Books & Starters
Seeing Like a Feminist (Nivedita Menon)
The first book that equipped me, a layperson, to see the world through a feminist lens. I surprise myself by finding valuable learnings to be gleaned from the book each time I revisit a page. Described thus:
“For Nivedita Menon, feminism is not about a moment of final triumph over patriarchy but about the gradual transformation of the social field so decisively that old markers shift forever. From sexual harassment charges against international figures to the challenge that caste politics poses to feminism, from the ban on the veil in France to the attempt to impose skirts on international women badminton players, from queer politics to domestic servants’ unions to the Pink Chaddi campaign, Menon deftly illustrates how feminism complicates the field irrevocably. Incisive, eclectic and politically engaged, Seeing like a Feminist is a bold and wide-ranging book that reorders contemporary society.”
Films & Main Courses
New World (2013)
If you weren’t aware already, the Koreans are masters of the crime genre. No one portrays the brutality, gore & unwavering dedication to a particular viewpoint of society better. New World is no different, but it manages to pull off poignancy & subtlety amidst the carnage, as well as the typical thrills and twists associated with the genre.
The story revolves around an undercover mole, planted into a mob family by intelligence agencies, to relay classified details and warn in advance of any impending plans. The cast is littered with extraordinary actors, such as the mole Lee Jung-jae, who portrays the stress, worries & fear that accompany anyone doing such a dangerous job with great dexterity & poise. The film demands the undercover agent to constantly choose sides and prove his loyalty to either of the two sides. Which side does he eventually choose?
Podcasts & Desserts
Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie and Zadie Smith on Race, Writing, and Relationships (The NYPL Podcast, Podcast #75)
This delightful podcast is every writer/ bookworm’s dream. Bringing together two contemporary female authors, not to mention, women of colour to discuss the art of writing, of characterisation, of telling stories of women, of modern multi-cultural and multi-racial societies, this podcast throws up some wonderful gems.
The easy flow of conversation between the two women and the thoughtful interjections debating everything from womanhood, sexuality, clarity in writing, writing about trauma, being black in America all make this podcast a must-listen!
Link here: https://www.nypl.org/blog/2015/08/25/podcast-chimamanda-ngozi-adichie-zadie-smith