FEATURE: The Power and Fear of the Pen

Semeen Ali presents youthful voices trying to come to terms with the nature of conflicting interests in the trajectories of freedom and democracy. She cites Albert Camus, the great existentialist, who explores the interconnections between freedom and responsibility, challenging the human temptation to consider suicide as possible escape from absurdity: “The only way to deal with an unfree world is to become so absolutely free that your very existence is an act of rebellion.”

In the poems, fiction and essays, the explorations may plumb the depths of despair or speak of the strength of the weakest of the weak. What we, as Indians, cannot afford to forget, though, is the simple mantra that Mahatma Gandhi has given the world—the mantra which defies all opposition: “Be the Change you want to see in the world.” >>>


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In a poignant piece, Prachi Gurjarpadhye takes us down memory lane to meet the pioneer of modernist Indian English poetry, Nissim Ezekiel (in pic) at a time when he was no longer in control over his mental faculties. Conversations with Uddipana Goswami and the Parsi voice from across the border, Bapsi Sidhwa, and articles on Aravind Adiga, Laxmi Narayan Tripathi, Aju Mukhopadhyay among others, are the highlights. >>>

Book Reviews are the life blood of any journal as they keep the readers updated with the latest releases and provide a choice to them to pick from the rich fare available. Our scholarly reviewers – Lipipuspa Nayak, Paresh Tiwari, Priyadarshini Gupta, Revati Raj Iyer (in pic), Srinivas Reddy, Subashish Bhattacharjee and Usha Kishore – introduce scintillating works of prose, poetry and fiction. >>>

“The way of human life … is an unimaginable, unpredictable and relentless chiaroscuro of happenings... It is a maze of approaches and opportunities, of ordeals and challenges,” writes U Atreya Sarma, while presenting seven short stories, including that of Sohail Rauf (in pic), guaranteed to tug at the heart strings and challenge the mind. >>>

Ambika Ananth believes “that poetry has a therapeutic quality …, apart from its creative side, restoring individuals and society to good health – the restorative quality can be felt by those who are receptive to it.” The children’s writer, Deepa Agarwal (in pic), speaks of her past as her “own” foreign country, while Dilip Mohapatra, Jean Ann Owens and others explore their experiences in varied forms and settings. >>>

Priyadarshi Patnaik and Pinaki Gayen present ‘The Scroll Paintings of Bengal,’ a vibrant narrative tradition of ‘Patuas,’ the wandering artist-performers who move from village to village singing stories of gods and goddesses as they unfold the visuals in the scrolls.

We invite art works from our members for being featured in next Issue. Details given inside. >>>

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Last Date: 31 Aug 2016
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02 Aug 2016: Scintillating Performance of Merchant of Venice in Bengali

18 Jul 2016: A Milestone for Indian Diaspora Poets

18 Jul 2016: Two interesting arrivals from Rasala

27 Jun 2016: Neelam Saxena Chandra’s poetry books released

19 Jun 2016: Natak Phatak – A Bold Attempt in adapting an English Film on a Bengal Stage

6 Jun 2016: Khandala Fest 2016

5 Jun 2016: Prof Raamaa Chandramouli receives Seshendra Award

1 Jun 2016: Christal Ferrao’s “It is like magic” released

22 May 2016: The Lost World of Sarala Devi by Sachidananda Mohanty

17 May 2016: Dharmashoke: A New and Fresh look into His/Herstory


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