Tag Archives: India

New Email Archive Tool to Sift Literary Legacies

“The leather-bound diaries of a 19th-century high-school principal in southwestern India are helping change how archivists around the world handle email. As authors’ archives encompass fewer handwritten drafts and more digital documents, email remains a particularly sticky problem. That’s where the diaries, kept for 50 years by Sudheendra Hangal’s great-grandfather-in-law, come in. In 2004, when Mr. Hangal was working as an engineer for Sun Microsystems in India, he came across the journals in a trunk in his in-laws’ house in Dharwad, about 300 miles from Bangalore. He discovered that his wife’s ancestor was something of the Samuel Pepys of Southern Asia, documenting the momentous and the mundane from 1880, when he was 30 years old, until his death a half-century later. On the lined pages of the diaries, he recorded births and deaths, daily household life and the price of vegetables.” (via WSJ)

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Illiterate, but in Love With Books

“On the banks of picturesque Dal Lake in Srinagar, the summer capital of Jammu and Kashmir, sits the only library in the neighborhood, run by a man who loves books but cannot read. In a single-story wooden house, carefully maintained shelves are filled with around 600 books in several languages, the prize possessions of Muhammad Latif Oata, a 44-year-old handicrafts seller who dropped out of school at age 10 to work.” (via NYTimes.com)

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Rare collection under threat as Delhi library faces closure

“One of India’s oldest libraries – established by 19th Century colonial officers who donated British and Indian first editions – is facing closure after government funding was withdrawn. Writers and scholars, among others, have rallied together to save the library.”

via NY Daily News

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Reading Made Easy – Why Just Books Libraries Work

Forbes – “Melissa D’Silva goes to the library almost every day. For someone who is not a book lover, this is unusual. “I don’t like to read,” she confesses. “But I came here to find books on baby care, and things to occupy my mind and time.” A few days ago, D’Silva had started her maternity leave and boredom was creeping in. So one day, she decided to head to the local library that her husband, Sharlon, had been frequenting for four months. Soon, she was hooked. D’Silva’s 10-year-old niece Rhea recently picked up Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney. When Rhea wanted to read the other books in the series, the library, called Just Books, offered to get her those books within 24 hours. The books would be sourced from other member libraries. Until a few months ago, the D’Silva household were not members of any library. “I was last the member of a government library, 12 years ago,” says Sharlon D’Silva.”

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India state bans book hinting Gandhi had gay lover

AP – “A state in western India banned Pulitzer-Prize winner Joseph Lelyveld’s new book about Mahatma Gandhi on Wednesday after reviews saying it hints that the father of India’s independence had a homosexual relationship. The author says his work is being misinterpreted. More bans have been proposed in India, where homosexuality was illegal until 2009 and still carries social stigma.”

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