She is seeking help!

Throughout the world women are deprived of their social and economic rights. When women stood besides one another to seek make a self-identity, women across the globe started a revolution and the critics termed it as ‘Feminism’. And twentieth century has witnessed a growing awareness among women regarding their desires, sexuality, self-definition, existence and destiny. Feminism does not particularly talk of equality and rights of women but it is more about compassion, respect and understanding from the male counterparts.

Beginning from the first inception of the Universe, there is a fascinating myth associated with the creation of woman by the Supreme Creator, Lord Brahma. He had introduced woman to his earlier creation man stating, “She will serve you lifelong and if you cannot live with her, neither can you live without her”. With time Literature had gained pace and began to carve a new way of introducing feminism in Indian literature. Massive work of feminism is also accomplished through Indian literature, leaving aside the activists and crusaders of the political and social scenario.

In post-Independence India, the New Woman also had begun to emerge. It was then that the feminist trend in Indian literature had appeared on the horizon. It is rather ironical that in India, the premier people who had come forward to claim women`s rights were not women but men. Feminist writers in India today proudly uphold their causes of ‘womanhood’, through their write-ups.

With every kind of Indian literature, there have existed such umpteen kinds of the evolution of womanhood, which have also at times taken the shape of feminism, mostly profound in Indian literature in various Indian as well as English languages. The habit of defining woman as an essence whose nature is determined biologically and whose sole identity is to produce human species, needs to change. And literature is doing its best to discourage the conventional image of women constructed by the orthodox society.

Literature therefore has always been an effective vehicle of fundamental changes. To a large extent, the popularity of feminist ethics in India has also been generated by the ‘new’ image of women presented by literary writers in their works. Writers not only embrace in themselves the social, cultural or mythical backgrounds of their native land, but also expose the fragments of alienation present in different segments of human life and its predicament.

Considering PepperScript is a publishing house, we as a team are making it a point, a strong point, that women issues be highlighted and reached to as many responsible individuals as possible. If you think you have a story that could motivate a woman to break the egg shell she’s been living within forever and seek out a self-identity; then we suggest you get your story published!

Get to know Ruby in detail!

Get to know Ruby in detail!

PepperScript is calling for submissions for its first ever Anthology ‘UNMASKED’ which will reveal as many facets of human mind and our character Ruby. For more details and submission guidelines visit www.pepperscript.com

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PepperScript in Conversation with Nistha Tripathi

  1. Seven Conversations (SC) is your debut novel. How challenging was the publishing industry?

Very challenging! Since I am an engineer, I had no understanding of how publishing works. Plus, I was in USA for last seven years, so Indian book market and its trends were also not very familiar for me. Good thing was that I was able to establish connection with some authors early on who had gone through the process and could give me an insider’s view and what to expect. So, I knew a rough ride lies ahead. Needless to say, it is hard to land a publisher for a debut novel especially by a person not connected to media or journalism. Writing an interesting synopsis itself is a tricky thing. For example, Anuj Bahri from Red Ink called me as my query had piqued his interest. Even though he could not take up the project at that point, he did give me couple of helpful feedbacks regarding the synopsis I wrote. This helped me later on. I was expecting a tough ride and was not going to give up easily. Eventually, Leadstart showed an interest and we signed up a deal. 

  1. SC is a spiritual fictional novel. What inspired you to weave the Hindu mythology with spiritualism?

The book is primarily spiritual. But instead of keeping it abstract and completely philosophical, I wanted to reconcile Hindu mythology with my sense of spirituality. This is mainly because I feel our ancient Vedic scriptures hold a lot of timeless wisdom which we, youth, are quick to reject because we don’t want to be orthodox. I wanted to convey that wisdom in form of a story we can relate to. So, there is lot of focus on Gita and Krsna in the book. At the same time, the message conveyed is religion agnostic. I strongly believe that all religions convey the importance of good values and inner happiness; I have put it in a fiction format where the protagonist is going through turmoil’s that are making her question the meaning of life. I have tried to answer those doubts (which I am sure all of us face at some point) in seven conversations. One of the conversations is also focused on ‘love’ because I think it is an integral part of finding inner happiness.

