Archive for ‘links’

April 17, 2016

Of Interest (16 April, 2016)

Unsorted (spot the themes though):

 

Via Darran Anderson, this piece by Christopher Turner on utopianism in architecture.

You have probably read this already but just in case: Sara Ahmed interviews Judith Butler, and they are both great and therefore this is also pretty great. (Link goes to a PDF)

Danika Parikh on Zac Goldsmith’s attempts (i.e. Modi, Hinduism, islamophobia) to reach out to British Indians.

Joe Macaré interviews Walidah Imarisha here. (Via Josh Kitto)

Long, impressive piece on B.R. Ambedkar, by Pratap Bhanu Mehta.

Tiara Jante interviews Rasheedah Phillips (of Black Quantum Futurism and The Afrofuturist Affair) here.

The Ladies Finger on recent events in Kashmir.

Naben Ruthnum watches DDLJ, his first Bollywood film. (I too identify with nearly being driven away from the films by Lata Mangeshkar.)

Shaheen Ahmed on the erasure of Assam’s syncretic traditions.

At We Are Wakanda, a review of the new Black Panther.

An extract from Minnie Vaid’s The Ant in the Ear of the Elephant.

Timothy Yu on the (a) problem with “Have They Run Out Of Provinces Yet?” (Via Sandeep Parmar)

Shruti Ravindran is fantastic, this piece on two Mumbai biologists and the natural wonders of Aarey Milk Colony is fantastic.

Sharon Irani interviews Appupen about Rashtraman and his recent work.

Nathan K. Hensley on drones, empire, space.

Via Keguro Macharia, Vijay Prashad on international scrutiny of caste-based violence, and India’s response to this.

Gautam Bhatia on Ambedkar’s revolutionary constitution.

 

April 3, 2016

Of Interest (3 April, 2016)

Unsorted:

Two (or possibly three) interviews with Victor LaValle: a conversation with Lincoln Michel that is spread out across here and here, and another with Samuel Sattin at the Rumpus, here.

Namwali Serpell on Nnedi Okorafor and Afrofuturism.

Shing Yin Khor on food, authenticity and appropriation.

A profile of Naezy, a young Muslim rapper in Mumbai, by Bhanuj Kappal.

Decolonizing Knowledge and the Question of the Archive, an ebook by Professor Achille Mbembe, at Africa is a Country.

An interview (by Tom Lamont) with Laura Mvula, about anxiety and success and her new album.

Via Subashini Navaratnam, this piece on the use of African fractals in the building of Benin City.

On Bhisham Sahni’s Tamas: Nilanjana Roy, here, and Jai Arjun Singh, here.

Ijeoma Oluo on not always loving your body.

Sofia Samatar being correct on the subjects of Gormenghast and fantasy and language (and I nearly cried at this piece because yes)

Megan Milks on personal pronouns, being “we”, subjectivity.

This interview with Sarnath Banerjee (by Ratik Asokan) is great and annoying in equal parts and therefore very good indeed.

March 20, 2016

Of Interest (20 March, 2016)

Unsorted:

Nisi Shawl’s crash course in Black SF history.

Supriya Nair interviews Sunil Khilnani about his new book, Incarnations.

I’ve come to Doreen Massey’s work very recently (I wasn’t expecting space/landscape to play as big a part in my research as it has come to do); here’s “Landscape/space/politics“.

Sharanya Manivannan on the Karaikal Ammaiyar approach to existing in public.

Look at these glorious freshwater crabs. Look at them all colourful and smiley.

John d’Addario on Gran Fury. Via Chapati Mystery.

A Helen Oyeyemi interview (with Lauren Oyler) in which she continues to say good things. Via Aaron Bady.

Eric M. Gurevitch on Handsome Nanda, the Therigatha, and empathetic criticism, feat. a Very Long Footnote. Via Nilanjana Roy.

Amit Chaudhuri on Rhodes Must Fall.

Fandom Following’s Wendy on Personal Favourite White Boys and Problematic Faves. Via Rukmini Pande.

