Webbed #1

I welcome the readers of the blog to this weekly listicle, Webbed.

  1. Road to Happiness  In Happier is the Selfless, economist Bibek Debroy examines the way to attain a happy state of mind when one builds relationships beyond quid pro quo. He starts by exploring the often misquoted Hindu expression Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam (the world is indeed a family) and mentions the extraordinary work of Sarvesh Tiwari’s The Hoax called Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam in tracing its source. Taking cues from David Robert Grimes’ recently published paper, On the Viability of Conspiratorial BeliefsDunbar’s Number proposed by British Anthropologist Robin Dunbar and the ‘world’s happiest man’ Matthieu Ricard, Debroy explores the road to lasting Happiness.
  2. Songbird – In A Cockney Chaffinch and the Art of Birdsong, naturalist and the head of Wildlife Trust of India, Vivek Menon goes in search of a mysterious voice that sang to him on a cold winter morning in St. James’ Park, London. He explores why birds play a major part in this personal aural mindscape of ours.
  3. Heartbreak Warfare – Mohan Rakesh, one of the pioneers of the modern Hindi literature, died at the young age of 46. Poonam Saxena pens a wonderful piece in trying to understand this complex man through his third and final marriage to a young woman named Anita. ‘He tells her that in his list of priorities, his writing comes first followed by his friends. She is only in third place.’ The love story of Anita and Mohan Rakesh
  4. Word – Abby Norman’s Letters to a Young Writer is the most wonderful piece of advice shared by a writer. She is currently working towards publishing her first book. Her writing is practical and to the point. MUST READ for every aspiring writer out there!
  5. Pen is mightier than the Sword! – Tim Parks argues as to why reading with a pen in hand would uplift the mankind in his essay, A Weapon for Readers. On the predatory nature of the pen suspended over a text, he writes ‘Like a hawk over a field, it is on the lookout for something vulnerable. Then it is a pleasure to swoop and skewer the victim with the nib’s sharp point. The mere fact of holding the hand poised for action changes our attitude to the text. We are no longer passive consumers of a monologue but active participants in a dialogue.’
  6. Conversations with a Film Analyst – As a lover of cinema and writings on cinema, Baradwaj Rangan is a name impossible to ignore. Many lovers of cinema have grown reading the writings of the National Award winning film critic. In this interview by Tanul Thakur and Rahul Desai, we get to understand his persona a lot more. Ranging from his early days of critiquing to reading and writing across genres, this interview comes off as deep and insightful. A lot to learn from!

That’s it for the first Webbed edition. I hope to have a lot more in the second. Hope you enjoyed it 🙂

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Author: Kavir Nair

A bespectacled lad from the filter coffee preferring south Indian coastal city of Chennai. The Japanese coined a word just for me - Tsundoku, which means the act of buying a book and leaving it unread, often piled together with other unread books. Although I must add, having an unread library is the way I could truly honour the late Umberto Eco. When not watching movies in theaters or beach walking on Marina, you can find me at home reading a book or writing a journal or Netflixing. While I do all this as Ravi Kiran, my alter ego - Kavir Nair needs an exclusive space to write. Hence, he has chosen this abode.

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