…… Down!’

Years ago You imposed lockdown On our actions Aspirations Choices Voices…. You imposed lockdown On our thoughts Our minds Our movements Our expressions …. We were ‘socially’ distanced Discriminated Oppressed Repressed…. Now you are promoting ‘social’ distancing Instead of explaining ‘physical’ distancing Paving way to convince people of tradition Glorifying caste system and its logical coronation …. Your lockdown of[Read More…]

April 24, 2020 Arts/Literature
Earth Day

Earth Day

May we be receptive to the wisdom of nature and the knowledge that if her laws are obeyed, our lands and people will flourish May we save the planet from present practices of destruction and allow the raw wounds of the earth to heal May we bring back the natural harmony of nature and restore to our souls the richness[Read More…]

April 23, 2020 Arts/Literature
The River of Life

The River of Life

I float down the river. It can be any river imagined. Yet it is here despite a vision Devised to make it real. It stretches back in time To the Big Bang And into a nearly imaginable future Until the Earth is swallowed By a dying expanding sun That swallows our planet fully as it is engulfed. Such ponderous thoughts[Read More…]

April 23, 2020 Arts/Literature
Picking fruit from cherry wood. cherry picker hands. fresh organic cherries. red fresh cherry on the tree. fresh red cherry heap. macro shooting on tree.

To the Cherry Pickers (To Make Much of Time)

God bless the cherry-pickers! They swarm upon the ground— picking, picking, picking what’s unerringly found. They love low-hanging branches where picking’s easily done. They abhor a wealth of chances. “Tough nuts” they always shun! They tell you what you’ve heard a hundred thousand times. They claim the final word is easy—and it rhymes! They know the way to Timbuktu. They[Read More…]

April 23, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Transparent People

The Transparent People

The transparent people cannot be seen Is that true? The transparent people have no emotions Is that true? In a field, on a bus Walking down the road Singing, in pain The sun is no friend Nor is the rain The transparent people float Smiling in pictures No flowers at home The transparent people From towns on a map Forever[Read More…]

April 18, 2020 Arts/Literature
Stay Safe; Stay Home

Stay Safe; Stay Home

Stay Safe. Stay Home.   The birds flew home. They had nests.   Stay Safe. Stay Home.   But, men? Did all men have a place to stay? A place they could rest? A place that housed their beds?   “1.6 billion worldwide lack adequate housing”.   Stay Safe. Stay Home.   A place that shelters them from Death by[Read More…]

April 18, 2020 Arts/Literature
 The ‘Sultana’s Dream’ Project by Chitra Ganesh and the Importance of Muslim Feminisms

 The ‘Sultana’s Dream’ Project by Chitra Ganesh and the Importance of Muslim Feminisms

I was fascinated to learn that a new exhibit at the Memorial Art Gallery (MAG), in Rochester, New York, celebrates Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain’s Sultana’s Dream. For those who have not heard of this groundbreaking work, a quick Google search yields this synopsis on Wikipedia: Sultana’s Dream is a 1905 feminist utopian story written by Rokeya Sakhawat Hossain, a Muslim feminist,[Read More…]

April 17, 2020 Arts/Literature
Photo by anokarina

To Oppressed Truth-Tellers Everywhere

I must go where my conscience takes me not where I am supposed to go. I must do what my conscience dictates, in fact demands. I cannot succumb. I have made mistakes and I’ll repent forever, not in some magical way but in a very practical way. I will learn to want less and thus to have more freedom for[Read More…]

April 16, 2020 Arts/Literature
Andrea Bocelli’s Music Hugging the Wounded Earth

Andrea Bocelli’s Music Hugging the Wounded Earth

On Easter Sunday Andrea Bocelli performing at the historic Duomo cathedral in Milan. The cathedral is closed to the public because of the coronavirus pandemic. This past Easter Sunday (April 12), Italian tenor Andrea Bocelli performed a solo concert titled “Music for Hope” to promote “love, healing and hope to Italy and the world.” The next day, he gave an[Read More…]

April 15, 2020 Arts/Literature
We want to go home

We want to go home

Allow us to go home At a time when we are stuck in your cities Neither continuing here for earning livelihood by staying Nor getting a privilege to practice your set norms With economic activities coming to a halt And stoppage of all the work and no means to earn We are least motivated to stay back And want to[Read More…]

April 15, 2020 Arts/Literature
A Dying Nation

A Dying Nation

Knocks repeated knocks Dead of night Pounding The Door and the Heart Friends and Loved Ones Left to cry Fate awaits No Garlands Jagged edges cut Deeply Our silence Even deeper Biko, Anand Together The wages of deceit In a dying nation Romi Mahajan in an Author, Marketer, Investor, and Activist SIGN UP FOR COUNTERCURRENTS DAILY NEWS LETTER  

April 14, 2020 Arts/Literature
“Chemical Shower, Bareilly, Covid 19’ by DeepankarGohain

Lockdown Ruminations

I have never had such a long unending weekend.. Celebrating clear blue skies, a greater fluttering of birds and the flowers sprouting like never before. A lovely pink moon adorned the Universe this morning. Inhaling all this wonderous views, doing deep breathing exercises, holding the breath to the count of fourty was an exhilarating joy.. Then I thought of the[Read More…]

April 12, 2020 Arts/Literature
Pandemic and Poetry: How Writers in Pakistan react to COVID-19

Pandemic and Poetry: How Writers in Pakistan react to COVID-19

There is a proverb in Persian and Urdu that could be roughly translated thus — ‘A collective death has an air of festivity’. The great Urdu poet, Ghalib, however, would have not subscribed to this notion as was made evident from an episode in his personal life. Once afflicted by his financial and existential miseries, he had foretold his own[Read More…]

April 8, 2020 Arts/Literature
Bohemian folk singer who sang for those who couldn’t

Bohemian folk singer who sang for those who couldn’t

 In an ideal world, we all hope to leave the world a better place, to make a difference somehow, to have our life matter. Julie Felix, who died recently, aged 81, has left behind a legacy far greater than her half century career as a folk singer. But to dismiss her just as a protest singer of yesteryear would be[Read More…]

April 5, 2020 Arts/Literature
Review of Ajnabi

Review of Ajnabi

(Adaptation of The Stranger by Albert Camus) Directed by Anil Kumar Chaudhary Performed at Veda Factory and Tefla’s Studio As strange as it may sound – is the philosophy of the world, condemned to death. If the purpose of literature is to comfort and disconcert, the actor is the promise of the world which, in Camus’ The Stranger, Meursault imagines.[Read More…]

April 4, 2020 Arts/Literature
Manusangada: The Grammar of Anarchy

Manusangada: The Grammar of Anarchy

“Constitutional morality is not a natural sentiment. It has to be cultivated. We must realise that our people have yet to learn it. Democracy in India is only a top-dressing on an Indian soil which is essentially undemocratic.”                             – Dr.B.R.Ambedkar       The above quote by Babsaheb Ambedkar in the times of Corona Pandemic which is proving to be a[Read More…]

April 4, 2020 Arts/Literature
What’s This ‘Candle’ Ma?

What’s This ‘Candle’ Ma?

K.P Sasi is a film maker, cartoonist and a writer SIGN UP FOR COUNTERCURRENTS DAILY NEWS LETTER  

April 4, 2020 Arts/Literature
The crackle of brilliance

The crackle of brilliance

A review of the play ‘Kusur’ Director & Lead actor: Amol Palekar Co-director & Playwright: Sandhya Gokhale Veteran script writer, costume and set designer, scholar of Hindustani classical music and lawyer, Sandhya Gokhale staged her play, ‘Kusur’ at the inaugural function of New Delhi’s National School of Drama’s 21st Bharat Rang Mahotsav – India’s International Theatre Festival spanning 21 days[Read More…]

April 2, 2020 Arts/Literature
COVID-19 And We Are Not Allowed To Watch, Listen And Read What We Want, Anymore

COVID-19 And We Are Not Allowed To Watch, Listen And Read What We Want, Anymore

Now, that almost all of us, all over the world, have been forced into staying in what could be easily defined as house arrest, there is suddenly plenty of time to read books, to watch great films, and to listen to splendid music. Many of us, for years, have been sadly repeating again and again: “if only we would have[Read More…]

April 2, 2020 Arts/Literature
Bob Dylan’s Midnight Message to JFK’s Ghost

Bob Dylan’s Midnight Message to JFK’s Ghost

“For murder, though it have no tongue, will speak with most miraculous organ.”   – Hamlet On May 1, 1962, President John Kennedy was meeting in the Oval Office with a group of Quakers who were urging him to do more for peace and disarmament.  As he kept explaining the great political opposition he was facing within his own government, they[Read More…]

April 1, 2020 Arts/Literature
Poetry as Utopia and Apocalypse

Poetry as Utopia and Apocalypse

The word “prophet” is rooted in the Greek word prophetes, a word that breaks down etymologically into “to speak before or foretell”. A soothsayer is considered a prophet in the sense that he foretells events. Such is the soothsayer in Julius Caesar who tells Caesar to “beware of the ides of March” when he was doomed to assassination. The Prophetic books of the Old[Read More…]

April 1, 2020 Arts/Literature
An Open Letter to my Deceased Father

An Open Letter to my Deceased Father

Dear Dad, I am glad you did not live to see these.   You died.   Died before you saw them collapse by the roadside.   Gandhi called them his friend. And so did you.   Why did God not have mercy on them?   Why is it they have no food? No water, no shoes? Why is it they[Read More…]

March 31, 2020 Arts/Literature
We the abandoned – Migrant workers

We the abandoned – Migrant workers

We the abandoned people of this world Out there walking miles to our villages With none in your cities to protect us During these times of lockdown   We built your houses We constructed your offices We built your shopping malls We produced in your factories   We built your cities from the scratch We served your needs in your[Read More…]

March 30, 2020 Arts/Literature
Nation

Nation

The small bird who has just learnt to fly Flapping her wings with joy and confidence Moving across the wind in the sky With the earth and her people under her feet The little bird who flies in the sky Does not feel that she owns the sky.   The young fish who has just come out of the egg[Read More…]

March 29, 2020 Arts/Literature
Poetry In The Time Of Resistance

Poetry In The Time Of Resistance

It has been more than three months since the protest against Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA) is happening across the country. The protest has achieved its reach across the national boundaries. Jamia Millia Islamia has been the flag bearer ever since it has started, soon universities across the world joined this protest; firstly against the brutalities unleashed by Delhi Police on[Read More…]

March 26, 2020 Arts/Literature
Primavera Redefined – (Or life post-corona virus?)

Primavera Redefined – (Or life post-corona virus?)

From the womb of the Earth, She rose —   Fiery, like the volcanic core, unfolding each limb. soaring, phoenix like, from the ash left behind   out of the gore the rotting Core of the Death Sun.   Cremation smoke.   From the womb of the Earth She rose —   Death crept. Silenced factory smoke.   She strode[Read More…]

March 23, 2020 Arts/Literature
Indu Kilam Waxes Lyrical

Indu Kilam Waxes Lyrical

It was perhaps the twentieth day of the lockdown. I had lost count of dates and days, sitting in my small ten by twelve feet study, like my ancestors the pit dwellers, I had no idea about the world outside. Dead landlines and lifeless cell phones had gathered dust as thick as scum on the stinking pond in the heart[Read More…]

March 21, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Poet as Warrior

The Poet as Warrior

   (Dedicated to Kai Coggin) W. H. Auden’s poem “In Memory of W. B. Yeats” is often quoted to dismiss the importance of poetry as a form of social justice. The current fashion among poets is that poetry can revolutionize social inequalities, make positive changes, build empathy for marginalized groups, and convey information about causes important to the poet. For[Read More…]

March 21, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Many Allegories of Parasite: When the Cellars Hit Back

The Many Allegories of Parasite: When the Cellars Hit Back

The multi-award winning South Korean movie Parasite is a feast of stunning surprises and irresistibly eloquent symbolism.From the very title and its ambiguity to the hierarchy of three families inhabiting a layered architectural splendor, metaphor is everywhere. Look at the three families and their visibilities, spatial agency and even smells. Parasite is inevitably about the politics of space, its ownership[Read More…]

March 21, 2020 Arts/Literature
Two Covid-19 viruses meet Albert Camus

Two Covid-19 viruses meet Albert Camus

The world was calm now. And silent. Only the birds chirped tweeted sang cawed. Only the animals barked mewed mooed growled. Only the river gurgled. Only the sky thundered. Only the fires crackled.   Two covid-19 teenage viuses walked around the city assessing the damage. On Route vers l’ouest, they found mansions with cars parked in front and little gardens.[Read More…]

March 15, 2020 Arts/Literature
Kashmir got it’s first female calligrapher

Kashmir got it’s first female calligrapher

Nadiya Mushtaq Mir hailing from Kralpora area of district Budgam , educated from Kashmir University where she pursued masters in economics as well as a degree in fashion designing has become Kashmir’s first female calligrapher. ‌Speaking about her art (calligraphy) and designing she said since childhood she was very keen and interested in this art and make sure it will[Read More…]

March 12, 2020 Arts/Literature
Love in the time of the Karuna virus

Love in the time of the Karuna virus

no one bothered till the Karuna virus caught the police chanting the Hindu god’s name and chasing Muhammedans along with the mobs. the virus had its miraculous debut in Shaheen Bagh when one by one the policemen stopped in their tracks and lowered the batons. the ones demolishing the Masjids stopped work and came down as if nothing ever happened.[Read More…]

March 10, 2020 Arts/Literature
On the eve of the 60th anniversary of the atomic bombing of Hiroshima, Greenpeace volunteers fly Peace Doves, bearing messages of peace, "No More Hiroshima", "Yes to Peace",  "No to Rokkasho" in Japanese and in English, beside the A-Bomb Dome Memorial in Hiroshima. 
Greenpeace renews their calls for peace and make this anniversary a message to world leaders to make real their commitments to nuclear disarmament, including the Japanese government to abandon plans to produce nuclear weapons.

Warriors of Peace – What do We Fight for?

For this country of our fathers and forefathers who laid down their lives to unshackle it and rebuilt it with their sweat and blood India of their hopes and dreams the land we kiss, whose dust adorns our foreheads We fight for the Constitution collective conscience of wise men and women who wanted to ensure that each one of us[Read More…]

March 10, 2020 Arts/Literature
They played Ashtapada

They played Ashtapada

a muslim with his eyes blinded was recognized by the direction his face lay turned towards the qibla1 bloodstains whispering war on his cheeks like line breaks of a romantic ballad poem his last prayer very carefully spoken as he was heaving, breathing being dragged from the arms of his kohl-eyed lover, before they made her a corpse, her unarmed[Read More…]

March 8, 2020 Arts/Literature
Alarm

Alarm

Any narrative of Delhi Riots ’20 just communal is dangerous for all but some are keen to say so ever The jackals after sheep herd people of riot hit zones committed helping each other to survive at their best and many did great they were all good samaritans Then why are some so keen to call it fight of communities[Read More…]

March 8, 2020 Arts/Literature
A woman sitting with her husband and their child reacts next to damaged property after their house was burnt by a mob on Tuesday in a riot affected area after clashes erupted between people demonstrating for and against a new citizenship law in New Delhi, India, February 28, 2020. REUTERS/Adnan Abidi - RC2L9F9XG1SM

Fearlessly Forever !

