Reading for our times

Reading for our times

By Usha Raman
A podcast that celebrates books and reading and the beauty of the written word--spoken out loud.
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Ep 8: Reading around the world

Reading for our times

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Into the wild: readings on nature for children
Books are a great way to introduce children to the wonders and wealth of nature. In this episode of the show Sadhana Ramchander curates a delightful set of readings that will surely be enjoyed by the children in your lives—and the child in you. Sadhana Ramchander reads two poems by Shel Silverstein: Zebra question' and 'The toad and the kangaroo Kobita Dass Kolli reads Ruskin Bond’s Henry  the chameleon Suchitra Shenoy introduces us to the life of the remarkable Jane Goodall, from the book Fantastically great women  who saved the planet'by Kate Pankhurst Divya Mukpalkar reads Ma Ganga and the razai box by Geeta Dharmarajan  Tara Jayarao reads Fussing around insects a translation from a Tamizh story by Salai Selvam from the book 'Mother steals a bicycle' Malini Siruguri reads an extract from The Lorax by Dr Seuss A Giridhar Rao reads Shel Silverstein's The Giving Tree
30:36
July 4, 2020
Bookshelf favourites
In this episode, we have a selection of old favourites—pieces we return to time and again, when the mood takes us. Words that we pull off our shelves—or out of our memories—just because we want to feel something again, to know something again, to return to a moment of excitement or awe or insight that has shifted something inside us. Books/work featured in the episode Testimonio by Brian Doyle, from the collection One Long River of Song (read by Aasheesh Pittie) Standing up by Tomas Transtromer (read by Malini Waghray) 90 Minutes to Entebbe by William Stevenson (read by Divya Bharath) Black Dogs and Enduring Love by Ian McEwan (read by Usha Raman) For whom the bell tolls by John Donne (read by Amita Desai)
21:14
June 27, 2020
Let's laugh a little
There’s humour to be found in so much literature. And then there’s humour that is literature. This episode, curated by Kaivalya Dasu, brings together a set of readings that will remind us that literature is not just for quietly sinking into with our minds, but also for diving into joyously so that we can bubble up with laughter, or float back up to the surface with a smile. Books featured in this episode: Cocktail Time by P G Wodehouse (read by Kaivalya Dasu) The Secret Diary of Adrian Mole, Aged 13 ¾ by Sue Townsend (read by Maya Bhagat) The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams (read by Aniruddha Dasu) Brisingr by Christopher Paolini (read by Pakhee Jha) The original piece featured in the episode was written and read by Fleurette Modica
25:41
June 20, 2020
Ep 8: Reading around the world
In this episode, Suroor Alikhan, host of the blog Talking about Books, takes us on a global reading tour. The six excerpts featured in the episode are by writers  from different regions of the world, from Argentina to Angola, from Jamaica to Poland, opening the page to very different literary traditions. The books featured in this episode are: Drive your plow over the bones of the dead by Olga Tokarczuk (Poland) Go went Gone by Jenny Erpenbeck (Germany) Bestiarios by Julio Cortazar (Argentina) The Lunatic by Anthony C Winkler (Jamaica) The Book of Chameleons by Jose Eduardo Agualusa (Angola) The Book of Masks by Hwan Sun-won (South Korea) If you’d like some reading recommendations, take a look at Suroor’s blog: https://talking-about-books.com
36:43
June 13, 2020
Children's Voices, Set 3
A group of enthusiastic young readers share some of their favourite moments from some of their favourite books, ranging from folk tales by A K Ramanujam to good old Ruskin Bond, and even a bit of Shakespeare. The books/stories featured in this episode include: Folk Tales from India by A K Ramanujam The Enormous Turnip by Alexei Tolstoy The Wizard’s Wand by Geronimo Stilton Basava and the Dots of Fire by Radhika Chadha Farida plans a Feast by Maegan Dobson Sippy Coming Round the Mountain by Ruskin Bond Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, children’s abridged edition The Little Bird in the Big Mountains by Pari Rana
