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Jaipur Bytes

Jaipur Bytes

By Launchora
The Jaipur Bytes podcast, hosted by Lakshya Datta, delivers thought-provoking ideas and meaningful debates from the iconic Jaipur Literature Festival, setting off conversations even when away from the Pink City. Jaipur Bytes is produced by Launchora in association with the Jaipur Literature Festival.
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Tharoorosaurus: Shashi Tharoor in conversation with James Crabtree

Jaipur Bytes

Bill Gates: How to Avoid a Climate Disaster
Bill Gates in conversation with Alok Sharma. “It’s easy to feel powerless in the face of a problem as big as climate change. But you’re not powerless. And you don’t have to be a politician or a philanthropist to make a difference.” – Bill Gates In conversation with Alok Sharma, President of the COP26 Climate Conference and former Secretary of State for Business, Bill Gates will set out a wide-ranging, practical—and accessible—plan for how the world can get to zero greenhouse gas emissions in time to avoid a climate catastrophe. Gates has spent a decade investigating the causes and effects of climate change. With the help of experts in the fields of physics, chemistry, biology, engineering, political science, and finance, he has focused on what must be done in order to stop the planet’s slide toward certain environmental disasters. He will explain not only why we need to work toward net-zero emissions of greenhouse gases, but also details what we need to do to achieve this profoundly important goal.
April 4, 2021
Unfinished: Priyanka Chopra Jonas in conversation with Shobhaa De
Unfinished is one of the most exciting and inspirational books of the year, following Priyanka Chopra Jonas' journey through life and cinema. The memoir takes readers from her childhood in India, through her formative teenage years in the US, to her return to India where she unexpectedly won the national and global beauty pageants (Miss India and Miss World) that launched her acting career. The result is a book that is warm, funny, sassy, inspiring, bold and rebellious and will inspire a generation around the world to gather their courage, embrace their ambition and commit to the hard work of following their dreams. A National Film Award winner with more than 60 international and Hollywood films to her credit, Chopra Jonas made her American TV acting debut on the ABC-TV hit drama Quantico where she made history as the first Indian-born actor to star as the lead of a TV drama series. She is a global UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, recipient of the prestigious Danny Kaye Humanitarian award, and is also involved in a number of efforts to protect children's rights and to promote the education of girls around the world, including her namesake charity, The Priyanka Chopra Foundation for Health and Education. In conversation with  author and columnist Shobhaa De.
April 3, 2021
Debate: The Virtual World Has Become More Real Than The Physical
Payal Arora, Marcus du Sautoy, Tarun Khanna, Renata Lok-Dessallien, Pragya Sharma and Meredith Broussard moderated by Sanjoy K. Roy. Has technology, with its augmented and extended reality, and the social disengagement of the Pandemic, transformed our perception of the real? Has the virtual world  changed and upended the significance of physical experience? What are the definitions of reality? What defines the new realities?  Writers and thinkers, futurists and traditionalists discuss and debate if the virtual has overtaken the real.
April 2, 2021
Your Best Day Is Today: Anupam Kher in conversation with Sanjoy K. Roy
Celebrated actor Anupam Kher's latest book, Your Best Day is Today, is an enduring narrative that encourages us to take a pause and consider and appreciate the smaller things in life. An amalgamation of experiences, lessons and positive takeaways, the book attempts to present a guide to connect with your inner self in order to cope with these difficult times. In this session Kher delves on the importance of adapting to change and the necessity of knowing that you are not alone.
April 1, 2021
Six Suspects: Vikas Swarup in conversation with Shubhra Gupta
Vikas Swarup’s thrilling second novel Six Suspects is a witty, gripping and masterfully written tale that looks deep within the heart of contemporary India. The internationally bestselling author Slumdog Millionaire deftly explores themse of murder, corruption and oppurtunity, through an imaginative and intensive plot, unravelling the lives and motives of the six suspects involved in the killing of a politician’s son, offering both a riveting page-turner and a sobering look into the social dynamics at play.  The author discusses his influences, writing process, and the upcoming web adaptation of his riveting novel, in conversation with Shubhra Gupta. Vikas Swarup is an Indian diplomat and writer, and current Secretary (West) at the Ministry of External Affairs. He is best known as the author of the novel Q & A, adapted in film as Slumdog Millionaire, the winner of Best Film for the year 2009 at the Academy Awards, Golden Globe Awards and BAFTA Awards.
April 1, 2021
Evolving Narratives: Vikram Chandra, Sudhir Mishra, Monika Shergill and Vikramaditya Motwane with Vani Tripathi Tikoo
The digital landscape is perhaps the most exciting space for creative potential today, having transformed long-established modes of consuming, interpreting and interacting with text-based narratives. This is a golden age of entertainment as streaming services constantly evolve, challenging viewer expectations and bringing in new ways in which stories are created, absorbed and shared. In a fascinating session, the panelists exchange ideas on the process of adapting dynamic scripts to the screen, reimagining the text for the visual medium and broadening the possibilities of immersive, authentic storytelling.
March 31, 2021
Girl In White Cotton - The Story of Burnt Sugar: Avni Doshi in conversation with Janice Pariat
Avni Doshi’s Booker shortlisted novel Burnt Sugar, published as Girl in White Cotton in India, is a vivid and unsettling account following the complex relationship between a mother and daughter. Tracing the  fragile line between familial devotion and deception the tale evocatively brings up the subjective nature of truth and the reality of toxic relationships. In conversation with author and poet Janice Pariat, they examine the roots of this compelling and raw narrative and unravel its questions of identity, love and trauma.
March 31, 2021
Trump It Up - The Era of Neo-Nationalism: Homi K. Bhabha in conversation with Sanjoy K. Roy
The seeds of the storming of the Capital were sown, and shown to the world, early in President Trump’s Presidency with his chest-thumping belief in what commentators have called “dangerous” nationalism. Scholar and critical theorist Homi K. Bhabha, a believer in a more benign and inclusive world view, evaluates how you address these actions rooted within the fabric of chaos, discontent and “uncivil unrest”. A session that analyses the growing instances of neo nationalism around the world also discusses how this narrative is trying to redefine democracy, political power, public ethics and success in troubling terms, fueled by conspiracy theories. Bhabha is the Anne F. Rothenberg Professor of the Humanities at Harvard University. His work explores postcolonial theory, cultural change, and power. His books include Nation and Narration and The Location of Culture. In conversation with Sanjoy K. Roy, Bhabha delves on this new era of politics and what it entails for our future.
March 30, 2021
Diving Deep With Douglas Stuart: The Many Layers Of Shuggie Bain
Douglas Stuart in conversation with Paul McVeigh. Glasgow-born Douglas Stuart’s 2020 Booker prize-winning debut novel Shuggie Bain evokes the  essence of addiction, parenthood, courage and love. Following the bond between a son and his mother, fractured by alcoholism, poverty, aspiration and human misery. The novel graphs an intimate, devastating  yet ultimately hopeful journey through their lives.  Stuart began his career in fashion design before moving onto writing. His other work includes the short stories Found Wanting and The Englishman. In conversation with writer and playwright Paul McVeigh, Stuart unravels the thought and process behind bringing this heartbreaking story out into the world.
March 30, 2021
One Two Three Four - The Beatles In Time: Craig Brown in conversation with Bee Rowlatt
Celebrated satirist, critic and writer Craig Brown’s Baillie Gifford Prize winning recent biography One Two Three Four: The Beatles in Time is a serendipitous retelling of the chance merger of four elemental figures. An enchanting mix of history, autobiography, interviews and fan letters, it brings forth a fitting tribute to a band whose words echo through homes even today. Through a kaleidoscopic mix of narratives, the book also presents a look into the lives of those around them who were engulfed and impacted by their astounding success and tragedy. Brown is the only person to have won three different Press Awards, for best humorist, columnist and critic, in the same year.  Known for his riveting parodies in Private Eye, he is also the author of Ma’am Darling: 99 Glimpses of Princess Margaret, The Tony Years and One on One among many others. In conversation with writer and broadcaster Bee Rowlatt, Brown takes us through the story of four men who represented not just a cultural milieu but also timeless music and fervent fame.
March 29, 2021
Maharani Jindan kaur - The Rebel Queen: Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni, Priya Atwal and Navtej Sarna
Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni and Priya Atwal have both evoked the spirit of the beautiful Maharani Jindan Kaur through fiction and fact. Kaur was regent of the Sikh Empire from 1843 until 1846.  She was renowned for her energy and strength of purpose with the Governor General Dalhousie writing of her, “She has the only manly understanding in the Punjab”. Divakaruni has previously authored the celebrated books The Palace of Illusions, Mistress of Spices and The Forest of Enchantment. Her latest book is The Last Queen. Atwal's recent book, Royals and Rebels: The Rise and Fall of the Sikh Empire, showcases the centrality of female agency within the expansion of Sikh sovereignty. In conversation with Navtej Sarna, author of several works of fiction and non-fiction including The Exile, a novel based on the life of Maharaja Duleep Singh, the last Sikh King and son of Maharani Jindan, the three authors bring alive a fascinating tale of the splendour and downfall of a mighty kingdom, court intrigue, colonial deception and greed,  as well as  motherhood and feminine strength.
March 29, 2021
No Country For Farmers: Kota Neelima, Dushyant Dave, Surjit Bhalla with Sanket Upadhyay
“India lives in her villages,” said Gandhi. Although agriculture is the most important sector of the economy, accounting for close to 16 %of the GDP and providing employment to much of the nation's workforce, rural-urban distances and divides continue to grow. The incomprehension between those who contribute to growing our food and those who consume it widens by the day. All political parties claim to represent the farmer but the tiller of the soil is mute and invisible in the process of decision making. Climate change further impacts the uncertainties that farmers face. An engaged panel speaks of the paradoxes of policy and the complex issues involved in bringing about much-needed reforms and discusses the signposts ahead. Kota Neelima is an Indian author, researcher, artist and political commentator, specialising in rural distress, gender and her work focuses on the condition of women farmers, farmer suicides and peripheries of democratic societies. Economist, author and columnist Surjit Bhalla is currently the Executive Director for India at the International Monetary Fund. Dushyant Dave is a senior advocate and former president of the Supreme Court Bar Association. Sanket Upadhyay is an anchor and Executive editor at NDTV.
March 28, 2021
Agent Sonya: Ben Macintyre in conversation with Swapan Dasgupta
Best-selling author and historian Ben MacIntyre’s latest work Agent Sonya is an exhilarating narrative whfich unravels the life of Ursula Kuczynski Burton, code name- Agent Sonya, the spy behind some of the most dangerous espionage operations of the twentieth century. Her escapades included a failed assasination on Hitler, spying on the Japanese and other covert missions for Moscow. MacIntyre’s other books include Agent Zigzag, Operation Mincemeat and A Spy Among Friends. In conversation with Swapan Dasgupta, he discusses the life and times of a lover, mother, soldier and spy.
March 28, 2021
We are the Weather - Saving the Planet Begins at Breakfast: Jonathan Safran Foer with Jeffrey Gettleman
A powerful narrative on the stark realities of climate change, We Are the Weather: Saving the Planet Begins at Breakfast by Jonathan Safran Foer takes a hard-hitting look at the day-to-day human contribution to the unfolding environmental catastrophe. Weaving personal stories, facts and metaphors, he also analyses what motivates some people to sacrifice short-term comfort for the sake of the long term preservation of our climate by eliminating animal-based products from their diet. In conversation with journalist Jeffrey Gettleman, he delves on the changes that each one of us can make to mitigate this crisis.
March 27, 2021
Pandemics - Past and Future: Chinmay Tumbe and Laura Spinney in conversation with Ambarish Satwik
The recurrence of pandemics is an unfortunate reality in human history. Leaving a devastating trail of suffering and death, they disappear from public memory until such time that the demons surface again. Academic and author Chinmay Tumbe in his recent book, Age of Pandemics (1817-1920): How They Shaped India and the World, chronicles the many facets of the cholera, plague and influenza pandemics, which claimed over 70 million lives between 1817 and 1920 with India being the epicentre in all these episodes. In the first truly global treatment of one of the worst pandemics of all time, Pale Rider: The Spanish Flu of 1918 and How It Changed the World, author and science journalist Laura Spinney delves into lesser known details of that forgotten disaster. In conversation with surgeon and author Ambarish Satwik, they touch upon the science and psychology of pandemics and lessons from the past that may make us better understand the potential onset of zoonotic diseases in the future.
March 27, 2021
The Many Lives of Democracy: Edward Luce and Anne Applebaum in conversation with Suhasini Haidar
Democracy has many faces, many lives, subject to change, investigation, reform. In The Retreat of Western Liberalism, Edward Luce makes a larger statement about the weakening of western hegemony and the crisis of liberal democracy, of which Donald Trump and his European counterparts are not the cause, but a terrifying symptom. He warns of the dangerous ignorance of the West regarding its own socio-political trajectory, and its arrogance towards society's economic losers, insisting that we cannot move forward without a clear diagnosis of what has gone wrong. In her bookTwilight of Democracy, staff writer for The Atlantic, Anne Applebaum stirs a deeper inquiry into the nature of democracy and the rising appeal of an age-old blend of nationalism and autocracy. Fuelled by the discourse of conspiracy theory, political polarization and the 21st century use of social media, she charts the rising era of illiberalism and antidemocratic trends within the West. The two talk to Suhasini Haidar who is the diplomatic and national editor at The Hindu.
March 26, 2021
Word, Inspiration and Story: Kevin Kwan in conversation with Shunali Khullar Shroff
Sex and Vanity is Kevin Kwan’s latest book, following on the sensational success of Crazy Rich Asians, and opening up a world of extravagant travel, love, and deceit, with subtle undertones of the complexities of race and identity. A love affair traversing Capri and the Hamptons, the narrative – a homage to A Room With a View – introduces us to the lives of the ultra-rich seeking happiness in excess, Asian classism and snobbery. The bestselling author of China Rich Girlfriend and Rich People Problems dives into his literary journey and the universe of privilege, couture and cultures his books represent, in conversation with author Shunali Khullar Shroff.
March 26, 2021
The Connections and Disconnections between India and China: Tansen Sen in conversation with William Dalrymple
The interactions between India and China have been long and complicated. Tansen Sen sets on a singular mission: to fill the gaps in the narratives tying the regions, breaking through traditional conceptions of understanding India-China connections and proposing new ways to explore the historical and contemporary relations. Sen peoples his tapestry with material exchanges, archival evidence, intelligence reports and information networks, sweeping across historical contexts both within and outside the Asian continent. Sen is Director of the Center for Global Asia, Professor of History, NYU Shanghai. He specialises in Asian history and religions and has special scholarly interests in India-China interactions, Indian Ocean connections and Buddhism. In conversation with author and Festival Co Director William Dalrymple.
March 25, 2021
All Power Corrupts: Amish, Kim Ghattas, Pavan K. Varma, Pinaki Misra, Pinky Anand and Suhel Seth with Vikram Chandra
“All power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.” So goes the axiom but is it an absolute truth? Is power inherently susceptible to being misused? Or can power be yielded dispassionately for the public good? Eminent speakers and public intellectuals examine the proposition in its different dimensions.