Ramzi Fawaz on diverse mutants and superheroes, the hollowness of some current “diversity” discourse, and a much more nuanced reading of Umapagan Ampikaipakan’s infamous column than most of the outraged responses I’ve seen. Via Niall Harrison.

And via Fawaz’s piece, this good thing, by Alexandro Segarde.

Vinay Lal on Godse, the RSS and the murder of Gandhi. Via Bhuvi Gupta.

China Miéville on social sadism.

I meant to link to this weeks ago: Aman Sethi on the Jat agitation, water and the economy.

(Finally a self-plug) Here is a roundtable on South Asianness, folklore, etc., featuring Arun Jiwa, Suna Dasi, Vajra Chandrasekera, Laila Borrie, Shveta Thakrar, Sukhbir Cheema and me.

March 13, 2016

Of Interest (13 March, 2016)

Unsorted links about SF and empire and race:

 

Debbie Reese collects responses to J.K. Rowling’s “History of Magic in North America”.

Roz Kaveney in the TLS is insightful about Tolkien and also voices some of my frustrations with much of the Tolkien criticism I’ve read.

Phenderson Djèlí Clark has some fantastic black history and SF essays on his blog (and you should read them all, obviously), here’s one on SF and racial terror.

Esther Wang on the appeal of fictional worlds where everyone is white. (I feel this essay so hard.)

Vajra Chandrasekera has a new column at Strange Horizons, of which this is the first installment, and it’s great (and advocates blowing things up; I do like this man). His recent review of Binti is also fantastic.

K2 on colonial settlers in The Revenant. (Fun fact! Apparently Grace Dove wasn’t invited to the Oscars.)

Sofia Samatar’s “Notes Toward a Theory of Quantum Blackness” is beautiful; the things it links to and references are vital.

Rega Jha on only one of a long history of atrocities perpetuated on Indian culture by our colonial overlords. Via Sunny Singh.

Andrew Yang on Ken Liu’s The Grace of Kings.

Dr. André M. Carrington, whose book I’m very eager to read, interviewed here by Noah Berlatsky. Via Matthew Cheney.

The Ramayana in Persian (an extract from a book by Audrey Truschke), and a Persian Mahabharata (Yael Rice, via bint battuta)

Aaron Bady on A. Igoni Barrett’s Blackass.

February 28, 2016

Of Interest (28 February, 2016)

Rohith Vemula/JNU/India/This Cultural Moment:

How Delhi Police put out our candlelight vigil for Rohith.

Asha Kowtal on the insidious decentring of caste from the discourse. “Because our history is being distorted even before it is fully formed.” (Via Amba Azaad.)

In recent weeks I’ve kept linking to things Ravish Kumar says/does because he’s great; here’s an interview.

A photo essay in the Caravan by Nikhil Roshan, as a group of JNU students waited to be arrested.

Lawrence Liang on Gandhi, Tagore and Anti/Nationalism.

 

Books:

This awards season, remember the Gold Star Awards (and be glad that the Mongrel Coalition Against Gringpo exists and is in the world)

Claudia Rankine is interviewed here by Lauren Berlant and some good things are said. (Via Kawrage on twitter.)

Sarah Howe is interviewed by Greg McCartney, and she also says good things. (Via Sandeep Parmar.)

Ethan Robinson reviews Nancy Jane Moore’s The Weave, and in the process also offers a reading of the entire genre, and of assumptions in fiction in general, that I’d find useful and important even if a) he wasn’t a friend b) I hadn’t edited this.

Smriti Daniel on the Noolaham Digital Library.

Kuzhali Manickavel’s continued explorations into SF on the radio are still great. “It is neat how advice about sex can also be advice about interacting with aliens.” (Via Blaft)

E.R. Truitt (whose book sounds relevant to the interests of many who read this) on our imaginary North.

Adam Roberts on the wrath of Achilles John Wick.

Nayomi Munaweera is author-photographed twice.

 

 

February 21, 2016

Of Interest (21 February, 2016)

 

Sedition/JNU/Being Anti-National/Campus politics and the state:

 

Kanhaiya Kumar’s speech (translated from Hindi), before he was arrested.

