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Public Texts

Public Texts is a monthly series of conversations that brings authors to talk about their work, based on their latest book. The session is usually structured as an hour-long conversation between the author/s (and illustrators) and the moderator. After the session, the floor is open to audience for questions.

 

Our guests vary from authors of books on science, nature and culture to authors of fantasy fiction and children’s books. Some of our past speakers include Harsh Mander, AR. Venkatachalapathy, Kartik Shanker, Asha Nehemiah, Sukanya Venkatraghavan and Shreya Ila Anasuya.

 

All sessions have a popup bookstore where the audience can buy the book being discussed and other related titles. The IIHS Library also organises book exhibitions alongside showcasing our public reference library. All Public Texts sessions are free and open to the public. Children are welcome. For updates on upcoming Public Texts sessions, join our mailing list.

 

Public Texts is jointly hosted by the IIHS Library and the Word Lab. All Public Texts sessions are live-streamed on the IIHS YouTube Channel. Watch previous sessions on the IIHS YouTube Channel.

Upcoming

No Easy Answers

How Children Learn and Grow
Thursday, 26 Sept 2019 | 6:00 pm
Free entry, limited seats. RSVP required.

We are delighted to invite you to the next Public Texts session titled No Easy Answers: How children learn and grow with Kamala Mukunda and Arjun Jayadev. They will discuss learning difficulties, gender gap in STEM, digital classrooms and more from her book, What Did You Ask At School Today? Book 2 (HarperCollins India, 2019). This session will be particularly interesting to parents, teachers, students of psychology and education and child-learning enthusiasts.

 

Event Live Stream

Past Events

Previous Sessions

India’s Yesterdays

Putting our past in context

Monday, 19 Aug 2019 | 6:00 pm

On Monday 19 August, IIHS hosted yet another full house at the Public Texts session with Manu S. Pillai and Prem Panicker. History buffs were all ears for the session titled, India’s Yesterdays: Putting our past in context. Other than his new book The Courtesan, the Mahatma and the Italian Brahmin (Westland, 2019), the chat delved into childhood, identity, nationalism, caste and the importance of seeing these in context. If you missed it, here are some photographs from the session and watch the full video here.

 

The Urban Treeverse: Stories of trees in cities
Thursday, 25 July 2019 | 6:30 pm

 

We had Harini Nagendra, Seema Mundoli and Rohini Nilekani sit down to talk about trees as memory keepers of cities, based on the book, Cities and Canopies (Penguin, 2019). Rohini suggested a Bengaluru Forum for Urban Forestry, Seema held a pop quiz on seeds and Harini spoke about not cutting mother trees. Head over to the IIHS YouTube Channel to watch this session.

 

Casting a Spell: Voices in feminist fantasy fiction

Public Texts session titled Casting a Spell: Voices in feminist fantasy fiction was held on Thursday, 20 June 2019 from 6:30 pm onwards at BCC. Click here for photographs from the session.

 

Shreya Ila Anasuya and Sukanya Venkatraghavan were in conversation with Shalini Srinivasan about their feminist fantasy collection, Magical Women (Hachette, 2019). They discussed the importance of feminist voices in fantasy fiction. The discussion included what feminism means to them and how fantasy lets them play God with their characters. Head over to the IIHS YouTube Channel to watch this session.

 

Where do Stories Come From? Writing for Children Through the Years

Public Texts session titled Where do Stories Come From? Writing for children through the years was held on Friday, 31 May 2019 from 6:30 pm onwards at BCC. Click here for photographs from the session.

 

Children’s books author Asha Nehemiah was in conversation with writer and editor Bijal Vachharajani. They discussed writing for children through the years with a focus on concepts, process and relevance. A variety of children’s books were available for purchase at the Lightroom bookstore pop-up shop at the event. Head over to the IIHS YouTube Channel to watch this session.

 

As part of this session the IIHS Library held a week-long children’s book exhibition from 27 to 31 May 2019 in the gallery space on campus. Readers of all ages browsed through the IIHS Library children’s book collection.

 

Slow and Steady: Talking about Sea Turtle Conservation in India

PublicTexts session titled Slow and Steady: Talking about sea turtle conservation in India was held on Thursday, 2 May 2019 from 6:30 pm onwards at BCC. Click here for photographs from the session.

 

Ecologist Kartik Shanker was in conversation with H S Sudhira, Director of Gubbi Labs about his book From Soup to Superstar: The Story of Sea Turtle Conservation along the Indian Coast (Harper Litmus, 2015). The session explored the slow and steady stride of sea turtles into India’s conservation story. Head over to the IIHS YouTube Channel to watch this session.

 

All Characters are Tamil: A Conversation about Tamil Culture, People and Politics

The March edition of Public Texts, All Characters are Tamil: A conversation about Tamil culture, people and politics, was held at BCC on Thursday, 21 March 2019 from 6:30 pm onwards.

 

A R Venkatachalapathy was in conversation with Ranjani Krishnakumar about his book Tamil Characters: Personalities, Politics, Culture (Pan Macmillan, 2018). The conversation  unpacked contemporary Tamil Nadu through politicians, current events and policies. Head over to the IIHS YouTube Channel to watch this session.

 

Close Encounters of Another Kind – Women and Development Economics

Book launch of ‘Close Encounters of Another Kind – Women and Development Economics’ by Dr. Devaki Jain was held on 10 September, 2018.