Today, it rained in Delhi. Tonight, the rains would wash the stains Of blood on the streets filled with pain. The earth would absorb the red And little green grass would spread Over this patch which filled the anguish Of ribbons of peace of millions of others. A storm will emerge tomorrow The big trees may collapse with that storm[Read More…]

March 7, 2020 Arts/Literature
Lives In Painting

Lives In Painting

Human history as cultural history We need to reform our teaching of history so that the emphasis will be placed on the gradual growth of human culture and knowledge, a growth to which all nations and ethnic groups have contributed. A new freely downloadable book I would like to announce the publication of a book, which tells the story of[Read More…]

March 7, 2020 Arts/Literature
Marginalised?

Marginalised?

  Marginalised? Who said we are marginalised? We are humans walking side by side.   Women, Men and Children Dalits, Tribals and the Abused —   Who said we are different?   Who said that Woman is born of Man’s rib? Who said caste is by God writ?   Who said women cannot enter temples or mosques? Who said Menstruation[Read More…]

March 7, 2020 Arts/Literature
Your Beloved!!

Your Beloved!!

Call her for once,call her by her name, Another birth you may not born, To call her once again!! Hope and despair goes hand in hand, Whom you choose,’tis your decision.. Step forward,if you hold a broad chest, Don’t allow despair to play the rest! It’s tough though,as void and ego don’t let you do, Remember that ,Miracle does not[Read More…]

March 5, 2020 Arts/Literature
Song of Requiem For the 46… and Counting

Song of Requiem For the 46… and Counting

Beneath a pile of charred rubble sodden with splattered blood hanging on precariously to the half rotten dead in the drain killed in the name of God now a bait of murderous mob for the unsuspecting who come looking for their own I am Delhi ravaged by my kith, shamed by my kin I bewail my destiny marked with massacre[Read More…]

March 5, 2020 Arts/Literature
On the movies Parasite, Joker and of Class Struggle

On the movies Parasite, Joker and of Class Struggle

      Sitting in the movie halls watching Joker and later Parasite in the order of release, these two seemingly different Oscar winning movies bring forth differing and varied emotions. While with Joker, you are taken through an intense microcosm view of individual agony of personal and structural violence and desperately begs your allegiance and sympathy towards the anti- hero,[Read More…]

March 4, 2020 Arts/Literature
Empty Desire!!

Empty Desire!!

It is five o clock in mid spring.. And the hymns of Azaan comes into my ears, Where do the God’s Abode,I don’t know, Neither it is my wish to know about .. I walk by my own, towards the clock tower , Drizzles wet me, still I wish to get a cool shower.. It seemed I had been locked[Read More…]

March 1, 2020 Arts/Literature
Lalan Fakir in Outerspace

Lalan Fakir in Outerspace

I have seen the world recede behind the trees; the world that was for you and me — a vibrant blue world, dotted with green, swirls of ocean and breeze painted by Van Gogh — A Starry Night, and then came a tsunami that wiped it all from site.   A fakir overnight, as Lalan, I sing afloat in space[Read More…]

February 26, 2020 Arts/Literature
You, yes you!

You, yes you!

He’s not my leader the one who is too busy for the people who are dying on the streets, he’s just a bad fox who eats on the dead and lurks in dark to escape to his friends who are murderers! You, yes you! I am fed up of you how you lie, how you kill and then groan in[Read More…]

February 26, 2020 Arts/Literature
Painting A True Christ: A Review of Terrence Malick’s Film “A Hidden Life”

Painting A True Christ: A Review of Terrence Malick’s Film “A Hidden Life”

There’s an early scene in Terrence Malick’s masterful new film – what I would call a moving painting – where the central character Franz Jägerstätter, an Austrian peasant farmer from an isolated small mountainous village who refuses to take an oath to Hitler and fight in the German army, is talking to an older man who is restoring paintings in[Read More…]

February 20, 2020 Arts/Literature
The song of Shaheen Bagh

The song of Shaheen Bagh

Shaheen Bagh is untouched by the winter chill there is a fire burning within! Shaheen Bagh replies speeding bullets with flowers ‘why don’t we love each other?’ Shaheen Bagh is singing ‘ we will see… We will see that promised day’ Shaheen Bagh Is reading out a piece of paper, their inheritance- ‘Justice Freedom! Equality!’ Shaheen Bagh is singing a[Read More…]

February 19, 2020 Arts/Literature
Dark Phase!!

Dark Phase!!

Far away,secluded in an utter isolation, She used to count the yellow lights, being numbed, Sometimes, few of her owns came to visit her, but they never lookedback whie leaving, Again,an utter silence left behind,devoured her existence in quite dark…! Broken soul,weird thoughts,no way to be released,she wanted still to live a life, Every morning,with some needles and nerves,she painfully[Read More…]

February 19, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Lost Chinar!

The Lost Chinar!

I watch my brothers crying, begging to the nation for justice, The same pain,some sane voices to rebel against their bloody wounds, It’s the Freedom,who is chained in rules..!! Free birds got locked in a vicious cage, They’re afraid ,they tremble in the souns of bullet, A silencer is put towards their home, It’s the Freedom,which is chained in rules..!![Read More…]

February 16, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Art of Protests and Foot-marking the Politics of Silence

The Art of Protests and Foot-marking the Politics of Silence

While the art of protest is curating its own shows in the streets across the country, an art show titled ‘Rustic Footmarks’, recently held in Kochi has raised a question-mark over uncritically endorsing the generic term ‘Indianness’ and the autonomy of art The first act is the speech of silence enacted on the upfront. An art show has recently held[Read More…]

February 13, 2020 Arts/Literature
Yes, we are Shaheen bagh

Yes, we are Shaheen bagh

You call me by your own names Pakistan, Bangladesh, Tukde Tukde gang or Terrorists You push us to the walls Or kick us with all the trolls You shoot us Or abuse us   We declare, We are just a simple Shaheen bagh We are no big people But just pure simple folks of this country Who never understand your[Read More…]

February 12, 2020 Arts/Literature
#She!

#She!

Someday,sometimes,if I was remembered by you, Do come alone,with bare limbs, as I dwell in the utmost bliss.. Not the woman I’m ,whom you used to know pretty before.. She was an innocent pie,did keep faith on the lie,some col blooded lie! Here struggles a warrior,you’ll find her war marks on her body, Ruthless,desperate,leaving all her priorities to uphold her[Read More…]

February 8, 2020 Arts/Literature
Photo by MarioGuti / iStock.

Goodbye!

Like a torn string,,like a wingless seagull, I’m done..and its all over!! All my slogans,all my comrades, I bid you farewell,as my time is up.. I’ve seen brutal faces with fake adore ,covered in them, Where each eye is upon me, And my lone soul walk along.. Over the thorns, leaving my bloody steps behind.. I bid you fsrewell, my[Read More…]

February 5, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Script is Being Written

The Script is Being Written

The script is being written For those belonging to the `other’ faith For women, Dalits, and the margins and For the under-nourished colours Trying to cover their bodies and minds From the gazes of penetrating shame The script is being written In bolder and bolder letters.   The script is being written When the gutters swallow the Constitution For the[Read More…]

February 4, 2020 Arts/Literature
It’s Time

It’s Time

Vaults will be broken to take out all our belongings you took away from us like nothing to make one happy palace with a big bed of our dreams, on our hope you light a bonfire! Your home shall burn for the sins you committed by taking our belief to be in power, and then nailing one fabulous manifesto filled[Read More…]

February 4, 2020 Arts/Literature
A Warrior mother!!

A Warrior mother!!

I carry some wounds and hurt with my self indeed! Not a mere woman I’m,you must know me, Rather a warrior mother,who fought a unique battle…without any weapons in her hands, Nor I am like Goddess Durga,who decorated herself with so many arms! The battle I faced and fought lone indeed, For they didn’t recognise me to my child, Another[Read More…]

February 3, 2020 Arts/Literature
Breaking News: Rama Denied Citizenship Based On NRC + CAA!

Breaking News: Rama Denied Citizenship Based On NRC + CAA!

            “Minister, we have some stunning news,” the secretary panted out as he rushed into the minister’s office. The minister was not pleased at this abrupt entrance. It was a busy day, and as the person in charge for enforcement of the new Citizenship Amendment Act, he had a lot to do. “What is it,” he curtly asked. “Sir, this[Read More…]

February 1, 2020 Arts/Literature
The deity of a destroyer!!

The deity of a destroyer!!

I’ve been locked for thousand days, threatened by your guns,and you think you banished me in front of my children.. I born with an oath,not to be defeated ,you don’t know, In a dark corner of tge green hills,I write your Last Supper.. In that corner,I raise a fire,that reached all through my children, They keep the fire in their[Read More…]

February 1, 2020 Arts/Literature
If there is peace

If there is peace

  If there is peace- where does it live? how does it look? when to look for it?   Is it in the lathis of police or the iron rods of the bajrang goons?   Is it in being mob lynched for carrying a surname in a plastic bag?   Is it in the dead bodies of ganeshguri  blast whose[Read More…]

February 1, 2020 Arts/Literature
What Jan 30 says aloud to Jan 26

What Jan 30 says aloud to Jan 26

Look, pal, You are the resurrection day of a nation and I am the remembrance day of the Father of the same nation. In a way we are closely related too being neighbours divided by just four days. Yet, I am sad to say that there is truly nothing common in between us.   I am a minute’s silent prayer.[Read More…]

January 31, 2020 Arts/Literature
All that it takes to transform

All that it takes to transform

I have dents and bumps On my shanks from soccer. My shins are covered With them and I marvel At their feel that took place When I was a teen And there were no shin guards. My son-in-law is More. He was a professional soccer player, A doctoral physicist and a MD. He is so much younger than me So[Read More…]

January 31, 2020 Arts/Literature
My Mother is crying!

My Mother is crying!

Luminous messages silently comes every dark nights, Every night bleeds there,I hear the noises of marching boots… Down the narrow lanes and paths, My mother is crying in chains… Not for a single moment Bhagat’s mother winked her eyes.. She remained calm as she would be a brave martyr’s mother… My mother is weeping, she is chained by them.. They[Read More…]

January 31, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Dissent

The Dissent

How many days people keep silence how many days keep them in prisons How many batons and bullets in store to keep a nation scared now and forever Listen to the cries it is not for mercy but for the rights granted by nation Look at these people who are gathered all under skies meek, weak and tired Still they[Read More…]

January 29, 2020 Arts/Literature
Blossoming of Shaheen Bagh

Blossoming of Shaheen Bagh

The flowers blossom in the gardens of Shaheen Bagh Lifting the spirits and releasing a fresh aroma The air filled with the spirit of the republic Bringing freshness in an environment filled with poison Attracting pilgrims to this temple called Indian republic Where devotees hold the sacred text called the constitution And read out the prayer from the preamble Perform[Read More…]

January 29, 2020 Arts/Literature
The NPR Encounter

The NPR Encounter

On hearing the door bell ringing, Mr.  Krishna Murthy got up from his reclining chair and walked to the front door with difficulty. He was experiencing cramps in both his legs for the last fortnight. On opening the door, he found two government officials with files and registers in hand and two policemen. The other two wore saffron kurtas and[Read More…]

January 28, 2020 Arts/Literature, Editor's Picks
Srinagar hunches like a wild cat!!

Srinagar hunches like a wild cat!!

Hail you ruler! In my country,in my land, Alms were distributed to us as beggars received, Food,clothes,livelihood and the most desired freedom, You rewarded us with very little on which we may just survive, Here mosques full of dust and nobody enters in namaz, our land was a tulip bed, you deliberately turned into debris!! The whole planet watching us,[Read More…]

January 28, 2020 Arts/Literature
#ShrineofLOVE…!!

#ShrineofLOVE…!!

The afternoon sun began waning over the dove-white shrine, Alone stood there the shrine,almost in the solemnity, Chirping sounds of birds coming from distant willows, Where not a single shadow guarded the wintry ray of sunshine, The shrine remarked the sign of the deep Love, And wounded several times by the bullets and guns, Everytime blood spilled masive from the[Read More…]

January 26, 2020 Arts/Literature
‘The land of Tagore is bleeding!’

‘The land of Tagore is bleeding!’

They choose me to bleed, They hurt me to bury my soul, “Don’t shout, don’t oppose, or you gotta be finished”…they shouted out, They frightened me and locked me behind the rails, “Fight Dude Fight!” My comates inspired me! They stabbed my back, with the edge of their weapons, They bullied me to kill my rage, Even they tortured me[Read More…]

January 16, 2020 Arts/Literature
Three pellets and a cradle

Three pellets and a cradle

biscuit a pellet hit her small palm that clutched a half eaten biscuit. she broke into a rasping wail “bikoot mama bikoot” the biscuit fell to the ground near her, near her mamma. mamma a pellet hit her left breast that smelt of milk. a fount of blood spurted all over her baby and soaked a biscuit on the ground.[Read More…]

January 9, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Origins Of The United States Of America, The Joker And The End Of White Supremacy

The Origins Of The United States Of America, The Joker And The End Of White Supremacy

  At its root, capitalism not only meant slavery and white supremacy but also the ethos of the gangster –  Gerald Horne       The film ‘Joker’ presents a contemporary phenomenon present in several countries, but which can only be understood in its complexity through the history of the origins of the USA. African-American historian Gerald Horne argues in the book[Read More…]

January 9, 2020 Arts/Literature
I am your voice

I am your voice

I am your voice but I will not say a word. I am politically numb. I fear that we may be entering an age of authoritarian populism and one day it will munch us all. We seek rainbow but we often get clouds of tear gas and a hail of bullets. My friend, that day is not far away when[Read More…]

January 9, 2020 Arts/Literature
An Anthem For Freedom (Aazadi)

An Anthem For Freedom (Aazadi)

There were no lines that drew you from me I had no flag, no anthem, no lines that said you stood outside I had nothing, only the world which housed many worlds Where you and I were one; Till the day they drew barbed wires between you and me And shoved me into a sky like a square grey patch[Read More…]

January 8, 2020 Arts/Literature
America, Where Great Literature Kicked The Bucket

America, Where Great Literature Kicked The Bucket

Once in a while, people ask me: “Why did you accept the US citizenship, many years ago?” “After all,” they say, “now you are one of the most vocal critics of the United States, and of the West in general.” Perhaps I never explained, or I did, some time ago, and now it is forgotten. So, let me try again,[Read More…]

January 7, 2020 Arts/Literature
Resist!

Resist!

It is a system not a sudden gathering or attack, it doesn’t have a group it has a body planning to speed up chaos, attack wasn’t just about fifty men in masks it was about the doors they found open so easily! It is a crime yet it is done with no fear, happy are they to masturbate out every[Read More…]

January 7, 2020 Arts/Literature
The Triumphing of Democracy

The Triumphing of Democracy

We see And yet we will see —   The war clouds turn the sky aflame The razing ground do much the same   Neanderthals died of unknown cause Homosapiens crossed a borderless world.   Civilisation spread Nuclear Armament   Bloodied wars   Unhouse the ones who read Shroud them Beat them till they bleed   Only one can lead[Read More…]

January 6, 2020 Arts/Literature
Search That Song

Search That Song

A beauiful actress with a fan club for her looks Looked at the mirror when she was old and said: `I am not this one and where did I go?’ A tough man with muscles all around him Asked his son by the end of the game `Who took my muscles away and why?’   An intellectual who controlled the[Read More…]

January 6, 2020 Arts/Literature
Half Widow: Movie depicting inconvenient truth about Kashmir to be released in India

Half Widow: Movie depicting inconvenient truth about Kashmir to be released in India

Half Widow, a film based on the plight of women whose husbands were abducted and killed by the Indian forces in disputed region of Kashmir, is set to be released in India next week. Made by Kashmiri filmmaker Danish Renzu, it enthralled an audience at the Vancouver International South Asian Film Festival in Surrey in 2018. An armed struggle has[Read More…]

January 3, 2020 Arts/Literature
Celebrate Womanhood…!!