Rahi Gaikwad on caste and the nation. (Via Mridula Chari)

Puja Sen in Himal on what all of this says about the party in power.

Jamall Calloway connecting Rohith Vemula’s death to a wider system of global oppressions. (Via Shruti Iyer)

(via Aakshi Magazine,) Mohamad Junaid on freedom of expression, the space of the campus, what the current narrative centres and what it erases. This, in particular:

The same day frothing TV journalists were holding court martials against Umar Khalid and Kanhaiya Kumar, the news of Shaista’s and Danish’s cold blooded murders was quietly suppressed—part of a larger history of suppression, which makes a certain kind of “national conscience” possible in India.

Swara Bhaskar writes to Umar Khalid.

David Palumbo-Liu on the possible ramifications in the US of what’s happening at home. (Via Chris Taylor)

Atul Dev in conversation with Vikram Chauhan, the lawyer who led the attacks on students and journalists outside Patiala House.

Nayan Jyoti points out that the state’s repression of the university just happens to be taking place at the same time as it suppresses workers across Haryana and Rajasthan. (TW for pictures of injuries, possibly)

Meanwhile, Dalit activists seeking permission to fly a black flag are arrested.

Shuddhabrata Sengupta on Ambedkar, Tagore and the Nation State.

In the most charming of all possible responses, the university has been hosting public talks on nationhood and they’re all available at the Stand With JNU Youtube page here (schedule here).

A performance of Dastan-e-Sedition.

A tweet by Anupam Kher, actor and tolerant Indian. (At least till someone explains to him about Nazis and he deletes it; though right now he seems to stand by it):

And Ravish Kumar on NDTV with this searing piece of reportage/performance art (on the channel’s website here) about the current state of our news media.

February 14, 2016

Of Interest (14 February, 2016)

Unsorted because I’m on holiday:

Kate Schapira on bodies and science and the world and bringing people into it.

Keguro Macharia on living with Jess Row’s Your Face in Mine. (Disclaimer because I edited this; on the other hand, it’s wonderful and everyone should read it.)

Sophia Azeb on the Tate Britain’s Artist and Empire exhibition.

Timothy Burke on Uagadou and the mechanics of African wizarding schools.

Ruchika Sharma on the origins of the Bhojshala myth.

Anuradha Vikram on witches and anti-colonial botany. Via Karen Gregory.

Soraya Roberts on Winona Ryder. Via Anna Carey.

Debbie Chachra on maker culture and the forms of work it excludes or devalues.

A roundtable (feat. Naomi Zeichner, Doreen St Felix, Anupa Mistry and Judnick Mayard) on Beyoncé’s “Formation“. Via Kate Schapira.

“and next thing you know the State has sponsored a musical warning people about you.” Creatrix Tiara on decolonization, western activism, other complicated things. Via Shruti Iyer.

A Dalit Marxist Manifesto by Chittibabu Padavala.

Edit: And this gorgeous piece on urban India, imagining love, and cinema, by Ravish Kumar. In Hindi here, translated into English here.

 

 

 

 

January 31, 2016

Of Interest (31 January, 2016)

Here are some good things I read this week.

Children’s Books (and media):

Rob Maslen on T.H. White’s The Sword in the Stone (which is of course perfect). And here is a conversation from a few months ago about The Once and Future King, in which Felix Gilman, in particular, says some good things.

Brent Ryan Bellamy at Strange Horizons on energy in The Jetsons and The Flintstones.

The results of the Hindu Young World-Goodbooks awards are here (shortlists here). I’m in Delhi soon, and am planning to pick up some of these (definitely the Venita Coelho).

Nicole Pasulka and Brian Ferree on Ursula the Sea Witch and Divine. I enjoyed this, but also I’m confused by any writing about Ursula that reads her as white.

