Month: March 2004

  • It’s a busy day, but there’s time for a few quick links: India Today might have knocked the Godfather off their list of the 50 most powerful people in India, but he’s making a bit of a splash over in Canada. Way down at the end of this report is the most interesting line: speculation […]

  • Blogging will be low for the next two months or until my editor removes the Smith & Wesson from my left temple, whichever is sooner. Nope, the Babu’s not joining the ranks of Indians Writing in English; he foolishly promised to put together a few things for a publishing house and discovered too late that […]

  • William Faulkner, second finest failure. (Link via Arts & Letters Daily.) The thing is, Atal Behari Vajpayee is an honourable man. A while back, he’d obliquely criticised people who banned books and ravaged libraries, suggesting that they might choose to table their objections in more intellectual fashion. The thing is, it’s the elections and he’s […]

  • It’s official: there is no truth in advertising. But these guys are amateurs in the backscratching stakes: I fondly remember the Indian poet who complained bitterly to me that a fellow practitioner had slated his most recent book. “And I gave him a really good review just three months before my book came out, to […]

  • *Good to have Pico Iyer back in form–the Babu loves his non-fiction, but has to admit that the fiction leaves him umm, kind of lukewarm. Anyway, here’s the man on jet-lag, and yes, this is from a soon-to-be-published book. Yay. “I often think that I have traveled into a deeply foreign country under jet lag, […]

  • Rushdie’s been named President of PEN America. From ‘A Declaration of Independence’, which he wrote in 1994 for the International Parliament of Writers: “Today, around the world, literature continues to confront tyranny–not polemically, but by denying its authority, by going its own way, by declaring its independence. The best of that literature will survive; but […]

  • The Babu has actually been working, much to the surprise of everyone who knows him, and apologises for the blogging go-slow at Kitabkhana over the last week. We missed out on quite a bit: the NBA awards, the kerfuffle over an initiative that would drop cover prices from book jackets in the UK that had […]

  • From Anuradha Roy’s Cooking Women, the prize-winning entry in the Outlook-Picador Non-Fiction Competition: “My mother, being the newest bride and wife to the youngest son, was not trusted to cook in the ultimate real kitchen. ?What do they cook in your part of the world, anyway? Just potatoes and roti,? my middle aunt Shanti would […]