Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Arindam's Report Mentioned in Kama Maclean's Work

Prominent author, Kama Maclean, mentioned my January 21, 2001, report in Hindustan Times, in her footnote No. 76 (Sept 2009, page 341) in a prestigious research paper, also Chapter One of a book now.

Here’s note as mentioned in that paper:

This paper was presented in an earlier form at the Annual Conference on South Asia at the University of Madison Wisconsin, 2005, with thanks to the panel participants and audience for their feedback and comments. It is an extension of the arguments presented in Kama Maclean, Pilgrimage and Power: the Kumbh Mela in Allahabad, New York: Oxford University Press, 2008, chapter one.
Sample the beginning of the paper:

Pilgrimage, Tourism, and Layers of Looking at theKumbh Mela

Kama Maclean


The black and white photograph is of a group of peasant women, wrapped in coarse woolen shawls against the January cold. They look at the camera blankly—or is that with hostility at the camera’s intrusion? Deliberately drained of color, the image seems as though it could have been taken a century ago. One woman, the central figure, is wearing dark sunglasses, and has been no doubt chosen as a focal point because her middle-class accessory stands out as the image’s only sign-post to modernity. The photograph, ‘‘Kumbh Mela Women,’’ was taken at the Allahabad Kumbh Mela in 2001. It is copyrighted. It is ‘‘collectable,’’ and apparently, a wise addition to an investment portfolio. It is also an example of how images of the traditional (often synonymous with ‘‘the religious’’) have become desired, frame-able objects, fine art mementos to our own modular, more complete modernity. It was images such as this (and this is a comparatively benign example) that raised along-standing issue for managers of the Kumbh Mela in 2001: did photographers have a right to enter the mela grounds and take photographs as they pleased? How did the presence of international media crews affect the festival, and the ways in which people perform their rituals?


76. Roy, Arindam, ‘‘Scribes vow to shun Kumbh administration,’’ Hindustan Times, January 21, 2001; Rahul Bedi, ‘‘Hindu Sect forces out Westerners,’’ The Age, January 13, 2001, p. 22.

Link of the Research Paper: