Sunday Long Reads: Insect Loss and Their Impact, History of the Forgotten People, Sri Lanka Civil War, and more


A few days ago, I opened a jar of honey that I hadn’t touched for months. The thick golden molasses was strewn with black specks – ants that had died after gorging on the nectar. It was something I hadn’t seen in years. Now it seems like a long time ago that a forgotten candy bar, fruit, cube of cheese left uncovered, or even a crumb of cake would attract a troop of foraging insects out of nowhere. Their traces of pheromones alerted more colony members who would join in the effort to break down the food into tiny particles, which they took home.


When hosts became guests at Rashtrapati Bhavan

Queen Elizabeth II at the entrance to the Dwarka Suite, with Prince Philip and India’s first President Rajendra Prasad. (Courtesy: Rashtrapati Bhavan Photographic Archives)

The first resident of Rashtrapati Bhavan had an unsuccessful start to his stay at Viceroy House. On December 23, 1929, Lord Irwin was traveling by train to Delhi, when a bomb was dropped on his vice-regal train. The nonchalant Irwin would have remarked: “I heard the noise and I thought ‘this must be a bomb’. But as nothing happened, I continued to read Chaloner (poet and statesman Sir Thomas Chaloner).

Although only five viceroys have had the luxury of calling the Rashtrapati Bhavan their home, 14 Indian presidents to date have resided in this magnificent palace. However, our presidents never really stayed in the same rooms that were once occupied by the viceroys.


What the passage of ends teaches us about nature

Bustard The thing with the feathers: the great majestic Indian bustards are in great danger. (TR Shankar Raman)

Two bullets went through three brothers and killed them as they sat side by side.

The secretary wrote: “The first bullet killed one and… the second bullet after going through one hit the other, which was behind it, and killed him too.

Maharaja Ramanuj Pratap Singh Deo pulled the trigger in 1947. In Surguja district in central India, he shot them at night from a vehicle. It was his private secretary who later recounted the death of the last cheetahs slaughtered in India.


Remembering the forgotten heroes of India’s freedom struggle

BR Ambedkar at his residence in Mumbai

Chahe jitni tarah se kahi jaye, aur jitni bar, Azadi ki kahani se kuchh chhut hi jata hai (No matter how many ways and how many times it is said, some things always go unsaid when it comes to freedom struggle stories) I heard this statement from a balladeer from the east of Uttar Pradesh who composed songs about the heroes of the freedom movement. It is true that history is the “account of what happened”, but it is not fixed, it is constantly evolving.


How a collective of translators makes room for richer conversations and an inclusive lifestyle

(From left to right) Ashwani Kumar, co-founder of the Indian Novels Collective with writer Annie Zaidi, writer-translator Anjali Purohit and co-founder of the collective Anuradha Parikh at an event of the collective

Two years ago, when Usha Priyamvada, a 90-year-old Hindi writer and scholar based in Wisconsin, was approached with the idea of ​​having her first novel Pachpan Khambe Laal Deewaarein translated into English, she became anxious. She wondered if anyone would be interested in reading the 60 year old novel. Published in 1961, the famous novel is set within the confines of a women’s college in Delhi, where we meet Sushma Sharma – lecturer, principal, bachelor and sole provider of her large family – who has resigned herself to the regimented loneliness of his life. .


Why writing is a form of soul-searching for Sri Lankan writer Anuk Arudpragasam, whose new novel is on Booker’s long list

Run in Silence, Run Deep: Anuk Arudpragasam (Courtesy: Penguin Books)

As in his life, the impact of the civil war that lasted almost three decades in Sri Lanka is reflected in the writings of Anuk Arudpragasam. “I wanted to write a novel about the relationship between a young man and his grandmother, but during its writing the war started to enter the narrative in various ways. After a while it became clear that this would also be a war novel, although it deals with the psychic repercussions of war rather than its immediate violence, ”he said of his second novel. shortlisted for the Booker Prize, A Passage North (Penguin Hamish Hamilton, Rs 599), a meditation on absence, grief and the legacy of civil war, which follows his first book, The Story of a Brief Marriage (2016).


How does the cuteness quotient play out in the animal community?

animals, animal kingdom, cute animals, animals and cuteness, 2021 eye, sunday eye, indian express, new indian expresses Round eyes, chubby limbs, a cuddly body – what’s not to love? (Photo: Ranjit Lal)

It is a weapon that has been used since time immemorial by almost all animal species, including us, with devastating effect. Animals have used it on their own kind – and even on us, and we fall victim to it almost every time. And there is a very simple reason for that: it has survival value.

She’s the terrible “cute” bombshell, who can reduce tough boobies into hot balls of sweet goo. As soon as they face a toothless and gurgling baby, stretching out his chubby arms, huge eyes, innocent smile, the action is done! It doesn’t have to be a human baby – a puppy or a kitten or an orangutan, a rabbit or a baby tiger will do as well, although perhaps the line could be drawn for babies. naked mole rats! If that’s the effect the C-Bomb can have on Iron Men, can you imagine what it does to inherently tender women? Of course, there are people who cringe at the mention of the “C” word and researchers working in animal labs who try to erase its effects by giving their subjects cold hard numbers instead of. names, while they are conducting some of their experiments.



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