If Scotland is a Colony, Who are the Colonisers?

BY EFFIE DEANS I don’t know whether the SNP thinks Scotland is a colony, but certainly many if not most independence supporters think this. They often point to a list of countries that have gained independence from the UK and argue that none of them have ever wanted to go back. Most of these countries used to be part of the British Empire. The implication is that … Continue reading If Scotland is a Colony, Who are the Colonisers?

The Indian People of Camaraderie

BY ZOHRA FATIMA Afternoon slumbers were often lulled by a euphonious voice next door, “one-two cha cha cha, let’s do that again….” It was the sound of dancing coming from next door. The Anglo-Indian mother and daughter duo ran a dance school named ‘Connie and Danny’ from home. She taught to waltz, Jive, Ballroom dancing, and salsa to her eager students. After the class ended, … Continue reading The Indian People of Camaraderie

A Champion Of Downtrodden Women

BY RUCHIRA GHOSH This is the saga of a courageous, undaunted, free-spirited British lady, who spent a major part of her life in an alien land, wholeheartedly devoting herself to the service of humanity. To date, she is venerated and fondly remembered for the yeomen’s service she rendered to the masses (read women) in her adopted country. On a cold November evening in 1895, Miss … Continue reading A Champion Of Downtrodden Women

Khadi- A Movement For Women

BY VIBHA MITRA On this International Women’s Day, I pay homage to the philosophy of Khadi and its founding father, my lifelong inspiration, Mahatma Gandhi.  A textile person now, I understand the importance of Swadeshi, the Charkha and Khadi. Khadi is not merely hand spun, hand woven, it is a way of life! Promoting our indigenous industry, keeping alive our traditions.  It is about women … Continue reading Khadi- A Movement For Women

Fading Colours of Colonial Townships

BY ZOHRA FATHIMA Subsequent to the British era, Richmond Town in Bangalore stood monumental in bridging the gap between the Indians and the British. Named after Thomas Richmond, a philanthropist and an Anglo-Indian barrister in the British government who also happened to own a bungalow there, it is one of the prime localities of the city. The area has many by lanes like Wellington Street, … Continue reading Fading Colours of Colonial Townships

Farewell Madame

BY DR KAUSTAV BHATTACHARYYA FAREWELL MADAME MARIA AURORA COUTO: PERSONAL TRIBUTE FROM A YOUNG ADMIRER … An article arrived in my smartphone newsfeed on Ms. Maria Aurora Couto and there was an instant excitement at the prospect of sharing it with her on WhatsApp, which I had done in the past until I read those devastating words ‘passed away’.  At which point the excitement turned … Continue reading Farewell Madame

Brit Influences Linger on in Bengali Psyche

BY RUCHIRA GHOSH Anglo-Bengali camaraderie may be traced back to 1690 when Job  Charnock, a senior official of the erstwhile East India Company, shifted his operations to Sutanati, an obscure village inhabited by local merchants who had dealings with the company. Gradually he  got the area merged with  two other villages, Gobindopur and Kalighat, thus laying (although this is highly disputed) the foundation of  the  sprawling  … Continue reading Brit Influences Linger on in Bengali Psyche

How Anglo-Indian Education has Shaped English Learning

BY DR KAUSTAV BHATTACHARYYA For my generation who grew up in ‘Calcutta’ as opposed to Kolkata, there is a certain sense of pride and belonging to the world of English ‘lettres’ (using the word in the French sense where it includes all written words in different forms like verse, prose and essays, i.e. the literary world of English language). We read and devoured English poets … Continue reading How Anglo-Indian Education has Shaped English Learning


BY DR KAUSTAV BHATTACHARYYA The tragic news of demise of Mr. Neil O’Brien was received with disbelief when I first read on the social media feed and then a pall gloom of grief and nostalgia descended. Media went to town with his obituary describing him as icon of Indian quizzing and tributes started pouring in, but for my generation of Kolkata schoolgoers Mr. Neil O’Brien … Continue reading Neil

Childhood Given New Meaning in European Schools

BY DR KAUSTAV BHATTACHARYYA In the 18th and 19th centuries, the public schools of Britain, the lycées of France and the Cadet Academies of Prussia set the template for modern Europe’s state-controlled childcare apparatus. Global child rights discourse often turns the spotlight on how children are treated—historically and in present times—in our part of the world. But it is also educational to turn the gaze … Continue reading Childhood Given New Meaning in European Schools