Anne of Green Gables is pro-choice! (Mrs Lynde I’m not so sure of …)

 

Empire:

Malcolm Harris reviews Ned and Constance Sublette’s The Slave Coast; I’m particularly struck by this, near the beginning:

But to think about American slaves merely as coerced and unpaid laborers is to misunderstand the institution. Slaves weren’t just workers, the Sublettes remind the reader—they were human capital. The very idea that people could be property is so offensive that we tend retroactively to elide the designation, projecting onto history the less-noxious idea of the enslaved worker, rather than the slave as commodity. Mapping 20th-century labor models onto slavery spares us from reckoning with the full consequences of organized dehumanization, which lets us off too easy: To turn people into products means more than not paying them for their work.

Deana Heath on Britain’s national curriculum and its whitewashing of imperial history. Via Alex Adams.

So many Rhodes Must Fall thinkpieces, so little time. But this by David Olusoga and this by Christopher Phelps and this by Minesh Parekh aren’t bad. (The position of this website is, obviously, #RMF)

 

Other:

Joyelle McSweeney interviews Kamau Brathwaite on catastrophe, ecological and otherwise, and history, and home. (This is amazing, you should read it.) (via Kate Schapira.)

In Goa, coconut trees are no longer trees.

Rather terrifying (and yet also not at all surprising :/) that the effects of the caste system are literally visible in Indian DNA. Via Alok Prasanna Kumar.

Florence Okoye on realising an Afrofuturist Africa. Via An Afrofuturist Affair on twitter.

Pritesh Pal’s everyday photographs of a queer couple are rather lovely–link and some context at Gaylaxy, here.

The text of Sara Ahmed’s lecture, “Feminism and Fragility“.

Vajra Chandrasekera destroys SF and writes a really good essay.

What I loved about these books is what they had in common, this beautiful blue-shifted Soviet optimism. “I want to capture the many fleeting expressions on the faces of my youthful contemporaries—those who ride in trams and make their way on foot, those who are building towns in the taiga, those who are training for flights into space.” That’s Aksyonov talking about his book, the one without robots or artificial islands. It comes from that particular time and place when real people like Korolyov and Glushko did utterly science-fictional things, and even though I was reading it as the dream of the USSR crumbled, it managed to transport me across the thirty intervening years to a place where the dream was still alive. Communism, the future, space—no, I had it right at thirteen, that was science fiction.

JR Martin on Carol, Velvet Goldmine and David Bowie.

Sridala Swami links me to Dhrubo Jyoti’s fantastic reply to a ridiculous piece about caste by Devdutt Pattnaik which Scroll.in inexplicably decided the world needed to see.

 

 

January 24, 2016

Of Interest (24 January, 2016)

A two week silence, and there are things I’m not linking to this week. I’m sorting through the sheer volume of what has been written since the death of Rohith Vemula, and can only link to a couple of things–including his own words on the subject.

(In a completely different way and for completely other reasons I find I’m unable to link to any of the thousands of editorials and personal responses that have been written since the death of David Bowie.)

Anyway.

 

Rohith Vemula:

Rohith Vemula’s last words.

Meena Kandasamy on Rohith’s death is a call to arms that feels necessary.

Let them realise that Vedic times, the era of pouring molten lead into the ears of the Shudras who hear the sacred texts, the era of cutting the tongues of those who dared to utter the knowledge that was denied to them, are long gone. Let them understand that we have stormed these bastions to educate, to agitate, to organise; we did not come here to die. We have come to learn, but let the monsters of caste and their henchmen bear in mind that we have come here also to teach them an unforgettable lesson.

 

Books:

Children’s literature has managed two painful controversies over books about happy slaves in the past few months. Debbie Reese has collections of links here and here; Ebony Elizabeth Thomas’s annotated Storify is the best thing I’ve read on the subject.

There was an annoying piece about the book in the NYT recently, so here is a reminder that you should read Christina Sharpe on Alice Goffman’s On the Run.

Via Megan Milks, Kayla E. collects the thoughts of ten women and nonbinary comics creators about the Grand Prix de la ville d’Angoulême and its failure to recognise that not-men exist.

Sneha Rajaram on growing up with Margaret Atwood’s Cat’s Eye.

Via Egbert Alejandro Martina, Nadina Botha on the necessity of Afrofuturism.

Gayatri Jayaraman on recent Indian poetry. Via Sridala Swami.