  1. As an author what would be your best conversation with ‘Meera’, the protagonist of SC?

I crafted each conversation to serve a specific purpose. Seven conversations are of pain, truth, heart, purpose, hope, light and self. I strongly recommend everyone to read the ‘Conversation of Self’ which ties the whole book together and is the soul of the book. All our answers lie within and that is conveyed beautifully in this conversation. 

  1. Your book is changing perceptions. How does it feel having changed lives?

It is very humbling. I was working in high paying jobs on Wall Street previously but I never got the satisfaction of doing something worthwhile. This book’s journey has given me immense happiness and a feeling of content. Frankly, commercial success was not my primary goal, I was just happy to have written a book that I loved and that I could be proud of. When that first feedback came and someone told me that the book has helped them find their peace, I felt the whole grueling journey has been worth it. And that feeling will keep me happy till I die. My family was also very proud of me after reading this book and that means a lot to me. It is a book that I could share with my parents and teachers. As you grow, you start realizing that financial success is not everything, life is so much bigger. 

  1. One question you think we all face in life undoubtedly. And why?

One question that we all ask inevitably at some point is ‘Did I do the right thing?’. It could be about a big decision you made or in general, the life choice you opted. One variation of it is – ‘What should I do?’ when we are facing a dilemma. I have covered this in detail in ‘Conversation of Heart’ in the book. Humans are constantly facing a battle of heart vs. mind. We think that we can control and plan out things and if we follow certain strategy, then our life would be good. At the same time, we are plagued by doubts – ‘what if?’ We feel that the grass is always greener on the other side. All this leads to is an eternal tug of war between different choices. We are never satisfied because we keep feeling that we could have done something better. This is the root cause of unhappiness in most of us.

  1. Who is your favorite author?

There are so many of them. To name a few, I would go for P G Wodehouse in humor. He is extremely consistent and the metaphors he comes up with are so unique – signs of a gifted writer. Other than him, I am also a fan of Kurt Vonnegut in satires and Keigo Higashino, best selling Japanese mystery author. 

  1. Not restraining only to SC, would you like to share with us your favorite quote?

“It is better to be hated for what you are than to be loved for what you are not.”  ― André Gide, Autumn Leaves

  1. Did you overcome any dare before you could choose happiness over convenience?

It was more like a prolonged thought process than a dare. I have made many unconventional choices in life such as leaving traditional jobs to pursue things like writing, dropping out of a very competitive MBA program to pursue a startup, ending unhappy relationships etc. I think its about taking a leap of faith. The first time is obviously very difficult but then you get more accustomed to making such decisions in future. 

  1. Would you like to point the similarities between Meera and yourself?

There are many because the book is partly inspired by my own life experiences. We are both willing to choose happiness over convenience; we both are reserved, strong and spiritual. 

  1. Would you like to leave a message for Team PepperScript?

Absolutely, I think it is a great initiative because I have seen the struggles of publishing journey myself. I feel there are many deserving writers out there and it would be great if PepperScript can bring them to market and help them get to as many readers as possible. So, keep up the good work and I am also psyched about PS Comics and Comic Con 🙂

About the Author: Nistha Tripathi is a writer and entrepreneur – wanderer would be more appropriate. She is by education an engineering grad from UIUC and MBA dropout from NYU which she believes is not important. “I penned down Seven Conversations when I felt that life had given me a story to tell and it was my duty to tell it aloud,” she says.

About the Book: Seven Conversations is a thought experiment on life and existence. The characters might be fictitious but their questions are not.

More about the Book 

Does India really need vocational training?

A press release from a German consulate said a comic book which is a collaborative effort between artists from India, France and Germany has been released on 28th January 2015. It showcases the importance of vocational training in India has been stressed via a new medium – a comic book which is a collaborative effort between artists from India, France and Germany.

The recently unveiled comic magazine “Priya and Ashok in Europe” is a unique form of storytelling using cartoons and graphic art form. The magazine is the outcome of a workshop where student artists and renowned cartoonists and graphic artists Sarnath Banerjee and Charbak Dipta from India, Joerg Reuter from Germany and Oliver Tallec from France participated.

Vocational training is the main theme of the comic, a field where Germany and India are natural partners as emphasized.

A tribute to India’s greatest storyteller!

Cartoonist R. K. Laxman, who died on 26th January 2015, was an institution unto himself. We wont be wrong if we call him a man whom no politician or minister could escape considering his pointed satire. The media is tagging him with various names like ‘Uncommon Man’ and ‘Uncrowned Conscious Keeper’.