March 25, 2021
The Curious Incident of the Author Who Couldn't Be Categorised: Mark Haddon in conversation with Sandip Roy
Celebrated author, poet and artist Mark Haddon takes us on a journey through his literary career, which includes The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time, the short story collection The Pier Falls and his latest novel, The Porpoise. In conversation with author and broadcaster Sandip Roy, he talks about the inspirations and ethos that guide his pen.
March 24, 2021
Brown Baby: Nikesh Shukla in conversation with Nish Kumar
In Brown Baby, Nikesh Shukla explores themes of racism, feminism, parenting and our shifting ideas of home. By turns heartwrenching, hilariously funny and intensely relatable, the memoir is dedicated to the author’s two young daughters and serves as an act of remembrance to the grandmother they never had a chance to meet. In this emotionally stirring session, Shukla navigates the porous boundaries of love, grief and fatherhood in conversation with British stand-up comedian, radio host and presenter Nish Kumar, ultimately showing us how it’s possible to believe in hope. Shukla is a British author and screenwriter, and the editor of the 2016 collection of essays The Good Immigrant. His other works include the novels Coconut Unlimited and The One Who Wrote Destiny. Kumar is the host of The Mash Report on BBC Two, Hello America on Quibi and BBC Radio 4 Extra's topical comedy show Newsjack, among others.
March 24, 2021
Will China Shape the Future of the World: Rana Mitter in conversation with Tansen Sen
Was the relationship between China and the world  shaped by wars? War with Japan in the late 1930s, the PRC's involvement in Korea in the early 1950s, its border conflict with India in 1962, and the military offensive it launched against Vietnam in 1978 were key events in the history of China's foreign relations. Within this context, how will the relationship between the two rising powers, China and India, and the global leadership of the United States change during the 2020s? As China develops its Belt and Road Initiative, how will it influence the future of Asia and the World? Rana Mitter, author of China’s Good War explores how China’s new nationalism might structure its relationship with India, the United States and the world. In conversation with Tansen Sen.
March 23, 2021
The Haunting of Alma Fielding - A True Ghost Story: Kate Summerscale in conversation with Ira Mukhoty
Kate Summerscale’s latest book, The Haunting of Alma Fielding, is a gripping narrative that follows the investigation of supernatural experiences in the shadow of war, and the unraveling of a story of trauma, loss and alienation. Summerscale is  also the author of  bestsellers The Suspicions of Mr Whicher and The Queen of Whale Cay. In conversation with historian and author Ira Mukhoty, Summerscale explores the 1930s case of the ‘Croydon Poltergeist’ and the hidden folds of the human mind.
March 23, 2021
The Spread of Buddhism: Himanshu Prabha Ray and John Guy in conversation with William Dalrymple
A session traversing the spiritual and archeological path of the expansion of Buddhism opening a fascinating window into its foundations, histories and traditions. It also gives a keen insight into the role of patronage and of Buddhist monks in spreading its ideas and philosophy. Academic and author Himanushu Prabha Ray, talks of the expansion of Buddhism within India while the Senior curator for the Metropolitan Museum of Art, John Guy, explores the spread of Buddhism through SE Asia, in conversation with Festival Co- Director and author William Dalrymple.
March 22, 2021
My Name Is Malala: Malala Yousafzai in conversation with Pragya Tiwari
Nobel Peace Prize winner and bestselling author Malala Yousafzai's journey has been nothing short of extraordinary. From being an education activist in the Swat Valley in Pakistan to her path breaking work with the Malala Fund, she has emerged as an international voice in the fight for education for all and ending gender discrimination. Her latest book is We are Displaced: My Journey and Stories from Refugee Girls Around the World. In a conversation with Pragya Tiwari, she gives us an inside look into her inspirations, journey and roots.
March 22, 2021
Art and Politics in the Shadow of Music: Alex Ross in conversation with Katherine Butler Schofield
Renowned author and music critic Alex Ross’ latest book Wagnerism: Art and Politics in the Shadow of Music unravels the cultural history and significance of Richard Wagner and the kaleidoscopic work and life he inhabited. Ross weaves together not just Wagner’s story but also the political, artistic and cultural history of the last 150 years. Ross’ other books include The Rest Is Noise: Listening to the Twentieth Century and Listen to This.with In conversation with academic and author Katherine Butler Schofield, Ross delves into the artistic genius of Wagner and the impact of art in world history.
March 21, 2021
Age of Disquiet - Reclaiming Hope: Sonali Gupta, Kairavi Bharat Ram and Arshya Gaur with Shelja Sen
We live in an age of accelerated anxiety and the prospect of loss stares us in the face in the times of the pandemic. A conversation across generations where two young women writers, Kairavi Bharat Ram, age 22, and Arshya Gaur, age 16, share their hurts and the process of healing with clinical psychologist and author Sonali Gupta and psychologist and family therapist Shelja Sen.  Dr. Sen is co-founder of Children First, a child and adolescent mental health institute, and author of Imagine: No Child Left Invisible, All You Need is Love: The Art of Mindful Parenting and Reclaim Your Life: Going Beyond Silence, Shame and Stigma in Mental Health. Clinical psychologist Sonali Gupta is the author of Anxiety: Overcome It and Live Without Fear. Kairavi Bharat Ram is a third-year student at London College of Fashion and has written C is for Cat, D is for Depression. Arshya Gaur is a student, writer and consultant at the Daily O. She recently published a collection of poems titled How to Open a Parachute, dealing with depression and anorexia.
March 21, 2021
Enter Stage Right - The Alkazi-Padamsee Family Memoir: Feisal Alkazi, Amal Allana, Quasar Thakore Padamsee with Sanjoy Roy
Enter Stage Right: The Alkazi-Padamsee Family Memoir is a heartfelt homage to one of the greatest alliances in the world of theatre and art in post-Independence India: the Alkazi-Padamsees. Penned by noted director Feisal Alkazi, son of the late theatre veteran and Director of the National School of Drama Ebrahim Alkazi, and Roshen Alkazi, pioneering costumier and founder-director of Art Heritage, the memoir charmingly recounts the stories and anecdotes that constitute the history of Indian theatre, bringing them to life with insightful observations and more than 50 archival photographs. In this memorable session, he speaks to Quasar Thakore Padamsee to discuss the institutional legacy of their family and how they shaped the future of arts in India. In conversation with festival producer Sanjoy K Roy.
March 20, 2021
Our Man - Richard Holbrooke and the End of the American Century: George Packer with Basharat Peer
Journalist and writer George Packer’s Our Man: Richard Holbrooke and the End of the American Century is an enduring account of the force behind the Dayton Accords which famously ended the Balkan wars. Packer’s sweeping diplomatic history is based on Holbrooke's diaries and papers and gives a peek into the life of man both equally admired and detested. Packer’s other works include The Unwinding: An Inner History of the New America, The Assassins’ Gate: America in Iraq and Blood of the Liberals. In conversation with journalist and writer Basharat Peer, Packer dives into the life and career of an extraordinary and deeply flawed man and the political and social circles he inhabited.
March 20, 2021
Feminism Reframed: Bee Rowlatt, Mariam Khan and Sabrina Mahfouz with Afshan D'Souza-Lodhi
A timely session which brings together a cross section of voices and perspectives to understand feminism and its kaleidoscopic dimensions. Bee Rowlatt embarks on an extraordinary journey looking at the life and legacy of the first celebrity feminist, Mary Wollstonecraft, in her latest book In Search of Mary. Mariam Khan  in her anthology It’s Not About The Burqa, writes about why feminism needs to die. Both of these writers, alongside playwright, poet and editor of The Things I Would Tell You: British Muslim Women Write, Sabrina Mahfouz discuss the ways in which feminism has changed over the years. The three committed writers come together to inform us, critique and reframe feminism for contemporary women. In conversation with Afshan D'Souza-Lodhi.
March 19, 2021
Tom Stoppard - A Life: Hermione Lee in conversation with Chandrahas Choudhury
Tom Stoppard, one of the greatest living playwrights, is a towering and beloved literary figure. Known for his dizzying narrative inventiveness and intense attention to language, he deftly deploys art, science, history, politics, and philosophy in works that span a remarkable spectrum of literary genres: theater, radio, film, TV, journalism and fiction. His most acclaimed creations, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead, The Real Thing, Arcadia, The Coast of Utopia and Shakespeare in Love, remain as fresh and moving as when they entranced their first audiences.  British biographer, literary critic and academic Hermione Lee’s latest work, Tom Stoppard: A Life, weaves Stoppard's life and work together into a vivid, insightful and always riveting portrait of a remarkable man. In conversation with author Chandrahas Choudhury, Lee talks about his life and draws on a wealth of new materials and on her many conversations with Stoppard.
March 19, 2021
Divine Comedy - Dante Alighieri: Piero Boitani and Claudio Giunta in conversation with H.E. Vincenzo de Luca
Drawing heavily from Roman Catholic theology and philosophy, Divine Comedy by Dante Alighieri is a long narrative poem divided into three parts: Hell, Purgatory and Paradise. The text and its imaginative vision of the afterlife is a masterpiece representing Dante’s journey from darkness to error to the final ascent to God in Paradise. Author and literary critic Piero Boitani is a Dante scholar and is Professor Emeritus of Comparative Literature at the Sapienza University in Rome. Academic and author Claudio Giunta teaches Italian Literature at the University of Trento in Italy. He is an expert in medieval literature, the poetry of Dante and his contemporaries and pedagogy of the humanities. Together they discuss the significance of the Divine Comedy and its verses and celebrate the life and writing of this master of words on the 700th anniversary of his death. In conversation with the Ambassador to Italy in India, H.E. Vincenzo de Luca.
March 18, 2021
Unscripted: Vidhu Vinod Chopra and Abhijat Joshi in conversation with Vani Tripathi Tikoo
A book charting an exceptional life and career, Unscripted by screenwriter, director and producer Vidhu Vinod Chopra and scriptwriter Abhijat Joshi takes us on an extravagant journey through the life, mind, method and madness of perhaps one of the greatest filmmakers Bollywood has seen today. Over the past three decades, Chopra has seen it all, from putting together low budget student films to establishing the largest production house within the Indian film industry, he has presented the biggest blockbusters of the era while also introducing the audience to a sparkling list of actors who he took under his wing and nurtured to stardom. In conversation with Vani Tripathi Tikoo,  they dive into a session on Chopra's life and work and a friendship spanning decades.
March 18, 2021
The Edict Project - Music and Meaning for our Times: T.M. Krishna in conversation with Manasi Subramaniam
TM Krishna, public intellectual and acclaimed classical vocalist in the Carnatic tradition, is dedicated to working across the spectrum of music, society and culture. The Edict Project, in association with Ashoka University, is a creative collaboration that seeks to musically rediscover Emperor Ashoka’s ancient edicts -- philosophies that speak of a more humane society built on empathy and compassion created during the period of the lockdown, they convey Krishna’s conviction that the world can be healed through a deep understanding of music. An inspirational multidisciplinary session that searches history and culture to frame words, music and meaning for our times. Krishna’s latest book is Sebastian and Sons.
March 17, 2021
Stormy Past, Contentious Present: Tripurdaman Singh in conversation with Karan Thapar
Tripurdaman Singh's latest book Sixteen Stormy Days: The Story of the First Amendment of the Constitution of India is a fascinating look into the turbulent history and contentious legacy of the First Amendment of the Constitution. Rooted in parliamentary debates, press reports, judicial pronouncements and existing scholarship, the book takes a deep dive into the series of events that led Prime Minister Nehru to make this sweeping amendment in a constitution he had so passionately championed. Singh is a British Academy postdoctoral fellow at the Institute of Commonwealth Studies, University of London. In conversation with journalist and writer Karan Thapar, Singh explores the nascent years of India in the context of what he calls “the first great battle of ideas.”
March 17, 2021
From Streets to Tweets - The Era of Digital Activism: Avijit Michael and Nida Hasan with Abhinandan Sekhri.
The power of the ‘tweet’, the ‘like’ and the ‘share’, and other digital interventions has never been more evident as online avenues become increasingly viable sites of protest. They offer invaluable potential for raising awareness, engaging in structural critique, mobilising support and driving action while also allowing for a range of negative mirror activities. An urgent session on the positive power of digital activism as founders of virtual social justice platforms discuss the rise of new movements, the effectiveness of online petitions, and the internet as an emerging space for resistance, in the wake of the pandemic and mounting political crises across the globe. In conversation with Abhinandan Sekhri. Avijit Michael is the founder and executive director of Jhatkaa, a campaigning organisation committed to building grassroots citizen power across India.  Nida Hasan is the Country Director of Change.Org. Abhinandan Sekhri is the Co-Founder and CEO of Newslaundry.
March 16, 2021
Innovation, Imagination and Creativity: Vinay Sahasrabuddhe, Mugdha Sinha, Shubhendra Rao, Roger Highfield with Sanjoy K. Roy
How do we understand culture? Does it stem from civilisational history or is it an evolving way of life? How do we reinterpret and regenerate its roots? In a pandemic ridden, constantly transforming world, how does innovation and creativity manifest in society, and how can they be promoted despite the difficulties of our times? Rajya Sabha member Vinay Sahasrabuddhe is the President at the Indian Council for Cultural Relations and the Director of the Public Policy Research Centre. Mugdha Sinha is Secretary Art, Literature, Culture and Archaeology and Secretary Science and Technology as well as the Director General Jawahar Kala Kendra and the Literary Secretary of IAS Association Rajasthan. Shubhendra Rao is a celebrated composer and Sitar player.  Roger Highfield is the Science Director of the Science Museum Group. In conversation with Sanjoy K. Roy, they discuss the fascinating interplay between culture, innovation, economies and societal beliefs and delve on the roots of creative sustenance.
March 16, 2021
Who Rules The World: Noam Chomsky in conversation with Sreenivasan Jain
Celebrated American linguist, philosopher, cognitive scientist, historian, social critic and political activist Noam Chomsky’s book Who Rules the World? questions the United States and its exercise of power throughout conflict areas in a post 9/11 world. Critically analysing claims of freedom and human rights, Chomsky in his celebrated style investigates the era of modern day imperial powers and their role in climate change, nuclear proliferation and the overall threat to human civilisation. In conversation with journalist Sreenivasan Jain, Chomsky delves into the critical need for active public participation in changing policies and introduces us to the unsettling truths of our times.
March 15, 2021
A Coup in Turkey: A Tale of Democracy, Despotism and Vengeance in a Divided Land
Jeremy Seal in conversation with Max Rodenbeck. A gripping and multi-layered political narrative, Jeremy Seal’s A Coup in Turkey: A Tale of Democracy, Despotism and Vengeance in a Divided Land unravels the events leading up to the coup that removed the traditionalist Prime Minister Adnan Menderes of Turkey in 1960. Through eye witness accounts, Seal lays bare the striking parallels between the past and the present and digs deep into the heart of the feud. Seal’s other books include The Wreck at Sharpnose Point, Meander: East to West, Indirectly, Along a Turkish River and A Fez of the Heart: Travels Around Turkey in Search of a Hat among others. In conversation with South Asia Bureau Chief for The Economist, Max Rodenbeck, Seal explores this charismatic political figure and his eventual downfall and dramatically re-centres our understanding of the past.
