Ep 284: The Life and Times of Nilanjana Roy

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A lifetime spent reading, writing and reflecting teaches you a lot. Nilanjana Roy joins Amit Varma in episode 284 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about books, feminism, family, memory and the state of the world. Also check out:1. Nilanjana Roy on Twitter, Instagram, Amazon, Financial Times, Business Standard and her own website. 2. The Girl Who Ate Books: Adventures in Reading -- Nilanjana Roy. 3. The Wildings -- Nilanjana Roy. 4. The Hundred Names of Darkness -- Nilanjana Roy. 5. Episodes of The Seen and the Unseen that discuss reading and writing with Sara Rai, Amitava Kumar, VK Karthika, Sugata Srinivasaraju, Mrinal Pande, Sonia Faleiro, Vivek Tejuja, Samanth Subramanian, Annie Zaidi and Prem Panicker. 6. Episodes of The Seen and the Unseen on the creator ecosystem with Roshan Abbas, Varun Duggirala, Neelesh Misra, Snehal Pradhan, Chuck Gopal, Nishant Jain, Deepak Shenoy and Abhijit Bhaduri. 7. A Meditation on Form -- Amit Varma. 8. Why Are My Episodes so Long? -- Amit Varma. 9. The Prem Panicker Files -- Episode 217 of The Seen and the Unseen. 10. Jonathan Haidt on Amazon. 11. Where Have All the Leaders Gone? -- Amit Varma. 12. The Ranga-Billa Case. 13. Sarojini Naidu on Amazon. 14. The Collected Works of Mahatma Gandhi. 15. The Mahatma and the Poet — The letters between Gandhi and Tagore, compiled by Sabyasachi Bhattacharya. 16. Amitava Kumar Finds the Breath of Life -- Episode 265 of The Seen and the Unseen. 17. Margaret Mascarenhas on Amazon. 18. The Web We Have to Save -- Hossein Derakhshan. 19. The Country Without a Post Office -- Agha Shahid Ali. 20. Wanting — Luke Burgis. 21. René Girard on Amazon and Wikipedia. 22. The Silence of Scheherazade -- Defne Suman. 23. Silver -- Walter de la Mare. 24. Lessons from an Ankhon Dekhi Prime Minister — Amit Varma. 25. George Saunders and Barack Obama on Amazon. 26. A life in 5,000 books -- Nilanjana Roy. 27. Surender Mohan Pathak, Ibne Safi and Gabriel Garcia Marquez on Amazon. 28. The Power Broker — Robert Caro. 29. The Death and Life of Great American Cities — Jane Jacobs. 30. JRR Tolkien, Ursula Le Guin and Terry Pratchett on Amazon. 31. Forget reading Thomas Piketty. Try a bit of Terry Pratchett -- Robert Shrimsley. 32. Fifty Shades of Grey -- EL James. 33. Ankur Warikoo, Aanchal Malhotra, Manu Pillai and Ira Mukhoty on Amazon. 34. Mahashweta Devi and Naiyer Masud on Amazon. 35. The former homes of Hurree Babu and Putu the Cat. 36. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri -- Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen. 37. Om Namah Volume -- Amit Varma. 38. Salman's Sea of Stories -- Salman Rushdie's Substack newsletter. 39. What Is It Like to Be a Bat? — Thomas Nagel. 40. The Hidden Life of Trees -- Peter Wohlleben. 41. An Immense World -- Ed Yong. 42. The Twitter thread by Sergej Sumlenny that Nilanjana mentioned. 43. The Inheritance of Loss -- Kiran Desai. 44. The Grapes of Wrath -- John Steinbeck. 45. Pather Panchali -- Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay. 46. Gora -- Rabindranath Tagore. 47. William Shakespeare, Kalidasa, Geoffrey Chaucer and Krishna Sobti on Amazon. 48. The Cult of Authenticity -- Vikram Chandra. 49. Meenakshi Mukherjee: The Death of a Critic -- Nilanjana Roy. 50. Field Notes from a Waterborne Land: Bengal Beyond the Bhadralok -- Parimal Bhattacharya. 51. Patriots, Poets and Prisoners: Selections from Ramananda Chatterjee's The Modern Review, 1907-1947 -- Edited by Anikendra Sen, Devangshu Datta and Nilanjana Rao. 52. The City Inside -- Samit Basu. 53. Understanding India Through Its Languages -- Episode 232 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Peggy Mohan). 54. Wanderers, Kings, Merchants: The Story of India through Its Languages — Peggy Mohan. 55. The Life and Times of Mrinal Pande -- Episode 263 of The Seen and the Unseen. 56. Manjula Padmanathan on Amazon. 57. The Life and Letters of Raja Rammohun Roy. 58. If No One Ever Marries Me -- Lawrence Alma-Tadema. 59. If No One Ever Marries Me -- Natalie Merchant. 60. Kavitha Rao and Our Lady Doctors -- Episode 235 of The Seen and the Unseen. 61. Lady Doctors: The Untold Stories of India’s First Women in Medicine — Kavitha Rao. 62. The Memoirs of Dr Haimabati Sen — Haimabati Sen (translated by Tapan Raychoudhuri). 