Saturday, March 31, 2012

The Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival

Out of Print author, Sampurna Chattarji mentions Out of Print in a panel discussion at the Sunday Times Oxford Literary Festival. The panel was on New India, New Voices, and Sampurna's point was that online journals such as Out of Print were becoming a significant force in promoting new - and established - writers.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Sahmat protests shutting down of Sunil Gupta's exhibition

Art theorist and friend, Ranjit Hoskote alerted us to a protest by SAHMAT against the shutting down of the Sunil Gupta exhibition in Delhi. Signatories to the protest are friend of Out of Print Ram Rahman, Gita Kapur, Vivan Sundaram and Indira Chandrasekhar (not the Out of Print editor but the publisher from Tulika Books, Delhi).

We append the letter below.

We are shocked to read that the exhibition of photographs by Sunil Gupta mounted by the Alliance Francais in Delhi as a part of their Francophone Festival was shut down shortly after its opening. The show opened with a large attendance of Delhi's artists at which Aruna Roy, the highly regarded social activist, also gave a speech. Apparently the Delhi police arrived at the venue on the complaint of an individual that there were nude images on display. One section of the exhibition had images made in Paris for a show of contemporary Indian art at the famed Center Pompidou last year, which had funded the project. There is nothing obscene about these photographs, many of which have been published in Indian newspapers and art magazines before and are in the public realm.

The Alliance Francais needs to publicly clarify if they were ordered to shut down the exhibit by the Delhi police and if so, on what grounds. If major institutions like them cannot stand up against complaints made by a single individual and support the work of an artist they have invited to exhibit, they do not deserve the respect or patronage of the art community. It is specially ironic that a French institution would buckle under so easily. We hope the Alliance will clarify the circumstances which have led to yet another instance of moral policing against the freedom of expression.

Ram Rahman, Geeta Kapur, Vivan Sundaram, Indira Chandrasekhar


The Safdar Hashmi Memorial Trust
29 Ferozeshah Road, New Delhi 110001
Tel: 2338 1276

Friday, March 23, 2012

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Out of Print 7

This issue has followed on a most intense period of literary activity and interaction at the Jaipur Literature Festival and Lekhana, Bangalore’s Literary Weekend. Cover art by editor, Mira Brunner, is a reference to the questions of censorship, freedom of speech, the sensibilities of communities, and the political awareness and activism that the response to the question of Rushdie or no Rushdie has engendered. Perhaps the stories, on the other hand, are an indication that even though socio-ethical issues dominated much of the recent inky laser-jet neuron cloud space of the subcontinental literati, the gatherings at Jaipur and Bangalore ultimately paid tribute to a larger vision of literary inspiration.

Stories by Patrick Bryson, Sampurna Chattarji, Jessica Tyner, Smriti Ravindra, Nisha Susan, Prasanta Das, Mahesh Natarajan, and Susmita Srivastava.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

A Tribute to Indian Little Magazines

Nilanjana Roy's marvellous tribute to India's little magazines from the last century can be read on her blog, Akhond of Swat.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The inspiration behind Annalemma's India theme

Chris Heavenerfounder and editor of Annalemma Magazine tells Out of Print what his inspiration was for the India issue.   

I had the opportunity to go on a research trip to India with my brother, a documentary filmmaker. We’d met Dr. Joseph D’Souza at a conference the year before where he spoke about his work with the Dalit FreedomNetwork. He and his team showed us around Hyderabad for a week with the hopes of finding a good story to tell in a documentary. Unfortunately, we couldn’t find a story that appropriately met the needs of the DFN. But I still wanted to maintain a personal connection with the work they were doing and I wanted to maintain a connection with the country. 

I witnessed the intense and traumatic wealth and resource disparity there, along with the wholesale exploitation of people of lower castes. And in spite of that I still found the country exceedingly beautiful. The people were incredibly warm and inviting. I loved every minute of my time there. 

With the India issue I wanted to explore the contradictions I saw in the country because I see them in the US as well. As a young country, I feel like it’s important for us to learn whatever we can from cultures who’ve undergone centuries of the issues Americans are waking up to. I wanted to offer a point of entry for a Western reader who’s ready to take that first step.