Celebrate Womanhood…!!

You find her giving your birth, Even though you try to corrupt her, She is the most vigorous icon in the Earth, that may adore you or smash you, according to your will.. Show your gratitude to her, You born from her womb, Hail you Man!!always you unwrap her in your different form of words.. The temple of her is[Read More…]

January 1, 2020 Arts/Literature
Black Mirror’s Scathing Social Commentary Is A Wake-Up Call for Contemporary Democracies

Black Mirror’s Scathing Social Commentary Is A Wake-Up Call for Contemporary Democracies

Black Mirror does best when it shows how, in a world that’s almost this world, mass media and social media cause problematic behaviour at the mass level. Premiering in 2011 in Britain, before taking the world by storm on Netflix, Black Mirror blends science-fiction with social commentary to galvanise discussions of how technology and human behaviour intersect in unforeseeable ways. [Read More…]

December 31, 2019 Arts/Literature
ID Card – A Poem by Anvar Ali

ID Card – A Poem by Anvar Ali

A powerful poem on CAA/NRC by the renowned Malayalm poet Anvar Ali

December 28, 2019 Arts/Literature
The Sound of Silence

The Sound of Silence

Short story The king was facing a major problem. He has become allergic to sound. The doctors treating him on sound allergy were of the opinion that the shouting on streets against the king must be regulated, so that the king can maintain good health. The citizens were out on the streets shouting slogans against the king. The minister was[Read More…]

December 23, 2019 Arts/Literature
I’m A Pigeon

I’m A Pigeon

I’m a pigeon with legs tied up, Everyday they feed me with donations grains.. They assured me to be in safe, and I suffocate every moment, dying of my freedom. They assure me every time, That I’ll get a blissfull life, Secured from the struggle and insecurity, But I know its a doom to me in the mouth of the[Read More…]

December 20, 2019 Arts/Literature
Our world…

Our world…

World hides its monstrosity In being silver around night’s chest World easily presaudes World changes color like we do World lends a hand, heavy like society Coiling what’s night with care World kicks hard out of its property World says, it’s all fair World never wears what it can’t bare World walks miles to gain position World freezes at you[Read More…]

December 19, 2019 Arts/Literature
Freedom

Freedom

inspired by & freely adapted from a poem by the French poet Paul Eluard   On every door at every gate in every doorway on all the windows, mirrors of all the world   I write your name.   On every road with every step in the wide meander and the sand on the straight and narrow and around each[Read More…]

December 19, 2019 Arts/Literature
Locked, In Assam

Locked, In Assam

A cage grows around me each day Everyone is free they say, Wishes plummet to the bottom and gets locked in platinum vaults Everyone is free they say, A pact is signed today where the larynx is laminated they tell it is to protect all the homes, a fire is built, curfewed are all the nights just to have the[Read More…]

December 18, 2019 Arts/Literature
Contributions of RSS to Indian Society

Contributions of RSS to Indian Society

Anti-Minority attitude Brahmanism Communalism Divisive beliefs Educational destruction Fascism Godse worship Hatred Islamophobia Jumlebaazi Killing institutions Lynching Manuvaad National chauvinism Othering minorities Patriarchy Quelling resistance Riots Saffron sickness Terrorism of majority Unconstitutional act legitimisation Violence War mongering Xenophobia Yelling Zombie creators in form of lynchers and rioters Sreerama is a poet and earlier worked with Central Warehousing Corporation (CWC) SIGN[Read More…]

December 17, 2019 Arts/Literature
Photo by mysterykatt123

Future

As a gust of wind sends the curtains flapping wildly, I wonder about our future. The future is signaling us to go back. The future is telling us to stop where we are now. But we pretend not to hear. And we don’t care. We’re not aware of what we’ve lost and are seeking things we don’t need at all.[Read More…]

December 14, 2019 Arts/Literature
Funeral of Democracy

Funeral of Democracy

Funeral of your democracy warned foresighted ages ago. In spite of fellow beings, you burn your abode willfully. Many nations have been here, reckoning to be invincible Little did they know, they perish notorious in the process. Men of infamy, high on false pride Feeding gullible, treacherous fantasies Selling hate for old brotherhood, you saw it coming in willful silence?[Read More…]

December 12, 2019 Arts/Literature
Stand up and fight

Stand up and fight

When you feel your generation is being crushed by the twin excavators of the political imbecility and haphazard bureaucracy. When you realize that the government is insensitive to the peoples wishes and is making mockery of their destiny. When your see the naked dance of corruption dismantling the very base of our society. When you see unemployment dancing everywhere and[Read More…]

December 9, 2019 Arts/Literature
RAPE-UBLIC!

RAPE-UBLIC!

 It is not some chicken that rests on those breasts they feed your next generation pluck them out and you’ll see death all around, you do think to pluck those every night in a small corner of your bed you might be a father, brother, husband or just some man who is desperate to drive fast!   The bra your[Read More…]

December 8, 2019 Arts/Literature
Right and Left

Right and Left

Right doesn’t talk of rights because it believes in taking away your rights It does not recognize education as a right as it awakens people to demand more rights Right creates myths and false pride around nation and religion so that you condition yourself to live without rights Right attacks your very basic needs before you realise what is right[Read More…]

December 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
For Hiba, 18 months old pellet victim of Kashmir

For Hiba, 18 months old pellet victim of Kashmir

She cries in pain, Mother, hold me tight, I feel cold. Mother tells her, It is not cold, It is the icicles making you chill. She laments, Mother, hold me tight. It is darker than the night around, Mother tells her, It is not the night that is dark. It is the burnt coal surrounding the village. She whispers, Mother,[Read More…]

November 28, 2019 Arts/Literature
Empress With A Pen!

Empress With A Pen!

A poem on Arundhati Roy Fountain pen unfurling from the curls After the blood carpet why history never unfurls Everyone makes a full stop with decoration To declare how it’s “The End of Imagination” Millions think of the magician thinking above Her pen thinks how he bluffs wearing a glove Curating the structured Homo sapiens To validate that they work[Read More…]

November 25, 2019 Arts/Literature
Rights?

Rights?

Do these women have rights? These women who break rocks These women who carry bricks These women who in Temples please Gods What Gods? Devdasis? Can they Me Too? Farmers’ wives, sweepers, Women who clean dirt From homes and yet Live in dirt themselves. Women who could not go to school Can they Me Too? Women who remain Unlettered, Unfed,[Read More…]

November 20, 2019 Arts/Literature
Funeral in Kashmir

Funeral in Kashmir

Exile, Or, Home? They asked, Which home? The one you bulldozed, Or the one you occupied, They are furious, And, Outraged, Or, the one that is a rubble, They look They scare, stay there, Hands up, How can I stay without name Without face Or without eyes. Leave then, Go in exile They laugh Or smirk, How can I go[Read More…]

November 19, 2019 Arts/Literature
J. N. U.

J. N. U.

J.N.U a university where voices speak up where streets protest where classes struggle where birds are still free where azaadi isn’t just a word where democracy lives Sutputra Radheye: He is a young Indian poet for whom poetry is a medium of protest against the authority. He channelizes his words to write what he sees, and how he sees.He doesn’t[Read More…]

November 19, 2019 Arts/Literature
This file is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Unported license.  https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0/deed.en

Bystander

I had heard of people in abusive relationships— Of torture made to disappear, Of tyrannies of the mind calculated to blind and crippling dependence cultivated, Of phantom foes and spectral fears and hollow promises renewed, Of shrunken lives under constant vigil terrorised into compliance, Of gaslit rebellion and curfewed movement, isolated from the world’s concern; I marvelled at how all[Read More…]

November 14, 2019 Arts/Literature
Omnicide

Omnicide

For the new generations You and bride, side-by-side At new son’s cradle side, First son at grandpa’s side, Daughter at grandma’s side, All at full tableside— Fortunate family! Springtime ride, riverside. Summer swim, oceanside. Autumn hike, mountainside. Winter song, fireside. Countryside, cityside, Sweet life of bourgeoisie! But there’s another side— Rat-race-cide, ed-debt-cide, Rush-hour- cide, autocide, Boob-tube-cide, junk-food-cide, Beer-gut-cide, pharma-cide— All[Read More…]

November 11, 2019 Arts/Literature
What’s Joker’s Joke?

What’s Joker’s Joke?

“Cause how many times can you wake up in this comic book and plant flowers?” – Rodriguez, “Cause” It’s not funny, that’s for sure. When I went to see Joker, the new Todd Philips’ film, there were five other people in the theater in the liberal, up-scale tourist town populated by wealthy second-home owners, exiles for the most part from[Read More…]

November 10, 2019 Arts/Literature
House of Gods or Plea for Peace

House of Gods or Plea for Peace

Oh house of Gods! Oh house of Gods! Temples or Mosques Churches or Synagogues Displaced they stand— A black stone Rectangle or phallic Does it matter? In streams refugees pour out Bloodshed, Gore Hatred and More More and More Ring- a- round the roses Pocketful of doses You think when they Burnt, Singed, they would have learnt Flames should be[Read More…]

November 10, 2019 Arts/Literature
My Country

My Country

They tell me it is your country, but prove your love to keep the peace, gift the land to us to please, and obey the majority or cease. They tell me it is your country but as long as I don’t affirm my belief, remain silent when in grief, and mourn my history in silence. They tell me it is[Read More…]

November 9, 2019 Arts/Literature
Red Dots

Red Dots

I heard In real or in a dream? Home is white… Or red? Tulip tree is buried…. In ice, Or in debris? Kangri is in shed. Or dead in the cold? My pheran… The one with red dots on chest…. Is like a scarecrow on tilted pole, Or cut into shreds? Who tells me?????? My umbilical cord…… Is missing……………… In[Read More…]

November 8, 2019 Arts/Literature
Tranquility of Visual Memory: The Tibet Film Festival

Tranquility of Visual Memory: The Tibet Film Festival

The lights dim, the crowd goes quiet, and viewers begin to leave worries of this world behind, anticipating instead a new and mysterious alternative world that will soon envelop their eyes and ears…Films create worlds…! (Brent Plate) Film festivals across the globe are more often than not venues to celebrate masterpiece works of art-house filmmakers, creating space for indie cinema,[Read More…]

November 7, 2019 Arts/Literature
Monologue of an Oligarch – For K. P. Sasi 

Monologue of an Oligarch – For K. P. Sasi 

  Who should rule a family, community or commonwealth, humanity? What hierarchy should we, who know what’s best impose on those who don’t?   We ask them in elections, though that doesn’t guarantee that our Divine Right to command and then consume the fruits of rule will be confirmed. It’s best if we don’t ask, just act instead to organize[Read More…]

November 7, 2019 Arts/Literature
Animal World – Cartoon by K.P Sasi

Animal World – Cartoon by K.P Sasi

The Kerala police has arrested two Communist Party of India (Marxist) activists, Alan Shuhaib and Thaha Fazal under the provisions of the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) from Kozhikode on Saturday. The two were accused of having circulated notices criticising the alleged encounter killing of four Maoists in the Manjakkatti forests in Palakkad district. K.P Sasi is a film maker,[Read More…]

November 5, 2019 Arts/Literature
Consecration

Consecration

My spine is bent, Sir You can see the bones jutting out; My hands I have stretched, To touch your feet My index finger on your right toe: Can’t you see, Yes? Thank you! (glee) I beg your pardon? Yes, I made sure I burnt all the books before we met And my pen is now the river My brain[Read More…]

November 3, 2019 Arts/Literature
Empire of the Overlord

Empire of the Overlord

Children in unison rise Crying for the ultimate reprise. Bus fares hike Water jets strike Murderers walk free The land is no longer safe Asperger bound The world round Children protest In anger and unrest Where do they stand? Why have they become the voice of The angry clans? Why is it they scream In angst against the regime? Why[Read More…]

October 31, 2019 Arts/Literature
Pain

Pain

Pain to be documented for the sake of civilization. Pain, language of the unspoken, censored, plugged and precluded. Pain of mothers daughters and lovers, of sons, fathers and admirers. Pain of separated caged minors of mums in the dread for their teens. Pain of kids deprived of children’s play and tempers. Pain of teachers in empty schools like haunted sanctuaries.[Read More…]

October 28, 2019 Arts/Literature
 Poet Inhabits the Heart of Jimmy Carter

 Poet Inhabits the Heart of Jimmy Carter

[Author’s Note:The 39thPresident of the United States (1977-1981), Jimmy Carter has been in the news recently, and we wish him well….  I consider him one of the great people I’ve had the honor of meeting.  Following his too-brief tenure in the White House, Carter worked gratis for decades with “Habitat for Humanity,” physically building and refurbishing houses for those in need…. In[Read More…]

October 24, 2019 Arts/Literature
Kashmir

Kashmir

a paradise weakening in the mist as the signals of light are jammed the houses smelling of local herbs boiled in the saucepans filled with water saline lanes have leaves fallen uncrunched yet ailing and roads filled with boots and barood microphones are tapped and locked in rooms painted in tricolour- all shades of saffron then azaan arrives, whispers began[Read More…]

October 21, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Bowl of Ice Cream: A Tribute to Botham Jean

A Bowl of Ice Cream: A Tribute to Botham Jean

He was tired that night A long day; Work can grind And of course there’s more Smart, Black, numbers in his head He liked Ice Cream Soothed by the TV Feet up A long day; Home at last; refuge Young man; career ahead; ambitious What was tomorrow going to hold? Smooth, creamy, buttery Late night sweet snack A long day;[Read More…]

October 12, 2019 Arts/Literature
Did Rama eat meat, and why is it relevant to contemporary India?

Did Rama eat meat, and why is it relevant to contemporary India?

What does the Valmiki Ramayana tell us about Non-Vegetarianism of its protagonist and deuteragonists? “Who controls the past controls the future. Who controls the present controls the past.”                  ~George Orwell (Ninteen Eighty-four) The Rāmāyana is the world’s second longest poetic composition, after another Hindu epic, the Mahābhārata.  The mythological epic poem narrates[Read More…]

October 12, 2019 Arts/Literature
Undoctrinate

Undoctrinate

What hides underneath all those layers? The layers you got padded with since birth? The layers you did not get to choose But accept without questioning The unwarranted layers You feel comforted in The layers You think Define you Your identity Your being Your existence Peel away the layers My friend Peel Layer After layer Until You emerge To yourself[Read More…]

October 11, 2019 Arts/Literature
Is Literature Dying ?

Is Literature Dying ?

