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Monday, March 01, 2021

Adrija Roychowdhury


Adrija writes long, researched features on history, world and national politics, as well as social issues. Follow her on Twitter @AdrijaRoychow

The land of goddesses: Why Durga is key to understanding Bengal
Mon, Mar 01, 2021

Worship of the feminine form and in particular the celebration of Durga has deep historical roots in the Bengal region.

‘More Bengali than any Bengali’: Marwaris, the ‘outsiders’ who built Kolkata
Sat, Feb 13, 2021

A special place among non-Bengali voters, who constitute approximately 15 per cent of the vote bank, is reserved for the Marwari community, which practically built Kolkata as we know it today.

Explained: The great Sutton Hoo discovery that ‘The Dig’ explores, and an Indian parallel
Thu, Feb 11, 2021

How was the Sutton Hoo ship burial excavated? What was the significance of the excavation?

When the violence of Chauri Chaura prompted Gandhi to suspend the non-cooperation movement
Fri, Feb 05, 2021

It is interesting that while the Chauri Chaura incident was abhorred by Gandhi, in the memory of post-Independent India, it has been commemorated with two memorials and a train being named after it.

James Wilson, the British economist who presented India’s first ‘budget’
Mon, Feb 01, 2021

Wilson was appointed to find a solution to India's financial crisis caused by the mutiny of 1857.

Explained: What TMC means when it calls the BJP ‘bargis’
Tue, Feb 02, 2021

Simply speaking, the word bargi referred to cavalrymen in Maratha and Mughal armies. The word comes from the Persian “bargir”, literally meaning “burden taker”, notes historian Surendra Nath Sen in his 1928 work The Military System Of The Marathas.

Explained: The history of ‘Joy Bangla’
Sat, Jan 30, 2021

Roots of the slogan go way back to 1922, when a nationalist movement against the British was raging in India.

Explained: Who is B B Lal, the Padma Vibhushan awardee who led excavation at Ramjanmabhoomi site?
Sat, Jan 30, 2021

Between 1950 and 1952, Lal excavated a number of sites associated with the Mahabharata. Consequently, he discovered a number of Painted Grey Ware sites in the Indo-Gangetic divide and upper Yamuna-Ganga Doab.

How the cow came to be debated in Constituent Assembly and why Article 48 was added to Constitution
Mon, Jan 25, 2021

Ambedkar opposed the imposition of ban on cow slaughter as a fundamental right, Rajendra Prasad came up with Directive Principles of State Policy as a solution.

‘Military conflicts have increasingly penetrated civilian space in the post World War period’: Author of new book on the experience of war
Fri, Jan 22, 2021

As the author explains, war can be an extremely thrilling experience for some, while an excruciating one for many others.

In the land of ‘Sri Ram’: Why Indian indentured labourers in Suriname refused to come back
Mon, Feb 08, 2021

The fact that two-third of the more than 34,000 Indian immigrants settled down in Suriname and gave up their free passage back to India is to some extent proof of the fact that life in Suriname was perhaps better than in British India.

In European cemeteries across India, clues to tough lives, religious politics and a shared history
Sat, Jan 09, 2021

Taken together, the European cemeteries, tell a story of the aspirations, hardships, and the cultural exchange that went into creating a pluralistic India.

Explained: The significance of the Confederate flag being waved inside the Capitol
Thu, Jan 14, 2021

This is the first time in the USA’s history that the Confederate flag has appeared inside the halls of the Capitol.  

Why do we celebrate New Year on January 1?
Fri, Jan 01, 2021

It was Roman dictator Julius Caesar who reformed the calendar soon after coming to power in the late first century BCE.

Rajputs loved guns but hated using them in war: Historian Robert Elgood on his new book on Jodhpur guns
Tue, Dec 22, 2020

Guns, says Elgood, have played a significant role in shaping India’s national identity, or for that matter, that of any country.

The other Dalrymple and the 5 partitions that hold clues to many present strifes in Asia
Mon, Dec 21, 2020

In the 1930s, the British Raj actually stretched from Yemen all the way upto Thailand. It included princely states like Dubai and Oman which were princely states just like Jaipur, Hyderabad and Kashmir.

Explained: Who was Khudiram Bose?
Wed, Dec 23, 2020

One of the youngest leaders of the Independence movement, Bose is highly regarded in Bengal for his fearless spirit.

Reviving legacy of Rahim, equally fluent with the sword and pen
Sat, Dec 19, 2020

Apart from being a prolific poet in the 15th century, Rahim was also an astute statesman in the Mughal court, the commander-in-chief of the Mughal army, a translator par excellence, an enthusiastic patron of architecture and so much more.

New Delhi architecture was meant to soften nationalism, Parliament House was always meant only for Indians
Sat, Dec 12, 2020

The enthusiasm for Indian architectural elements in New Delhi was deemed all the more necessary given the nationalist political climate and the fear of what it might hold for British rule in the country.

Explained: What is the Nazi art dispute case being tried in the US Supreme Court
Fri, Dec 11, 2020

The plaintiffs of the case argue that their Jewish ancestors were forced to sell the rare collection to the Nazis during the Holocaust.

From Kohinoor to Goddess Annapurna, why some stolen objects return and others don’t
Thu, Dec 03, 2020

The records of the Archaeological Survey of India show that the government has been able to retrieve 40 art objects between 2014 and 2020. However, demands for the return of objects like the Kohinoor and the Amravati marbles have been turned down.

A rose, star, blue, pink: How a Covid-tainted area celebrates itself in masks
Sun, Nov 29, 2020

Every year since 2016, The Indian Express has been marking the 26/11 terror attacks with stories of strength and a public event showcasing the spirit of the survivors.

Shortchanged by Partition, why Sindhis hold Karachi especially dear
Fri, Nov 27, 2020

The name of the Karachi chain of sweets and bakeries has frequently come under attack for its seeming association with Pakistan. Yet, for the Sindhi owners of the chain, the name is a reminder of a lost homeland and a Partition unlike any other.

Young philosophers discuss ways of finding inspiration through philosophy in today’s times
Mon, Nov 23, 2020

"One does not become a philosopher simply by reading a book by Plato or the Bhagavad Gita… To be a philosopher one needs to be in love with wisdom and truth," said Shraddha Shetty

Explained: Why BBC announced a probe into a 1995 interview of Princess Diana
Thu, Nov 26, 2020

Twenty-five years later, the landmark interview which aired on BBC’s Panorama programme, is under scrutiny as the journalist and interviewer, Martin Bashir, faces charges of having secured the Prince Diana interview through unethical means.