Arts & Culture


Girlhood in Isao Takahata’s Only Yesterday

By Saadia Peerzada

Coming of age films largely rely on romanticization of youth and fail to explore the humane aspects of the same. With Studio Ghibli coming to Netflix internationally in 2020, how does it bring its exploration of the human experience to the coming of age genre? How does Takahta’s Only Yesterday break away from the mainstream narrative on girlhood?

The Viability of Utopia Today

Alexandra Verini

Does imagining perfect worlds serve our present or our future, or do utopias simply set us up for disappointment and failure?

Commodification of Female Passing Bodies in the Age of OnlyFans

Madhulika Agarwal

With everything getting digitalised, sex work too is moving online, offering more liberty to the content creators of the same. However, a lot of conversation regarding online sex work focuses only on the progressive aspect of it, choosing to ignore the dangers that come associated with the same.

Remo D’Souza: The Man Who Changed the Face of Indian Dance

Anushka Bidani

Despite its importance, dance had always been a background element. It has always been present, but it was seldom the main focus of the film. However, in the past few years, this subsidiary status has changed. Dance films and dance reality TV shows have become more common, and dancers have steadily gained celebrity status. This shift in perception can be credited to various reasons, one of the principal ones being Remo D’Souza.

Democratizing Art: How the Pandemic Has Transformed Art Spaces

Muskaan Kanodia

Virtual Tours for Museums around the world were initially made for in-person support to make the galleries accessible and their experiences better. However, with a worldwide lockdown, the virtual experience has encouraged many of us to explore uncharted territories of art history and museums sitting at our desktops in pyjamas. This has made previously inaccessible museums and galleries a more democratic and inclusive space. However, what lies ahead this road is to see whether this continues to be the case in the post-COVID world.

Food Beyond the Mess: Why Campus Outlets are Invaluable to Indian Colleges

Devika Goswami

The pandemic meant nearly a year-off campus for college students. Of the many things lost, the shared memory of food is difficult to measure and yet an important part of the college experience. How do campus outlets positively shape student life and support small business owners? How might the pandemic change this shared experience of food?

The Growing (In)Significance of the Nobel Peace Prize

Saaransh Mishra

Nobel laureates are meant to be harbingers of peace in this excruciatingly peaceless world that we inhabit. In order to set healthy precedents, the onus is on the Nobel Peace Committee to award this significant honour only to the ones that can leave a legacy for future generations to follow, and currently it is miserably failing at that.

The Way We Were – Gossip (Or Lack Thereof) In A Pandemic

Akanksha Mishra

Looking back, I realised most of my interactions with people through the pandemic have a key element missing. At the risk of sounding like a nosy aunty from your neighbourhood – where is the gossip?

WhatsApp With India’s Travel Plan?

Tisha Srivastav

Tisha Srivastav writes on the first two months of a buzzing Indian WhatsApp group post-Lockdown. With zero fake news, it coordinated a spirited effort to rethink responsible travel in India.

Where Fashion Trends Come From and Why You Should Care

Rujuta Singh

While it might seem like fashion trends come out of nowhere, there is a method to the madness. These trends eventually permeate into all aspects of our lives in some form, whether we realize it or not.

Ancient Pandemic, Modern Eyes

Mali Annika Skotheim

A year into the COVID-19 pandemic, it is difficult to read Thucydides’ account of the Athenian plague without seeing parallels in our own time.

Dating From A Distance

Harshita Bedi

For the longest time we have been told that once we find that special someone, our life becomes better, happier and worth living. While many choose to disagree with this view, it cannot be denied that humans are social beings who have been collectively living in a society and mating. With the pandemic, the need for human connection was sought to be satisfied. How has the world of dating adapted to the pandemic? What is different about online dating now?

Encounters with the Black Cloud

Deeksha Puri

I wonder, am I the only one? It certainly does seem so when everyone else is seemingly coping fine.

Under the Precipice Rolls the Sea

Tanisha A

When you’re working with a zero budget project, you have to rely on a lot of things outside of your control to capture a frame that tells the story you want it to tell, how you want it to.

Queering Valentine’s Day: Navigating singlehood and ‘compulsory heterosexuality’

Roshan Roy

Cultural expectations around Valentine’s day can be very choking. Since the culture around it is heterosexual in nature, it fails to cater to the needs of ‘other’ identities. This piece explores the question: Can there be a queer valentine’s day that celebrates not only multiple identities and sexualities but also singledom which is overlooked by our heteronormative world? After all, love does not have one meaning. Love begins when you set out to understand yourself and counter these structures that govern our societies.

Remembering SOPHIE

Madhulika Agarwal

SOPHIE’s loss is enormous for the music industry, but it is an even bigger loss for her family, friends and fans, whose lives SOPHIE coloured with compassion above everything else. They will live up to her legacy and keep honoring what was so close to her heart.

(Mis)leading Spotify Chart Toppers: What is India listening to?