 With ever increasing onslaught from the internet, electronic media and urban lifestyles, many critics have started voicing their worries about whether Literature, in its written form, is becoming more and more obsolete and  dying. Death pronouncements about Literature have been made several times and they continue to be made whenever writers start forecasting and start expressing anxiety about their irrelevance[Read More…]

October 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
The Bhakt

The Bhakt

(This is a fictional scene with no direct or indirect relation with persons living or dead. Any name or scene is utterly co-incidental. The purpose of this poem is to reflect a segment of the society.) So, the sheep-head citizens- You’re here today. Welcome. Have a seat- Like you’ve for decades now. Make yourself comfortable. I know. I know. Nothing[Read More…]

October 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Weak Rope

A Weak Rope

The hangman brought the noose Near an erect neck of a prisoner I must apologise to you,’ whispered the hangmanI am only doing a job for the survival of my family.’ `Execution has been my family occupation for generations The reason is unknown to me Why I should kill and who I should kill. You are only a subject in[Read More…]

October 3, 2019 Arts/Literature
Joker raises quite many real issues – sadly, only to skirt them on its way

Joker raises quite many real issues – sadly, only to skirt them on its way

  In the end, Joker remains a laughter-free, irony-free, subtle-as-a-sledgehammer disappointment, partly redeemed by an Oscar worthy performance from Joaquin Phoenix. I wanted to like Joker.  I became a fan of all things Batman in middle school, when Batman: The Animated series was on reruns in India.  Christopher Nolan’s masterful Batman trilogy sent me to the source material: the comics. [Read More…]

October 3, 2019 Arts/Literature
Classical Voice For Social Justice

Classical Voice For Social Justice

Art is the intellectual foundation of social change. Artists not only document social change; they promote, inform and shape it. Whether through music, plays, photography, paintings, films, poetry, sculpture, or hip-hop, art is powerful. Music is one of the most popular mediums of arts. We have seen Pete Seeger who has always used his songs as a language of protest.[Read More…]

September 27, 2019 Arts/Literature
Miyah

Miyah

dappled bloody sheet and nineteen lakh bodies floating to the asphalt shores of Brahmaputra- naked and filled. Birds flying away, leaves falling cold sun setting low, moon bent till toe homes painted grey, heart- dead fay indians-moments ago, now far away.   how shall one be in solitude in war? how shall one be happy in sorrow? if hunger seeks[Read More…]

September 25, 2019 Arts/Literature
Debris…

Debris…

Oh, how weeps Mother Earth! Near her toes, the forests burn. Animals in death throes churn. Sumatran anacondas die. Smoke blinds the eye. Hazy skies, poison air People choke. Life comes to a halt. Brazil, her lungs they say, Now fiery flames breathe. With so much smoke, Will Mother Earth choke? Oh, how weeps Mother Earth! Young blood is spilt[Read More…]

September 23, 2019 Arts/Literature
Just because of my name

Just because of my name

Every time I step out of my house I am not sure of my return Just because of my name Which reflects my identity Living in constant fear Just because of a name being a Khan or an Ansari The threat of lynching and beaten to death looms me over Day in and day out The fear of huge mobs[Read More…]

September 22, 2019 Arts/Literature
Is the movie ‘Section 375’ a nail in pulverizing the women’s movement?

Is the movie ‘Section 375’ a nail in pulverizing the women’s movement?

Section 375 is an intense and layered courtroom drama revolving around the dialectics of justice and law.  The movie comes at the time when the sensitization around the gender issues are seen to be taking their due space and the movie leaves the one thinking about the tenability of that same space. This movie is a profusion of debates around[Read More…]

September 20, 2019 Arts/Literature, Patriarchy
The frontier less; the Damned!

The frontier less; the Damned!

Night steals upon us like death… In the morning it leaves one or two cups of coffee untouched on the table! An eerie silence swallows me it howls into my ears. My trembling legs search up and down the lane the sound of boots answer me! At a distance I hear crowds, shouts, Gunshots and wails. You call it calm![Read More…]

September 17, 2019 Arts/Literature
A series in 4 episodes

A series in 4 episodes

episode 1: a regiment of old people, more bones than flesh, are thrown into an army truck. to be unloaded in the woods near some godforsaken border. but, a fierce debate breaks out whether they should be blinded or not. orders are awaited from the capital city. episode 2: a burst of pellets perforate a sieve on a snow girl’s[Read More…]

September 13, 2019 Arts/Literature
Natsamrat – Shades of King Lear and other Tragedies

Natsamrat – Shades of King Lear and other Tragedies

  Natsamrat (The King of the theatre) has shades of King Lear in it. However, the masterpiece of this Marathi movie starring Nana Patekar as Ganapat Rao Belwalkar is not just Nana, though his performance is spectacular. It is his best friend in the movie, Vikram Gokhale as Rambhau who lingers. Both are actors on the stage and according to[Read More…]

September 10, 2019 Arts/Literature
What is there in Rahi Masoom Raza which touches immensely? 

What is there in Rahi Masoom Raza which touches immensely? 

            In post-partition literary tradition in India, there have been writers altering the course of literary trend by their peculiar style of writing. Simultaneously, they have travelled their own way and have had the ability to go beyond the disciplinary conservatism while weaving their creative writings. They refused to maintain the literary status-quo. In the legacy of Urdu-Hindi post-partition literature,[Read More…]

September 10, 2019 Arts/Literature
Robert Mugabe

Robert Mugabe

Taking assigned seat at banquet table Right across from me Robert Mugabe President of Zimbabwe Destroyer of Rhodes and his ilk Leader of the Revolution Against Apartheid, Racism, Colonialism, Imperialism Personal Hero Intelligent, sophisticated, well-informed, polished, well-spoken Devout Catholic too Vilified by Western Governments and their Flunky News Media No surprise there After dinner talking about his problems I joked[Read More…]

September 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
The Wisdom of Ganesh Gaitonde – Part I

The Wisdom of Ganesh Gaitonde – Part I

Note: Ganesh Gaitonde is a fictional character from the Netflix series Sacred Games, but that does not make him any less real than anyone else on the planet. Warning: Profanity ahead. Get parental advice before proceeding. Somewhere on a yacht in choppy waters off the western Indian coast I met Ganesh Gaitonde, noted[1]political analyst, role model for the youth and[Read More…]

September 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
For Cars, Baubles and Beef

For Cars, Baubles and Beef

For cars, baubles, and beef We pledged our untrammeled allegiance For cars, baubles, and beef We declared an insidious war We held our flag up high We demanded full compliance For cars, baubles, and beef We punished all dissenters Here we are today Apocalypse here and now For cars, baubles, and beef We sacrificed our smiling children Progress is hard[Read More…]

September 5, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Medal for Blood !

A Medal for Blood !

A rain of blood fell from the sky on a valley A sixteen year old boy cried in pain when his eyes were hit with pellet bullets `But why?’ He asked the soldier who shot him `You sold our country to another country’ `To which country?’ the boy asked with tears of blood `To Pakistan,’ said the soldier confidently `And[Read More…]

September 2, 2019 Arts/Literature
Molecules

Molecules

Dead people are free human beings For freedom is a term meant for the living The living dead walking as corpses on streets Or on their best luxurious vehicles Are also are free human beings in their own minds For they do not know that their freedom is determined by others. To that extent, freedom is a mental construct Whether[Read More…]

September 1, 2019 Arts/Literature
Kashmir – The Invisible and the Damned

Kashmir – The Invisible and the Damned

You can look away now The Vale of tears has dried up And a deathly silence stalks the Dal Deserted towns, burnt orchards and shadows everywhere. Paradise will ne’er be the same again Nothing will ever be the same again We, the invisible and the damned, the rejected and the reviled, have long ceased to exist for a world gone[Read More…]

August 31, 2019 Arts/Literature
Search for Answers

Search for Answers

With those thousands and millions of pieces you have been broken into How long can you keep on fixing them to get through one more day? And with a cracked heart and crushed soul How long till u count yourself among the living fray? With this unthinking unfeeling existence of yours How long till u tire and call it a[Read More…]

August 30, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Requiem for Amazonia

A Requiem for Amazonia

Amazon burns Each flame licks a life Each ember leads to strife How will man survive? From the meat roasted by the flames That rise as if from Earth’s insides? The birds that no longer fly Lie roasted, toasted, drained of colour. The brilliant macaw with its plumes of blue and yellow, The golden monkey that leaps from tree to[Read More…]

August 28, 2019 Arts/Literature
Hollywood reboots Russophobia for the New Cold War

Hollywood reboots Russophobia for the New Cold War

It is an age-old question as to the extent art reflects the world we live in. Bertolt Brecht allegedly said to the contrary that art was “not a mirror held up to reality but a hammer with which to shape it.” The Marxist German playwright devised theatrical methods designed to distance the audience from the staged drama while drawing self-reflexive[Read More…]

August 28, 2019 Arts/Literature
Love For My Country Transcends Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nay The Whole world!

Love For My Country Transcends Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nay The Whole world!

Tsunami of aggressive nationalism Across USA, Europe and beyond Internationalism is my creed; patriotism acceptable But not the sedition law   My ancestors born in Pakistan Part of undivided India Communal partitioning in 1947 Affected lives   My mother born in 1921 At Suri Mohalla, Rawalpindi Completed her studies At middle school, Rawalpindi   At school she learnt needle work[Read More…]

August 27, 2019 Arts/Literature
The Carpenter Friend

The Carpenter Friend

I do not wish the sun to rise And I do not wish the moon to disappear The carpenter who made this bed Has done more than he could dream for Saving me from the nightmare of getting up To see what I do not wish to see And to hear what I do not wish to hear If ever[Read More…]

August 25, 2019 Arts/Literature
The Dead Flower

The Dead Flower

Sometimes I do not like meeting people Whenever I do not like meeting myself Meaningless actions and meaningless words Among the multitude of meaningless people Make me feel the need to enjoy the absurdity To understand that a word in need Is just a word indeed. And when the heaven fell on earth I thought it was a dead flower[Read More…]

August 22, 2019 Arts/Literature
Kashmir

Kashmir

A soul without a body was walking Wondering how much time was left in his life The corpses on the side of the road Seemed to be breathing A man with a chopped hand Was struggling to ride a bicycle Women hid their faces For the shame others have done to them The past was best to be forgotten The[Read More…]

August 17, 2019 Arts/Literature
Night of the broken glass for Huzaifa Pandit

Night of the broken glass for Huzaifa Pandit

On the night of broken glass he reads a poem by Faiz. Outside, someone drives under influence down a frail bridge across the river, after the rains. jo toot gaya, so toot gaya ‘Khuda Hafiz. Khuda Hafiz, Would there be salvage after the wreck?’ asks the squeaky wiper blades to the tune of filmy rain dance that fogs the pane.[Read More…]

August 15, 2019 Arts/Literature
Shanti Rides a Green Horse

Shanti Rides a Green Horse

(Wisdom-King Achala: The Unshakeable) Presented here are some tales and some verses by Bhusukupa, mystic, poet, who lived in the eastern parts of the Indian subcontinent around a millennium ago. Lovers of Bangla literature remember him as the poet who wrote seven and a half poems of the Chawrjyapawd collection that contains verses that speak of the Tantric SahajaYana or[Read More…]

August 15, 2019 Arts/Literature
Ambush at Kamikaze Pass

Ambush at Kamikaze Pass

Call it a summer whim or something about this grim moment of ours, but I had an urge to post at TomDispatch my very first piece of published writing. It appeared 48 years ago in what was, at the time, one of the more obscure journals on the face of the Earth, one I helped found as a then-antiwar-China-scholar-to-be: the Bulletin of Concerned Asian[Read More…]

August 12, 2019 Arts/Literature
Sacred Games In The Name of Babri Masjid

Sacred Games In The Name of Babri Masjid

Sacred Games-2 is slated to begin from August 15 on Netflix Cinema is the worst form of expression, and particularly more so, when we are bombarded with over 400 hours of news, real news, enacted news in our 24 hours, round the year, which has rendered an ordinary citizen gasping. Even real time wars, street to street battles and massacres[Read More…]

August 12, 2019 Arts/Literature
They Fill the Land – What Filth!

They Fill the Land – What Filth!

The poem is based on a brief observational study done by my team and I on the Pirana landfill site in Ahmedabad. The poem is meant as a satirical take on the social and environmental repercussions of landfill sites, and our attempts to not acknowledge the same. It is intended not to preach, but provoke individuals to take cognizance of[Read More…]

Photo: “The Joy of Peace”. By Pilar Viviente, Venice 2019.

LIVING ON BRIDGES: Dialoguing on Peace, Cultural Violence, Education, Art

With Pilar Viviente, Gary Corseri and some esteemed friends Photo: “A Tower of Understanding”.  By Pilar Viviente, Venice, 2019 “Life can certainly throw us some hardballs, that’s for sure!  But that is the thing about life—unfathomable, mysterious, beautiful and ugly all on one plate, one sitting, one incarnation.” — Antonio C. S. Rosa “Nous sommecomme des nainsjuche sur des epaules[Read More…]

August 11, 2019 Arts/Literature
“UrfeAalo” – Theatre driving social transformation for manual scavengers

“UrfeAalo” – Theatre driving social transformation for manual scavengers

 “UrfeAalo” a play by Whistle Blower Theatre group, forces its audience to confront the harsh reality of manual scavenging – an occupation which is no less oppressive than bonded labor. It talks about Nilesh, a Valmiki trying to get out of the caste imposed occupation. Nilesh while in school was associated with a theatre group for social awareness, and he[Read More…]

August 11, 2019 Arts/Literature
Again

Again

 A ghazal for all Kashmiris and In Memoriam Agha Shahid Ali     Soldiers have died in vain and will again. Lovers have kissed in rain and will again.   Neighbors dispute, tragically lose all calm. Nations have split in twain and will again.   Beauty gives power to hurt or heal with balm. Passion brings exquisite pain and will[Read More…]

August 11, 2019 Arts/Literature
In the Name of Family

In the Name of Family

In the name of family We destroy the same In the name of peace We build wastelands Imagine, please, imagine please do A little girl at your bosom Imagine, please, imagine please do A young boy laughing loud The warmth of embrace The exuberance of dawn The deep love and grace Forever now gone Joy knows no home Absolute and[Read More…]

August 9, 2019 Arts/Literature
‘Imagination Unlimited’: Countercurrents.org Initiates A New Book Publication Venture

‘Imagination Unlimited’: Countercurrents.org Initiates A New Book Publication Venture

The dedicated journal Countercurrents.org has sustained for almost two decades. Writers and readers from all parts of the world have appreciated the relevance of this crucial effort. After an experience of two decades of social journalism, Countercurrents.org has decided to get involved in the production of books with a difference, through a venture titled ‘Imagination Unlimited’. The rationale for this[Read More…]

August 8, 2019 Arts/Literature
Dear Ilhan

Dear Ilhan

Dear oh dear Ilhan We see you in our sleep We see you when awake We hear you in all of our being There is nothing like a voice That wavers never at all There is nothing like the strength Of dignity withal Please don’t ever tire Your energies should never wane Stay vigilant dear Ilhan You bless us with[Read More…]

August 7, 2019 Arts/Literature
August 6, 1945 – For our children

August 6, 1945 – For our children

                       I An anniversary falls today, Which most of us ignore, Though thousands were just burned away: Birth of atomic war.   In summer, 1945, Near end of WWII, When most of us were not alive, A nightmare became true.   On Monday morning, August 6, At 8:15 a.m. Enola Gay performed some tricks Of nuclear mayhem.   A monster[Read More…]

August 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
Scream!

Scream!

