Dead White Guys (TM): On Diversifying the Canon

Five months ago (has it been that long??), I took my last requirement to graduate as an English major from Trinity, a little white haven. Yet again, I was the only international student in class. Yet again, I was the only one who sounded like me. Paradoxically, the English department was a refuge. The professors…

Performing 15th August

Activists are arrested. Bloodlust runs unchecked. Dissent is branded anti-national. Our horror is quelled when glorious 75% off sales trick us into believing, yes, we are free. Freedom is disguised as independence day chocolate hampers and laptops left over in the warehouse and tacky tricolor Sarees that just won’t get sold. Meanwhile, the activists continue…

Identity Politics

“I am a South Asian woman who writes about experiences of immigration and womanhood from and in South Asia” I am liminal. I am limited. I am defined by geography and colour and a history that follows me with a shame I must constantly erase. I must identify. I must delineate. I must be loud…

Delhi (1): The Myth of Public Space

Access to public space is a problem one is forced to confront living in Delhi. It is self-evident that women must hide themselves, cloistered in groups, evading the gaze of the many men that revel in judgement and lechery as a woman passes by. I don’t like going outside here. It makes me uncomfortable. The…

The Saree Closet

Like most Indian families, ours has a closet in our home that houses a plethora of Sarees. It is a closet largely relegated to special occasions and family reunions. It is a closet fallen into disuse. My relationship to the Saree closet has evolved in strange ways. When I was younger, my mother would remind…

Published!

I published a thing in Himal South Asian, a magazine for all things South Asia! It highlights the fraught relationship of the immigrant millennial to the idea of home. Go read it here and share your thoughts!

Inertia

When 26/11 ripped at the fragile seams of Hindu-Muslim harmony, I wrote a piteously naïve plea to “stop fighting and just get along”. Cringing. Grief has replaced naiveté with despair. These attacks are projections of our worst anxieties. As a parent you spend every day praying your kids will be ok. Worrying about their every…

Body (2)

Should we cover up? It is an unwinnable fight. The familiar look of discomfort, the lingering tension that persists every time we leave the house wearing anything that leaves hints of skin exposed. The hushed Chinese whisper that invariably turns into a large scale blowout when we refuse to conform. The constant bone of contention…

Wrong

I’m not sure when I started being able to justify wrong to myself. When white became steadily murkier and black became avidly more appealing. There are the simple wrongs. The universal bad. Murder. Rape. Violence. Bad. Then there are the less objectionable cousins. The little lies. The jokes that aren’t meant to hurt anyone. That…