March 15, 2021
Till We Win: India's Fight against the COVID-19 Pandemic
Randeep Guleria, Chandrakant Lahariya and Gagandeep Kang in conversation with Maya Mirchandani. Will India win the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic? When can we expect a safe and effective vaccine?  How should we respond to this 'new normal' as an individual and as a community? What is the way forward? Offering insights on how India continues to fight the pandemic, Till We Win is a must-read for everyone. A detailed, objective and hopeful account of our times, this is a book for the people, for political leaders, policymakers and physicians with the promise and potential to transform public health in India. Dr. Randeep Guleria, Director of All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, is an MD in Medicine and the first DM in Pulmonary Medicine in the country, and has been at the forefront of the Government of India’ sefforts on the COVID-19 pandemic preparedness and response. Dr. Chandrakant Lahariya is a leading public policy and health systems expert and a recipient of the Indian Council of Medical Research's Dr. BC Srivastava Foundation Award for his work on translating community-based health research in public policy interventions. Dr. Gagandeep Kang is a renowned infectious disease researcher and virologist who serves on many advisory committees in India and internationally, including for the World Health Organisation. The co-authors discuss their exciting new project in conversation with award-winning journalist Maya Mirchandani.
March 14, 2021
Indian Sun - Remembering Ravi Shankar: Oliver Craske in conversation with Guillermo Rodríguez
To mark Pandit Ravi Shankar’s birth centenary, Oliver Craske has penned a comprehensive biography of the sitar maestro. Ravi Shankar excelled in Indian classical music and played a leading role in its post-independence revival within India, before becoming its pioneering global ambassador. A childhood immersed in dance and music with his older brother Uday Shankar, and the rigorous discipline of learning the sitar under the tutelage of the legendary Allauddin Khan, prepared him for transforming the international understanding of Indian culture from 1954 onwards. Ravi Shankar’s creative associations with George Harrison, Yehudi Menuhin and Satyajit Ray, among others, led to worldwide acclaim and extraordinary musical experiments and collaborations. Using rare family archives and fresh interviews, Craske tracks his professional success and often tangled personal life. In a moving and evocative session, Craske alongside writer and cultural critic Guillermo Rodríguez speak of Shankar’s genius and his profound impact on the world.
March 14, 2021
The Chipko Movement: Ramachandra Guha, Shekhar Pathak, Manisha Chaudhry, Mukul Sharma
The Himalayan forests determine the well-being of India’s Northern Plains. Scholar, traveller, and activist Shekhar Pathak’s important book The Chipko Movement: A People’s  History has been rendered in English by translator and publisher Manisha Chaudhry. It tells the story of how local communities in Kumaon and Garhwal, especially the women, resisted forest felling by loggers. Relying on extensive research and primary sources, it documents the antecedents, the inspiration and the impact of this transformative movement in its grassroots context. Edited and with an introduction by historian and public intellectual Ramachandra Guha, the narrative also bears witness to the deep friendship and understanding between Pathak and Guha, two men who share so little and so much. In a deep and insightful discussion, they speak with writer and academic Mukul Sharma about the book and its backstories.
March 13, 2021
Reflections: Anish Kapoor in conversation with Homi K. Bhabha
Anish Kapoor has succeeded in transforming the cool, conceptual, and minimal approach to sculpture by adding lyricism, metaphor, and the heat of the primordial. Objects spill out from their own parameters, yet they also stand serenely as in meditative focus as if for ritual. Typically, the sculptures appear abstract, with Kapoor's intention to promote self-reflection made most obvious when using mirrored surfaces. He does not wish to present a prescriptive idea, but instead to create an environment within which people themselves can consider meaning. As the viewer becomes part of the sculpture, each work speaks of the confined individuality of a single body, but also of the expansive inclusiveness of a shared place. His sculptures paradoxically entwine esoteric philosophy with sensual everyday experience. In this session, one of India’s greatest artists talks about his life and work with his friend Homi K. Bhabha.
March 13, 2021
The Truth of Yoga: Daniel Simpson in conversation with Ranju Roy
Scholar and author Daniel Simpson’s recent book The Truth of Yoga takes us on a journey through the origins, development and concept of Yoga. Cutting through myth and misinformation, the text provides a comprehensive overview of this age-old discipline which is celebrated worldwide for its mental, physical and spiritual benefits. Simpson teaches courses on yoga philosophy at the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies and at Triyoga in London. He draws on his experience as a journalist to make the subject accessible. Yoga practitioner and teacher Ranju Roy is the co-author ofEmbodying the Yoga Sūtra: Support, Direction, Space and teaches courses on the practice and philosophy of yoga. In conversation with Roy, Simpson delves into the past, present and future of this ancient tradition.
March 12, 2021
Maoism - A Global History: Julia Lovell in conversation with Michael Puett
With the growing friction between China and the world, exacerbated in the wake of the pandemic, the need to understand the political legacy of Mao is urgent and growing. In Maoism: A Global History, eminent British scholar, author and translator Julia Lovell takes on the ambitious and challenging task of covering the sweeping and turbulent history of Maoism in one accessible text, bringing attention to Mao and his ideas in a new light. Through a series of interviews, archival references and ethnographic study, Lovell synthesises concurrent narratives and conceptions, providing a re-evaluation of the ideology in the present context. She discusses her exciting work in conversation with historian and writer Michael Puett in an essential session on the enduring appeal of Maoism.
March 12, 2021
Interpreting Dharma: Bibek Debroy in conversation with Keerthik Sasidharan
The concept of Dharma is unique to Indian philosophy and difficult to translate as it implies different things in different contexts. Hindu narratives are ambiguous and avoid prescriptive moralities. The Dharma and duties of different individuals face conflicts of ethical and human dimensions. Distinguished economist, writer, scholar and translator Bibek Debroy speaks of these dilemmas and the ethical and karmic choices inherent in them. Debroy heads the Prime Minister’s Economic Advisory Council. He has translated a monumental ten-volume unabridged version of the Mahabharata and made a large body of the epics and ancient texts available to contemporary readers. In a deep and engrossing session, he speaks with Keerthik Sasidharan author of the recently published novel The Dharma Forest ( book one of a trilogy based on the Mahabharata), of understanding and interpreting Dharma.
March 11, 2021
Tacky's Revolt - The Story of an Atlantic Slave War: Vincent Brown in conversation with Maya Jasanoff
Acclaimed author and historian Vincent Brown's groundbreaking geopolitical thriller Tacky′s Revolt: The Story of an Atlantic Slave War takes on the Atlantic slave trade with a subversive and powerful reconstruction of the history of insurgency, rebellion, victory and defeat. With a keen emphasis on the seminal uprising that upended the dominant imperial rule of the British Atlantic world, eventually becoming known as the Tacky’s Revolt and ultimately leading the way for abolition, the book explores the contentious climate of oppression and slavery, offering an alternative perspective of the events that occurred, with an unflinching look at the brutal and inhumane methods of oppression and the resilience of those that resisted. In conversation with writer and academic Maya Jasanoff, he unpacks the complex narratives binding the conflicting histories of Europe, Africa and America, offering illuminating insights into the condition of terror and war, proving more relevant than ever in the era of BLM and socio-political sifting change and raising the ever pertinent question, who gets to write the story?
March 11, 2021
The Rise and Fall of Dinosaurs: Steve Brusatte and Lisa Randall in conversation with Pranay Lal
Academic and paleontologist Steve Brusatte’s book The Rise and Fall of the Dinosaurs: A New History of a Lost World is a stunning narrative covering more than 200 million years. Showcasing a new and complete history of these magnificent creatures it draws from cutting-edge science dramatically bringing to life their lost world and enigmatic origins. Academic and writer Lisa Randall's book Dark Matter and the Dinosaurs: The Astounding Interconnectedness of the Universe takes us on a journey across the universe and through the Milky Way giving us an exceptional understanding of how dark matter may have led to the cataclysmic extinction of Dinosaurs on earth. Writer and biochemist Pranay Lal is the author of Indica: A Deep Natural History of the Indian Subcontinent. In conversation with Lal, they dive into the diverse world of dinosaurs and their ongoing legacy.
March 10, 2021
Say Nothing - Wind of Change: Patrick Radden Keefe in conversation with Fintan O'Toole
Patrick Radden Keefe has always had a way with his words, powerfully laying out stories that illuminate a much larger picture. An award-winning staff writer for The New Yorker, Radden Keefe’s recent literary escapes include an eight-part podcast called Wind of Change, which investigates the strange confluence of espionage and pop music during the Cold War. His other recent work includes the book Say Nothing: A True Story of Murder and Memory in Northern Ireland, which follows the story of a missing mother in the years of the Irish Troubles, unraveling a history which is still very raw. In conversation with author and literary editor Finton O’Toole, Radden Keefe gives us a glimpse into his writing process and the source of his inspirations.
March 10, 2021
The Battle of Belonging: Shashi Tharoor in conversation with Faye D'Souza
What does it mean to be Indian? Politician and celebrated author Shashi Tharoor's latest book, The Battle Of Belonging: On Nationalism, Patriotism, And What It Means To Be Indian, evaluates the historical and current political trends impacting the “idea of India.” Tharoor explores these changing interpretations of nationalism, patriotism, citizenship and belonging as well as the nature and future of nationhood. In an important conversation with journalist Faye D’Souza, he discusses these themes and ideas in the context of the past, the present and the emergent future.
March 9, 2021
Voices of Faith - Inspirations from Kabir
Purushottam Agrawal in conversation with Kavita Sharma. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 13, 2021
Voices of Faith - Peaceful Heart: The Buddhist Practice of Patience
His Eminence Dzigar Kongtrul Rinpoche in conversation with Puneeta Roy. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 12, 2021
Voices of Faith - Across Boundaries: The Spirit of Christmas
Michael Williams, John Varghese, Margaret Alva and Paul Swarup in conversation with Deepak Mukarji. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 11, 2021
Voices of Faith - The Power of Prayer
Joshua Pollock in conversation Rishabh C. Kothar. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 10, 2021
Voices of Faith - Tales from the Quran and Hadith
Rana Safvi in conversation with Manimugdha S. Sharma. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 9, 2021
Voices of Faith - Guru Nanak: Ode to the Cosmos
Madan Gopal Singh and Navtej Sarna in conversation interspersed with music. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 8, 2021
Voices of Faith - Adi Shankaracharya: Hinduism’s Greatest Thinker
Pavan K. Varma in conversation with Malashri Lal. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 7, 2021
Voices of Faith - Ramcharitmanas: Then and Now (Episode 4)
Pavan K. Varma and Philip A. Lutgendorf in conversation with Harish Trivedi. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 6, 2021
Voices of Faith - Ramcharitmanas: Then and Now (Episode 3)
Pavan K. Varma and Pushpesh Pant in conversation. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 5, 2021
Voices of Faith - Ramcharitmanas: Then and Now (Episode 2)
Pavan K. Varma and Pragya Tiwari in conversation. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 4, 2021
Voices of Faith - Ramcharitmanas: Then and Now (Episode 1)
Pavan K. Varma and Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni in conversation. This episode is part of the Voices of Faith series for JLF Brave New World, presented by the Kamini and Vindi Banga Family Trust.
February 3, 2021
Mahabharata: Adapting Ancient Myth for Modern Theatre
Devdutt Pattanaik in conversation with Ravi Jain and Miriam Fernandes. Presented by Why Not Theatre, Shaw Festival and Canadian Opera Company. Join us for a conversation with famed mythologist, author, and illustrator Devdutt Pattanaik and theatre artists and writers Ravi Jain and Miriam Fernandes for a deep dive into the world of the Mahabharata through the lens of Jain and Fernandes’ stage adaptation of the ancient text. The conversation will speak to the relevance and importance of these myths in our modern world and how these epic stories can help us unpack the chaos around us. Why Not Theatre’s new theatrical adaptation of the Mahabharata takes a modern twist on the ancient Indian epic, with the session also providing a sneak peek into the process of creating the show as well as its Bhagavad Gita mini-opera. Mahabharata was commissioned by the Shaw Festival and the World Premiere will be presented by the Shaw in Niagara-on-the-Lake, Canada. The Bhagavad Gita was developed with the support of a Creative Residency at the Canadian Opera Company. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFToronto2020.
December 16, 2020
Burning the Books: A History of the Deliberate Destruction of Knowledge
Richard Ovenden and Vickery Bowles in conversation with Sharmila Sen. In Burning the Books, Richard Ovenden, the chief librarian of the Bodleian in Oxford, charts 3000 years of neglect and literary vandalism in libraries across the world and the consequences for human culture and the sum of human knowledge. Beginning with the library of King Ashurbanipal of the Assyrian empire, he journeys us through continents and centuries as he tells us of the history of books and ideas, and the libraries that house them. Vickery Bowles, City Librarian at the Toronto Public Library, speaks of what needs to be done in terms of public policy and funding to nurture and sustain the library system. In conversation with author and Editorial Director of Harvard University Press Sharmila Sen, they explore the inner life of the libraries. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFToronto2020.
December 12, 2020
Kahaani Online: The Boy & The Drum
A special story dramatisation with Rohini Vij, suitable for ages 10 to 12. Telling a story means more than just reading it out. It is a play of dramatic actions, voice modulations, and projection. In this episode of Kahaani Online, storyteller Rohini Vij not only tells you a heart-warming tale about a kind boy and his drum but also teaches you different tricks and tips so that YOU can tell YOUR story better! This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFToronto2020.
December 11, 2020
Crossover Narratives: Ann Cleeves, Anosh Irani, Emma Donoghue in conversation with Devyani Saltzman
The digital age is transforming how readers and audiences interpret and consume literary fiction. Ann Cleeves, Anosh Irani, Emma Donoghue, and Devyani Saltzman discuss the creative collaborations that enable the movement from script to screen and how text-driven narratives get transformed into dynamic scripts and immersive moving images. Bestselling author Ann Cleeves’ Vera Stanhope series has been dramatized onscreen as Vera and the Jimmy Perez novels as the series Shetland. Celebrated novelist and playwright Anosh Irani’s one-man show, Buffoon, won the 2020 Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play, and his latest book is titled Translated from the Gibberish: Seven Stories and One Half Truth. Award-winning author Emma Donoghue’s book Room has been adapted into a movie and a play. Writer and curator Devyani Saltzman latest book is Shooting Water: A Memoir of Second Chances, Family, and Filmmaking. She is currently the Director of Public Programming at the Art Gallery of Ontario. This episode is the audio version of a live online session at #JLFToronto2020.
December 11, 2020
From A to Z: The Meaning of Everything
Shashi Tharoor and Simon Winchester in conversation with Supriya Nair. The making of the Oxford English Dictionary (OED), under the editorship of James Murray and others, was a monumental 50-year task requiring thousands of volunteers. In his book, The Meaning of Everything: The Story of the Oxford English Dictionary, British-American author and journalist Simon Winchester, tells the story of the OED and its early editors. Winchester’s popular book, The Surgeon of Crowthorne, also tells the odd story of the murderer who contributed extensively from his prison cell. Renowned politician and author Shashi Tharoor’s latest book Tharoorosaurus covers the etymologies and eccentricities of the words in the English language. In conversation with Supriya Nair, they discuss the English vocabulary and this constantly evolving tome of lexicons. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFToronto2020.
December 10, 2020
The Tyranny of Merit: Michael Sandel in conversation with Anand Giridharadas
What accounts for success or failure? Writer and philosopher Michael Sandel’s latest book The Tyranny of Merit: What's Become of the Common Good? looks deeper into the binaries that have brewed generations of anger, frustration, and polarization in America. Sandel’s timely book examines the need to recognize success in a manner that reaffirms the ethics of solidarity, humility and dignity. In a conversation with Anand Giridharadas (author of Winners Takes All), he challenges the atmosphere of meritocratic hubris and inequality, and stresses the need for the common good as a key to face the extreme challenges of our times. This episode is the audio version of a live online session at #JLFNewYork2020.