18:03
June 6, 2020
Episode 7: The Dutch Golden Age
In a slight departure from our usual format, four students of art history take us through the lives of four individuals who inhabit different roles during the period known as the Dutch Golden Age, spanning the 17th century in Holland, and give us a sense of what it might have been like to have been an artists--or live on the edges of the art establishment--during this time. If you'd like to learn more about the Dutch Golden Age, Shreya Subramanyam suggests these readings:Schama, Simon. The Embarrassment of Riches: An Interpretation of Dutch Culture in the Golden Age. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1987 Sutton, Elizabeth, ed. Women Artists and Patrons in the Netherlands, 1500 - 1700: Amsterdam, Amsterdam University Press, 2019 Hofrichter, Frima Fox. Judith Leyster: A Woman-Painter in Holland’s Golden Age. Texas: Davaco, 1989. Prak, Maarten. “Guilds and the Development of the Art Market during the Dutch Golden Age” Netherlands Quarterly for the History of Art 30, no. 3/4 (2003) 236 - 251 Kirby, Jo. “The Painter’s Trade in the Seventeenth Century: Theory and Practice” National Gallery Technical Bulletin 20, Painting in Antwerp and London: Rubens and van Dyck (1999) 5 - 49 Dash, Mike. Tulipomania: The Story of the World’s Most Coveted Flower and the Extraordinary Passions It Aroused. New York: Crown Publishers, 1999. Alpers, Svetlana, The Art of Describing: Dutch Art in the Seventeenth Century, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1983 Moggach, Deborah. Tulip Fever. Canada: Dial Press Trade Paperback, 2001
25:56
May 30, 2020
Banned! Reading for our Times/Episode 6
This episode, Banned! opens the covers of some proscribed books—works of both fiction and non-fiction that have been banned or simply taken out of circulation, in India. The episode has been put together by Hyderabad-based art historian, anthropologist and curator Sita Reddy, and features readings from A K Ramanujan's 300 Ramayanas, Wendy Doniger's The Hindus, Perumal Murugan's One Part Woman, and Anand Teltumbde's Republic of Caste, among others.
55:13
May 23, 2020
Episode 5: On love and loss
Drawing from writers as far apart in time as Ismat Chugtai and Arundhati Roy, and as distant in location as Elif Shafak and bell hooks, our young readers sample work on emotions and experiences that are specific yet universal. How do we think of love--as a noun or a verb? What is the content of grief? And how do we recover...and remember?
25:58
May 16, 2020
Reading for our Times Episode 4: Pandemic Preoccupations
In the weeks and months since the Covid-19 pandemic locked us down and stilled the streets, we have all had to deal with a variety of challenges--some large, some small, but all to some degree forcing us to re-evaluate our relationships with each other, with nature, and the world. In this episode, we bring you a set of reflections, combing some original writing mixed in with extracts from work that "speaks" to us in specific yet somehow universal ways. 
35:07
May 9, 2020
Reading for our Times/Episode 3: Writing from South Asia
This episode features six works by writers from the South Asian subcontinent--well, mostly India, with a touch of Pakistan. Included are well known names like Amitav Ghosh and Kamila Shamsie, but also authors in translation, Ambai and a selection from Terigatha, a collection of Pali Buddhist poems by women monks.
21:14
May 2, 2020
Reading for our Times-Children's Voices Part 2
Six children between the ages of 8 and 10 read from their favourite books, including selections from the Harry Potter series, Fancy Nancy and The Penderwicks.
14:29
April 25, 2020
Reading for our times--Children's Voices Part 1
Children read from some of their favourite work--mythology, adventure, humour and more!
10:50
April 21, 2020
Reading for Our Times: Episodes 1 and 2
Books are an escape, but they are also an inspiration, a comfort, and a space for learning in the broadest way possible. In this series, we pick out some of our favourite bits from some of our favourite books. 
25:41
April 21, 2020