Write of Passage
- IPL spot-fixing case: Net widens, police watching 3 more players, other bookies
- IPL 2013: Imperious Brad Hodge powers Rajasthan Royals to qualifier
- Sonia Gandhi, PM Manmohan Singh slam BJP for disrupting Parliament, stalling bills
- IPL spot-fixing: 'Bookie' Vindoo was close to BCCI chief's son-in-law, say cops
- Jessica Lall case: Shayan Munshi to face perjury trial
Yet the most significant reason to engage with this book is its visual and anecdotal exploration of the work of the 58 craftspeople. "The final project incorporated scripts in 14 languages and 21 different handskills, covering 16 states of India," say the authors. A colourful and nostalgic sea of personal and sociological stories unravels through the crafts of the East, West, North and South of India. Old, forgotten songs, folklore, customs and traditions, rural rites of food, religion and celebration open up through the written word.
For instance, embroidery done in Devanagiri — a Bihar project — showcases rituals of the Madhushravani puja, with a Maithili festival song embroidered on cloth. Another project from Gujarat taught illiterate craftswomen to create their own signatures, also an exercise to underline personal identity. These have been arranged in a wall hanging which is a cluster of embroidered calligraphy signatures. There are many such riveting aspects — on fabric, saris, leather products, papier-mache, brass, copper, woodcarving, intricate carpets, block printing, finely woven shawls, Kangra paintings and Kavda pieces. From Urdu to the Talim script, Kannada, Telugu to even Sindhi and Persian—these scripts pull us into a new dialogue where the letters speak, so to say, louder than words.
The book includes chapters on the written word in film posters, advertisements and calligraphy in open spaces. One of the big attractions is a chapter on the only existing handwritten Urdu daily newspaper — The Musalman — edited and published in Chennai by third generation publisher Syed Arifullah. When you finally set the book aside, a Roland Barthes saying quoted by the authors in an earlier chapter returns to make sense. "... to see the letter, as the ancient calligraphers did, as an enigmatic projection of our own bodies."
- Fixing probe now reaches Bollywood, son of Dara Singh held
- BCCI cashes Pune Warriors guarantee, 'disgusted' Sahara walks out of IPL
- Sreesanth spent Rs 1.95L on clothes, bought friend BlackBerry, paid in cash: Police
- Delhi firm with MoD as client is linked to Pak cyberattacks
- After Infosys, iGATE sacks Phaneesh Murthy for sexual misconduct
- 2 weeks after harassment, Haryana schoolgirls return, cops in tow