December 9, 2020
Shadow State: Murder, Mayhem, and Russia's Remaking of the West
Luke Harding in conversation with Suhasini Haidar. In an era of kleptocratic governments and modernisation of communist era propaganda for the age of Facebook and Twitter, Luke Harding’s The Shadow State explores the alleged hidden war orchestrated by Russia to reshape the modern world. Detailing accounts of espionage, corruption, and KGB-style murders the book takes us through the murky waters of how deep the Russian roots run in this post Soviet world. In a conversation with Suhasini Haidar , Harding discusses this threat to America and the future of Western democracy. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFNewYork2020.
December 3, 2020
The Bhutto Dynasty – The Struggle for Power in Pakistan
Owen Bennett- Jones and Husain Haqqani in conversation TCA Raghavan. Journalist and author Owen Bennett-Jones’ new book The Bhutto Dynasty: The Struggle for Power in Pakistan is a vivid account of the deeply rooted influence and journey of one of Pakistan’s most powerful families. Drawing on research and unpublished documents spanning across more than two decades, he explores the turbulent years of political power and personal loss that have long overshadowed the Bhuttos. Jones is also the writer of Pakistan: Eye of the Storm and Target Britain. Husain Haqqani is Pakistan's former Ambassador to Sri Lanka and the United States, and was previously Benazir Bhutto's spokesperson. He is currently the senior fellow and director for South and Central Asia at Hudson Institute. In conversation with diplomat and author TCA Raghavan they discuss the political and social landscape that led to the rise of the Bhutto dynasty and the legacy they left behind. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFNewYork2020.
December 2, 2020
Each of Us Writers: Diaspora and Displacement
Diasporic writers in the US, Jenny Bhatt and Mimi Lok speak to Neelanjana Banerjee on how displacement, whether physical or cultural or both, has shaped their storytelling and their own identities as writers.  This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFHouston2020.
December 2, 2020
Bollywood - In Search of the Feminine Gaze: Richa Chadha in conversation with Supriya Dravid
Bollywood, and the Indian film industry in general, is dominated by men and tends to have an innately masculine bias. However, recent trends have shown films centered around women are slowly and surely making their mark. The spirited, multiple-awardee and popular actor Richa Chadha speaks of searching for the feminine sensibility and the important perspectives it represents. Chadha’s major films include ‘ Masaan,’ ‘Gangs of Wasseypur,’ and ‘Sarabjit;’ she has consistently spoken up against patriarchy, misogyny, and injustice. In conversation with Supriya Dravid, she speaks of her career, films, and beliefs. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFHouston2020.
December 1, 2020
How Innovation Works: Matt Ridley in conversation with Shruti Rajagopalan
‘How Innovation Works: And Why it Flourishes in Freedom ’ by Matt Ridley is a fascinating analysis of innovations across time and history. The Fifth Viscount Ridley is a hereditary peer who has been a member of the British Parliament and also the author of ‘The Evolution of Everything: How New Ideas Emerge and The Rational Optimist: How Prosperity Evolves’. In conversation with scholar, economist and columnist Shruti Rajagopalan, he discusses the importance of collective and collaborative innovation and its significance in the shaping of the 21st century.  This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFHouston2020.
December 1, 2020
Sweet Taste of Liberty: W. Caleb McDaniel in conversation with Morgan Jerkins
Pulitzer Prize-winning author and academic W. Caleb McDaniel’s latest book, ‘ Sweet Taste of Liberty: A True Story of Slavery and Restitution in America ’, is a stirring narrative of Henrietta Wood’s journey from being a twice-enslaved woman to her fierce battle for justice and reparation. In a conversation author and editor Morgan Jerkins, McDaniel examines the unforgettable lessons of Henrietta’s life and the value of the moral victory it represents. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFHouston2020.
November 30, 2020
The Life and Death of Democracy
Ajume H. Wingo, Christophe Jaffrelot, Gideon Levy, Makarand R. Paranjape and Mukulika Banerjee in conversation with Milan Vaishnav. While the notion of democracy had its birth in Ancient Greece and gained currency in the 18th century revolutions in France and America, it was in the 20th century that it became a global aspiration. Yet each nation that professes allegiance to democracy has a shifting definition of what the concept entails. A distinguished panel of speakers examine the constitutional safeguards as well as the civic attitudes that define the critical parameters of democractic process. Christophe Jaffrelot's recent publications include India’s First Dictatorship: The Emergency, 1975-1977, The Majoritarian State: How Hindu Nationalism is Changing India, and Dr. Ambedkar and Untouchability: Analysing and Fighting Caste. Ajume H. Wingo has published widely on liberal democratic philosophy and politics, particularly on institutional building in places where there are non-liberal democratic or illegitimate political institutions. He is the author of Veil Politics in Liberal Democratic States. Gideon Levy is a journalist and author of The Punishment of Gaza. Mukulika Banerjee was the inaugural director of the LSE South Asia Center and is associate professor in social anthropology at the London School of Economics. Her books include Why India Votes?, and the recently completed monograph, Cultivating Democracy: Politics and Citizenship in Agrarian India. Milan Vaishnav is a senior fellow and director of the South Asia Programme at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace and is the author of When Crime Pays: Money and Muscle in Indian Politics. A crucial conversation on the pulse and vital parameters of democracy around the world. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFColorado2020.
November 21, 2020
Waiting for the Vaccine: William A. Haseltine and Ambarish Satwik in conversation
As society waits for a vaccine for the COVID-19 virus, a timely conversation on social realities and medical roots to help the world exit the limbo it finds itself in. Scientist, author, and philanthropist William Haseltine is the founder of two academic research departments, the Division of Biochemical Pharmacology and the Division of Human Retrovirology at the Harvard School of Public Health. His work revolves around cancer, HIV/AIDS, genomics, and COVID-19. His latest autobiographical book is My Lifelong Fight Against Disease. Ambarish Satwik is a vascular and endovascular surgeon and writer. He is director of the Vascular Cath Lab at Sir Ganga Ram hospital and professor of vascular surgery, GRIPMER. He is author of the critically acclaimed novel Perineum: Nether Parts of the Empire. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFColorado2020.
November 21, 2020
The Battle Of Belonging: Shashi Tharoor in conversation with Pragya Tiwari
What does it mean to be Indian? Retired diplomat, politician, and celebrated author Shashi Tharoor's latest book, The Battle Of Belonging: On Nationalism, Patriotism, And What It Means To Be Indian, evaluates the historical and current political trends that are impacting the “idea of India.” Tharoor explores the changing interpretations of nationalism, patriotism, citizenship, and belonging, as well as the nature and future of nationhood. In an important conversation with journalist Pragya Tiwari, he discusses the concept of belonging in the context of nationhood. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFColorado2020.
November 20, 2020
A Profoundly Important Imperfection: Understanding Our Universe
Eric Cornell in conversation with Priyamvada Natarajan. The notion of imperfection usually carries negative implications and the idea of defect. But what is the significance and implication of the concept of imperfections in the field of physics? How did it impact our universe? Eric Cornell, Professor of Experimental Physics from the University of Colorado and Nobel Laureate for Physics in 2001, speaks with distinguished astrophysicist Priyamvada Natarajan and evaluates the one moment in time 14 billion years ago that made it possible for us to be here today. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFColorado2020.
November 20, 2020
Running Toward Mystery: The Adventure of an Unconventional Life
The Venerable Tenzin Priyadarshi in conversation with Mayank Shekhar. Running Towards Mystery by The Venerable Tenzin Priyadarshi is a vivid account of a life dedicated to the path of truth, devotion, and human connections across all barriers. The revered monk and teacher is also the President and CEO of The Dalai Lama Center for Ethics and Transformative Values at MIT. In conversation with journalist Mayank Shekhar, The Venerable Tenzin Priyadarshi shares the lessons learned from the mentors who shaped his life, stressing the importance of spiritual courage and truth at all times. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFColorado2020.
November 19, 2020
Oceans and the new Thalassology
David Abulafia in conversation with William Dalrymple. Oceans and seas across the world have played a pivotal role in the development of world history. They stand not just as a testament to political and economic change but also play an integral role in the spread of ideas and religion across the planet. They have recently found themselves under scrutiny as major drivers of change in human affairs and as the subject of a major wave of exciting and path-breaking historical scholarship. One of the leading figures of this new wave is emeritus Cambridge don David Abulafia. He is the Wolfson Prize-winning author of books such as The Boundless Sea: A Human History of the Oceans, and The Great Sea: A Human History of the Mediterranean, among others. In conversation with historian and Festival Co-Director William Dalrymple, Abulafia offers a fresh perspective on the extraordinary narrative of humanity and its relationship with the sea. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFColorado2020.
November 18, 2020
The Writing Room: The Gurus of Crime
Hussain Zaidi and Vikram Chandra in conversation with Jenny Bhatt. Introducing us to the inner world of noir, celebrated authors Vikram Chandra and Hussain Zaidi embark on a journey around the various aspects of the genre, the craft and techniques of building plot and character, and developing narrative styles. Chandra is the bestselling author of books such as Sacred Games, Red Earth and Pouring Rain, and Geek Sublime: The Beauty of Code, the Code of Beauty. Zaidi’s work includes The Endgame, The Class of 83, and Mumbai Avengers, to name a few. In conversation with writer and literary critic Jenny Bhatt, they present a masterclass on fiction and the dark side. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFColorado2020.
November 18, 2020
The Essential Yann Martel
Taking us on a journey through his layered and multifaceted literary process, Booker Prize-winning author Yann Martel talks about the liberating power of the written word. Martel is the bestselling author of books such as Beatrice and Virgil and Life of Pi. In a conversation with writer and author Diksha Basu, Martel explores the inspirations and essence of his work, and talks about his journey as a writer. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFColorado2020.
November 17, 2020
Closing Debate: The Age of Iconoclasm
Bee Rowlatt, Edward Chancellor, Nick Robins, Swapan Dasgupta, William Dalrymple and Zareer Masani discuss the age of iconoclasm with Mukulika Banerjee in the closing debate of #JLFLondonAtBL2020 Britain is full of statues of men once regarded as imperial heroes, many of whom are responsible for acts of loot and pillage that would now be classified as war crimes. This house believes the time has now come to remove them to a museum of colonialism. The JLF closing debate is a much-loved session that always sets pulses racing – watch out for the drummer… This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFLondonAtBL2020.
October 20, 2020
The Dharma of the Storyteller: Amish and Vikas Swarup in conversation with Shrabani Basu
What are the responsibilities of the writer, to themselves, to their readers, to the narratives they share? Bestselling writers Amish, Vikas Swarup and Shrabani Basu speak to one another on their commitment and belief in words and of the dharma of the storyteller. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFLondonAtBL2020.
September 14, 2020
Tharoorosaurus: Shashi Tharoor in conversation with James Crabtree
Writer, politician and public intellectual Shashi Tharoor is the award-winning author of over 20 books of fiction and non-fiction. His predilection for long words has also created a sub- genre of #Tharoorisms. On #JLFLondonAtBL2020, Tharoor speaks with author & journalist James Crabtree of his latest book ‘Tharoorosaurus’ and shares some whimsical anecdotes behind his vocabulary. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFLondonAtBL2020.
September 14, 2020
Our Bodies, Their Battlefield: What War Does to Women
Award-winning foreign correspondent Christina Lamb has worked extensively in war-torn areas and combat zones for over 30 years. She speaks to fellow journalist Taran N. Khan about her latest book ‘Our Bodies, Their Battlefield’, a groundbreaking examination of how women experience sexual abuse in modern conflicts. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFLondonAtBL2020.
September 13, 2020
The Lost Children: Deepa Anappara in conversation with Sanjoy K. Roy
Deepa Anappara’s debut novel ‘Djinn Patrol on the Purple Line’ journeys to the heart of childhood and painful loss of innocence. In conversation with Sanjoy K. Roy, managing director of Teamwork Arts and the founder-trustee of Salaam Balaak Trust, she discusses the impact of poverty and religious violence on the education of children.  This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFLondonAtBL2020.
September 13, 2020
The Mathematics of Stardom: Vidya Balan, Nayanika Mahtani, Vani Tripathi Tikoo
The award-winning Vidya Balan and author and screenplay writer Nayanika Mahtani discuss their latest film on the mathematical genius, the late Shakuntala Devi. In conversation Vani Tripathi Tikoo. This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFLondonAtBL2020.
September 13, 2020
The Essential Bernardine Evaristo: Girl, Woman, Other
This episode is the audio version of a live online session from #JLFLondonAtBL2020. Bernardine Evaristo’s 2019 Man Booker Prize-winning ‘Girl, Woman, Other’ follows the journey of an interconnected group of 12 black women in a quest for love, hope and home spanning across the legacy of contemporary and colonial Britain. In conversation with writer Anjum Hasan, she discusses the idea of womxnhood, culture, class, politics and race coursing through her iconic writings.
September 11, 2020
Where does Fiction come from: Elizabeth Gilbert, Leïla Slimani, Avni Doshi, John Lanchester, Howard Jacobson, Damian Barr
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. Elizabeth Gilbert, Leila Slimani, Avni Doshi, John Lanchester and Howard Jacobson in conversation with Damian Barr.
April 13, 2020
The Travel Session: Katie Hickman, Howard Jacobson, Elizabeth Gilbert, Peter Hessler, Suketu Mehta, William Dalrymple
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. Travel writing is one of the most ancient forms of literature but does it have any relevance in the age of the internet, globalisation and Google Maps? Travel writers Katie Hickman, Elizabeth Gilbert, Peter Hessler, Howard Jacobson and Suketu Mehta discuss the genre and read from their work with William Dalrymple.
April 10, 2020
Winners Take All: Anand Giridharadas in conversation with Åsne Seierstad
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. Writer and TIME editor-at-large Anand Giridharadas takes on the privileged classes in his scorching new book, the bestselling Winners Take All. It investigates the global elite’s efforts to ‘change the world’ except in ways that threaten the social order and their position atop it. This searing critique of modern plutocrats who seek to do more good but never less harm is described as a call to action for elites and everyday citizens alike. A session that offers transformative perspectives to complex societal problems. In conversation with Åsne Seierstad.
April 6, 2020
The Lives of Women: Bettany Hughes, Jung Chang, Benjamin Moser, Lindsey Hilsum, Hallie Rubenhold, Anita Anand
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. How does one capture the life of a woman in writing? How different is the feminine biography from that of a man? Biographers Bettany Hughes, Benjamin Moser, Jung Chang, Lindsey Hilsum and Hallie Rubenhold discuss the difficulty of pinning to paper the lives of women to paper in conversation with Anita Anand.
April 2, 2020
Belt, Road and Beyond: Bruno Maçães, Manoj Joshi, Shyam Saran in conversation with Sujeev Shakya
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. China’s mammoth Belt and Road initiative, straddling almost 70 countries, is an infrastructure project of staggering complexity. Alongside writers and diplomats Manoj Joshi, Shyam Saran, Sujeev Shakya and Bruno Maçães, a Portugese politician, former Minister of European Affairs and author of Belt and Road: A Chinese World Order, discusses its ambitions and implications as it tracks new trade and energy routes, with particular emphasis on its feasibility and implications in India and South Asia.