Celebrate, Celebrate the Independence Day While Munch-like screams explode Like fireworks lighting the night sky Silent, vociferous, full of angst Unable to speak Bleak, bleak, bleak. Oh, the cruelty of life! The anger and strife Guernica revisited each time. This is not just about soldiers who die. But about all those who silently cry For a dozen different whys? A[Read More…]

August 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
History of Street Plays in India – An Ongoing Social Movement

History of Street Plays in India – An Ongoing Social Movement

Theatre and India share a long relationship dating 5000 years ago. The earliest form of theatre was Sanskrit theatre. Bharata’s ‘Natya Shastra’ was the one of the earliest play enacted in India. Indian theatre was heavily influenced by the people who ruled over the country. During the Islamic rule in the country, theatre was mostly forbidden throughout the nation. However,[Read More…]

August 5, 2019 Arts/Literature
Post Truth

Post Truth

I cannot speak anymore the language of my oppressors. My memory gradually corroded by a billion ants folds into itself. I cannot think anymore, my eyes are vacant, perpetually wandering. I’m defenceless as ever, I put my papers in place and patiently await my turn at the guillotine for them to press the button, for them to cut off my[Read More…]

August 5, 2019 Arts/Literature
Oh, Baltimore

Oh, Baltimore

Baltimore, Oh Baltimore You have things on your mind You have children to feed and trees to tend You have ties that strongly bind No fool, no demagogue, no trickster Could ever fool you deep No hateful and crude cad Should make you cringe or weep You rise when hate is strong Your daughters and sons see clear Baltimore, Oh[Read More…]

August 2, 2019 Arts/Literature
They Are Kissing

They Are Kissing

After Dorianne Laux’s “Kissing” They are kissing at gunpoint. They know they cannot be caught kissing. They are kissing as though the chinars never saw any bloodshed, only lipstick. Asifa is grown up now, she’s kissing her love and her horses are dancing the grass is erupting in joy, the valley is rushing in its unviolated grace because they are[Read More…]

July 31, 2019 Arts/Literature
Miyah Poetry: How do Besieged Communities Respond?

Miyah Poetry: How do Besieged Communities Respond?

A FIR was registered against 10 Assamese poets (July 10, 2019). These poets mostly Muslims; have been pioneers and are leading lights of what has come to be known as Miyah Poetry. One sample, by the initiator of this trend; Hafiz Ahmed goes like this Write, Write Down, I am a Miya, My serial number in the NRC is 200543,[Read More…]

July 27, 2019 Arts/Literature, India
In Conversation with Ghulam Nabi Aatash

In Conversation with Ghulam Nabi Aatash

Kashmir is a place endowed by divinity from every niche. From eons valley has been witnessing umpteen legendary writers, scholars and poets. Besides breathtaking, splendiferous natural beauty, Kashmir has rich historical traditions. Folklore is one of the important parts of our culture which is passed down from generation to generation. Folklore is an oral history preserved by the people; these[Read More…]

July 26, 2019 Arts/Literature, Kashmir
A Sampling of 1970s Bengali Songs of Pintu Bhattacharya: an Obscure Star of the Post-Renaissance Musical Age

A Sampling of 1970s Bengali Songs of Pintu Bhattacharya: an Obscure Star of the Post-Renaissance Musical Age

Following the renaissance epoch of Bengali vocal music between 1900-1950, established by key creative figures such as Rabindranath Tagore (1861-1941), Dwijendralal Roy (1863-1913), Rajanikanta Sen (1865-1910), Atul Prasad Sen (1871-1934) and Kazi Nazrul Islam (1899-1976), five compositional geniuses who blazed their trails into musical history, and to whom Bengal’s musical heritage owes its identity to this day–there occurred an expected[Read More…]

July 25, 2019 Arts/Literature
Garnering Acquittal

Garnering Acquittal

A black father is gone A black husband is gone A black friend is gone A black human is gone He couldn’t breathe He said as much They cared enough To kill him Unsafe Even in your own skin Dead Leaving your kin Remorse is absent Like after stepping on an ant Go, go home Be with your loved ones[Read More…]

July 19, 2019 Arts/Literature
Poet from Jharkhand bags Sahitya Akademi award for poem with universal appeal

Poet from Jharkhand bags Sahitya Akademi award for poem with universal appeal

For decades in India, the Adivasi identity has been appropriated and exploited for political and economic gains.The diverse culture of tribal people in the country has been commodified, packaged and labelled with an umbrella-term, which does little to help their cause. At the same time, the mainstream media and literary discourse has largely ignored Adivasi literature. But that is beginning[Read More…]

July 19, 2019 Arts/Literature
Before the Jasmine Bloom: Leyla Bouzid’s “As I Open My Eyes”

Before the Jasmine Bloom: Leyla Bouzid’s “As I Open My Eyes”

Tunisian film world is witnessing a surge in production with a variety of themes, which were not usually allowed for quite a long, triggering what is called ‘a post-revolution cinema revival.’ According to producer Habib Attia, “Since 2011, one of the most tangible benefits we’ve seen is the ability to talk about all topics, especially themes of society, our daily[Read More…]

July 12, 2019 Arts/Literature
Yes, As We Speak

Yes, As We Speak

Yes, as we speak horrid things are happening Right under our very gaze Yes, as we speak brutality is sport And the children suffer as they have before Is the noise of violence that which defines us? Or is it the silence that lets the noise grow? Is there really a tale of Love in this mess? Or is the[Read More…]

July 10, 2019 Arts/Literature
Lalla – The Origin

Lalla – The Origin

Makuris Zan Mal Tcholum Manas Ada Mya Labum Zanis Zaan Su Yeli Dyuenthum Nishi Paanas Sorui Suie Ti Bi Na Kehn   My inner self got laved and purified About HIM then patently I came to know And when I saw HIM nigh to me HE was everything everywhere and I nought From the very beginning Kashmir is known for[Read More…]

July 9, 2019 Arts/Literature
Savarna middle class and Article 15: Puncturing the ‘politics’ in the political

Savarna middle class and Article 15: Puncturing the ‘politics’ in the political

Article 15 is one of the few movies in commercial Bollywood cinema in recent times that talks about caste. However, it talks about caste using specific lingo and tropes that sit well with the world view of the urban, savarna, multiplex-frequenting, post-liberalization middle class. Far from triggering discomfort in their accumulated privileged world, the movie in its chilling Netflix thriller-esque style[Read More…]

July 9, 2019 Arts/Literature
Why the movies like ‘Article 15’ do not jolt but solidify casteism?

Why the movies like ‘Article 15’ do not jolt but solidify casteism?

Article 15 is an attempt to glorify the ‘harmonious’ varna vyavastha, film maintains deafening silence when it comes to questioning the caste structure itself.   Article 15, a movie directed by Anubhav Sinha, faced angry protesters after the release of its trailer. Hindutva supporters felt that their old age traditions and culture are being questioned and successively ridiculed. Article 15[Read More…]

July 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
Fireworks behind statue of liberty

Independence July 4, 2019

Today we will name The Day of Peace. And when tomorrow becomes today The Day of Social Justice.   When the weekend rolls around first will be The Day of the Council of All Beings followed by The Day of Love our Neighbors along with The Love of Strangers.   To start the new week Day of Earth First. Then[Read More…]

July 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
Article 15 

Article 15 

“We became Harijan (Mahatma Gandhi used to address Dalits as people of God, Harijan) or bahujan (many people) but we never became the people, “says the activist. And so the Dalits remain marginalized in our Bharat & never mainstream. The film Article 15 by director Anubhav Sinha is overflowing with such innumerable dialogues which are right on spot .And there are many scenes, which are symbolic[Read More…]

July 5, 2019 Arts/Literature
Unda: Of threats, real and perceived

Unda: Of threats, real and perceived

How would you take a police story without the usual masculine derring-do or hifalutin dialogues that appeal to lowbrow tastes?Unda, the Mammotty-starrer Malayalam movie directed by Khalid Rahman, is not a police story per se. There is no mystery involved, nor is there an investigation that keeps you on tenterhooks. The plot is simple. A contingent of nine-member policemen from[Read More…]

July 4, 2019 Arts/Literature
Photo by MarioGuti / iStock.

A Walk Between Love and Hate

The love that you gave me Was more than what I could handle For I do not know How to return your love So, I placed your love in a fixed deposit And I do not dare to open the deposit In the bank of love where I did not belong. The hatred that you showered on me Could ignite[Read More…]

July 3, 2019 Arts/Literature
Courtesy: https://metro.co.uk/ (screenshot)

Et tu, Dalai Lama?

Disturbing though are Dalai Lama’s recent public views[i] That Europe would be teeming with Muslims& Africans If refugees continue to be let in that Continent Without a return ticket in their pockets   Pray why should you think that it would be wrong To allow persecuted Muslims & Africansasylum or refugee status Have you forgotten that as a Tibetan Monk[Read More…]

July 2, 2019 Arts/Literature
Bollywood And Its Cultural Biases

Bollywood And Its Cultural Biases

Caste, gender and religious biases are a norm in Bollywood. Ofcourse, there was a time when cinema sophistry was due to the beauty of Urdu language as Yusuf Khan, Naushad, Sahir, Kaifi Azami, Jaan Nisar Akhtar, Gulam Mohammad, Mehboob, Kamal Amrohi, and so many others were part of it. Even the non Muslims used to speak Urdu and the script[Read More…]

July 2, 2019 Arts/Literature
Image courtesy: The Statesman

The Constitution Of India Is More Powerful Than An AK47!

In such troubled times More so than at any time in the past The Constitution of India shall be our shield Against all oppressive/repressive acts   Of communal/caste/racial hatred or bias On religious minorities/ subordinate castes/tribals On women/LGBTQIA community/differently abled And on workers/farmers/toiling masses   I shall stand up for my constitutional rights And of those less privileged And shall[Read More…]

June 25, 2019 Arts/Literature
Global South and Political Oppositional Cinema

Global South and Political Oppositional Cinema

Films from the Global South (such as that of Latin America, Asia and Africa) seldom receive the kind of acceptance the Anglo-American English movies get across the world. The international film festivals may be an exception where the ‘best’ from such countries is recognised, and it is here that some enthusiastic cinephiles get an opportunity to experience these movies. But[Read More…]

June 24, 2019 Arts/Literature
Once Upon a Time Never Comes Again: Bob Dylan,A Masked Man in Search of Redemption?

Once Upon a Time Never Comes Again: Bob Dylan,A Masked Man in Search of Redemption?

“He wears a mask and his face grows to fit it.” – George Orwell, “Shooting an Elephant” The lobby of the temple of time travel called the Triplex Cinema in Great Barrington, Massachusetts was suffused with a nostalgic vibe tinged with the whiff of encroaching death when I walked in for The Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story.  I[Read More…]

June 22, 2019 Arts/Literature
Facing Violence with Music: The Story of Mikis Theodorakis

Facing Violence with Music: The Story of Mikis Theodorakis

21 Jun 2019:  Celebrating World Music Day These days internet can open up fascinating treasure-troves from the half-forgotten past. In a French archive one can watch a short documentary- “Nous Sommes Deux”, made almost 50 years ago by Robert Manthoulis for the French television. The title – “We are two” (in Greek, “Imaste dio”) is the first line of a[Read More…]

June 21, 2019 Arts/Literature
Trumped-up wars

Trumped-up wars

“Obey me or die!” the orange-haired man threatens the world. “My drones know you’re home, and my missiles don’t miss. I’m Commander in Chief, CinC for short. I’ll sink you into the sea, fry you crisp, burn you to dust with the push of a button. I’ll overthrow your governments, strangle your economies, jail your refugees. I’m the trumpet of[Read More…]

June 20, 2019 Arts/Literature
Review: “Tales Of A City By The Sea” by Samah Sabawi – Palestinian Genocide & Palestinian Holocaust In Microcosm

Review: “Tales Of A City By The Sea” by Samah Sabawi – Palestinian Genocide & Palestinian Holocaust In Microcosm

“Tales Of A City By The Sea” by Gaza-born, Palestinian Australian playwright and poet, Samah Sabawi, is a simple but powerful play about the realities of life and love in the Gaza Concentration Camp that is ruled with an iron fist by Apartheid Israel. However fundamentally the play is about those who have choices and those who do not. Specifically[Read More…]

June 10, 2019 Arts/Literature
No modern-day historian held up the mirror to the ruptured spirit of our culture as fully as Eric Hobsbawm

No modern-day historian held up the mirror to the ruptured spirit of our culture as fully as Eric Hobsbawm

Hobsbawms’s posthumous collection of essays, ‘Fractured Times- Culture and Society in the Twentieth Century’(2013), is a tour de force of cultural history                              Eric Hobsbawm ( 9 June, 1917 – 1 October, 2012) In the preface to Fractured Times he wrote just days before his death, Eric Hobsbawm put his future reader on notice that it was going to be[Read More…]

June 3, 2019 Arts/Literature
Chotu, the homeless

Chotu, the homeless

They all called him Chotu. How and why the name came to stick, even he didn’t know. He wasn’t short. As an Indian, he was average in height. But he wasn’t an Indian, or was he? Well, even that wasn’t clear to him. The other day, the fat clerk at the aadhar office had refused to give a form because[Read More…]

June 3, 2019 Arts/Literature
Matryoshka (for Katya)

Matryoshka (for Katya)

Your eyes are the mystery you have willed them to be. From a distance, they are a breeze Bearing the scent of sandalwood, of ginger, Salty sea lather roasting in an oriental sun. When viewed directly, One sees the colors of a spice market Haloed in blue.   Your lips were formed in Russian forests, Kept moist by the same[Read More…]

May 29, 2019 Arts/Literature
The Professor And The Poet: Reflections on Chomsky and Dylan

The Professor And The Poet: Reflections on Chomsky and Dylan

I have been pondering lately the significance of two elder visionaries who have exerted a lasting influence on me – Noam Chomsky (90) and Bob Dylan (77) – the former because he is an intellectual ‘rock of Gibraltar’ now in his ninth decade, and the latter because I recently saw the Nobel Laureate perform in concert more than half a[Read More…]

May 29, 2019 Arts/Literature
Unfinished Portrait: Iraq and Afghanistan, 2012, with the performance occurring after sunset.

Loved Naught

you won’t leave me but you won’t love me just the same you will be there yet not there in the mediocrity of life we will live procreate and finish no ecstasies no abysses no heights of bliss no depths of despair we shall amble along life’s well trodden path walking in the footsteps of all those who lived and[Read More…]

May 26, 2019 Arts/Literature
Clipped Wings

Clipped Wings

your wings are clipped woman you soaring bird have been dashed to the ground no price will save your person compromise compromise compromise the only panacea for lulled harmony debasement self-effacement take the cue woman your only chance your days numbered your time monitored you don’t even know if you can come or go at the end of it all[Read More…]

May 25, 2019 Arts/Literature
Nazrul Islam – The bard of Bengal

Nazrul Islam – The bard of Bengal

‘I sing the song Of equality : In my view gender difference is essentially a triviality. Everything that is great in the world, all the works, beneficial and good, half must be credited to woman, and to man, half only we should. (Original: ‘Nari’ ( Bengali) Translator : Mohammad Omar Farooq ) PoemHunter.com This is a reflection of Kazi Nazrul[Read More…]

May 22, 2019 Arts/Literature
AS WE SAY – Have a good day

AS WE SAY – Have a good day

A day without hatred or fear a day without prejudice, suspicion or persecution a day without being lied to being swindled or mislead a day without bullying, without abuse, violation violence or murderous terror without the trauma of affliction without humiliation and without a loss of love. A day so natural that the sun rises in the east over the[Read More…]

May 12, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Psychological Disorder

A Psychological Disorder

A psychological disorder is ruling us Which looks at others as disorders Orderly men hung themselves Others were ordered to be relieved From their existence with empty promises. The images of the order surround us In petrol stations, bus stands and railway stations On the streets, on newspapers and television sets His voice blasts on our ears With promises unwilling[Read More…]

May 8, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Beautiful Journey

A Beautiful Journey

A journey through the hills, waters, fields, cities and towns A journey through the pains, sufferings, anger and anguish A journey through laughter, joy, intimacy, bonding and hatred A journey through the wilderness of thoughts and actions A journey through images, words, music and colours This train of life is beautiful to remember. The passengers come and go Some look[Read More…]

May 4, 2019 Arts/Literature
Photo by Volunteer BC

To a Friend in Hospice Care – At Easter

You’ve blessed so many, Henry, whom you do not know, Together with your family and every friend. We won’t forget you, even when it’s time to go. In loving memories, good lives don’t ever end. You’ve lived well, Henry, without benefit of fame— The fate of most on turbulent, huge, teeming Earth; But human worth is far more than a[Read More…]

