Manjula Narayan

Manjula Narayan

Manula Narayan is National Books Editor at Hindustan Times. She writes on literature and popular culture.

Articles by Manjula Narayan
Bill Gates
Bill Gates

Interview: Bill Gates on his new book, How to Avoid a Climate Disaster

PUBLISHED ON FEB 19, 2021 06:33 PM IST
Electricity, transport, food, buildings and manufacturing are the biggest areas of CO2 emissions. All of them will have to be tackled to combat climate change. In a video interview, Bill Gates spoke about the need for innovation, to shift to new ways of doing things, and about his new book that provides a plan to bring emissions down to zero by the year 2050
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Bill Gates, Co-Chair of Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, attends a conversation at the 2019 New Economy Forum in Beijing, China.(Reuters/ File photo)
Bill Gates, Co-Chair of Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, attends a conversation at the 2019 New Economy Forum in Beijing, China.(Reuters/ File photo)

India must set example in climate crisis fight: Bill Gates

UPDATED ON FEB 16, 2021 02:42 AM IST
“When most people think about climate, they think about making electricity and about passenger cars mostly. They aren’t aware that there are many other sources of CO2 emissions. Electricity, transport, food, buildings and manufacturing are the biggest areas of emissions,” Gates said.
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Publicity still for Paatallok.
Publicity still for Paatallok.

Essay: The Story of Paatallok and Tarun Tejpal

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON MAY 21, 2020 11:44 PM IST
An examination of why the hit show has not acknowledged its source material
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A man with provisions handed to him by a GNEM volunteer in Gurgaon.(Parveen Kumar/HT Photo)
A man with provisions handed to him by a GNEM volunteer in Gurgaon.(Parveen Kumar/HT Photo)

Lockdown Diaries: Wise words in a fraught time by Manjula Narayan

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON APR 28, 2020 08:25 AM IST
The 29 authors, who contributed to Lockdown Diaries, brought fresh perspectives to a shared experience
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Soha Ali Khan(Courtesy Juggernaut)
Soha Ali Khan(Courtesy Juggernaut)

Interview: Soha Ali Khan on her new weekly podcast for kids

UPDATED ON FEB 28, 2020 07:51 PM IST
In an email interview, Soha Ali Khan talks about her new weekly podcast, India’s first celebrity audio book show for kids, which features her reading stories for children by Indian authors
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Carrying hell within you: The right panel from The Garden of Earthly Delights by Dutch painter Hieronymus Bosch (c.1450-1516).(Universal Images Group via Getty)
Carrying hell within you: The right panel from The Garden of Earthly Delights by Dutch painter Hieronymus Bosch (c.1450-1516).(Universal Images Group via Getty)

Review: Low by Jeet Thayil

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
PUBLISHED ON FEB 14, 2020 07:43 PM IST
Grief, guilt, Mumbai, and Donald Trump loom over Jeet Thayil’s new novel
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Amitabha Bagchi(L) receiving the DSC Prize from Pradeep Gyawali, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Nepal, in the presence of DSC prize founder Surina Narula and Harish Trivedi, jury chair of the prize for 2019.(DSC Prize for South Asian Literature)
Amitabha Bagchi(L) receiving the DSC Prize from Pradeep Gyawali, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Nepal, in the presence of DSC prize founder Surina Narula and Harish Trivedi, jury chair of the prize for 2019.(DSC Prize for South Asian Literature)

Litfesting in the lap of the Himalayas

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON JAN 03, 2020 07:58 PM IST
The IME Nepal Literature Festival, which hosted the $25,000 DSC Prize for South Asian Literature this year, featured interesting sessions that were well attended
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Popular even in Peru - Shah Rukh Khan in(DDLJ)
Popular even in Peru - Shah Rukh Khan in(DDLJ)

Interview: Fatima Bhutto on her new book, New Kings of the World

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON OCT 04, 2019 06:54 PM IST
Fatima Bhutto’s new book looks at the global appeal of eastern pop culture. In an email interview she talks about why everyone, from the Germans to the Peruvians, is enamoured by Bollywood, K-pop and Turkish Dizi
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Neil MacGregor in conversation with Pramod Kumar KG.(Mountain Echoes)
Neil MacGregor in conversation with Pramod Kumar KG.(Mountain Echoes)

Magic in the mountains: A look back at the stimulating sessions of the Mountain Echoes Festival 2019

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON SEP 14, 2019 01:02 PM IST
Stimulating sessions and interesting conversations were part of the 10th edition of the Mountain Echoes festival in Thimphu, Bhutan.
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A Parsi couple prays to the guardians of the fire temple at Tardeo in Mumbai on Navroz in 2015.(Kunal Patil/Hindustan Times)
A Parsi couple prays to the guardians of the fire temple at Tardeo in Mumbai on Navroz in 2015.(Kunal Patil/Hindustan Times)

Review: Oh! Those Parsis by Berjis Desai

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON SEP 07, 2019 12:39 PM IST
Berjis Desai’s book that lists the A to Z of the Parsi way of life shows you why the community makes other Indians both glad and mad.
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Subhashini Chandramani(Pictures courtesy the author)
Subhashini Chandramani(Pictures courtesy the author)

