BY: SARAH BAKEWELL Optimism is not generally thought cool, and it is often thought foolish. The optimistic philosopher John Stuart Mill wrote in 1828, “I have observed that not the man who hopes when others despair, but the man who despairs when others hope, is admired by a large class of persons as a sage.” […]
The world is upside-down, provincialism has replaced cosmopolitanism, and exoticism is dead in today’s fiction. Just like in ‘Raag Darbari’.
By: Ulka Anjaria A conference was held recently at Delhi University to commemorate 50 years of Shrilal Shukla’s Hindi novel Raag Darbari. Shukla was an IAS officer who wrote Raag Darbari based on his experiences in rural UP, winning the Sahitya Akademi award for it in 1969. The book went on to capture the imagination […]
By: Haroon Khalid Surrounded by thousands of others, there is nothing remarkable about the grave of Dulla Bhatti, on a raised platform, plastered with cement under the shade of an old tree. There is no mark on the grave but a board next to it identifies its occupant. Occasionally, an odd visitor brings flowers or […]
BY: JENNIFER SZALAI Steven Pinker doesn’t just want you to be happy; he wants you to be grateful too. His new book, “Enlightenment Now,” is a spirited and exasperated rebuke to anyone who refuses to concede that the world is becoming a better place. “None of us are as happy as we ought to be, […]
By: Sajid Iqbal In a world where belief and militancy are becoming fused, there are peaceful yet puritanical forms of religion that still capture peoples’ imagination. One such form is advanced by the Tablighi Jamaat (TJ), a worldwide Islamic missionary movement popularising the concept of inner reform among believers. What makes TJ fascinating and relevant […]
By: DWIGHT GARNER The Dutch-born historian and New York Review of Books editor Ian Buruma spent several years in Tokyo when he was in his early 20s, and he picked up a nickname. Because “Buruma” sounds a bit like the word “bloomers” in Japanese, at least one acquaintance — Hijikata Tatsumi, the father of Butoh […]
Well researched book recreates those times in a thoroughly enjoyable if not, at times, scintillating manner
BY: Tariq Bashir A highly successful barrister in his early forties – known for his icy and incisive demeamour and having a dashingly impressive personality – was making waves in the political and social circles of the Bombay high society. The tall, lean and slightly greying Mr Jinnah did not so much owe his success […]
Tributes pour in as legendary actor Sridevi passes away at 54
The sudden demise of veteran actor Sridevi has sent shockwaves throughout the Indian film industry with many Bollywood celebrities such as Amitabh Bachchan, Rishi Kapoor, Rajinikanth and Kamal Haasan mourning and expressing their condolences. The actor, who was 54, died late at Saturday night reportedly due to cardiac arrest in Dubai, where she had gone […]
An interview with the Nigerian author of ‘Season of Crimson Blossoms’, a searing novel about a taboo relationship set in a conservative Muslim community.
When Nigerian writer Abubakar Dam Ibrahim published his first novel in 2015, he was prepared for a fatwa against it. The Season of Crimson Blossoms, featuring a 55-year-old Muslim widow’s romantic and sexual relationship with a 25-year-old criminal, was unlike anything that had come out of Nigerian writing in English until then. Set in the […]
The breath-taking garden will be opened for public in March as parts of efforts to revive night tourism
As you make your way to Lahore Fort from the newly built Greater Iqbal Park, a straight passage will lead you to the historic complex called Hazuri Bagh. This antique garden is a huge enclosure between the Alamgiri Gate of Lahore Fort and the Badshahi Mosque. Right there in this garden, in an instance, you […]