April 21, 2019 Arts/Literature
Dmitry Vlasov- It is a Fish Eat Fish World

Dmitry Vlasov- It is a Fish Eat Fish World

A Comparative Analysis of Bishop’s “The Fish” and Hughes’ “Pike” as Political Commentaries on Human Relations. Whatever the differences are between the two poems “The Fish” by Elizabeth Bishop, and “Pike”, by Ted Hughes there is a central idea that binds them together – life is a continuous painful struggle for survival. In this struggle for survival, there are winners[Read More…]

April 15, 2019 Arts/Literature
TH Sreerama- RSS BJP: The real Tukde Tukde Gang

TH Sreerama- RSS BJP: The real Tukde Tukde Gang

We the Tukde Tukde gang Mentored by RSS Pracharaks And educated by Whaatsapp University and Fake news Media Do resolve to polarize the Society We specialize in accusing others Of breaking the country In the name of Tukde Tukde gang Without stating that we are the ones who do it We break the country In the name of Hindu-Muslim, Mandir-Masjid,[Read More…]

April 14, 2019 Arts/Literature
Threat of advocates of ‘Hindu Rashtra’

Threat of advocates of ‘Hindu Rashtra’

They say Hindus are under threat And they will protect Hindus From onslaught and takeover of Muslims and Christians By establishing the Hindu Rashtra They say India is synonymous with Hindus India should mean rule by Hindus for the Hindus It is establishing a Hindu rule in the country Where all religious identities assimilate into a larger Hindu identity If[Read More…]

April 10, 2019 Arts/Literature
Purged

Purged

When the womb opens And bleeds again Irregular, untimely This cleansing, purging Innards Rumbling, pouring Not an end To a natural cycle Can you know? What your tantrums Torture and turns does Fear churns out Its own poison And blood gushes out To release the tension It’s a considerate moment When, for a second You are shaken So you say[Read More…]

April 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
Props

Props

You were called Sophisticated Yes The chic clothes Were your props The perfume Your halo You carried yourself Well But then There were so many aids Stripped of them You panicked The person in you Had had Too many crutches The two feet The mind Were not enough You ran for cover Preeti Tej Singh has written two books of[Read More…]

April 5, 2019 Arts/Literature
Do you really have a choice?

Do you really have a choice?

With empty stomachs and tattered clothes With lifeless eyes devoid of all hopes With dreams not daring to knock at your hearts Is hatred the lifeline you are really looking for? When the ‘accident of your birth’ decides your fate And even for that the fault is laid down at your gate When people look at you but do-not acknowledge[Read More…]

April 4, 2019 Arts/Literature
Claustrophobic

Claustrophobic

Your God looks Suffocated In his wooden frame Your God Gasps For air In his prison He looks crushed Beneath your Flowers, incense and offerings You are cruel To his ears With your Relentless chants Recitations and hymns Leave him alone Let him out He needs to breathe To live Preeti Tej Singh has written two books of poetry. The[Read More…]

April 4, 2019 Arts/Literature
Circumference

Circumference

April 3, 2019 Arts/Literature
Reflections on American Politics

Reflections on American Politics

Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha[Read More…]

April 3, 2019 Arts/Literature
Bar bar Modi sarkar

Bar bar Modi sarkar

Angela Ferrao is a Goa based cartoonist. https://www.facebook.com/Ferraodesigns

April 2, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Poor Woman

A Poor Woman

Your breasts Attract no attention Poor woman They are All dried up and loose Black and filthy You yawn You scratch The miserable wretch Tugs at it No milk in it mother He says The men look With disdain And the women Walk past with indifference You wonder Are these breasts only Or you too dead Preeti Tej Singh has[Read More…]

April 2, 2019 Arts/Literature
The Tale of Fickle and Staid – (A Parable)   

The Tale of Fickle and Staid – (A Parable)   

Once upon a time, in a far away land, high up in the mountains, there were two little villages named Fickle and Staid.  They were on opposite sides of a deep gorge, through which flowed an icy cold river.  Over the river a tiny little bridge connected the two towns.  The simple folk of both villages lived separate lives except[Read More…]

April 2, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Blurred Picture

A Blurred Picture

Ideas enlarge They blow out Of the illusive lens The brain is But a locked trove You are A blurred picture In the scope of my vision And my losing sight Has frozen in time You are no longer Caught Between flutter of eyelids There is only A scratched negative It’s a developmental failure It won’t Turn positive Preeti Tej[Read More…]

April 1, 2019 Arts/Literature
Keshta, old manservant of mine -Rabindranath Tagore- a narrative poem

Keshta, old manservant of mine -Rabindranath Tagore- a narrative poem

Keshta, old manservant of mine (Puratan Bhritya) Rabindranath Tagore- a narrative poem Translated by ©Monish R. Chatterjee (2019) Goblinesque of appearance, he was a fool beyond measure Anything went missing, screamed the mistress, “Keshta stole our treasure.” From dawn till dusk, I swore on his father’s name- barely any heed he paid The caning exceeded his earning, yet witless was[Read More…]

April 1, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Collector’s Delight: 21 Films by K.P. Sasi

A Collector’s Delight: 21 Films by K.P. Sasi

K.P Sasi is one of the unsung heroes of Indian parallel cinema movement. His repertoire of films are amazing. From feature films , music videos to a plethora of documentaries that touch every aspect of our lives. His films are a collectors delight. A Package of 21 Films Directed by K.P. Sasi Are Available. All these films are social issues[Read More…]

March 31, 2019 Arts/Literature, Editor's Picks
Free Dreams

Free Dreams

This morning light is not enough For me to wake up My sleep is not yet over Do not disturb my dreams For they are more beautiful Than your reality And I do not have to pay for them. Welcome to the world of free dreams Take a room in this hotel of free dreams Order whatever you want You[Read More…]

March 30, 2019 Arts/Literature
“Drops of Light”: A Meditation With Poetry, Photos, Music….

“Drops of Light”: A Meditation With Poetry, Photos, Music….

By Pilar Viviente and Gary Steven Corseri   Pilar Viviente: Winter tree in Spring light Ready to wake up after Winter No birds yet hopping on the tree But how beautiful you are! Gary Steven Corseri: Tree unblossomed, whose feather-branches brush the morning air…to wake the rocky, sleeping giant, stirring under the blue-pink sky as the waves lap, and clouds[Read More…]

March 26, 2019 Arts/Literature
Midnight Sky

Midnight Sky

A ghazal for Muslim victims of hatred in Christchurch, NZ, March 15, 2019   Each cosmic conflagration in the midnight sky Helps sketch a constellation in the midnight sky. Dim, bright, small points of light light years apart comprise Apparent aggregations in the midnight sky. Imagined beings, mythic heroes, mesmerize, Impart more fascination to the midnight sky. Far, far above[Read More…]

March 16, 2019 Arts/Literature
Image Courtesy Live Law - http://www.livelaw.in/cms/wp-content/uploads/2015/10/Beef-Ban-Cartoon-min.jpg

Is neutrality still desirable? 

When hate becomes institutionalized And love is forced to look for places to hide If such a scenario you encounter, is neutrality still desirable?   With cries for war all around And the feeblest voice for peace also drowned If such a scenario you encounter, is neutrality still desirable?   When lies are awarded generously And truth just looks on[Read More…]

March 14, 2019 Arts/Literature
The Cawing of the Crow

The Cawing of the Crow

In time its caws roused me from my ritual morning immersions: sipping coffee, lacing words together, drawing them like fingers Across the surfaces of life, Yet remaining untouched.   How long it cried out for my attention Before I walked to the window to confront it, I do not know, but I knew it was me it had called.  [Read More…]

March 11, 2019 Arts/Literature
Search

Search

Jesus came to me I did not recognise him Marx came to me I did not recognise him Ambedkar came to me I did not recognise him Gandhi came to me I did not recognise him Buddha came to me I did not recognise him Then, I came to me `Who are you?’ I asked ‘I am you…!’ He said[Read More…]

March 7, 2019 Arts/Literature
Social Conflicts And Sahir Ludhianvi’s Thoughts

Social Conflicts And Sahir Ludhianvi’s Thoughts

‘Khuda-e-Bartar teri zameen par zameen ki khatir yeh jung kyoon hai? Har ek fatah-o-zafar ke daaman pe khoon-e-insaan ka rang kyon hai? O Lord Almighty, on your land, why is this war raging to win a land? Why has every conqueror’s victory always been tainted with stains of human blood?) From lyrics of the film ‘ Taj Mahal(1963) Even after[Read More…]

March 6, 2019 Arts/Literature
Shivaji-Utsav (Shivaji Festival) By Rabindranath Tagore

Shivaji-Utsav (Shivaji Festival) By Rabindranath Tagore

                       A few distant centuries ago, on a nondescript day I can barely imagine Upon what craggy hilltop, within a dense sunless forest O sovereign Shivaji Lightning-like, across your forehead, there flashed The thought from above- “With a singular religious thread, this torn up, fragmented Bharata, I shall bind in[Read More…]

February 24, 2019 Arts/Literature
Warrior in a Murmuration of Snow Flakes

Warrior in a Murmuration of Snow Flakes

It was not a confused snow; Large flakes bobbing and drifting on meek drafts, Uncertain where to land. Nor was it a helpless snow, Each flake driven to its end By a commanding wind. Neither was it a diamond crystal snow, Each particulate sparkling in the light, As it blasted the skin like sand shot by its cruel wind. It[Read More…]

February 21, 2019 Arts/Literature
AZADI! BOLO AZADI!

AZADI! BOLO AZADI!

Wait! Wait! Wait! For what? Again another debate? Where plots are set for an organised lie Tantrums of intellectuals, leaving others to die Fire is all set to burn the city Ignoring all the screams in its vicinity Poverty claims who is going to be its next prey Heads gamble lives, Azaadi stands far away Barren hearted farmer walks restlessly[Read More…]

February 20, 2019 Arts/Literature
When They Went to Slaughter Communists

When They Went to Slaughter Communists

A Poem After Martin Niemoller’s First They Came for the Communists. When they went to South Korea to slaughter Communists, they were ordered to “kill em all” . They did what they were told And slaughtered helpless innocents at No Gun Ri. I was too young to know or care. My indifference was clearly forgivable   By the time they[Read More…]

February 2, 2019 Arts/Literature
Unconscious – ‘Dostoevsky’s And Freudian’

Unconscious – ‘Dostoevsky’s And Freudian’

Critique of Waldo Frank- TOPICS: Freud, psychoanalysis, modernism. By Waldo Frank, ISSUE: Autumn 1934 Volume 10 # 4,PUBLISHED: March 31, 2010 It was 1928, Freud’s Essay, ‘Dostoevsky and Patricide’ appeared in 1928 as Case Study or Case History, which opened up floodgates of controversies and debates. Freud’s cautious and slightly hesitant identification of Dostoevsky’s mental illness, in all probabilities as[Read More…]

January 24, 2019 Arts/Literature
Brexit Brings May Woes

Brexit Brings May Woes

Angela Ferrao is a cartoonist. https://www.facebook.com/Ferraodesigns

January 18, 2019 Arts/Literature
A Prayer!

A Prayer!

A: The United States has dropped bombs on innocent people including children in Iraq. We should do something. B: Yes, you are right. We must pray. A: Over one hundred people died waiting in queues during the implementation of demonitisation. B: Yes. We must pray. A: Thousands of farmers are committing suicide in India. B: How sad ! We must[Read More…]

January 15, 2019 Arts/Literature
Harappa To Ayyappa

Harappa To Ayyappa

Harappa! We are all your descendants You shepherded the first civilization You built the first city in the East You domesticated the early animals Goat, sheep, buffalo, dog and donkey. You made the first pot, brick, bronze tools You built the first tank, boat and building. You were God’s Own Man. Brahma came and burnt all your civilization Indra damaged[Read More…]

January 14, 2019 Arts/Literature, India
Photo by wolfgangfoto

The Birch in Winter

As the snow lands soft on my face,
The memory suffices.
The gray becomes bearable,
and I find myself satisfied.

January 13, 2019 Arts/Literature
The Shock

The Shock

When can I forget losing my mother
Perhaps, only after losing myself
When should a flower merge with the sand
Still watching the plant remain.

January 12, 2019 Arts/Literature
P. K. Rosy: A dalit actress in film world

P. K. Rosy: A dalit actress in film world

Many women have struggled to come up in the tinsel world of film industry. The #Me Too movement has exposed how domination of male led many women to terminate their careers or compromise and continue in the field. Being a dalit woman makes it all the more difficult to survive. In the face of such uncomfortable conditions, P. K. Rosy[Read More…]

January 11, 2019 Arts/Literature
Visual Politics of Iranian Cinema: Social Class in Asghar Farhadi’s ‘A Separation’

Visual Politics of Iranian Cinema: Social Class in Asghar Farhadi’s ‘A Separation’

Iranian movies receive widespread critical acclaim and popularity in the global space for its creative richness, honesty and the striking blend with reality. These movies are regarded as some of the finest piece of artistic expressions that has come out from the global visual scape. The achievements and recognition can be attributed to the legendary filmmakers like Abbas Kiarostami, Dariush[Read More…]

January 8, 2019 Arts/Literature
Movie Review: “The March of the Wooden Soldiers” directed by Hal Roach

Movie Review: “The March of the Wooden Soldiers” directed by Hal Roach

I am fond of telling my great grand children that when and where I grew up, there were no mobile phones (in fact, we had no phone at all), there were no computers, and for a long time, there wasn’t even a radio because neither my grandparents or I spoke English. I was born in America, but English was my[Read More…]

January 7, 2019 Arts/Literature
Mrinal Sen, Calcutta, 1978

Mrinal Sen: “A perfect combination of a wise-old-man and completely young at heart”

“I don’t agree with Godard when he says that the cinema is a gun. That is too romantic an expression. You can’t topple a government or a system by making one “Potemkin”. You can’t do that with ten “Potemkins”. All you can do is create an environment in which you can discuss a society that is growing undemocratic, fascistic.” –[Read More…]

January 4, 2019 Arts/Literature
Rounded

Rounded

When a child, she ran the mountains with the dogs. The only voice she heard were those of the toothless old woman, The old man, frail as a robin’s bone, dry coughing, dry coughing. No boxes spoke to her, no images existed that were not there and then. Mystery lived in every unopened bud; she shelled okra So its secrets[Read More…]

January 2, 2019 Arts/Literature
Suspending Choice: The Patrick Melrose Series

Suspending Choice: The Patrick Melrose Series

Ashes, even when washed way, can haunt the living.  A cracked Patrick Melrose has come to retrieve the cremated remains of this late father. He is addicted, indulgent, outrageous. He drinks and doses to excess; his moments of brief sobriety are nothing more than painful interludes in poor living and self-inflicted disgrace.  Painful lucidity is tampered with; the moments he[Read More…]

December 31, 2018 Arts/Literature
Photo by MarioGuti / iStock.

Audit of Human Life

Make an audit of the profit and loss account
From the time of evolution of human life
And the loss of lives of humans and other species
Due to the evolution of human race

Your life and mine deserve nothing better

Than a place in the dustbins that humans failed to create.

December 29, 2018 Arts/Literature
A Laughter From The Sky

A Laughter From The Sky

The shattered pieces of a mirror
Lay at the feet of Sabari.
She looked at the pieces
And wept with her heart.