 

Aromar Revi, Founding Director of IIHS was in conversation with Padma Bhushan Dr. Devaki Jain, writer and feminist economist. Dr. Jain’s latest volume of essays brought together her various engagements with public policy, development economics and women. It examined the gender development mission that began in 1975 with the First World Conference of Women and went on to become the Women’s Decade, while simultaneously rooting itself in the reality of the Global South. In her newest work, Dr. Jain highlights the ways in which the design of public policy has ignored the lived experience offered in India as development.

 

The Movements of Movements – What Makes Us Move?

Jai Sen, the editor of The Movements of Movements – What Makes Us Move? Vol. 1 was in conversation with IIHS faculty Solomon Benjamin and with Madhu Bhushan, independent activist-writer-(re)searcher. He spoke about situating movements and uprisings in internationalism from grassroots to a global level. This event was held on 18 April 2018.

 

Health Inequities in India: A Synthesis of Recent Evidence

This book brings together a vast expanse of research on health inequities in India, identifies research gaps, proposes areas for future research on the subject, and discusses all the major documented axes of marginalisation. This event was held on 23 February 2018. For more details, please visit: http://www.healthinequity.com.

 

Dr. Upendra Bhojani (Faculty, Institute of Public Health and External Consultant, IIHS), was in conversation with the editors of the book, Sundari Ravindran and Rakhal Gaitonde and the other contributors to the volume: Dr. T K Sundari Ravindran (Professor, Shree Chitra Tirunal Institute for Medical Sciences and Technology, Trivandrum), Dr. Rakhal Gaitonde (Centre for Technology and Policy (CTaP), Indian Institute of Technology, Chennai), Dr. C Priyadarshini (Assistant Professor, M S Ramaiah Medical College, Bangalore), Dr. Sudharshini Subramaniam (Assistant Professor, Madras Medical College, Chennai), Dr. Chitra Grace (Independent Researcher, Trivandrum) and Dr. Prashanth Nuggehalli Srinivas ( Faculty & India Alliance Fellow, Institute of Public Health, Bangalore)

 

Trashonomics: Solid Waste Management|A Simple Guide for Children

In this PublicTexts event, authors of ‘Trashonomics’ book by Solid Waste Management Round Table, Archana Kashyap and Claire Rao were in conversation with, Sowmya Reddy (Animal rights activist), Almitra Patel (SWM expert committee), Vani Murthy (SWM expert/urban farmer), Mansoor Gous (Recyclable waste manager/expert), Sandhya (BBMP Medical Officer Health)

 

The conversation was about creating awareness on waste management at a young age and how this book could act as a guide for everyone to understand, practice segregation, recycling and reusing of waste and to become responsible citizens of tomorrow. This event was held on 16 September 2016.

 

Ahmedabad: A City in the World

In this PublicTexts event, Jayaraj Sundaresan, Fellow, Bartlett Development Planning Unit, University College London was in conversation with Amrita Shah, Journalist, Writer and Visiting Faculty at the Centre for Contemporary Studies, IISc, on her recent book, Ahmedabad – A City in the World (Bloomsbury, 2015). This event was held on 4 February 2016.

 

Looking Away: Inequality, Prejudice and Indifference in New India

On 24 April 2015, author Harsh Mander was in conversation with Samar Halarnkar at the launch of his new book, Looking Away: Inequality, Prejudice and Indifference in New India analysed the many different fault lines which crisscross Indian society today.

 

Shadow Play

In this PublicTexts event held on 11 March 2015, Dr. Vimala Rama Rao, was in conversation with author Shashi Deshpande, about her recent novel, Shadow Play (Aleph Book Company, 2013), a masterful meditation on kinship, marriage, ambition and the changing face of urban India.

 

Bengaluru: Roots and Beyond

In this PublicTexts event, Sathya Prakash Varanashi, architect and convener of the INTACH, was in conversation with Maya Jayapal, urban historian and author of her recently released book Bengaluru: Roots and Beyond (Niyogi Books, 2014) on 24 April 2014. Maya Jayapal’s other publications include Old Singapore (Oxford University Press, 1992), Old Jakarta (Oxford University Press, 1993), Bengaluru: Story of the City (EastWest Books, 1997).

 

The Integral Nature of Things: Critical Reflections on the Present

In this PublicTexts event, Amlanjyoti Goswami was in conversation with Dr. Lata Mani, author, feminist historian and cultural critic, about her new book, The Integral Nature of Things: Critical Reflections on the Present (Routledge, 2013) on 12 December 2013. The book meditates on the interrelations and interconnections between drawing from literary theory, sociocultural analysis and cultural studies.

 

Because I have A Voice: Queer Politics in India

In the opening PublicTexts event, editors Arvind Narrain and Gautam Bhan of the book Because I have a voice: Queer Politics in India (Yoda Press, 2005) were in conversation with Mario D’Penha, historian and activist, on contemporary queer politics as well as writing and activism around sexuality on 11 October 2013.

Book Launches

Bird Business

Thursday, 1 August 2019 | 6:00 pm

 

Rohan Chakravarty’s new book, Bird Business, was launched at IIHS by wildlife photographer Amoghavarsha J S. At the event, Nandita Jayaraj from The Life of Science sat down for a conversation with the author where they discussed, among other things, the usefulness of pigeons! 

RELATED VIDEOS

The Urban Treeverse
Harini Nagendra, Seema Mundoli and Rohini Nilekani

Casting a Spell: Voices in feminist fantasy fiction
Shreya Ila Anasuya, Sukanya Venkatraghavan and Shalini Srinivasan

Where Do Stories Come From? Writing for children through the years
Asha Nehemiah