In the spotlight
days and nights

“Days and Nights in Calcutta” – My Guide to being Bengali

by Susen in Culture

Being brought up mainly in Birmingham in the 1970s I had very limited exposure to Indian and Bengali culture despite the English Midlands being a centre of immigrant communities.  I had spent a few months in India when I was about 5 and then didn’t …


In the spotlight
Ganesha festival Mumbai 1987

Elephants, Lord Ganesha and the Indian Independence Movement

by Sue in Culture

Ganesha festival Bombay 1987 I remember it like it was yesterday.  It was 1987 and we had just arrived in Bombay (as it was then) around 5 weeks into my first sojourn into India.  By this point we were probably a slightly sorry looking and …


  • surgery

    Medicine – art, science or business?

    A couple of years ago I had an ear infection.  I had never had an ear infection before and can honestly say it was the most painful thing I have ever had (I was going to say worse than childbirth but seeing as I had …

  • Justice photo

    Sex, morality and rape in modern India

    I remember on my first visit to India being struck by the seeming chaos of everyday life in the towns and cities.  Creative traffic rules, along with much beeping of horns ruled on the roads, cows wandered freely in the middle of roads, their Hindu …

  • Cornelia cropped

    Cornelia Calling

    I had somehow subscribed or been subscribed to a newsletter listing the Kali Theatre’s future performances and two in particular stood out: Cornelia Calling and Twelve, on ‘honour’ killings. The Kali Theatre specialises in producing plays written by Asian women. For various reasons, well my …

  • sexuality

    India takes one giant leap backwards

    What a confused world we live in.  That could be a general statement but today it is confusion over sexuality – in particular homosexuality. On 27 November in the UK we had the Supreme Court judgment in the case of Bull v Hall[1].  This was …

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    Caste in the UK

      Last Saturday saw hundreds of people gather in Central London to demonstrate against caste discrimination in the UK – we passed the demonstration in Whitehall. This issue came to prominence earlier on this year when the House of Lords voted to include discrimination on …

  • M

    World Mental Health Day – mental health in the UK and India

    10 October is World Mental Health Day – a day first celebrated in 1992, designed to bring awareness and understanding of mental illness and disability and its effects on people worldwide. In the UK, it is estimated that in any one year, 1 in 4 …

  • Surrogate

    Surrogacy in India

    I am reading Rampuri’s ‘Autobiography of a Sadhu’ at the moment and there is a wonderful part where another sadhu complains, ‘When you white people first came, you were rich, important and powerful.  You were sahibs and governors and viceroys even….’  Rampuri explains that ‘they’ …

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Southbank Alchemy Festival 2014

It’s back for the 5th year! The Southbank annual Alchemy Festival showcases music, dance, literature, comedy, fashion, art and design from the UK and South Asia. Performances not to be missed include Susheela Raman, Anoushka Shankar, Aditia Mangaldas, Indian food tasting with Cinnamon Kitchen among many others. Plus the street food stalls outside, featuring every type of street food you could wish for. See our Events page for more details of this and other events
In the spotlight

‘Speed’ at Kali Theatre – a review

by Sue in Theatre reviews

‘It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife’. Set in 19th century Britain, this opening sentence of Jane Austen’s ‘Pride and Prejudice’ will be familiar to many, together with Gurinder …


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