December 27, 2018 Arts/Literature
Forget History! Write Literature

Forget History! Write Literature

A fortnight back, a single column news item in newspapers announced the death of Mushirul Hasan, an Indian historian and former Vice Chancellor of Jamia Millia Islamia and author of a dozen and half books. His forte has been Islam in South Asia, communalism and birth of India and Pakistan as independent dominions. Except for some occasional remarks in sync[Read More…]

December 25, 2018 Arts/Literature
Fifty Years of a Revolutionary Tree

Fifty Years of a Revolutionary Tree

We still remember
The wailing of standing tree
When you were tied
And brutally murdered

December 22, 2018 Arts/Literature
Reminder

Reminder

For this term of your life
An imagination incomplete
And an unfinished existence
Like the half burnt bodies
Which float on the breasts of Ganga river
Swatch Bharat Ki Jai
For a collection of currency notes
Of no value.

December 19, 2018 Arts/Literature
Taking ‘Koshur’ Literature To World

Taking ‘Koshur’ Literature To World

Some ten years back, I reviewed, ‘Journey into Islam, the Crisis of Globalization’ (2007) the first of series of three books written by Prof Akbar Ahmed, an American scholar seeking to establish a dialogue and understanding between the West and Islam. And to find answers for the hatred and mistrust between Muslims and the West intensified after the September 11-[Read More…]

December 18, 2018 Arts/Literature
Pondering Around

Pondering Around

A life was pondering around
Between the sky and the earthworms
Neither there nor here
A life destined to be
Meaningful or meaningless

December 16, 2018 Arts/Literature
Translating Habba Khatoon, A Praiseworthy Attempt by G R Malik

Translating Habba Khatoon, A Praiseworthy Attempt by G R Malik

Most of the readers, who are good at reading the literature written in their mother tongue or in a language they can read and comprehend well, feel it as an unnecessary step taken; and they often pose a question – “Why would someone translate a work of art from source language to any other language?” For such readers, the answer[Read More…]

December 7, 2018 Arts/Literature
Action and Thought

Action and Thought

Last night my mother came in my dreams
She asked me, why do you do what you do?
And I said
`Mother, I don’t do what I should do
And I do what I shouldn’t do’
She just smiled and said
`Do what you ought to do
and don’t do what you shouldn’t do’

December 5, 2018 Arts/Literature
From A Human Being To Being Human(e)

From A Human Being To Being Human(e)

In between lies man’s perennial striving
Out of mundane struggles of hell
To become the total man —
From a human being to being human(e)
That unlocks the door to Heaven!

November 26, 2018 Arts/Literature
In One Voice

In One Voice

                 On a day when the skies had opened up in  Thiruvanathapuram on the eve of the beginning of the crucial month of Vrischikam, along the outskirts of the urban world, 500 children from different schools were preparing to travel into the city. They were carrying in their minds the tunes and words[Read More…]

November 21, 2018 Arts/Literature
The paradoxical anomaly – DEATH 

The paradoxical anomaly – DEATH 

The death of morality….
 the death of reasoning ….
The death of rationality ….
I am bizzare I am death !

November 13, 2018 Arts/Literature
Artistic dilemma – The Passions of The Mind !

Artistic dilemma – The Passions of The Mind !

“A beautiful thing never gives so much pain , as does failing to hear and see it ! ” – GUTAV KLIMT As I come across this quote from my favourite artist my eyes are drawn to the easel on which rests the long forgotten canvas with its half drawn lotus leaves and lotuses standing in solemn impeccable majesty -defeated[Read More…]

November 11, 2018 Arts/Literature
The Mob

The Mob

“Who is that with the dagger?”
“I don’t know.”
“And who is that with the stick?”
“Sorry, don’t know.”
“Who is that with the sledgehammer?”
“Don’t know.”
“And look, who is that with the pen?”
“Oh, he? He’s a journalist.”

November 10, 2018 Arts/Literature
Partition Angst in Annada Shankar Roy’s Nursery Rhyme

Partition Angst in Annada Shankar Roy’s Nursery Rhyme

A translation of Annada Shankar’s Teler Shishi with commentary The Jar of Oil Annada Shankar Roy Translated by Monish R Chatterjee   Little Khuku breaks a jar of oil, And here you are fighting mad Yet you, grown-up kids, breaking up, dividing our Bharat You say ain’t half as bad Well, what then? What then? What then?   There you go,[Read More…]

October 30, 2018 Arts/Literature
Harps of Kashmir Bleed!

Harps of Kashmir Bleed!

O Mother, do not cry
For I have died but the battle stays
My death is not the full stop
It’s just a question which you must ask!

October 27, 2018 Arts/Literature, Kashmir
A solemn heart, A shattered love story !

A solemn heart, A shattered love story !

Where do I begin To tell the story of how great a love can be The sweet love story that is older than the sea The simple truth about the love she brings to me……. (Love story ) The natural disasters #me too the #sabrimala the #all women bleed , the rapes and molestations , nuns , the talaq the[Read More…]

October 22, 2018 Arts/Literature
Orson Welles, Broadcasts and Fake News

Orson Welles, Broadcasts and Fake News

Orson Welles’ spectral return to the screen, ingeniously in posthumous mode, should have come as a comfort to the magicians skilled in the arts of trickery.  Beyond the grave, he seems to be exerting a continuing influence, with his film, The Other Side of the Wind making its debut after 48 torrid years at the Telluride Film Festival.  His delight[Read More…]

October 9, 2018 Arts/Literature
I cry out to you dear father….

I cry out to you dear father….

You said “Find Yourself in the Service of Others – to make a difference”
Sure you did not mean – “Make others serve you till he is lost”
I cry out to you to come back, dear father
For a satyagraha to relieve us from our own oppression

October 4, 2018 Arts/Literature
Where will you sleep? ( A question to Mahatma )

Where will you sleep? ( A question to Mahatma )

When communal frenzy Was at its peak And hatred led to Massacres of Innocents While India celebrated It’s ‘ freedom at Midnight’, You slept with Strife – torn victims When communal frenzy Is at its peak , Caste conflicts, lynchings, Communal violence Continue unabated, While those who supported Your murderers Are ‘ celebrating ‘ your birth anniversary Where will you[Read More…]

October 2, 2018 Arts/Literature
Nostalgia and Sunshine: Bruce Beresford’s Ladies in Black

Nostalgia and Sunshine: Bruce Beresford’s Ladies in Black

This effort seems to be a bit of camping out on the part of director Bruce Beresford, whose list of cinematic achievements include Driving Miss Daisy and Breaker Morant.  There are many smiles, a few distributed tears and occasional sighs of regret, but generally speaking, little by way of controversial stings.  Ladies in Black, in other words, is all entertainment[Read More…]

October 1, 2018 Arts/Literature
A Dissenting Note On Carnatic Music And Attack On It By Fundamentalists

A Dissenting Note On Carnatic Music And Attack On It By Fundamentalists

Dear Aruna Roy, I received your statement “Reclaiming our Heritage: Statement condemning the attack on classical musical expression in south India” for endorsement. As you are aware, I grew up immersed in (or force fed) Carnatic music for the first 20 years of my life. I have attended perhaps a thousand concerts in that period, not all out of choice. Long[Read More…]

September 30, 2018 Arts/Literature
Photo Credit -India Water Portal

Black holes

Fascinated by black holes Which do not allow even light Ray’s To pass? They are hypothetical Scientific marvel…. Look at the real holes On Earth …. They drag red blooded human ‘stars’ Squeeze their lives Leave their families In tatters! Look at the forced labor Cleaning humus and sewer Entering death traps Breathing stench with excreta …. No statistics or[Read More…]

September 21, 2018 Arts/Literature
Curl in dog’s tail

Curl in dog’s tail

The narrative is the story of a community of people , Dogistan, named after the dogs that its every household owns. The Dogistan’s dogs are of two kinds: tailless and curly tailed dogs. The former are gentle and docile,  while latter are very mean and abject.  The curly tailed dogs outnumber the tailless dogs.  A Dogistani lady,  Miss Ruby,   does[Read More…]

September 13, 2018 Arts/Literature
A newspaper page from 1980s about the movies then on display in various cinema halls of Kashmir

Kashmir’s Celluloid Years

The beginning and the end of cinema halls in Kashmir is linked with the turmoil it has witnessed for about nine decades now. During the early 1930s, when Kashmir was passing through an uncertain situation following the massacre of about two dozen unarmed civilians on 13 July 1931 and the consequent public revolt against an autocratic rule, a Punjabi speaking[Read More…]

September 8, 2018 Arts/Literature, Kashmir
Fear Is The Key

Fear Is The Key

Do not be afraid, my dear For your fear is what they want And if you agree with them You will become a stagnant slave. Do not become a slave, my child For your slavery is what they want And if you agree with them You will vanish from this landscape. Do not vanish my darling For your disappearance is[Read More…]

September 2, 2018 Arts/Literature
The flood in Aluva – A Glimpse

The flood in Aluva – A Glimpse

The water rose in our house to the first floor The water came suddenly from the river to where it had never come before as the dam had been unleashed into it and it had overflowed even to the midst of the town We left without further ado An old man and an old woman a daughter and her husband[Read More…]

August 25, 2018 Arts/Literature
A Writer’s Last Port of Call: V.S. Naipaul

A Writer’s Last Port of Call: V.S. Naipaul

V. S. Naipaul, the Nobel winning author who just died, was, like so many people, an enigma, at least in his writing. Lauded for his prose style and exquisite way with words, he was seriously criticized for his demeaning of Islam, women, Africans, and others in post-colonial countries, including the Caribbean from whence he came. Such criticism was amply justified. [Read More…]

August 18, 2018 Arts/Literature
Of ‘Mulk’, and the ‘Garm Hava’ of the Times we Live In, waiting for the ‘Naseem’ to Blow

Of ‘Mulk’, and the ‘Garm Hava’ of the Times we Live In, waiting for the ‘Naseem’ to Blow

The iconic poster of that memorable film ‘Garm Hava’(hot winds), with the inimitable Balraj Sahni’s grim face and downcast, apparently moist eyes reflecting a quiet determination, has these lines on it in comparatively small print: ‘…. every pain of mine,                           I hid even from myself.’ The recently released ‘Mulk’, in some ways reminds one of ‘Garm Hava’- and these[Read More…]

August 15, 2018 Arts/Literature
BEASTS…!!

BEASTS…!!

Will all the detergents and
Oceans full water of the world
be sufficient to wash away
The stains of sins
That are committed by these beasts..
On women of this country?

August 7, 2018 Arts/Literature
Lillian Hellman’s Days to Come

Lillian Hellman’s Days to Come

                         In 2017, Sweat won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama. Playwright Lynn Nottage based her play on interviews with steelworkers in Reading, Pennsylvania, conducted in 2011, at a time when the U.S. Census Bureau officially ranked Reading as one of the poorest cities in America.  Nottage cast her factory[Read More…]

August 3, 2018 Arts/Literature
Trees. the first victims of ‘development

Trees. the first victims of ‘development

Just because we don’t hear them scream in pain doesn’t mean they don’t feel the sharpness of the axe. Trees. the first victims of ‘development.’

July 31, 2018 Arts/Literature
Review, Summery and Evaluation of- Music beyond Boundaries- Hindi Film Songs by Ashok Da Ranade

Review, Summery and Evaluation of- Music beyond Boundaries- Hindi Film Songs by Ashok Da Ranade

It is mandatory to introduce India’s most versatile Musicologist and who has authored one of the finest musicological Research venture for the benefit of  the International and Indian Music Lovers of Hindi Music Songs. Here is an attempt to grasp the Origins and historical dynamics and transformations of Hindi Film Music into a great Modern Cultural phenomena. The idea germinated[Read More…]

July 28, 2018 Arts/Literature
The River of Life – Cultures of Resistances Down the Ages

The River of Life – Cultures of Resistances Down the Ages

Some stories say that Saraha was a Prince. Some stories say that he was born in a family of arrow-makers. At times, even the same stories, in different telling, tell different tales. Some say he lived in the 9th century AD. Some say, in the 10th. Some even say that he was from sometimes between the 10th & the 11th[Read More…]

July 28, 2018 Arts/Literature
I Am Not Hungry Anymore…..

I Am Not Hungry Anymore…..

I knew the alphabet from A to Z I could also recite it in reverse right from Z to A But I didn’t know so many combinations of the alphabet were possible When joined together they could form such big meaningful words ICDS and ICPS – the difference of but a letter yet two big independent things they say One[Read More…]

July 27, 2018 Arts/Literature
Lynch Mobs

Lynch Mobs

When a perfectly ordinary bunch of people turn into bloodthirsty mobs. A stranger becomes the object of bottomless hate. Angela Ferrao is an independent editorial cartoonist. https://www.facebook.com/Ferraodesigns

July 22, 2018 Arts/Literature
Ionesco’s play shows we can stand Up to fascism

Ionesco’s play shows we can stand Up to fascism

The Hindutva forces now expect every one to fall in line with their thinking. But they will not succeed. This reminds me of a play Rhinoceros written by Eugene Ionesco, a French-Romanian, a major playwright in the tradition of the theatre of the Absurd In this play over a period , every one turns from a human being into a[Read More…]

July 22, 2018 Arts/Literature
Irumbu Thirai removes the curtain that hides a dark world

Irumbu Thirai removes the curtain that hides a dark world

“Neither can you hide; nor can you run” is the popular slogan of the Tamil reality show- Bigg Boss, spinoffs of the Hindi and English version. IrumbuThirai (literally translating to iron curtain) is a film that accurately juxtaposes this slogan with the digital world. By amalgamating contemporary conceptions and controversies around Cambridge Analytica, UIDAI’s Aadhar, digital privacy, NaMO’s Digital India,[Read More…]

July 22, 2018 Arts/Literature
Dropout from WhatsApp education academy

Dropout from WhatsApp education academy

I’ve dropped out of regular learning From WhatsApp Education Academy I will now be dabbler, an occasional Visitor, an irregular scholar I have decided to manage my own consumption of information Away from device dependency, I will regain my ability to remember and store memories, and give myself more time for contemplation, time-in-nature, reading books and face-to-face social interaction I[Read More…]

July 21, 2018 Arts/Literature
Church and state only applicable to some

Church and state only applicable to some

Archbishop of Goa and Daman, Felipe Neri Ferrao’s pronouncements about the Indian Constitution being in danger created a furor in the media. Apparently the Catholic church in Goa is only supposed to boost tourism. Angela Ferrao is an independent editorial cartoonist. https://www.facebook.com/Ferraodesigns

July 20, 2018 Arts/Literature
Vedic Chants For Better Crops!

Vedic Chants For Better Crops!

