Life is elsewhere...

Yoda Press has three new titles in the making- Wish You Were Here: Memories of a Gay Life, Muslim Portraits: Everyday Lives in India, and Ecriture Indienne D’Expression Francaise.

All very different books- different from each other, and distinctly Yoda.

Sunil Gupta's Memories of a Gay Life stands at the forefront of that creative ‘migrant’ generation which first exploded on the visual art scene in the 1980s. Wish you were here is a memoir in photos by this important gay photographer of Indian origin for whom home is where he finds himself at a given moment. In this thought-provoking work, the personal becomes political without guile or inhibition as the photographer explores contentious terrain such as sexuality, gender and racism. His courageous engagement with the issues which have shaped his experience and practice has given decisive shape to the contemporary debate about difference.

In the Biography and Gender Sections, Rs 995, ISBN: 978-81-906668-0-0.

Muslim portraits is a "captivating new volume, [wherein] 13 anthropologists present a set of vivid portraits of Muslims in India today. Each of the contributors has had a long-term research interest in Muslim societies in India, but in these essays they profile one single individual whom they have met in the course of their research and whose story they found compelling. The subjects of this volume live in different parts of India, like Bhuj, the mountains of Kashmir, Hyderabad, Androth Island, and Lucknow, they speak different languages, eat different foods, are engaged in various kinds of work, but are all Muslim. Zooming in on individuals who have normally stood cheek-by-jowl with hundreds of others in a large canvas, these portraits focus attention on them in a separate frame, revealing their stories, predicaments, and realities, the aspirations they nurture and the impediments they overcome to attempt to achieve these. In doing so, they highlight the sheer diversity which lies hidden under the seemingly homogeneous category of the Indian Muslim, and shatter stereotypes. Intimately told and stripped of jargon, yet nuanced and incisive, this is a valuable addition to the corpus of books on the Muslim community in contemporary India." Commenting on the book, Richard Eaton of the University of Arizona says ‘These vivid and compelling portraits reveal the lives of eleven ordinary Indians utterly different in class, occupation, language, and regional identity yet sharing the same hopes, fears, and life-challenges common to us all. The volume challenges the crude, monolithic stereotypes of Islam so often heard today. It is a timely and much-needed contribution.’

Edited by Mukulika Banerjee, Reader in Social Anthropology at UCL, the title is in paperback, 164pages, Rs 250. ISBN 978-81-906186-2-5. In our Anthropology and Culture sections.

And finally, Ecriture Indienne, an anthology of Indian Writing in french "brings together texts from Pondicherry, Karaikal and Mahe, the erstwhile French territories in India. It also includes writings from Goa, a former Portuguese colony, where French was widely used in literary circles. Some of the writers whose texts appear in the anthology are Toru Dutt, Sri Aurobindo, M. Mukundan, Paulino Dias, Léon Saint Jean and so on."

The volume is put together by Vijaya Rao at the Centre for French & Francophone Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University. Paperback, 200 pages.