63. Women at Work — Episode 132 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Namita Bhandare). 64. The Loneliness of the Indian Woman -- Episode 259 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Shrayana Bhattacharya). 65. Films, Feminism, Paromita — Episode 155 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Paromita Vohra). 66. The Kavita Krishnan Files — Episode 228 of The Seen and the Unseen. 67. Manjima Bhattacharjya: The Making of a Feminist -- Episode 280 of The Seen and the Unseen. 68. I, Lalla: The Poems of Lal Dĕd -- Translated by Ranjit Hoskote. 69. Lal Ded's poem on wrestling with a tiger. 70. Anarchy is a likelier future for the west than tyranny -- Janan Ganesh. 71. The Better Angels of Our Nature -- Steven Pinker. 72. The Ferment of Our Founders -- Episode 272 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Shruti Kapila). 73. Rukmini Sees India’s Multitudes — Episode 261 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Rukmini S). 74. A Life in Indian Politics -- Episode 149 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Jayaprakash Narayan). 75. The Gita Press and Hindu Nationalism — Episode 139 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Akshaya Mukul). 76. Gita Press and the Making of Hindu India — Akshaya Mukul. 77. Manohar Malgonkar, Mulk Raj Anand and Kamala Das on Amazon. 78. Kanthapura -- Raja Rao. 79. India’s Greatest Civil Servant -- Episode 167 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Narayani Basu, on VP Menon). 80. Private Truths, Public Lies — Timur Kuran. 81. Alice Munro on Amazon. 82. The Bear Came Over the Mountain -- Amit Varma's favourite Alice Munro story. 83. The Median Voter Theorem. 84. The Ice Cream Vendors. 85. Mohammad Zubair’s Twitter thread on the Dharam Sansad. 86. The Will to Change -- Bell Hooks. 87. Paul Holdengraber, Maria Popova, Rana Safvi and Rabih Alameddine on Twitter. 88. The hounding of author Kate Clanchy has been a witch-hunt without mercy -- Sonia Sodha. 89. Democrats have stopped listening to America’s voters -- Edward Luce. 90. From Cairo to Delhi With Max Rodenbeck -- Episode 281 of The Seen and the Unseen. 91. The Indianness of Indian Food — Episode 95 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Vikram Doctor). 92. GN Devy. 93. The Art of Translation -- Episode 168 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Arunava Sinha). 94. Alipura -- Gyan Chaturvedi (translated by Salil Yusufji). 95. Tomb of Sand -- Geetanjali Shree (translated by Daisy Rockwell). 96. Writer, Rebel, Soldier, Lover: The Many Lives of Agyeya -- Akshaya Mukul. 97. Ashapurna Devi, Agyeya, Saadat Hasan Manto, Ismat Chugtai, Qurratulain Hyder, Amrita Pritam and Girish Karnad on Amazon. 98. The Adventures of Dennis -- Viktor Dragunsky. 99. Toni Morrison on Amazon. 100. Haroun and the Sea of Stories -- Salman Rushdie. 101. The Penguin Book Of Indian Poets -- Edited by Jeet Thayil. 102. These My Words: The Penguin Book of Indian Poetry -- Edited by Eunice de Souza and Melanie Silgardo. 103. The Autobiography of a Goddess -- Andal (translated by Priya Sarrukai Chabria and Ravi Shankar). 104. Ghachar Ghochar — Vivek Shanbhag (translated by Srinath Perur). 105. Amit Varma talks about Ghachar Ghochar in episode 13 of The Book Club on Storytel. 106. River of Fire -- Qurratulain Hyder. 107. The Ones Who Walk Away from Omelas -- Ursula K Le Guin. 108. The Left Hand of Darkness -- Ursula K Le Guin. 109. Mother of 1084 -- Mahashweta Devi. 110. Jejuri -- Arun Kolatkar. 111. The Collected Essays of AK Ramanujan -- Edited by Vinay Dharwadker. 112. The Collected Poems of AK Ramanujan. 113. Folktales From India -- Edited by AK Ramanujan. 114. The Interior Landscape: Classical Tamil Love Poems -- Edited and translated by AK Ramanujan. 115. The Essential Kabir -- Translated by Arvind Krishna Mehrotra. This episode is sponsored by CTQ Compounds. Check out The Daily Reader and FutureStack. Use the code UNSEEN for Rs 2500 off. Check out Amit’s online course, The Art of Clear Writing. And subscribe to The India Uncut Newsletter. It’s free! The illustration for this episode is by Nishant Jain aka Sneaky Artist. Check out his work on Twitter, Instagram and Substack.

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