Vijai Sardesai the leader of Goa Forward,wants farmers to chant ‘vedic hymns’ for better crops..if the same worked for good governance! Angela Ferrao is an independent editorial cartoonist. https://www.facebook.com/Ferraodesigns

July 19, 2018 Arts/Literature
Fake News

Fake News

Spreading the news which is Fake Being promoted for the divisive Sake Selling like a hot Cake It is time to be Awake Through producing the fake News To spread the hatred Views Building the lynching Queues By eradicating the cognitive Fuse Serving the Saffron Ring Masters Creating the lie Posters Under the direction of Communal Promoters It is time[Read More…]

July 19, 2018 Arts/Literature
 A Critical Discourse On Dalit Literature and Literary Theory

 A Critical Discourse On Dalit Literature and Literary Theory

According to the hymn in India, Brahmin were born from the mouth of Brahma, Kshatriyas were born from his shoulder, Vaishyas from his thighs, while the Shudras were born from his feet. Therefore, the Brahmin are considered as most superior, while the Shudras are at the lowest position in hierarchy. Shudras were considered to be the untouchables and were named[Read More…]

June 28, 2018 Arts/Literature
Somen Chanda

Rats: A Story by Somen Chanda

Have you heard of Caudwell and Conford? Of Ralf Fox? Do you know of Federico Garcia Lorca? These martyrs had reddened Spain The green olive forests are red Mothers lost children, lose children, Yet I say, good days approach Come, let’s go touch their blood And write, with that blood, a song for the good days.   The original Bangla[Read More…]

June 25, 2018 Arts/Literature
Shantanu Kamble – An Inspiring Dalit Writer

Shantanu Kamble – An Inspiring Dalit Writer

Dalit movement has produced great writers who expressed the pain of being discriminated in poignant prose and verse. Among those inspiring writers is Shahir Shantanu Kamble who was known as ‘ vidrohi kavi’ passed away.(maharashtratimes.indiatimes.com). He was only 39 years old. His passing away is a jolt to ambedkarite movement. He belongs to the tradition of ‘ vidroh shahiri’ ([Read More…]

June 24, 2018 Annihilate Caste, Arts/Literature
Does the Burns/Novick Vietnam Documentary Deserve an Emmy?

Does the Burns/Novick Vietnam Documentary Deserve an Emmy?

By the time I reached Episode Four in this ten-episode film, I concluded it should not be touted as an Emmy Award winning documentary. Episode Four “Resolve,” is the story of 1966, a year that the producers of this film have designated as the time when doubt began to worm its way into American troops. This doubt sows the breeding[Read More…]

June 16, 2018 Arts/Literature
Welcome to the New India

Welcome to the New India

The freely lynching Babus To the molesting Babas Highly protected Gau Matas To the disappearing Anna Datas   Where reality becomes a Fake And sells like a hot Cake Creating a country of communal Make Never ever to be socially Awake   Here Mythology turns to History And History becomes a Mystery Fake science is sweetened like a Pastry And[Read More…]

June 15, 2018 Arts/Literature
The contingent mysticism of Art

The contingent mysticism of Art

Carl Schmitt, renowned for his wide ranging critique of liberalism, once famously said,” All true politics is based on the distinction between a friend and an enemy.” Explicating his concept of the ‘political’, Schmitt further argues that it is not possible to analyse a thing from a non-political or a post-political prism. He uses the friend-enemy binary to underline this[Read More…]

June 14, 2018 Arts/Literature
Medieval Rohingya Poetry

Medieval Rohingya Poetry

People from the Ra-khin countries are called Ra-khin-ye – or the Rohingya. In vernacular Bengali, we had learnt of the place as the Arakan Valleys that lie to the east of Bangladesh – beyond the southern hilly walls of Chittagong. We had surmised that the Arakan must have been a great melting pot of Buddhism, Islam and the tribes. Buddhist[Read More…]

June 11, 2018 Arts/Literature
 I Ask That A Proper Play About Muslims Be Written

 I Ask That A Proper Play About Muslims Be Written

“To think that we can understand Islam through current headlines and the conflicting opinions of political pundits is sheer illusion. But the misrepresentations embedded in many scholarly tomes from prestigious institutions create even more problems.” — Richard Martin Oxman Some citizens in Europe and the United States have engaged in ugly debates about whether or not they ought to welcome[Read More…]

May 27, 2018 Arts/Literature
A Love Song to Americans

A Love Song to Americans

It doesn’t matter that the wars are coming It doesn’t matter that the wars just came It doesn’t matter that we had our warning To you all wars are just the same   I thought you really loved me I thought you really cared I thought that when the bombs were falling You’d shelter me when I was scared  [Read More…]

May 16, 2018 Arts/Literature
Searing Scenario in Seraing for All of Us

Searing Scenario in Seraing for All of Us

Special note: Don’t read about any of the films mentioned here prior to watching them. This “review” won’t spoil anything. “I remember loving The Promise over twenty years ago.” — Annapurna Tosca Sriramarcel “The Son is my favorite work of theirs.” — Rachel Olivia O’Connor When we first meet Jenny Davin (Adèle Haenel) of the Dardennes brothers’ The Unknown Girl (La Fille Inconnue) — the smart, uncompromising[Read More…]

May 15, 2018 Arts/Literature
Fifty Years without You in this Wilderness

Fifty Years without You in this Wilderness

[This poem was written in remembrance of half-a-century since the passing of my mother, a most remarkable woman the world did not get to know (reminds me much of Thomas Gray’s famous Elegy with the potent lines: Full many a gem of purest ray serene, The dark unfathom’d caves of ocean bear: Full many a flow’r is born to blush[Read More…]

May 14, 2018 Arts/Literature
A Passing Thought in the Age of Terror

A Passing Thought in the Age of Terror

  “Those with no sides and no causes.  Those who won’t take measure of their own strength, for fear of antagonizing their own weakness.  Those who don’t like to make waves – or enemies.  Those for whom freedom, honor, truth, and principles are only literature.  Those who live small, mate small, die small.  It’s the reductionist approach to life: if[Read More…]

May 10, 2018 Arts/Literature
Salutes to Karl Marx

Salutes to Karl Marx

Calling for a better World A world filled with utmost humanity Completely free from the oppressive structures And exploitative relations among humans   Where sharing and caring Is integral to human society Where social benefit and humanitarian values rules Eradicating the systemic flaws of the past   Where artificial divisions among humans become a past And social relations are democratised[Read More…]

May 6, 2018 Arts/Literature
The Future Works ….

The Future Works ….

  Yes! There are atrocities Rapes Murders Lynchings ….. But Also there are protests Agitations Strikes Struggles …. Egging on the masses For future peaceful lives Though the ‘ opium’ of religion Is engulfing the world over People are coming out of intoxication To challenge the fanatic power The legacy of Marx Unites the workers To observe May day With[Read More…]

April 30, 2018 Arts/Literature
Rape Republic

Rape Republic

                                                              women are flesh, maidens are meat. living as women is living hell. demons are gods, gods are satans in the people’s republic, rape republic. a toxic state in state toxic.[Read More…]

April 29, 2018 Arts/Literature
The Agony And The Ecstacy

The Agony And The Ecstacy

“Drawing is the poet’s written line, set down to see if there be a story worth telling , a truth worth revealling ” – Irving stone From within the unfathomable deep depths ,flows the esoteric river of inspiration through the heart /mind of an artist ….that which cannot be contained but needs to flow on its own terms and conditions[Read More…]

April 29, 2018 Arts/Literature
Rabindranath Tagore’s Hero Poems

Rabindranath Tagore’s Hero Poems

[While Tagore wrote extensively on philosophical exchanges between significant characters from India’s great epics, such as the Karna-KuntiSamvad, the vast compendium of his poetry is essentially reflective and non-historic.  He did, however, write a few tribute poems dedicated to heroic figures from India’s medieval years, including the Sikh hero, Banda Singh Bahadur, and the Maratha chief, ChhatrapatiShivaji.  In this sequence,[Read More…]

April 26, 2018 Arts/Literature
Dalit Writers: Struggle Against Social Discrimination

Dalit Writers: Struggle Against Social Discrimination

  Dalit writers are gaining prominence in modern literature. But their beginnings was not all that easy. They had to endure social stigma and isolation from society, especially the upper castes. Poets and their sufferings According to en.m.wikipedia, dalit literature started in the 1960s in Marathi language and quickly spread to other languages like Hindi, Kannada, Telugu, Bengali and Tamil.[Read More…]

April 26, 2018 Arts/Literature
Molest Me No More, Rape Me No More

Molest Me No More, Rape Me No More

Please allow me to walk the street Without being for your eyes a treat Don’t look down my shirt Don’t check the length of my skirt My bosom is round, my hips are tight But none of these are for your delight Burqua, jeans or any clothes are my fashion Why should I dress with caution? I may be a[Read More…]

April 24, 2018 Arts/Literature
Asifa

Asifa

Asifa, I have no words to speak of or for you
I had planned to give up poetry
At the end of this month
This National Poetry Writing Month
Poetry is of no use
Words have no beauty
What I need is action to enthuse
My deeds have to fill the stage of this world
So that never again is there an Asifa.

April 21, 2018 Arts/Literature
In a Time of Endless Wars

In a Time of Endless Wars

  I write for the men of a thousand years hence— and the women—and their healthy children. And…, if you are suffering, if night is day and day is night, I will drink the cup of despair with you, for I have tasted of despair.   But…, if you are happy and wise, may my words animate your limbs; may[Read More…]

April 20, 2018 Arts/Literature
A Small Little Girl

A Small Little Girl

A Small little Girl
With innocent smile on her face
Goes to the Forest
To bring back the horses

April 18, 2018 Arts/Literature
Coversations with an Indian male !

Coversations with an Indian male !

Ah ! The predicament of an engrossing coversation with an indian male The vicissitudes of rape ! A week does not go by without a ” RAPE ” being reported …. How does it get any better than this ! I wonder ! For a country of a billion souls ONE more case ? Well I say -‘ what’s new[Read More…]

April 16, 2018 Arts/Literature
Homeless

Homeless

Into the night he releases his wordless poem, rhythmic and perfectly metered; then pauses to consider it before a new trope of sound rises with the steam from his mouth.   This cold winter, this Moscow night, loneliness, or some ancient ache for belonging is our common inspiration. But I am the lesser poet, in need of words to beg[Read More…]

April 14, 2018 Arts/Literature
Representative Image

A Silent Statue

To Dalits, Muslims, subalterns,
To women, the poor, the marginalised sections,
You are a statue full of life
In this world of strife !!

April 14, 2018 Arts/Literature
Rape Victims

Rape Victims

Nirbhayas, Nancies and Asifas
Must be murdered
As a punishment to be born
A mere helpless girl ?
Unprotected, all unsecured
In her own volatile turf
Be it home, society, state or country
Until her society gives birth
To good and righteous people.

April 13, 2018 Arts/Literature
A Thousand Deaths And Still She Asks

A Thousand Deaths And Still She Asks

She speaks from my womb
Last time it was her entrails yelling
having been pounded, wrung and spread out to die
in wide eyed surprise
at yet another killing

April 13, 2018 Arts/Literature
As If a

As If a

As if a girl named Asifa does not exist, didn’t exist, will not exist
As if Asifa was never raped, never tortured, never ravaged
As if Asifa is a myth, a fantasy, a lie, a fading photo
As if we are we were we will be ……

April 12, 2018 Arts/Literature
The Wind Of Bad Breath

The Wind Of Bad Breath

Wind has no smell The aroma it spreads is from the Master’s garden. Nor has it any sound Music you hear in the wind is from the singing birds. Alas! Master’s garden has dried up And the birds sing no more! The crackling noise of the broken trumpet That you hear that hurts your eardrums Is from the oppressor’s loud[Read More…]

April 12, 2018 Arts/Literature
Photo by woodleywonderworks

Earth for Children

The earth is tired Of rotating around the sun For so many years For so many decades And for so many centuries. `Give me a break’, she cried `I am tired of this routine Going on serving others Like a selfless house wife No more will I withstand your marital rape You are not my husbands You are only my[Read More…]

April 10, 2018 Arts/Literature
Scandi Noir, Kim Wall and Murder

Scandi Noir, Kim Wall and Murder

Finland, a country noted for deep felt suicides executed during long dark winter months, has become the happiest nation on earth.  This statistical superstition, contrived to feed a social-media diet free of substance and light on evidence, belies one fundamental point: Scandinavia can boast its examples of curious killings and extravagant murders.  Little wonder, then, that there has been something[Read More…]

April 1, 2018 Arts/Literature
Mungling Dreams

Mungling Dreams

  He slept as a truck driver with vertigo, in the Mungling lodge midday buffet of daal, bhat, tarkari and naked women, all left on their own. Dreamt he was asending to the heaven of prosperity on an escalator made out of her thighs holding The World Bank’s “Annual World Development Report” in his hand. Bhuwan Thapaliya was born in Kathmandu,[Read More…]

March 30, 2018 Arts/Literature
Between The ‘Spiritual’ And Material’ Assemblage Of ‘Violence’ Reading/Viewing S Durga

Between The ‘Spiritual’ And Material’ Assemblage Of ‘Violence’ Reading/Viewing S Durga

If “the brain is the screen, as Deleuze would have us believe, Sanal Kumar Sasidharan’s third venture, S Durga “both expresses and induces thought, as images at once move us and move in us.” The brain/screen assemblage is, for Deleuze, an event of images in motion, which is to say both that we think in moving images and that moving[Read More…]

March 27, 2018 Arts/Literature
Bastar Solidarity Literary Festival, Kolkata

Bastar Solidarity Literary Festival, Kolkata

The two day People’s Literary Festival, organised by the Kolkata Chapter of the Bastar Solidarity Network, is all set to roll. Very rarely do we come across a literature festival dedicated exclusively towards upholding and portraying narratives of people’s struggles and resistances against various oppressions. This politics of direct celebration of dialectical materialism through such a literature festival, of course,[Read More…]

March 22, 2018 Arts/Literature
Kumar Hassan

Interview With Kumar Hassan

KUMAR HASSAN,1962 is a well decorated poet, born in Samblpur Town and grew upin paternal hamlet on the bank of Hirakud Dam Reservoir,Bichchedgarh in Jharsuguda Dist. in Orissa. His father late Moulana Mustakim Khan Gountia was an eminent local amateur vocalist, instrumental music artist, astrologist and mother Late JubeidaBai a housewife. He has so far more than forty books both[Read More…]

March 22, 2018 Arts/Literature
 Dramatic Lime for the Slime

 Dramatic Lime for the Slime

“Do something fresh, Richard, for God’s sake!” — Lorraine Hansberry, an atheist, to the author in the early sixties… when he was a young instructor of Dramatic Art Let’s have a new kind of dramatic fare. The food served on stage these days is not very palatable for the people in my quarters, bogged down as they are with concern over our[Read More…]

March 21, 2018 Arts/Literature
Acche  Din

Acche  Din

People are starving and some are doing so to death. People are homeless and living in streets. People are without jobs and are in poverty. (There are not enough jobs available.) Resource shortages (including water and food in some regions) are coming. Climate change is worsening in dire impacts. Elites want to set up mining, logging and other operations on[Read More…]

March 20, 2018 Arts/Literature
The Pigeons of Zhulebino

The Pigeons of Zhulebino

Those first days in Moscow,
they were the enemy:
their gray down gathering in corners
like the frail remains of long dead cicadas.
their dropping scarring the glass,
melding with black soot.

March 19, 2018 Arts/Literature
The Good Times Are Here

The Good Times Are Here

Achhe din  Achhe din
The good times are here.
Modi is just like Santa Claus
spreading much good cheer.

March 19, 2018 Arts/Literature
To Rebel Is To Create

To Rebel Is To Create

To rebel is to create
To conform is to stagnate
To question is to know
To follow is support to status-quo
To doubt is to be radical
To undoubtedly assent is to be ‘practical’
To self-criticize is to grow
To self-eulogize is just to blow with the flow
So dare to think

March 16, 2018 Arts/Literature
Nullity Canceled

Nullity Canceled

We are little grains of sand in an endless beach.
Our unique and relative placement is of no account.
Swept along by tides of time,
Flung and refined (with the rough edges removed)
By harsh unyielding winds of change,
We exist here on no grounds save that we simply are.

March 14, 2018 Arts/Literature
Man With The Solar Brain

Man With The Solar Brain

His brain awash with solar rays
The man with the solar brain
Walks past the cotton fields
And the mobile towers
Listening to the tweets and
The songs of extinct birds.

March 14, 2018 Arts/Literature