Sun. Aug 25th, 2019

The Seer

Read, Think, Act

Book Reviews

3 min read

The book is a mixed bag of travel tales.

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5 min read

The Ivory Throne can also be imagined as a palace in Travancore with its many chapters as many gateways of the palace from where caressing breezes and strong winds went out and, in the palace bringing with it many a tales of origin, exaggerated orders, larger than life anecdotes, thrilling mysteries and many a truths.

8 min read

He spoke of “Joe” and said you were the only real soul who had “attained freedom among us all,” including himself. You could drop everything, everybody and go out without a thought of regret & do your work, that you had attained this through thousands of reincarnations, he had seen it in India & here. No luxury counted, no misery (as in India) mattered – [you were] the same poised soul, etc.

9 min read

MS Subbulakshmi was introduced to the world as a perfect image of Tamil Brahmin housewife, shedding her Devadasi past. The hunger to control could have even made them change the colour of the people – the only thing they could not. They even controlled the rhythm of bodies as I read- “Rukmini Devi Arundale stripped the Bharatnatyam dance drama, once performed in the temple mandapams, of its eroticism and adapted it to the Western style stage, giving it “respectability” even while wrenching it from its ancient custodians, the Devadasis.” It beguiles me to no end how the Indian eye saw beauty in eroticism and its detailing as we can see in Khajuraho with unabashed appreciation. The roving British eye which hailed the Queen, saw “overt” sexual tenor in Kerala’s Mohiniattam.

9 min read

We either have the stupefying ancient caves and temples in the subconscious world of our minds or the British architecture immediately around us and the Mughals made sure we inherited their forts,fortresses, Urdu and cuisine. Perhaps, we are still learning about history – excavating, archiving and somewhat beginning to understand it.

5 min read

Bara is a short read but it does make some impressive political observations in just a handful of pages. What surprises me the most is that this was written more than 30 years ago, yet the questions that the author raised then is still relevant. When he tells the protagonist, “Are you a bureaucrat? Are you a revolutionary? You delude yourself that you can be both”, doesn’t it remind you of the likes of Kiran Bedi, Arvind Kejriwal or Irom Sharmila?