Rohan Pai

Spotify’s algorithmic mechanisms tend to create a deluding image of what is actually trending on the ground. Brown munde, a Punjabi song by AP Dhillon, has been a chart topper for nearly three months now. Alongside homegrown artist AP Dhillon is The Weeknd, an American pop singer who is currently #1 in the world on Spotify, and Arijit Singh. But is this what India is listening to?

The Economy Of Stories

Varsha Ramachandran

Why reimagine Juliet in 2020, as opposed to creating a new Desdemona or Laila or Heer? What about these particular characters makes us want to bring them to life again, albeit in a new socio-political scenario, or a reimagined world? I argue that it is our need for familiarity.

Racy Raj Tales: Miscegenation in British India

Ipshita Nath

Recent feminist historiography has revealed that such rumours stemmed from biases and prejudices rather than actual realities, and were meant to perpetuate the fear of the ‘Other’ among the British officers/community/etc. in India. However, such notions served to deepen the prejudice against interracial marriages.

Feminist Bollywood, Really?

Geetanjali Chanda

It is common to witness individuals who are vocal about the misogyny that is prevalent within Bollywood music, to be seen tapping their toes to the same problematic lyrics on a dance floor. Is it ever okay to listen to music that is degrading to a particular gender? And if we do, does that make us less of a feminist? Are we truly #SmashingThePatriarchy?

Boomers’ Guide to Gen Z: Intro to Texting 101

Devika Goswami

Prerequisites: anyone who’s been hit with an “ok, boomer” or is still confused about why people keep texting “ded” after a joke. By the end of this piece, you will understand why Gen Z is so hell-bent on texting instead of calling, what in the world ‘ghosting’ even means and why that full-stop might be making your texts sound a tad bit insincere to the Gen Z-er in your life.

Regional Rap for a National Cause

Rohan Pai

With Indian rappers carving out their own niches by choosing to represent and reach out to their people with regional vernacular, they provide a voice to the communities that were never heard before, while also instilling a sense of belonging to the larger community of India.

Arnabgate, TRPs and What you need to know about the ‘Business’ of Journalism

Saman Fatima

Fiery debates, screaming news anchors and a flurry of accusations or honest news and analysis—-what makes journalism sell? What makes news sensational and how does the business of television journalism work? These are questions that most of us asked after Republic TVs TRP scandal, Arnab’s WhatsApp chat leak and the BARC chiefs chilling confessions.

Pets of the Pandemic

Vanishree

Research indicates that the pandemic has showcased an increase in the adoption of pets, as a distraction from the uncertainty and discomfort. How has the relationship between the pet and the owner changed during the pandemic? And what impact does the opening up of the world and transiting back to life before COVID, have on this relationship?

Dosa: A Culinary Marvel

Shrishti Agrawal

The Dosa is a culinary gift from South Indian cuisine that has become a popular breakfast snack all across India. Although debates about the origin continue to persist, what most can agree upon is that the Dosa is not similar to a pancake or crepe.

The Next Stage

Abhinaya Penneswaran
The lack of a physical setting for performance art due to the pandemic has led to the creation of a new stage for artists and performers.

Uncovering Recovery from COVID-19

Mansi Ranka
Behind every single statistic is a person. What has going through it all and recovering from COVID been like?
We look at some personal stories!

Remembering Eddie – 6 Essential Songs

Shaayak Chatterjee

Eddie Van Halen brought joy to rock and roll. An idol for an entire generation, he broke the stereotype that virtuosos should always be brooding characters. Twenty days after his death, here are six songs to define his legacy.

Stoned, Shamed, Depressed – A Conversation with author Jyotsna Mohan Bhargava

Isha Deshmukh

Young minds have now become more overwhelmed than ever with social media generating our sense of self and technology assuring us a place in the status charts. How do we deal with impressionable teenagers being exposed to virtues and vices that even adults have difficulty navigating?

Louise Glück Wins a Prize She Never Needed

Kanishk Devgan

Louise Glück recently won the Nobel Prize in literature. Does she really need it, though? And what of all those who say she doesn’t deserve it?

Bringing The Boys to Life in Trump’s America

Karantaj Singh

Blonde hair, white male, cheeky smile, self-obsessed, xenophobic, erratic, and a public image built over love for his country. Is Homelander Donald Trump in a cape?

Give Me Liberty, COVID, or Cow Urine

Isha Deshmukh

COVID-19 has already claimed more than a million lives. Despite the very real threat, people continue to politicise the virus, deny it and spread baseless facts and treatments. What has happened to our scientific temperament in a time when we needed it most?

When should I stop watching the news?

Siddhartha Dubey

TV news has become a platform for lies and propaganda. If Indian news television is hurtling down an abyss, should we follow?

My Son’s Inheritance: India’s Invisible Violence

Aparna Vaidik

The book demonstrates how violence is secretly embedded in our myths, folklore, poetry, literature, and language, and is therefore invisible. Framing my narrative as a message to my son, I acquaint him with his ancestors—those who abet and carry out lynching as well as those who are lynched.