In his autobiography ‘The Tunnel of Time’, he says, “Since childhood I do not remember wanting to do anything else except draw.” His cartoons mirrored the hopes and aspirations, follies and foibles of a society in transition.

He was born Rasipuram Krishnaswamy Laxman on October 24, 1921 in Mysore. The youngest of six brothers, Laxman had as his older brother, the legendary R.K. Narayan, the creator of Malgudi.

A look at compilation of some of R K Laxman’s Best Cartoons:

Cartoons

Slovenia honors Tagore’s art

The anniversary of the passing away of Indian Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore will be remembered in Slovenia from August 7, his death anniversary, to September 4, with a unique exhibition of prints of selected paintings by Tagore and his contemporaries provided by the National Gallery of Modern Art in New Delhi.

The exhibition displays representative works of Rabindranath, Abanindranath and Gaganendranath Tagore, along with those of Abdur Rahman Chughtai, Jamini Roy and Amrita Shergil. The uniquely curated exhibition will be on display at the house of culture in the world heritage village of Smartno in the municipality of Goriska Brda on the western border of Slovenia with Italy, according to a statement issued by the Indian embassy in Slovenia.

The village of Medana in the municipality of Goriska Brda was the natal home of poet and jurist Alojz Gradnik, who was the most prominent translator of Tagore’s works into the Slovenian language from 1917 onwards. Gradnik’s translation of “Gitanjali” into Slovenian was published from Ljubljana in 1924. The memory of Gradnik is kept alive by the international festival of poetry and wine at Medana every August and by the “Gradnik evenings” in November each year.

This is the first time that the memory of Tagore is being so honoured in the birthplace of his major Slovenian translator after Tagore visited Yugoslavia in 1926. Slovenia, a country of two million people in Central Europe, is one of the breakaway countries of the original Yugoslavia.

By 1926, the Indian Nobel laureate’s works, translated by Gradnik and others, had generated an unprecedented response in Slovenia. Slovenian identification with Tagore and his people derived from a perceived common goal of striving for political and cultural independence. “One of Tagore’s aphoristic poems has been carved into a signpost in the mountains above the town of Polhov Gradec. Maribor city has installed a bust of Tagore in a central park,” said Sarvajit Chakravarti, the Indian ambassador to Slovenia, and the brain behind the exhibition.

The Slovenian ministry of education, science and sports hosted the first commemorative concert of Rabindra Sangeet in Ljubljana on Tagore’s birth anniversary May 7 this year. The municipality of Maribor also hosted an exhibition of prints of paintings by the three Tagores.

Following the widespread influence of Indian spiritual ideas in the West, British art teacher Ernest Binfield Havell attempted to reform the teaching methods at the Calcutta School of Art by encouraging students to imitate Mughal miniatures. Havell was supported by Abanindranath Tagore, a nephew of Rabindranath Tagore. Abanindranath painted a number of works influenced by Mughal art, a style that he and Havell believed to be expressive of India’s distinct spiritual qualities, as opposed to the “materialism” of the West.

The mantle of the Bengal school was taken up by Santiniketan, a university focused on the preservation and uplift of Indian culture, values and heritage, which Rabindranath Tagore established. It included the art school Kala Bhavan, founded in 1920—21.

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The history of Queen Victoria is fading, so shall your pride!

Three statues of Queen Victoria are lying in a public park in Agra with no security cover even after the vandalism in Mathura museum when three persons damaged a statue of the Queen. The statues were earlier lying in the open ground in the Fire Brigade office complex and were lifted by a crane to be placed in the Taj Municipal Museum.

However, the Agra Municipal Corporation will need to construct pedestals with canopies because of their size. But the civic body lacks resources for these. Rajiv Saxena, a conservationist, told media, “These were installed in 1905 in the Victoria Park, now named Shah Jahan Garden. The three statues of Queen Victoria one as head of the British Empire, one as religious head with a Bible and the third as a warrior or protector are heritage pieces and need to be preserved.”

The matter has been brought to the notice of district magistrate Pankaj Kumar who informed media that, “Yes, it is important, something will be done.” Social activist Harvijay Bahia of the Agra Vikas Manch stated that, “It’s really sad, but we will all get together and provide suitable platforms with canopies and take care of the statues. The heritage of the city is a matter of pride for us.”

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