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Interview: Manish Gaekwad, author, The Last Courtesan – “My mother and I were accomplices in this”

The genre of memoir was the best way to tell Rekhabai's story because she wanted to share her life in her own voice and not through another narrator. She wanted to be honest and truthful, and the memoir allowed her to do that. The process of writing the memoir was enjoyable and brought the author and Rekhabai closer together. Rekhabai would have been thrilled about the book's reception and the attention it is getting. The cover of the book features a picture of Rekhabai performing her routine as a dancer. The process of listening to Rekhabai's life story did not alter the author's relationship with the various places in India that the story unfolds in. The author's experience as a screenwriter influenced the narrative choices made in the book, but the prospect of selling movie rights did not influence how it was written. While working on the book, the author read various books including The Book of Disquiet and Fictions. If the book were to be made into a movie, the author would choose Tripti Dimri to play Rekhabai. Some depictions of courtesans in Indian cinema and literature that stood out for the author include Sardari Begum and Umrao Jaan Ada. The author believes that the stereotype of the tawaif as a sex-worker needs to be more informed. The author responds to gay men who romanticize the lives of courtesans by saying that if they find comfort and expression in courtesan-ship, why not? The author is currently working on a book about their own growing up years in the kotha and a rom-com film script.

Author Manish Gaekwad (Courtesy HarperCollins)
Updated on Sep 01, 2023 08:13 PM IST

Baba Farid University of Health Sciences vice-chancellor Dr Sood takes charge

Dr Rajeev Sood has assumed the role of vice-chancellor at the Faridkot Baba Farid University of Health Sciences. He plans to prioritize finishing pending works and aims to make BFUHS the top university in north India. Dr Sood has over 40 years of experience in medical practice and has previously served as the dean of PGIMER-Ram Manohar Lohia Hospital in New Delhi. This appointment comes after the resignation of the previous vice-chancellor, Dr Raj Bahadur, who left after being humiliated during an inspection.

Dr Rajeev Sood assumes the charge of the Faridkot Baba Farid University of Health Sciences vice-chancellor on Monday.
Updated on Jul 18, 2023 12:39 AM IST
By, Faridkot

Abducted Elizabeth Tsurkov detailed ‘meeting survivors of the genocide’ in 2019

In a 2019 Facebook post, Elizabeth Tsurkov had detailed her experience “meeting survivors of the genocide & ethnic displacement” while in Iraq

Elizabeth Tsurkov is an Israeli-Russian citizen who was studying political science at the New Jersey-based Ivy League institution (Elizabeth Tsurkov/Facebook)
Updated on Jul 06, 2023 01:59 PM IST
BySumanti Sen

Apara Mehta calls out casting of influencers on OTT: Ek minute ka reel banaane se acting ka nahi pata chalta hai

Veteran actor Apara Mehta slams the casting of social media influencers instead of experienced television faces in the OTT industry.

Apara Mehta on casting TV actors in OTT industry
Updated on Jul 01, 2023 04:47 PM IST
ByNavya Kharbanda

Refine your palette: How to develop your own interest in art

Don’t let galleries, abstracts and jargon intimidate you. To build your own taste in art, start small, stay with familiar words and build on your experiences

Damien Hirst’s spot paintings may seem simplistic. But consider for a moment why an artist would do it, and how it differs from Yayoyi Kusama’s work, which also features dots.
Updated on Jul 25, 2023 07:58 PM IST
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