 

Bodies and Places and Histories and Things:

Mindy Hung at the Toast on her relationship(s) with her father and religion. Via Kate Schapira.

Sanam Maher on the rise of Mr Burger. Via Bilal Tanweer.

This week on television: Sunny Leone was interviewed by Bhupendra Chaubey; he could not get over the whole “used to be in porn” thing; she was unruffled and thoroughly showed him up. More here.

Elizabeth Royte (words) and Charlie Hamilton Jones (pictures) on the necessity of vultures. (several graphic pictures there)

Padmini Ray Murray and Chris Hand on Making in India.

Dallas Hunt on Mad Max: Fury Road as a totem transfer narrative. Via Hiromi Goto.

Louis Allday on the Tate Britain’s Artist and Empire: Facing Britain’s Imperial Past, which. Er. Doesn’t.

Dominique Malaquais in Chimurenga on bodies and gender and embodying/engendering Africa.

 

January 10, 2016

Of Interest (10 January, 2016)

Here are links to some things I read this week.

 

Books:

I hadn’t realised quite how much discussion the LARB had devoted to Claudia Rankine’s Citizen (which is a book which should be spoken about lots) until a link from Natalia Cecire to the first part of this symposium–the links at the end of the piece lead to the second part, as well as a two-part roundtable; I haven’t read the roundtable yet but I’m glad it’s there.

Maureen McLane on Anne Boyer’s Garments Against Women.

Did I mention (I did) that Danez Smith’s [insert] boy was one of the best things I read last year? From “summer, somewhere”, in this month’s Poetry, via Sridala Swami. And here’s “I’m Going Back To Minnesota Where Sadness Makes Sense,” via half of my twitter feed this week.

A new Anne Carson story, “1=1“.

Salman Hussain in Dawn on Deepa Kumar’s Islamophobia and the Politics of Empire.

 

Film and TV:

When Casey Plett tweeted a link to this conversation between her and Jonathan Kay about The Danish Girl she said she’d thought to suggest titling it Ok Fine Goddammit Let’s Talk About The Danish Girl so that is what I am going to call it because it’s a good title. Related, very good, and linked to from that piece, Plett’s essay Rise of the Gender Novel. And less formal, but still great, Red Durkin’s livetweet of the film here (via Sabine on Twitter).

Via Rohan Maitzen, Maddie Rodriguez on three versions of Jane Eyre‘s red room scene.

I haven’t seen the Sherlock Christmas special. I’m  torn between my continuing bemusement at the British national pastime, so it seems to me, where everyone must always watch the same things on TV always and forever no matter how angry (Question Time) or disappointed (Doctor Who) one expects to be, and my shiny new bemusement at how little I care–I remember waiting for season two a few years ago and actually being excited. I mention this mostly to explain why I am the only Strange Horizons book reviews editor not to have written about it– but these pieces by Maureen and Dan are great, so you’re not missing anything.

I don’t know much about 6 Pack Band, who are being marketed (by Yash Raj Films?!) as India’s first trans band, but this cover of Pharrell’s “Happy” is making me very, er. Happy.

Deepra Dandekar performs a feminist reading of Mastani’s religion and caste in Bajirao Mastani.

 

Bodies in Space (i.e. miscellaneous?):

I’m not sure where else to classify this great conversation between Amandla Stenberg and Solange Knowles, on the subject of being young, black and amazing, but it’s so good, and so full of excellent pictures, and I’m very glad Stenberg is alive in the world (and also writing SFFnal comics!).

Medical student Bahar Orang on touching naked bodies. (Via Shruti Ravi)

Chandrahas Choudhury on food historian Pushpesh Pant. (I will admit to giggling at the “ey khaana to ey gaana” story.) (via Chapati Mystery)

The Ladies Finger have posted a best of the year list that has so many good things I want to link to. For a start: this lovely, warm piece by Aneela Z. Babbar on her Pakistani-Indian-Australian family (I’ve met her, she really is that funny in person), this useful illustrated guide to women on panels, and everything Sneha Rajaram has ever written.