English writer and literature Nobel Prize 2001, Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul poses during a photocall before a conference in Madrid, 27 May 2002. Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul was born in 1932, near Port of Spain in Trinidad, in a family descended from Hindu immigrants from northern India. His father was a journalist. He went to England at the age of 18 to study at Oxford University, and has lived in England since then, devoting himself to writing. His work includes "The Mystic Masseur" (1957), his first work, a novel; "Miguel Street" (1959), short stories establishing Naipaul as a humorist; "A House for Mr. Biswas" (1961); "The Loss of El Dorado" (1969), a colonial history of Trinidad, and "Beyond Belief: Islamic Excursions among the Converted Peoples" (1998), a description of the eastern regions of Islamic world.
 AFP PHOTO  Pierre-Philippe MARCOU / AFP PHOTO / PIERRE-PHILIPPE MARCOU

VS Naipaul dies at 85: Reading the Nobel laureate is to see literature at its finest, and that’s all that should matter by Anil Dharker

By the time I have sat down to write this, just a day after VS Naipaul’s death, every publication and every writer in the world seems to have paid a tribute to him. But ‘tribute’ is the wrong word here; that generally stands for undiluted praise, a highlighting of the deceased’s qualities of heart and […]

Read more
trumpindia

Trump Is Losing India by James Crabtree

“I love Hindu” was how Donald Trump put it, speaking to a cheering audience of Indian Americans at an election rally in 2016. “We are going to be best friends,” he added of his hopes for U.S. ties with India. “There won’t be any relationship more important to us.” And yet, as with so often […]

Read more
james

The Inevitability Of Virtual Reality by James Crabtree

VR is a new technology that already seems rather old-fashioned. We’ve had VR headsets for years, which never seem to take off. There have been a bunch of virtual worlds too. I read an essay about Second Life recently— remember that? — which is still limping on. And yet, a few days ago, I visited the Facebook campus in Menlo […]

Read more
modi-rahul-final

You can take Rahul out of Pappu but not the Pappu out of Rahul by Shekhar Gupta

A Rahul Gandhi who hugs his inner Pappu is Narendra Modi’s clear challenger and target for 2019. This Friday’s debate on the Opposition’s no-confidence motion answers several questions. First, should the Opposition let the BJP make it a Narendra Modi versus Rahul Gandhi election in 2019, or fight it state by state? Rahul has himself […]

Read more
anil-litlive

Mumbai Notebook by Anil Dharker

The Prime Minister of India boasts of his government`s achievements whenever and wherever he speaks. Following His Master`s Voice, the Chief Minister of Maharashtra does likewise. Here`s his latest statement, delivered to the Assembly with a flourish of trumpets: 2014-15:        14,455 2015-16:         5, 316 2016-17:         4,478 2017-18:         4,044 The declining figures the CM is bragging about are the number […]

Read more
Anil_Dharker_Image_2

Beautiful Game? by Anil Dharker

Who called it the ‘Beautiful Game’? There are many claimants but the one who made it synonymous with football was the legendary Pele with his autobiography, My Life and the Beautiful Game. Tonight when France plays Croatia in the World Cup Final, will we see the beautiful game? Or will we see football for what it really is? […]

Read more
shekhar

Bollywood’s Royals: Brave heroes on screen, spineless zeroes off it by Shekhar Gupta

Hindi cinema is the richest, starriest business in our popular culture, way ahead of even cricket. Why is it also the most pusillanimous too, and also going with the wind? Since this argument is about Hindi cinema, it is fitting that I steal the headline from Anand Bakshi in the 1972 mega-hit, starring Hema Malini […]

Read more
Churchill2_0

Churchill a War Criminal? Get Your History Right by Zareer Masani

IT’S A SAD reflection of our times that smearing and libelling our now-distant colonial past have become a popular substitute for soul-searching about our own failures, abuses and atrocities in the present. With popular and social media happy to circulate the wildest rumours and allegations, quotations out of context, half-truths and even blatant untruths, it’s […]

Read more
anil-litlive

London Notebook by Anil Dharker

If the Royals are here, can the paparazzi be far behind? Stating the obvious perhaps, so ubiquitous have the massed photographers become that they are now an accepted part of the scenery (Sadly, everyone seems to have forgotten the central role they played in the death of Princess Diana). I bring this up now because […]

Read more
Screen Shot 2018-06-12 at 11.59.02 AM

Waiting for Modi’s Achhe Din: The Bad, the Worse & The Ugly by Shashi Tharoor

The story of the last four years is one of missed opportunities and dashed hopes, of waiting for achhe din that never came, of seeing expectations raised to the heights by lofty rhetoric, only to come crashing down in the face of depressing reality. 26 May marks the fourth anniversary of an era of disappointment for believers, […]

Read more
Anil_Dharker_Image_2

Mumbai Notebook by Anil Dharker

The longest running play in the world in not a musical. In fact, it is a murder mystery called The Mousetrap which has been running in London`s St Martin`s Theatre since 1952. That`s 68 years! Based on Agatha Christie`s short-story Three Blind Mice, its original producer thought it would run for 14 months. Christie herself gave it 8 months. That`s […]

Read more