March 30, 2020
The Art of Innovation: Tilly Blyth and Payal Arora in conversation with Tarun Khanna
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. Throughout history, artists and scientists have been bound together by a complex thread born out of the desire to experiment, taking inspiration from each other’s disciplines but working from very different perspectives. This session, featuring Tilly Blyth, Head of Collections and Principal Curator at the Science Museum in London and the author of the edifying book The Art of Innovation: From Enlightenment to Dark Matter, and Payal Arora, Professor at Erasmus University Rotterdam and award-winning author of several books, including The Next Billion Users, discusses how the ingenuity of science and technology has fed the artistic imagination and affected innovation. The authors will be in conversation with author and academic Tarun Khanna, Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at the Harvard Business School.
March 26, 2020
Poetry: Searching the Sources with Arvind Krishna Mehrotra, Ashok Vajpeyi, Ranjit Hoskote, Ruth Padel
Three major Indian poets discuss the poetic imagination, searching its sources, inspirations and philosophy. Eminent English poet and translator Arvind Krishna Mehrotra speaks of his influences, among which he acknowledges William Carlos Williams and the Beat poets, as well as Kabir. Iconic Hindi poet and critic Ashok Vajpeyi has nurtured and founded many cultural institutions. Much awarded English poet, cultural theorist and curator Ranjit Hoskote is the author of the recent Jonahwhale as well as the acclaimed translation of the Kashmiri poet Lal Ded. In conversation with award-winning British poet and scholar Ruth Padel, they read from and discuss the contexts of their work as well as the wider canvas of poetics and aesthetic theories.
March 23, 2020
The Science of Harry Potter: Roger Highfield in conversation with Keshava Guha
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. The wizarding world of Harry Potter isn’t just about magic versus muggles. It has a dizzying array of scientific theory, metaphysics and connections between complex natural phenomena. Roger Highfield, author of The Science of Harry Potter, explores the fascinating links between magic and science, and shows how the fantastical conceits in the Potter books can actually be explained by scientific analysis. This session will be a delightful journey through stories of science that define a fictional series considered one of the 20th century’s most definitive cult classics. Highfield will be in conversation with writer and editor Keshava Guha, whose novel Accidental Magic is set in Boston of the early 2000s in a community of adult Harry Potter obsessives.
March 19, 2020
Ikigai: The Japanese Secret to a Long and Happy life
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. Francesc Miralles in conversation with Nilanjana S. Roy. The people of Japan believe that everyone has an ‘ikigai’ or ‘a reason to jump out of bed every morning’. The international bestseller by Hector Garcia and Francesc Miralles shares the Japanese secret to a long and happy life and has helped readers around the world to find purpose, nurture friendships and throw themselves into their passions. In conversation with writer and columnist Nilanjana S. Roy, co-author Francesc Miralles joins us at the Jaipur Literature Festival to share the inspirations, learnings and tools of’ ikigai’.
March 16, 2020
Om Swami: Random Acts of Kindness
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. Almost ten years ago, Om Swami renounced material wealth and left for a spiritual quest to Varanasi where he was initiated into the path of renunciation by a Naga saint in a little village. Soon after, Swami spent 13 months in intense meditation in the Himalaya. In conversation with  Puneeta Roy, Founder Trustee of the Yuva Ekta Foundation, he discusses his latest book The Book of Kindness, which suggests a definitive means to achieving true happiness: through the path of kindness. Om Swami is a monk and author of best-selling books including Kundalini: An Untold Story, If Truth Be Told: A Monk's Memoir and The Ancient Science of Mantras: Wisdom of the Sages. Media professional Puneeta Roy’s interest in Theatre led her to conduct workshops with young people using the Expressive Arts as tools for self-exploration and transformation. She is the Founder Trustee of the Yuva Ekta Foundation.
March 12, 2020
Shubha Mudgal: Looking for Miss Sargam
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. In a magical session that brings the music of words to life, the acclaimed vocalist Shubha Mudgal reads from and speaks her debut collection of short stories, Looking for Miss Sargam. Her book, set in the world of classical Indian music, is wry, tongue in cheek and full of deep insights and perspectives. In conversation with editor Sudha Sadanand, Mudgal tells us of the elusive Miss Sargam, of the traditions, realities and contradictions that a musician straddles and the realities that her narratives invoke.
March 9, 2020
My Name Is Why: Lemn Sissay
At the age of 17, after a childhood in a foster family followed by six years in care homes, Norman Greenwood was given his Birth Certificate. He learned that his real name was not Norman. It was Lemn Sissay. He was British and Ethiopian, and he learned that his mother had been pleading for his safe return to her since his birth. This is Lemn's story, a story of neglect and determination, misfortune and hope, cruelty and triumph. Sissay reflects on a childhood in care and in doing so explores the institutional care system, race, family and the meaning of home. Written with all the lyricism and power you would expect from one of the world's best-loved poets, this moving, frank and timely memoir is the result of a life spent asking questions and a celebration of the redemptive power of creativity. Introduced by Nandini Nair.
March 5, 2020
Big Tech, Surveillance Capitalism, Data Harvesting and the Cyber Future
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. For our 19th century forebears, science meant progress and hope. Today, we are not so sure. With Google and Facebook harvesting our data and listening to our every conversation in the service of surveillance capitalism, with development bringing environmental catastrophe in its wake and with robots replacing more and more human jobs, we now fear science the industries associated with it as much as we look to it as a solution to our problems. Here, scientist and mathematician Marcus de Sautoy, dystopian novelist John Lanchester and Jaspreet Bindra, author of the Tech Whisperer, discuss the Cyber Future, in conversation with Indo-American journalist and author Akash Kapur.
March 2, 2020
No Regrets: The Guilt-Free Woman’s Guide to a Good Life
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. Kaveree Bamzai’s edited anthology No Regrets: The Guilt-Free Woman’s Guide to a Good Life is a spunky handbook featuring insights by prominent women on how to rise above conventional norms and expectations and break free. Editor and journalist Bamzai discusses the inspirations behind the book and the deeper message it conveys. Novelist and celebrity columnist Shobhaa De takes a cue from her essay in the book to share her thoughts on society, politics, motherhood and feminine strengths, reminding women that managing time is equivalent to managing stress. Vani Tripathi Tikoo, actor, activist and a young mother, joins them to discuss the balancing act demanded of women and the secrets to negotiating a guilt-free life.
February 27, 2020
Doodles on Leadership: R. Gopalakrishnan in conversation with Mohit Satyanand
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. What is leadership? An invigorating session with R. Gopalakrishnan, Director of Tata Sons, that follows the path of the leader across the changes of perspective from the transactional to the corporate and the larger societal view. Moving away from the cut and thrust of operational action, Gopalakrishnan reflects on a leader’s journey emphasising the role that business leaders can play in matters concerning nation and society. He speaks with Mohit Satyanand, Chairperson of Teamwork Arts and an active angel investor, about the essential engagement with community and society for the business world.
February 24, 2020
The Democracy Index: Sachin Pilot, Rajdeep Sardesai, Namita Bhandare
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. What makes Indian democracy tick? A riveting session that explores the narratives and counter narratives of the electoral process and democratic systems. Sachin Pilot is a dynamic young politician currently serving as the Deputy Chief Minister of Rajasthan and as the President of the Rajasthan Pradesh Congress Committee. A member of the Indian National Congress, he was elected from the Tonk assembly seat with a record margin of 55,000 votes in 2018. Acclaimed journalist Rajdeep Sardesai is the author of several books including Newsman: Tracking India in the Modi Era  and 2014: The Election that Changed India. His recent 2019: How Modi Won India traces the story of BJP’s recent march to electoral victory. In conversation with journalist Namita Bhandare, they discuss various aspects of democracy, the political process, its triumphs and discontents.
February 20, 2020
Mediafile: Fact, Fiction and the Spaces in Between
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. The state of the media today warrants an unprecedented degree of skepticism and mistrust,.  Fiction often carries more veracity than so-called facts. Media consumers remain  unsure about the validity of sources and authenticity and provenance of information. In this timely session,  Editor-in-Chief of Outlook India Ruben Banerjee, Editorial Director, NDTV and author of Defining India Sonia Singh, and journalist and author of Shadow City: A Woman Walks in Kabul Taran Khan, in conversation with journalist Faye D’ Souza, examine and interrogate the increasing overlap of fact and fiction in the news and discuss  how to retrieve information from spaces in between.
February 17, 2020
Manish Malhotra: Unplugged
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. Couturier, costume stylist, entrepreneur and former model Manish Malhotra’s prolific career spanning over 29 years has seen him redefine and reinvent Indian fashion. His quest to combine the best of Indian artistic traditions with a modern expression has rendered an entirely new aesthetic, establishing him as one of the most beloved designers in Bollywood industry. A session to celebrate him as he stands at the turn of his glorious 30 years in costume designing and 15 years for his eponymous label, Manish Malhotra. In conversation with leading intellectual property attorney Safir Anand.
February 13, 2020
Faiz and Firaq: The Aesthetics and Politics of Poetry
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. This session looks deep into the hearts of two of the greatest Urdu poets of the last century,  Faiz Ahmed Faiz and Firaq Gorakhpuri urf Raghupati Sahay. Saif Mahmood, Chinmayi Tripathi, Joel Mukherjee, and Nishtha Gautam in a session of poetic critique, performance, and appreciation.
February 10, 2020
Patakha: Face to Face with Vishal Bhardwaj
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020.  A surprise crossover novella set in a small town in Rajasthan takes us across languages and genres to an essential human story about two sisters and their quarrels. Based on Charan Singh Pathik's short story ‘Do Behnein’, Vishal Bhardwaj’s adaptation Patakha is a comedy-drama that forays into both film and text. An engrossing conversation with Vani Tripathi Tikoo, where Bhardwaj and Pathik speak of their collaboration as well as the craft of narrative across genres.
February 6, 2020
Cricket - The Spirit of the Game: Shashi Tharoor, Gideon Haigh, Rajdeep Sardesai, Keshava Guha
A live session from #JaipurLitFest2020. Shashi Tharoor is a politician, public intellectual, award-winning author of 19 books of fiction and nonfiction, avid follower of cricket and author of Shadows Across the Playing Field: 60 Years Of India-Pakistan Cricket. Gideon Haigh is an eminent sports journalist and author of Crossing the Line: How Australian Cricket Lost Its Way and From Flock to Baggy Green. Acclaimed news anchor, writer and senior journalist Rajdeep Sardesai is the author of Democracy's XI: The Great Indian Cricket Story. Author Keshava Guha is Fiction Editor of Juggernaut Books and a sports enthusiast.
February 3, 2020
Exclusive: Author Hallie Rubenhold talks to Lakshya Datta about "The Five"
Hallie Rubenhold, author of "The Five: The Untold Lives of the Women Killed by Jack the Ripper", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 at the Diggi Palace on Jan 27. Hallie Rubenhold is a bestselling author, social historian, broadcaster and historical consultant for TV and film. Her most recent book, The Five, has been won the Baillie Gifford Prize 2019 and shortlisted for the Crime Writer’s Association Gold Dagger. It is the first biography of the five victims of Jack the Ripper and reclaims the narrative in favour of the women, rather than the murderer.
January 29, 2020
Exclusive: Anosh Irani talks to Lakshya Datta about writing novels, stories, and plays
Anosh Irani, author of "Translated from the Gibberish: Seven Stories and One Half Truth" and "The Parcel", in conversation with jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 on Jan 27. Anosh Irani’s novel, The Parcel, was a finalist for the 2016 Governor General’s Literary Award. It was longlisted for the 2017 DSC Prize for South Asian Literature and is currently on the 2018 Dublin Literary Award longlist. His play, Bombay Black, won five Dora Mavor Moore Awards and his nonfiction has been published in Granta and The New York Times.
January 28, 2020
Exclusive: Author Peter Meech talks to Lakshya Datta about "Billy (the Kid)"
Peter Meech, author of "Billy (the Kid)", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 at Diggi Palace on Jan 27. Peter Meech is an author, screenwriter, director and producer.  His memoir, Mysteries of the Life Force: My Apprenticeship with a Chi Kung Master, has been translated into several languages. He has an MA in Communications from Stanford, where he won a Stanford Nicholl writing award. His debut novel is Billy (the Kid).
January 27, 2020
Exclusive: Historian Stephen Dale talks to Lakshya Datta about the Mughal Emperor Babur
Stephen Frederic Dale, author of "Babur: Timurid Prince and Mughal Emperor", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 in Diggi Palace on Jan 27. Stephen is an Emeritus Professor of South Asian and Islamic History and a Distinguished University Scholar at The Ohio State University. He first visited India in 1963 as a Fulbright Lecturer in English at the Banaras Hindu University and returned in 1967 to work in the Madras/Chennai archives to carry out research for his dissertation on the Muslims of Kerala. His published works include Islamic Society on the South Asian Frontier: the Mappilas of Malabar 1498-1922, Indian Merchants and Eurasian Trade 1600-1750, The Garden of the Eight Paradises: Babur and the Culture of Empire in Central Asia, Afghanistan and India, The Muslim Empire of the Ottomans, Safavids and Mughals, The Orange Trees of Marrakesh: Ibn Khaldun and the Science of Man and Babur: Timurid Prince and Mughal Emperor.
January 27, 2020
Exclusive: Rheea Mukherjee talks to Lakshya Datta about "The Body Myth"
Rheea Mukherjee, author of "The Body Myth", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 on Jan 27. Rheea Mukherjee is the author of The Body Myth and was shortlisted for the TATA Literature Live First Book Award 2019. Her work has been featured in the Los Angeles Times, Buzzfeed,, Electric Literature, Out of Print Magazine and Southern Humanities Review, among others. She co-founded Bangalore Writers Workshop in 2012 and currently co-runs Write Leela Write, a Design and Content Laboratory in Bangalore. You can get her book on Amazon.
January 27, 2020
AI and Creativity: Marcus du Sautoy in conversation with Sanjoy K. Roy
As Artificial Intelligence takes over human narratives, Marcus du Sautoy questions the shape of our future. In his book The Creativity Code: How AI is Learning to Write, Paint and Think, he expounds on how algorithms work, the nature of creativity and how engineers are tracking our emotional responses to art. In a riveting session, du Sautoy, the Simonyi Professor for Public Understanding of Science at Oxford University, discusses intuition, the creative process and its correlation with mathematics. In conversation with Jaipur Literature Festival producer Sanjoy K. Roy.
January 27, 2020
Poor Economics: Abhijit V. Banerjee in conversation with Sreenivasan Jain
Abhijit V. Banerjee, Esther Duflo and Michael Kremer were awarded the Nobel Prize for Economic Sciences 2019 for ‘their experimental approach to alleviating global poverty’ by breaking down a complex problem into ‘smaller, more manageable questions’. Abhijit Banerjee returns to the Jaipur Literature Festival to speak of his RCT research-based approach to development economics. In conversation with journalist Sreenivasan Jain, he explains the need to understand and measure what happens in the real world to alleviate poverty and the necessity of making the poor and their decision-making central to the process. An inspirational session of insights and learnings vital to understanding our world.