Interview: Subhashini Chandramani on The Garden Art Journal

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON AUG 21, 2019 09:58 PM IST
The Garden Art Journal, which features wonderfully minimalist images that incorporate petals, seeds and leaves, intends to spur creativity in those who maintain journals. Here, Chandramani, @neelavanam on Twitter and Instagram, talks about the journal, about her form of Garden Art, and her own creative process
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Shubha Mudgal performing in Bhopal on July 18, 2015.(Praveen Bajpai/Hindustan Times)
Shubha Mudgal performing in Bhopal on July 18, 2015.(Praveen Bajpai/Hindustan Times)

Review: Looking for Miss Sargam by Shubha Mudgal

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON AUG 17, 2019 10:17 AM IST
Shubha Mudgal’s short fiction teems with authentic characters and situations peculiar to the world of the Hindustani classical performer
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Boys playing in front of a cave near Mamallapuram in Tamil Nadu.(Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
Boys playing in front of a cave near Mamallapuram in Tamil Nadu.(Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)

Interview: Poomani, author of Heat

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON MAY 25, 2019 10:11 AM IST
Poomani’s Vekkai is one of the great Tamil novels of the 20th century. Heat, the English translation of this extraordinary work has just been released. In a telephonic conversation facilitated by translator N Kalyan Raman, the author spoke about the book and its protagonist, the 15-year-old Chidambaram who murders a landlord to avenge the death of his elder brother
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Cultural and religious diversity is characteristic of Hong Kong. After praying at the nearby gurdwara, a Sikh man pauses to talk on his mobile phone in front of a Dawoodi Bohra cemetery in the city’s Happy Valley. The first burial here dates back to 1828.(Matthias Messmer)
Cultural and religious diversity is characteristic of Hong Kong. After praying at the nearby gurdwara, a Sikh man pauses to talk on his mobile phone in front of a Dawoodi Bohra cemetery in the city’s Happy Valley. The first burial here dates back to 1828.(Matthias Messmer)

Review: China at its Limits by Matthias Messmer and Hsin-Mei Chuang

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
PUBLISHED ON APR 19, 2019 09:26 PM IST
A book that combines history, photography, culture and travel writing, reportage, and political analysis to present a picture of China and the challenges to its rise
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Not among the missing: Women, who have cast their vote for the state assembly elections, outside the polling station at Raisar village of Jaipur district in Rajasthan, on December 07, 2018.(NurPhoto via Getty Images)
Not among the missing: Women, who have cast their vote for the state assembly elections, outside the polling station at Raisar village of Jaipur district in Rajasthan, on December 07, 2018.(NurPhoto via Getty Images)

Review: The Verdict by Prannoy Roy and Dorab R Sopariwala

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON MAR 22, 2019 08:32 PM IST
Rich in data backed by lucid explanatory text, The Verdict by Prannoy Roy and Dorab R Sopariwala decodes India’s elections and provides some pointers on who could win the Lok Sabha polls in 2019
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The attentive audience at the final debate at JLF 2019 on whether liberalism stifles debate.(Amal KS/HT PHOTO)
The attentive audience at the final debate at JLF 2019 on whether liberalism stifles debate.(Amal KS/HT PHOTO)

JLF2019; At the Mahakumbh of literature

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
PUBLISHED ON FEB 01, 2019 08:07 PM IST
As always, this year’s Jaipur Literature Festival was where Established India came to rub shoulders with Nobel laureates, Pulitzer prize winners and an adoring reading public
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Malaika Arora and Shah Rukh Khan in the Chaiyya Chaiyya song from Dil Se(1998).(Alamy Stock Photo)
Malaika Arora and Shah Rukh Khan in the Chaiyya Chaiyya song from Dil Se(1998).(Alamy Stock Photo)

Review: Jiya Jale; Gulzar in conversation with Nasreen Munni Kabir

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 15, 2018 10:57 AM IST
An excellent book that treats the Hindi film song with the seriousness and respect it deserves
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Daily life on the Ganga in Varanasi.(UIG via Getty Images)
Daily life on the Ganga in Varanasi.(UIG via Getty Images)

Review: To Die in Benares by K Madavane

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 07, 2018 08:51 PM IST
A short story collection that contemplates the inevitable with an unwavering gaze
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Contemplating the void: A sanyasi meditates on Vijayanagaram ghat on the Ganga in Varanasi.(Getty Images)
Contemplating the void: A sanyasi meditates on Vijayanagaram ghat on the Ganga in Varanasi.(Getty Images)

Review: The Twice-Born; Life and Death on the Ganges by Aatish Taseer

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON NOV 02, 2018 09:27 PM IST
Though Aatish Taseer’s book appears to be about the Brahmins of Benaras, it is actually a look at the continuing aftershocks of colonialism, about India and Bharat, and about the persistence of caste
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The Squirrel and her parents!(Stina Wirsen)
The Squirrel and her parents!(Stina Wirsen)

