This book is a study of the history of printing in South India focussed on the role of folklore in printed books. The author approaches the matter from a folklorist’s perspective and finds the proverbial saying “that print did not produce new books, only more old books” holds true. The history of modern folklore research tells us that textualization of Indian folklore – the orally transmitted tales, songs and other verbal expressions – was started by British collectors in India in the middle of the nineteenth century.
Calcutta defies all stereotypes. It is commonly believed that the civic chaos and economic stagnation that would have killed any other city have not been able to subdue the spirit of this strange urban agglomeration. Lina Fruzzetti and Akos Ostor, the editors of this book, have been smitten like many others by this irrepressible vitality and have been coming to the city since the mid-1960s, observing and parjticipating in the moveable feast.
This is a big, heavy book weighing about 5 lbs., but it is not heavy reading. On the contrary, it seems designed for scatter-brained, distracted reading—rather like watching a TV Talk Show, punctuated by commercial breaks and ‘recaps’ for those ‘who have just joined us’. The breaks here consist of numerous film and shooting stills from Mrinal Sen’s films, which interrupt rather than illustrate the text. Like those commercials, however, some of the stills are independently interesting.
Published as the aproceedings of an international conference, organized by the Development and Planning Department of the Government of West Bengal, this is an exciting book. The book features stalwarts in the literature on the political economy of agriculture. The 20 essays and presentations are divided into 5 sections–(1) theoretical perspectives, (2) agrarian relations, human development and neoliberal land reform, (3) Latin America-country experiences, (4) South Asia-country experiences, (5) some socialist experiences.
Contemporary regional drama in translation, one of the ‘not so exploited/explored sub-genres’ in literature(s) comes as a very easily enactable text for performance for theatre lovers who want to try something new with Rupalee Burke’s and Darshana Trivedi’s translation of the well known Gujarati playwright Satish Vyas’s Jal Ne Parde (Mist of Tears), Angulimal and Kamroo, a trilogy of two act plays.
Rigmarole and Other Plays is a collection of three satirical plays that depict contemporary situations, people and events. The genre drama has been used dexterously by Sai Paranjpye to engage with the creativity, imagination and inventiveness of children. The book is a pointer to the fact that dramatic situations abound in the environment around us.
The poems, short stories, extracts from magazines, statements in courts, and novels in The Other Side of Terror (‘What does it mean?’ an exasperated reader asked about the title) are grouped under ‘Freedom and Terror’, ‘Revolution and Terror’, and ‘Identity and Terror’.