January 27, 2020
Bolna Hi Hai: Ravish Kumar in conversation with Nilanjana S. Roy
Ravish Kumar, a much- awarded and fearless journalist, is also the author of tender nano storie  and the Ramon Magsaysay awardee in 2019. In a thoughtful and probing session with writer and columnist Nilanjana S. Roy, he speaks of his books and beliefs, his poems and love stories, the compulsions of prime-time news and the duties of responsible journalism.
January 26, 2020
Exclusive: Author Deepa Agarwal in conversation with Lakshya Datta
Deepa Agarwal, author of "Journey to the Forbidden City" and "The Begum", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 on Jan 26. Deepa Agarwal is an author, poet and translator who writes for both children and adults. She has over 50 published books to her credit and is the recipient of the NCERT National Award for Children’s Literature, among other honours. Her recent books are The Begum, Blessed, Friendship Stories and Journey to the Forbidden City.
January 26, 2020
Exclusive: Ramie Targoff talks to Lakshya Datta about Renaissance Woman Vittoria Colonna
Ramie Targoff, author of "Renaissance Woman: The Life of Vittoria Colonna", in conversation with Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 on Jan 26. Ramie Targoff’s scholarly area of interest is the English Renaissance with a strong secondary interest in the Italian Renaissance. An award-winning writer, she is the author of three books on Renaissance English literature titled Common Prayer: The Language of Public Devotion, John Donne, Body and Soul and Posthumous Love: Eros and the Afterlife in Renaissance England. Most recently, she has written a biography of the 16th century Italian poet Vittoria Colonna titled Renaissance Woman: The Life of Vittoria Colonna and has completed the first English translation of Colonna’s 1538 book of sonnets, entitled Sonnets of Widowhood. Her forthcoming book, Shakespeare’s Sisters, is a group biography of four women writers in Renaissance England: Mary Sidney Herbert, Aemilia Lanyer, Elizabeth Cary and Anne Clifford.
January 26, 2020
Uninhabitable Earth
David Wallace-Wells, Marcus Moench and Navroz K. Dubash in conversation with Prem Jha.  Climate change is no longer impending. We are currently in the throes of a grave environmental, and existential, crisis and frighteningly aware of it. David Wallace-Wells’ latest book, expanded from his viral article in The New York Times, alerts us in unsparing detail to the extent of damage and despair awaiting us, and presses us to imagine more effective ways to negotiate the future. An urgent session that brings together a panel of environmental researchers and activists, and analyses measures to mitigate the greatest challenge humanity faces today.
January 26, 2020
Eyes Right: Awakening BharatMata
Swapan Dasgupta’s recent book Awakening Bharat Mata: The Political Beliefs of the Indian Right draws on a variety of sources to trace the evolution of right-wing thought in India. Citing a spectrum of thinkers and writers, it identifies the significant threads that constitute an ideology that has increasingly gained traction and dominated vote banks across the nation. A spirited conversation that discusses and debates the history and influences that forged the vortex of Hindu nationalism with Dasgupta alongside writers and journalists Makarand R. Paranjape, Saba Naqvi in conversation with Pragya Tiwari.
January 26, 2020
Exclusive: Jonathan Phillips talks to Lakshya Datta about Sultan Saladin
Jonathan Phillips, author of "The Life and Legend of the Sultan Saladin", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 on Jan 25. Jonathan Phillips is Professor of Crusading History at Royal Holloway, University of London. He is the author of numerous books including The Fourth Crusade and the Sack of Constantinople, Holy Warriors: A Modern History of the Crusades and his latest, The Life and Legend of the Sultan Saladin (buy it on Amazon). His works are widely translated. Phillips has also presented many radio and television programmes including The Cross and the Crescent and The Road From Christ to Constantine. 
January 26, 2020
Of the people, By the people: The Indian Constitution
How did the Constitution of India, the world’s longest one till date and 70 years old in 2020, come into being? In his forthcoming book, Madhav Khosla, Ambedkar Visiting Associate Professor at Columbia Law School, explores the means India's founders used to foster a democratic ethos. The ideas behind this edifying and meticulous document, which lays the foundations of India as a democratic republic, are a natural reference point for nations, and remind us of the incredible promise that self-rule continues to embody and its challenges therein. In this session, Khosla along with India’s former Chief Election Commissioner Navin Chawla, astute politician and a former state governor Margaret Alva and advocate Saif Mahmood, aim to deconstruct this onerous text, which continues to define the workings of modern India.
January 25, 2020
Exclusive: Author Rakesh Kaul in conversation with Lakshya Datta
Rakesh K. Kaul, author of "Dawn: The Warrior Princess of Kashmir", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 on Jan 25.  Rakesh is an IIT gold medallist, migrated to the US in 1972. He was a founding contributor to the first Chair of India Studies at University of California, Berkeley, the Center for the Advanced Study of India at University of Pennsylvania and the Mattoo Center for India Studies at the State University of New York. He is the author of the bestseller The Last Queen of Kashmir. Kaul has had a distinguished business career as CEO and held leadership positions of publicly traded companies in the US. He serves as the Vice Chair of the Indo-American Arts Council.
January 25, 2020
Exclusive: Geeta Gopalakrishnan (author of "My Grandmother's Tweets") in conversation with Lakshya Datta
Geeta Gopalakrishnan is the Founder and Managing Trustee of Ma Foundation. She has channeled years of advertising experience into fundraising for Sadhana School for Special Children and underprivileged children with cancer. All proceeds of her book My Grandmother’s Tweets go towards MA Foundation, which supports desperate mothers with children afflicted by cancer at Tata Medical Centre in Kolkata. In this book, author Geeta Gopalakrishnan presents 109 sayings by the seventh-century saint Avvaiyar that have inspired women for centuries, and continue to inspire the new generation. Using multiple examples from Indian and Western mythology, as well as real life, she illustrates the veracity of these age-old aphorisms. Reminiscent of The Alchemist in the simplicity of the narration, this book will inspire readers while providing helpful life lessons that cut through eras and religions.
January 25, 2020
Exclusive: Author Harish Bhat (Brand Custodian of Tata Sons) in conversation with Lakshya Datta
Harish Bhat, author of "An Extreme Love of Coffee", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 on Jan 25.  Harish Bhat is an author, columnist and marketer. He works with the Tata Group. His first book, the bestselling Tata Log continues to enthrall readers with stories from the modern history of Tata. His second book, The Curious Marketer, addresses the intriguing topic of curiosity. His latest work is his debut novel, An Extreme Love of Coffee. Bhat is the Brand Custodian at Tata Sons and serves as a director of several Tata companies.
January 25, 2020
Transformations: The Business of Business
A session that searches how to reconcile economic growth with systemic problems of social inequality and environmental unsustainability. Even as millions of young Indians enter the workforce and entrepreneurs strike out in new parts, policymakers face the challenges and responsibilities to create a web of trust that can sustain institutions and processes. A distinguished panel from government, industry and academics seeks answers and solutions on how to build an environment that nurtures a transformative vision of growth. Tarun Khanna is the Jorge Paulo Lemann Professor at the Harvard Business School and author of Trust: Creating the Foundation for Entrepreneurship in Developing Countries. Arun Maira has penned several books on leadership, organisational transformation and the role of capitalism in today’s socioeconomic terrain. Economist David McWilliams is the author of Renaissance Nation. Hindol Sengupta has written nine books, including The Man Who Saved India and Recasting India.
January 25, 2020
Women And Work
A woman’s work is never done. Indian women’s participation in the workforce is decreasing steadily, even as figures rise in the rest of the world. A deep discussion on women and work, with anecdotal insights and perspectives, to analyse current realities and ponder how to understand, respect and revive the role of women in the economic sphere. A panel of women from diverse backgrounds, including an iconic chef, an ex-marine, a social entrepreneur and a rural activist speak to journalist Namita Bhandare of the causes and consequences of the roadblocks that come in the way of women’s working lives.
January 24, 2020
Shashi On Shashi: Shashi Tharoor in conversation with Michael Dwyer
Writer, politician and public intellectual Shashi Tharoor is the award-winning author of 19 books of fiction and non-fiction. A third-term Member of Parliament, representing Thiruvananthapuram, Dr. Tharoor has served as Minister of State in the Government of India and also as Under-Secretary General of the United Nations. His unerring sense of humour lightens up the serious oeuvre of his work, which includes a powerful indictment of colonialism. His predilection for long words and telling phrases has created a sub-genre of #Tharoorisms, and his recent attempts at stand up comedy have won him a constituency of admirers. In conversation with Michael Dwyer, he speaks of the personal and the political, and the beliefs and ideas that have anchored him in his public life and literary career.
January 24, 2020
Close to the Bone: Lisa Ray in conversation with Sanjoy K. Roy
Lisa Ray, author of "Close to the Bone", in conversation with festival director Sanjoy K. Roy. Lisa Ray is one of India’s first supermodels, an actor, a mother of twins through surrogacy and a cancer-survivor. Her memoir is an unflinching and a deeply moving account of her nomadic existence, her mentors, friends, lovers, her healing and spiritual quest. In conversation with Jaipur Literature Festival producer Sanjoy K. Roy, she discusses her riveting life story.
January 24, 2020
Exclusive: Franz Kafka's "Metamorphosis" in Virtual Reality @ Jaipur BookMark 2020
In this podcast-exclusive, Host Lakshya Datta chats with Ján Tompkins about VRwandlung - an immersive experience, a virtual reality installation adapting Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis by the Goethe Institut. Recorded live at the #ZEEJaipurLitFest2020.
January 24, 2020
Sonali’s Book Club: Sonali Bendre Behl in conversation with Meru Gokhale
Actor and model Sonali Bendre Behl decided to rekindle her passion for reading by connecting with other like-minded readers. She established ‘Sonali’s Book Club’, an inspirational space to interact with book lovers from around the globe. Other bibliophiles and friends from the film industry joined in as she battled cancer in New York. An exciting and eclectic set of books come up for live-streamed readings and discussion, providing the community of readers and writers an online platform to interact. Bendre is also the author of The Modern Gurukul: My Experiments with Parenting. In conversation with Meru Gokhale, she speaks of her inspirational endeavour and what books and reading mean to her.
January 23, 2020
Exclusive: Ashwin Sanghi (author of "The Vault of Vishnu") in conversation with Lakshya Datta
Ashwin Sanghi, author of The Vault of Vishu (part of the Bharat Series) in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival 2020 at the Diggi Palace on January 23.  Ashwin Sanghi ranks among India’s highest selling English fiction authors. He has written the bestsellers, The Rozabal Line, Chanakya’s Chant, The Krishna Key, The Sialkot Saga and Keepers of the Kalachakra as well as two New York Times bestselling crime thrillers with James Patterson, Private India and Private Delhi. He has also co-authored several non-fiction titles in the 13 Steps series on Luck, Wealth, Marks, Health and Parenting.
January 23, 2020
Thinking Aloud: Prasoon Joshi in conversation with Vani Tripathi Tikoo
Polyglot Prasoon Joshi is a poet, lyricist, author, advertising icon, screenwriter and CBFC chairman. In conversation with actor and theatre person Vani Tripathi Tikoo, he speaks of his ideas on culture, cinema and social narratives as well as his abiding love for classical music.
January 23, 2020
Exclusive: Nandita Das (author of "Manto and I") in conversation with Lakshya Datta
Filmmaker and author Nandita Das in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta, recorded live at the ZEE Jaipur LIterature Festival 2020 in Diggi Palace on January 23.  Nandita has acted in more than 40 feature films in ten different languages. Her directorial debut in 2008 was Firaaq, which won many accolades and appreciation in India and abroad. Manto, Nandita’s second directorial film premiered in 2018 at the Cannes Film Festival and travelled to many other festivals around the world. Her new book is called "Manto and I" and it is now available on Amazon and all bookstores.
January 23, 2020
From Eat, Pray, Love to City of Girls: Elizabeth Gilbert in conversation with Alexandra Pringle
Elizabeth Gilbert is the number one New York Times bestselling author of Eat, Pray, Love as well as the short story collection Pilgrims, a finalist for the PEN/Hemingway Award and winner of the 1999 John C. Zacharis First Book Award from Ploughshares. A Pushcart Prize-winner and National Magazine Award-nominated journalist, she works as writer-at-large for GQ. Her journalism has been published in Harper's Bazaar, Spin and The New York Times Magazine, and her stories have appeared in Esquire, Story and the Paris Review. Here she talks about her life in writing with her long-time friend and editor, Alexandra Pringle.
January 23, 2020
Celebrating Each Other's Stories: A conversation with Festival Co-Director William Dalrymple
William Dalrymple, festival co-director of #JaipurLitFest2020 and author of "The Anarchy", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive, William talks to Lakshya about the year that has been, and why this year's programme is the festival's finest. 
January 14, 2020
Welcome to #JaipurLitFest2020: A conversation with Festival Producer Sanjoy Roy
Sanjoy K. Roy, Producer of Jaipur Literature Festival and Managing Director of Teamwork Arts, in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive chat, Sanjoy talks to Lakshya about what you can expect from the festival in its 13th edition and the many ways you can experience it when it returns to the Diggi Palace in Jaipur from January 23 to 27, 2020. Learn more about this year's programme and the speakers at
January 8, 2020
Episode #100: A conversation with 'Jaipur Journals' author Namita Gokhale
In the 100th episode (and 2019 season finale) of Jaipur Bytes, host Lakshya Datta speaks with Jaipur Literature Festival co-director Namita Gokhale about her upcoming novel 'Jaipur Journals'. Partly a love letter to the greatest literary show on earth, partly a satire about the glittery set that throngs this literary venue year on year, and partly an ode to the millions of aspiring writers who wander the earth with unsubmitted manuscripts in their bags, 'Jaipur Journals' is a light-footed romp that showcases in full form Gokhale's unsparing eye for the pretensions and the pathos of that loneliest tribe of them all: the writers. 'Jaipur Journals' is available for pre-order on Amazon.
December 27, 2019
Writing Immigrants, Writing the City: Roanna Gonsalves, Shameem Black, Mridula Nath Chakraborty
A sense of belonging is an essential component to the notion of identity. In conversation with Mridula Nath Chakraborty, Roanna Gonsalves and Shameem Black read from their work and discuss the multiplicities of identity in their writings. This episode is a live session from JLF Adelaide 2019.
December 17, 2019
Qatar, India and the Gulf: An Abridged History with Dr. James Onley
Dr. James Onley, Director of Historical Research and Partnerships at the Qatar National Library, in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive, James and Lakshya talk about the 4000+ years long history between India and the Gulf, how the dynamics between the two regions changed after 1947, and the work he and his team at QNL having been doing to archive this rich history. Dr. Onley holds a D.Phil. in History from Oxford and specializes in the Gulf Arab states and their historical connections with India.  He is the author of The Arabian Frontier of the British Raj, the founding editor of the Journal of Arabian Studies, and the curator of the exhibition Qatar, India and the Gulf currently on in the QNL plaza. James will be speaking at JLF Doha, which is happening at  Qatar National Library this week from Dec 12 to Dec 14.
December 11, 2019
Present Tense - Way of the World: Peter Varghese, Shashi Tharoor, Tony Birch, James Crabtree
In conversation with James Crabtree, writers Peter Verghese, Shashi Tharoor & Tony Birch examine social realities nd the conflicts of today. This episode is a live session from JLF Adelaide 2019.