Review: The Rabbit & The Squirrel by Siddharth Dhanvant Shanghvi

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON OCT 12, 2018 11:33 PM IST
A story that examines the nature of love, life, friendship and the quest for happiness in a difficult world
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Old ties; new roots: Supporters of Seewoosagur Ramgolam, the Prime Minister of Mauritius, before he spoke for Mauritian independence during a constitutional conference at Lancaster House, London, on July 19, 1965.(Corbis via Getty Images)
Old ties; new roots: Supporters of Seewoosagur Ramgolam, the Prime Minister of Mauritius, before he spoke for Mauritian independence during a constitutional conference at Lancaster House, London, on July 19, 1965.(Corbis via Getty Images)

Review: India Moving by Chinmay Tumbe

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON SEP 14, 2018 09:05 PM IST
Erudite and thought-provoking, Chinmay Tumbe’s India Moving shows that the ongoing Great Indian Migration Wave is the world’s largest and longest voluntary migration episode in migration history
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Swimming pool for horses, Race Course.(Ritesh Uttamchandani)
Swimming pool for horses, Race Course.(Ritesh Uttamchandani)

Review: The Red Cat and Other Stories by Ritesh Uttamchandani

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON AUG 10, 2018 10:52 PM IST
Shot over the last four years on Ritesh Uttamchandani’s iPhone, this photobook features 98 images that reveal Mumbai’s pounding, generous heart
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The Hindu-Muslim Jhuley Lal-Udero Lal shrine in Sindh.(wikipedia)
The Hindu-Muslim Jhuley Lal-Udero Lal shrine in Sindh.(wikipedia)

Review: Points of Entry; Encounters at the Origin-Sites of Pakistan by Nadeem Farooq Paracha

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON JUL 21, 2018 02:05 AM IST
A nuanced collection of essays on the history, culture and politics of Pakista
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The Hindu-Muslim Jhuley Lal-Udero Lal shrine in Sindh.(wikipedia)
The Hindu-Muslim Jhuley Lal-Udero Lal shrine in Sindh.(wikipedia)

Review: Points of Entry; Encounters at the Origin-sites of Pakistan by Nadeem Farooq Paracha

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON JUL 21, 2018 02:04 AM IST
A nuanced collection of essays on the history, culture and politics of Pakistan
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Naxalites arrested by police at Gangabigha in the Nalanda district of Bihar on 23 November, 1985.(HT File)
Naxalites arrested by police at Gangabigha in the Nalanda district of Bihar on 23 November, 1985.(HT File)

Review: 13 Years; A Naxalite’s Prison Diary by Ramchandra Singh

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON JUL 13, 2018 08:33 PM IST
Ramchandra Singh’s prison diary captures the ideological and physical struggles of a young man of the Naxalbari generation
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Intimacy captured in a Rajasthani miniature.(Getty Images)
Intimacy captured in a Rajasthani miniature.(Getty Images)

Review: Infinite Variety; A History of Desire in India by Madhavi Menon

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON JUL 06, 2018 10:27 PM IST
A fascinating look at objects, relations, acts and places and, through them, the history of desire in India
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Picture of grief: Vaishali Samde with her daughter Gayatri (centre), 2015.(Kota Neelima)
Picture of grief: Vaishali Samde with her daughter Gayatri (centre), 2015.(Kota Neelima)

Review: Widows of Vidarbha by Kota Neelima

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON APR 27, 2018 06:30 PM IST
Widows of Vidarbha is a powerful book on the wives of farmers who kill themselves after they lose their crop
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Time for a fresh secular code applicable to all Indian citizens alike?: Activists protest against Triple Talaq in New Delhi on 5 October 2017.(Kamal Singh/PTI)
Time for a fresh secular code applicable to all Indian citizens alike?: Activists protest against Triple Talaq in New Delhi on 5 October 2017.(Kamal Singh/PTI)

Interview: Romila Thapar on her new book, Indian Cultures as Heritage

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON MAR 09, 2018 09:27 PM IST
Romila Thapar’s new book touches on thought-provoking subjects including attitudes to knowledge, the role of women, the context of objects that identify cultures and ideas like social discrimination that shape it. In an email interview, she elaborated on these ideas
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Strange fruit: An Indian in the US, 1971.(National Geographic/Getty Images)
Strange fruit: An Indian in the US, 1971.(National Geographic/Getty Images)

Review: How May I Help You by Deepak Singh

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON FEB 02, 2018 10:38 PM IST
A book on “an immigrant’s journey from MBA to minimum wage” is insightful and engrossing
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Visitors to the Jaipur Literature Festival busy clicking selfies during sessions.(PTI)
Visitors to the Jaipur Literature Festival busy clicking selfies during sessions.(PTI)

Jaipur Literature Festival 2018: The great literary jamboree

By Manjula Narayan | Hindustan Times, Jaipur
UPDATED ON JAN 30, 2018 11:15 AM IST
As with every year, the Jaipur Literature Festival 2018 thrived in the shadow of an impending controversy that thankfully didn’t break.
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