December 4, 2019
Writing about Indonesian Women, Adventures, and Choices: A conversation with Intan Paramaditha
Author Intan Paramaditha in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive chat, Intan talks to Lakshya about her academic career, Indonesian films, why she chooses to write in her native language, and how she wrote a choose your own adventure novel.  Intan is an Indonesian fiction writer and currently a lecturer in Media and Film Studies at Macquarie University, Sydney. Her first book was the short story collection titled "Apple and Knife". Her novel The Wandering won a PEN Translates Award and will be published in 2020 in English. Intan was a speaker at JLF Adelaide 2019 which happened earlier this month.
November 14, 2019
Dictators and the Cult of Personality: A conversation with Frank Dikötter
Frank Dikötter, author of "How to Be a Dictator: The Cult of Personality in the Twentieth Century", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive chat, Frank talks to Lakshya about his career, The People’s Republic of China, The people of Hong Kong, and dictators.  Frank has been Chair Professor of Humanities at the University of Hong Kong since 2006. He is the author of the People's Trilogy, a series of books that document the impact of communism on the lives of ordinary people in China on the basis of new archival material. The first volume, entitled Mao's Great Famine: The History of China's Most Devastating Catastrophe, won the 2011 Samuel Johnson Prize for Non-Fiction. The second instalment, The Tragedy of Liberation: A History of the Chinese Revolution, 1945-1957, was short-listed for the Orwell Prize in 2014. The Cultural Revolution: A People’s History, 1962-1976 concludes the trilogy. In "How to Be a Dictator", Frank examines the cults and propaganda surrounding twentieth-century dictators, from Hitler and Stalin to Mao Zedong and Kim Il Sung - and how their dictatorships, in turn, have influenced leaders in the twenty-first century, including Vladimir Putin, Xi Jinping, and Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Frank spoke at JLF Adelaide this past week, and will be speaking at the Jaipur Literature Festival next year, which will be happening in Jaipur from January 23 to 27, 2020.
November 7, 2019
The Story of Our Ancestors and Where We Came From: A conversation with Tony Joseph
Tony Joseph, author of "Early Indians: The Story of Our Ancestors and Where We Came From", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive, Tony tells Lakshya about the research that went into writing the book, how the modern indian population came to be composed as it is, and what we can learn about ourselves and our current times from our ancestors. Tony has been a journalist, columnist and contributor to leading newspapers and magazines for over three decades. He was the Editor of BusinessWorld, Associate Editor of Business Standard and Features Editor of The Economic Times. Tony will be speaking at JLF Adelaide, which is happened this weekend from Nov 1-3, 2019.
November 1, 2019
Writers are Robots are Gods: A conversation with Tom Cho
Writer and editor Tom Cho in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive chat,  Tom talks to Lakshya about his first book, his next book, and where and how he finds the words to fill them. Tom’s debut collection of fiction, titled "Look Who’s Morphing", was shortlisted for multiple awards, including the Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Book. He also has over 70 fiction publications in journals. His current project is a novel on the meaning of life. Originally from Australia, Tom now lives in Canada, and was a speaker at JLF Toronto last month. You can follow Tom's work at
October 24, 2019
Crafting the Future of Marijuana: A conversation with Ryan Stoa
Ryan Stoa, author of "Craft Weed: Family Farming and the Future of the Marijuana Industry”, in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive, Ryan tells Lakshya about what drew him to studying and teaching law, how he found himself writing a book about the cannabis and marijuana industry, how he proposes for quality regulation in the form of Marijuana Appellation System (akin to the wine industry), and what the international possibilities are once regulation evolves. Ryan Stoa is an Associate Professor of Law at Concordia University School of Law in Idaho, where he teaches Property Law, Administrative Law, Environmental Law, and Natural Resources Law. He has also authored numerous scholarly articles that address energy regulation, agriculture policy, natural resources management, and international development. Professor Stoa’s writing has appeared in The Wall Street Journal, The New Republic, Salon, Daily Beast, and The Conversation, and his research has been featured in Rolling Stone, Wired, and Gizmodo, among others.
October 11, 2019
Finding Elio, Oliver, and Samuel Again: A conversation with 'Call Me by Your Name' Author André Aciman
André Aciman, author of "Call Me by Your Name" and its upcoming sequel "Find Me", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive, André and Lakshya talk about why he drawn to writing these characters again, how the success of the film affected his writing process on "Find Me", why he chose to tell this story from three perspectives, while also sharing some great advice on how to write believable characters and emotions.  André is a memoirist, essayist and New York Times bestselling novelist, and currently Distinguished Professor of Comparative Literature at the Graduate Center, CUNY. His first book was a memoir, called 'Out of Egypt', which details his childhood growing up Jewish in post-colonial Egypt. In the upcoming follow-up to "Call Me by Your Name", titled 'Find Me', Aciman shows us Elio’s father, Samuel, on a trip from Florence to Rome to visit Elio, who has become a gifted classical pianist. A chance encounter on the train with a beautiful young woman upends Sami’s plans and changes his life forever. Elio soon moves to Paris, where he, too, has a consequential affair, while Oliver, now a New England college professor with a family, suddenly finds himself contemplating a return trip across the Atlantic. Aciman is a master of sensibility, of the intimate details and the emotional nuances that are the substance of passion. "Find Me" brings us back inside the magic circle of one of our greatest contemporary romances to ask if, in fact, true love ever dies.  André will be speaking at JLF Toronto on September 28. "Find Me" hits bookstores on October 29 worldwide. 
September 28, 2019
Giving a Voice to the Buddha's Wife: A conversation with Vanessa R. Sasson
Vanessa R. Sasson, author of “Yasodhara: A Novel About the Buddha’s Wife”, in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive, Vanessa and Lakshya talk about why she wanted to tell this story, what it was like to write in Yasodhara’s voice, and how the process of writing this book changed how she felt about the Buddha. Vanessa is a professor of Religious Studies in the Liberal and Creative Arts and Humanities Department at Marianopolis College, Quebec. She is also a Research Fellow for the International Institute for Studies in Race, Reconciliation and Social Justice at the University of the Free State in South Africa, as well as Adjunct Professor at the Faculty of Religious Studies of McGill University, Montreal. As a scholar, her focus is on Buddhist studies, with particular emphasis on hagiography, gender and childhoods. She will be speaking at JLF Toronto on September 28.
September 28, 2019
The Subconscious Process of Writing: A conversation with Farzana Doctor
Author, activist, psychotherapist Farzana Doctor in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive, Farzana and Lakshya talk about her life and career - both as a novelist and as a psychotherapist - as well as the work she does with WeSpeakOut, a global group that is working to ban female genital cutting in her Dawoodi Bohra community. Farzana Doctor is the award-winning author of Stealing Nasreen, Six Metres of Pavement and All Inclusive. Doctor was recently named one of CBC Books’ 100 Canadian Writers You Need to Know Now. SEVEN, her fourth novel, will hit bookshelves in August 2020. She will be speaking at JLF Toronto on September 28.
September 27, 2019
Debating Democracy & Decision-Making: A conversation with David Moscrop
David Moscrop, author of "Too Dumb for Democracy? Why We Make Bad Political Decisions and How We Can Make Better Ones”, in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. David and Lakshya talk about politics, the currently ongoing Canadian elections, his new book, and what sort of topics he and his guests will be debating on his new podcast "Open to Debate with David Moscrop". David is a political theorist and a post doctoral fellow in the Department of Communication at the University of Ottawa. He studies, writes, and talks about democratic deliberation, political decision making, and digital media. David will be speaking at JLF Toronto on September 28.
September 27, 2019
Curing Hatred With Forgiveness & Education: A conversation with Dr. Izzeldin Abuelaish
Dr. Izzeldin Abuelaish, 2010 Nobel Peace Prize nominee and internationally recognized human rights and inspirational peace activist, in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. Dr. Abuelaish talks to Lakshya about what hatred does to a person and to a community, where he gets his strength to deliver his message of hope and forgiveness, why political leaders need to humanize and not politicize, how health and peace are inter-connected, and why he started the Daughters For Life Foundation. Dr. Abuelaish is currently an Associate Professor of Medicine in the Office of Global Public Health Education & Training at the University of Toronto. In January 2009, an Israeli tank shelled the home of Dr. Izzeldin Abuelaish in the Gaza Strip and killed three of his daughters: Bessan, 21; Mayar, 15; and Aya, 13. This tragedy occured only minutes before Dr. Abuelaish was scheduled to speak live on Israeli television. His recorded cries for help captured hearts and headlines in Israel and around the world, and his response to the loss of his daughters was followed by international audiences. Dr. Abuelaish never sought to seek revenge or sink into despair and hatred. Instead, he called for those in the Middle East to stop the bloodshed and facilitate discourse for mutual understanding. His strongest hope is that his daughters will be the last sacrifice on the road to peace between Palestinians and Israelis. He started and chairs the Daughters For Life Foundation in their memory, based on the belief that lasting peace in the Middle East depends on the empowerment of girls and young women through education, which will allow them to become agents of change for the betterment of life throughout the Middle East. His 2010 book "I Shall Not Hate: A Gaza Doctor's Journey on the Road to Peace and Human Dignity” has been translated in to 23 languages. Dr. Abuelaish will be speaking at JLF Toronto on September 28. To learn more about his work, go to
September 26, 2019
Living With Climate Change: A conversation with Marcus Moench
Marcus Moench, founder of The Institute for Social and Environmental Transition-International, in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive conversation, Marcus tells Lakshya about the connection between literature and science that he found in India, why he was drawn to work on social and environmental issues, how JLF gives scientists and activists a platform to talk about universal issues like water scarcity and climate change, and what role he thinks the media plays in communicating the narrative relating to climate change (such as the Amazon Rainforest fires recently). Marcus is the founder of ISET-International and has worked extensively on water, climate and urbanisation particularly in Asia. With over three decades experience, his approach combines science with a compassionately humourous eye on the drivers of social change and human behavior. Using art as well as more traditional forms of publication, his work explores the mosaic of solutions to emerging environmental and other challenges. He is particularly well known for his pioneering work on India’s groundwater and interactions between complex social and environmental systems.
September 21, 2019
On Art, Stories, and the Native-American Experience: A conversation with Kent Nerburn
Kent Nerburn, author of “Neither Wolf Nor Dog”, in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive conversation, Kent and Lakshya talk about how “Neither Wolf Nor Dog” came to be, how it became a cult classic that is used as a bridge to connect non-natives to the Native-American experience, how Robert Plant (lead singer of Led Zeppelin) found the book and ended up writing the foreword of the 25th anniversary edition of the book, how the book’s film adaptation came together, and what advice he has for young artists and storytellers. Kent Nerburn is an American author and artist, having published over 20 works of fiction and nonfiction. His latest book is called "Dancing With The Gods". You can learn more about Kent at He will be speaking at JLF Colorado on September 21.
September 21, 2019
Telling Timely Tales of War and Women: A conversation with Maaza Mengiste
Author Maaza Mengiste in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive conversation, Maaza and Lakshya talk about how she was drawn to storytelling as a kid, what it was like to take the unknown path of becoming a writer, the research and multiple drafts that led to “The Shadow King”, and why she loves telling stories. Maaza is an Ethiopian-American writer and author of the 2010 novel “Beneath The Lion’s Gaze". Her new book, "The Shadow King", comes out on September 24. Maaza teaches in the MFA Program in Creative Writing at Queens College, City University of New York, and is a lecturer in Creative Writing at the Lewis Center for the Arts at Princeton University. She will be speaking at JLF Colorado on Sept 21.
September 20, 2019
The Legacy of Kabir: A conversation with Linda Hess
Scholar-translator Linda Hess in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive conversation, Linda talks to Lakshya about what drew her to come to India in her 20s, how she fell in love with Kabir and his words, and why 500 year old songs created by an illiterate poet are still relevant today. Linda’s publications include "The Bijak of Kabir", "Singing Emptiness: Kumar Gandharva Performs the Poetry of Kabir", and "Bodies of Song: Kabir Oral Traditions and Performative Worlds in North India". She has also written about Tulsidas and the Ramlila of Ramnagar. She taught in the Department of Religious Studies at Stanford University for 21 years, retiring in 2017. Linda will be speaking at JLF Colorado on Sept 21.
September 20, 2019
From Legal to Normal: A conversation with Chiké Frankie Edozien
Chiké Frankie Edozien, author of "Lives of Great Men: Living and Loving as an African Gay Man", in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive conversation, Frankie talks to Lakshya about his time at the Jaipur Literature Festival 2019, what it was like to be in India soon after Section 377 was abolished, what the ruling in India meant for the LGBTQ community in African countries where they’re still fighting for legality and equality, and why the journey from legal to normal is going to take time. Frankie is a Clinical Associate Professor at the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute at New York University, and starting in January 2020, he will be the new site director at NYU’s campus in Accra, Ghana. Frankie’s memoir, "Lives of Great Men: Living and Loving as an African Gay Man", won the Lambda Literary 2018 Nonfiction Award for Best Gay Memoir/Biography. He will be speaking at JLF Colorado on Sept 21.
September 19, 2019
The (Good) Talks We Should Be Having: A conversation with Mira Jacob
Mira Jacob, author of "Good Talk: A Memoir in Conversations", in conversation with writer/host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive, Mira and Lakshya talk about her new book - why she wrote it, what it was like to re-live these talks from her past, and what conversations she hopes it starts. About the book: Inspired by her viral BuzzFeed piece '37 Difficult Questions from My Mixed-Raced Son', Mira Jacob responds to: her six-year-old, Z, who asks if the new president hates brown boys like him; uncomfortable relationship advice from her parents, who came to the United States from India one month into their arranged marriage; and increasingly fraught exchanges with her Trump-supporting in-laws. Jacob also investigates her own past, including how it felt to be a brown-skinned New Yorker on 9/11. As earnest and moving as they are laugh-out-loud funny, these are the stories that have shaped one life, but will resonate with many others. You can order the book on Amazon and learn more about MIra's work at Mira will be speaking at #JLFHouston2019 on Sept 14, and #ZeeJLFColorado2019 on Sept 21.
September 14, 2019
Writing and Talking about Rape: A conversation with Sohaila Abdulali
Sohaila Abdulali, author of "What We Talk About When We Talk About Rape", in conversation with writer/host Lakshya Datta. In this podcast-exclusive episode, Sohaila talks to Lakshya about what it has been like to share this book with people around the world, and what stories readers have shared with her along the way. Sohaila has also published two novels, "The Madwoman of Jogare" and "Year of the Tiger", three children’s books, short stories and many non-fiction pieces. She will be speaking at JLF Houston on Sept 14, and JLF Colorado on Sept 22.
September 13, 2019
How Stories Heal Us: A conversation with Michael Patrick MacDonald
Michael Patrick MacDonald, author of the New York Times Bestselling memoir “All Souls: A Family Story From Southie”, in conversation with Jaipur Bytes host Lakshya Datta. Lakshya speaks with Michael about what drew him to tell stories, the writing process behind his memoirs, how his family and his community reacted to his books, and how he uses storytelling as a tool to talk about justice and healing. You can learn more about his work at Michael will be at #ZEEJLFColorado2019 at the session “We Shall Not Hate” on September 21.
September 3, 2019
The Yoga Sutra: Live from JLF @ British Library 2019
Ranju Roy and Dave Charlton in conversation with Tara Fraser. Understanding Patanjali’s Yoga Sutras is the key to understanding yoga itself and yet relatively few of today’s practitioners know how to apply these ancient Sanskrit aphorisms to contemporary life. Yoga Teachers Ranju Roy and David Charlton, both practitioners within the tradition of TKV Desikachar of Chennai, discuss some of the most important sutras in their new book Embodying the Yoga Sutra and show how each one illuminates a different aspect of the vast field of yoga, both on and off the mat. In conversation with author and yoga trainer Tara Fraser. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
August 29, 2019
India, Empire and the First World War
Santanu Das and Shrabani Basu in conversation with Yasmin Khan. Santanu Das's India, Empire and First World War Culture: Writings, Images and Songs recovers the experience of combatants, non-combatants and civilians from undivided India trying to make sense of home and the world in times of war. Shrabani Basu’s For King and Another Country also takes into account India’s First World War through the eyes of those who fought it. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
August 19, 2019
Self-Realization and Conscience: Tara Gandhi Bhattacharjee @ JLF Belfast 2019
The inaugural address by Tara Gandhi Bhattacharjee at JLF Belfast 2019. She has held the position of Vice-Chairperson of Gandhi Smriti and Darshan Samiti for nearly nine years. Gandhi Smriti is the site of the martyrdom of her grandfather, Mahatma Gandhi, for truth and non-violence. She is also involved with the movement to protect rivers and the environment in India. She is the Chairperson of the Kasturba Gandhi National Memorial Trust, one of the oldest pre-independence, non-governmental institutions serving the needy women and children of rural India and founded by Mahatma Gandhi in the memory of his wife. This episode is a live session from #JLFBelfast2019.
August 6, 2019
The Elephant and the Dragon
Vasuki Shastry, Steve Tsang, Ellen Barry and Lijia Zhang in conversation with Salil Tripathi. While the phenomenal economic rise of India and China is of key interest to economists around the world, the civilisational links between these two ancient cultures are equally fascinating. A session on how the ‘elephant’ and the ‘dragon’ negotiate their relationship with each other and the ways in which their growing influence is reshaping the world. Author and expert on Asian economies and public policy Vasuki Shastry, political scientist and historian Steve Tsang, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Ellen Barry and factory worker-turned writer Lijia Zhang discuss the two Asian superpowers and their impact on the world as we know it with author Salil Tripathi. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
July 30, 2019
The Dance of Democracy
Navin Chawla and Mukulika Banerjee in conversation with John Elliott. India is the world’s largest democracy. It has faced daunting challenges, sustaining democratic institutions against all odds. Its vigorous political system remains credible and sound in its fundamentals with nearly 900 million citizens, young and old, exercising their constitutionally given freedom to choose in what remains a disciplined and peaceable process. A session that examines the results of the recent national elections as well as the strengths and fault lines in India’s democratic convictions with former Election Commission of India head Navin Chawla, writer and academic Mukulika Banerjee in conversation with journalist John Elliott. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
July 23, 2019
Eve Was Shamed: How Justice Fails Women
Helena Kennedy, Avi Singh and Sunita Toor in conversation with Bee Rowlatt. Helena Kennedy QC’s ground-breaking book Eve Was Shamed offers an impassioned, personal critique of the British legal system. “The smell of the gentlemen’s club permeates every crevice of the Inns of Court,” writes Kennedy. A session which focuses on the treatment of women in the legal system with Kennedy, academic and women’s rights activist Sunita Toor and international lawyer Avi Singh in conversation with writer Bee Rowlatt. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
July 18, 2019
Running From and Towards Home: A conversation with Eric Ngalle Charles
Eric Ngalle Charles (poet, author, playwright) in conversation with Lakshya Datta (Founder of Launchora). Eric Ngalle was born in Cameroon. After nearly a decade seeking sanctuary as a refugee, he eventually reached south Wales, where he studied modern history and popular culture at Cardiff Metropolitan University. A fellow of the leadership network British-American Project, he currently sits on the board of directors for Literature Wales. Ngalle Charles is one of the Hay 30 - young writers who will help shape the world over the next three decades. This latest book is called "I, Eric Ngalle: One Man's Journey Crossing Continents from Africa to Europe". This episode is a podcast-exclusive.
July 10, 2019
(Under)valuing What Comes Naturally: A conversation with Lucy Caldwell
Lucy Caldwell (award-winning novelist and playwright) in conversation with Lakshya Datta (founder of Launchora). Lucy Caldwell was born in Belfast in 1981. She studied English at Queen's College, Cambridge, and for an MA in Creative and Life Writing at Goldsmith's, University of London. She is the author of three novels: Where They Were Missed (2006); The Meeting Point (2011), set in Bahrain immediately prior to the Iraq War; and All the Beggars Riding (2013). Her first novel was shortlisted for the Dylan Thomas Prize and the Waverton Good Read Award, and The Meeting Point won the Dylan Thomas Prize. Her debut collection of short stories, Multitudes, was published by Faber in 2016. She is also the editor of the recent Faber anthology Being Various: New Irish Short Stories. Also a successful playwright, her first stage play, Leaves (2007), premiered at Chapel Lane, Galway after which it was performed at the Royal Court. It was awarded the George Devine Award in 2006 and the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize in 2007. Lucy was a speaker at #JLFBelfast2019.
June 27, 2019
The Last Mughal
William Dalrymple transports us back to a bygone era of matchless splendour – the period of the last Mughal. This evocative session features readings by award-winning author and historian Dalrymple from his book The Last Mughal: The Fall of a Dynasty, Delhi, 1857 and the vocals of Vidya Shah celebrating the poignant and robust folk poetry of the time and ghazals of the Mughal court. This episode is a live session from #JLFBelfast2019.
June 22, 2019
Footloose: The Travel Session
Pico Iyer, Christina Lamb, Carlo Pizzati and Monisha Rajesh in conversation with William Dalrymple. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 21, 2019
The Billionaires: Looking at the Indian Elite
James Crabtree and Avi Singh in conversation with Mukulika Banerjee. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 20, 2019
What Is Not Said: Celebrating the Short Story
Chris Power, Namita Gokhale and Navtej Sarna in conversation with Paul McVeigh. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 20, 2019
Guru Nanak: Traveller, Poet, and Philosopher
Navtej Sarna in conversation with Amrit Kaur Lohia. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 19, 2019
From Hieroglyphs to Emojis
David Levy, Irving Finkel and Michael Erdman in conversation with Pragya Tiwari. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 19, 2019
Amritsar and the Patient Assassin
Anita Anand and Kim A. Wagner in conversation with Navtej Sarna. Anita Anand’s The Patient Assassin tells the remarkable story of one Indian's 20 year quest for revenge, taking him around the world in search of those he held responsible for the Jallianwala Bagh massacre of 1919, which cost the lives of hundreds. Kim A. Wagner’s Jallianwala Bagh: An Empire of Fear and the Making of the Amritsar Massacre is a dramatic telling of the event and its aftermath situating the massacre within the 'deep' context of British colonial mentality and the local dynamics of Indian nationalism. In conversation with writer and former diplomat Navtej Sarna, they discuss this seminal moment in the history of the Indo-British encounter and its consequences for the Indian freedom struggle. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 17, 2019
Words Are All We Have
Anjali Joseph, Lijia Zhang and Romesh Gunesekera in conversation with Catharine Morris. Three writers speak about ways of seeing and recording, and how they navigate words across countries and cultures. Romesh Gunesekera is the acclaimed Sri Lankan-born British author and finalist for the Man Booker Prize. Award-winning Anjali Joseph has written three novels, including her recent The Living. China-born writer and journalist Lijia Zhang has written memorable books that include China Remembers, Socialism Is Great! and Lotus. In conversation with editor and writer Catharine Morris. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 16, 2019
Masala Shakespeare
Jonathan Gil Harris, Rachel Dwyer and Varsha Panjwani in conversation with Cary Sawhney. Shakespeare’s Indian avatar has taken deep root in Bollywood and popular culture. Poet and lyricist Gulzar along with directors Sanjay Leela Bansali and Vishal Bharadwaj have all taken inspiration from the Bard. A lively panel explores the profound resonance between Shakespeare’s craft and Indian cinema and cultural forms. Jonathan Gil Harris, professor of English at Ashoka University, Rachel Dwyer, professor of Indian Culture and Cinema at SOAS, and academic Varsha Panjwani, lecturer in Shakespeare at NYU London, in conversation with filmmaker and director of the London Indian Film Festival, Cary Sawhney. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 16, 2019
Game Changers: Cricket Country
Shashi Tharoor, Wajahat S. Khan, Romesh Gunesekera and Prashant Kidambi in conversation with Mukulika Banerjee. Cricket in South Asia has become a symbol of national identity and a surrogate battleground between competing nationalisms. Prashant Kidambi’s Cricket Country: An Indian Odyssey in the Age of Empire tells the story of the first all Indian cricket tour of Britain and Ireland and how the idea of India took shape on the cricket field. Emmy-nominated multimedia journalist Wajahat S. Khan has co-authored Game Changer, a riveting memoir of Shahid Afridi, one of modern cricket's most controversial and accomplished practitioners. Indian politician and bestselling author Shashi Tharoor and acclaimed Sri Lankan author Romesh Gunesekera have written extensively on the sport. In conversation with writer and academic Mukulika Banerjee, they speak of how cricket has helped fashion the imagined communities of both empire and nation. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 16, 2019
#ZEEJLFatBL2019 Begins: Imagining Our Worlds
Opening Address (of ZEE JLF at the British Library 2019 on June 14) by Chief Executive of the British Library Roly Keating, High Commissioner of India to the United Kingdom Ruchi Ghanashyam, Namita Gokhale, William Dalrymple, Sanjoy K. Roy, and Shreyasi Goenka. This episode is a live session from #ZEEJLFatBL2019.
June 16, 2019
Converting Experience Into Meaning: A conversation with Pico Iyer
Pico Iyer (author of 16 books, TED speaker) in conversation with Lakshya Datta (Founder of Launchora). Pico Iyer's books have been translated into 23 languages. Both his 2008 meditation on the XIVth Dalai Lama, The Open Road, and his TED Book, The Art of Stillness, were best sellers across the US. Outside magazine called him "arguably the greatest living travel-writer," and the New Yorker said, "As a guide to far-flung places, he can hardly be surpassed." An essayist for TIME since 1986, Iyer is a constant contributor the New York Times, The New York Review of Books, Harper's, Granta and more than 200 other newspapers and magazines worldwide, and he has published introductions to 70 other works. He has written two new books about Japan - Autumn Light and A Beginner's Guide to Japan. Pico will be speaking at both #ZEEJLFatBL2019 and #JLFBelfast2019 this June.
June 10, 2019
Rabindranath Tagore's Many Lives: A conversation with Bashabi Fraser
Bashabi Fraser - author of “Rabindranath Tagore (Critical Lives)" - in conversation with Lakshya Datta - Founder of Launchora. Bashabi Fraser is a Tagore and post colonial scholar and poet. A Professor of English and Creative Writing and Founder Director of the Scottish Centre of Tagore Studies at Edinburgh Napier University, she is also the Editor-in-Chief of the e-journal Gitanjali and Beyond. She is the author of several publications, including the recent critical biography of Rabindranath Tagore.  An award-winning poet, Fraser has received the 2015 Outstanding Woman of Scotland Award, the 2019 Kavi Salam from Poetry Paradigm, the Word Masala Foundation Award for Excellence in Poetry in 2017, the 2010 Women Empowered: Arts and Culture Award and the AIO Prize for Literary Services in Scotland in 2009.
June 4, 2019
India's Mallika Victoria: A conversation with Miles Taylor
Miles Taylor (author of “Empress: Queen Victoria and India”) in conversation with Lakshya Datta (Founder of Launchora). Miles talks about why and how he got into learning and teaching Modern History, what drew him to writing a book about Queen Victoria, while also sharing surprising facts about her life and influence on India. Miles is a Professor of Modern History at York University, having studied history at Queen Mary University of London, Harvard and Cambridge, and previously having taught at Southampton, King’s College London, and Cambridge. Miles will be speaking at ZEE JLF at the British Library on June 15 at the session “Mallika Victoria: Empress of India”. #ZEEJLFatBL2019
May 28, 2019
India in Ireland: A conversation with Damian Smyth
Damian Smyth (Head of Literature and Drama at the Arts Council of Northern Ireland) in conversation with Lakshya Datta (Founder of Launchora). Hear Damian talk about the work the Art Council does in Belfast and beyond, how the association with JLF came about, and why Belfast is the perfect city for the festival. Experience the first ever JLF Belfast from June 21 to 23. #JLFBelfast2019
May 22, 2019
JLF @ The British Library: A conversation with Jamie Andrews
Jamie Andrews (Head of Culture and Learning at the British Library) in conversation with Lakshya Datta (Founder of Launchora). Jamie talks about the work the British Library does in the UK and internationally, their current “Writing: Making Your Mark” exhibition, why they got involved with JLF as their festival host in London, and what to expect from the upcoming festival from June 14 to 16. #ZEEJLFatBL2019
May 14, 2019
Aga Khan Foundation & JLF: A conversation with Matt Reed
Matt Reed (CEO of the Aga Khan Foundation UK) in conversation with Lakshya Datta (Founder of Launchora). AKF has been supporting JLF since 2015. As CEO, Matt’s focus is on expanding AKF’s partnerships in the UK and Europe and building greater public awareness about the work of the broader Aga Khan Development Network.  #ZEEJLFatBL2019
May 9, 2019
Shabana Azmi: The Word Set Free
An encounter with the free-spirited Shabana Azmi, magnificent actor and a committed social activist. Azmi belongs to an illustrious literary family and has been a member of the Indian Parliament. In conversation with writer and film director Sangeeta Datta, she speaks of her work in experimental and mainstream cinema, and the interplay of culture, entertainment and politics. This episode is a live session from JLF at British Library last year. #ZEEJLFatBL2019
May 3, 2019
JLF International Begins: A conversation with Namita Gokhale
Namita Gokhale (founder and co-director of the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival) in conversation with Lakshya Datta (host of Jaipur Bytes and founder of Launchora). Namita shares her favorite moments from the festival in Jaipur this past January, why she believes all writers - young and old - need to be readers first, how she curates the international JLF festivals and their programming, and what you cab expect to see (and hear) at JLF at the British Library (June 14-16) and JLF at Belfast (June  21-23) this summer. Namita is the author of over a dozen fiction and nonfiction books, including ‘Paro: Dreams Of Passion’ and ‘Things To Leave Behind’ (which recently won the Sushila Devi Literature Award). #ZEEJLFatBL2019 #JLFBelfast2019
April 22, 2019
The JLF Legacy: A conversation with William Dalrymple
William Dalrymple (historian, art historian, and co-director of the ZEE Jaipur Literature Festival)  in conversation with Lakshya Datta (host of Jaipur Bytes podcast and founder of Launchora). William talks about how he helped create JLF all those years ago, what he thought of #ZEEJLF2019 (the first one he couldn't attend), how he finds authors and speakers from around the world to bring to the festivals, and how JLF grew out of Jaipur to the travel the globe.
April 18, 2019
Waste of a Nation: Assa Doron, Sanchaita Gajapati, Robin Jeffrey
Assa Doron, Sanchaita Gajapati in conversation with Robin Jeffrey. Thi