articles by Neerja Deodhar

Entertainment

In Inventing Anna and The Dropout, portraits of empty ambition built on fraud and privilege

The two series feature real-life protagonists who proved the superficiality of the girlboss tag by turning it on its head. Anna Delvey and Elizabeth Holmes desired the success that came with the term, without the hustle associated with it.

Entertainment

Dangals of Crime, two-part docuseries on Discovery+, shines a light on the mafia embedded in Indian wrestling

Olympian Sushil Kumar's recent arrest was not a case of a bad apple. It was a symptom of something systemic — the inextricable links between wrestling and organised crime in Delhi-NCR and adjacent regions.

Entertainment

Shaunak Sen on why his Sundance award-winning film All That Breathes is far more than an environmental documentary

“I’m wary of bleeding-heart sentimentalism that tinges the discourse around environmentalism," says filmmaker Shaunak Sen, who feels All That Breathes, his documentary on kites in Delhi and their rescuers, is "an interspecies love story."

Entertainment

We Need To Talk About Cosby throws light on how complicated legacies should be sensitively handled

The docu-series on Bill Cosby shows, "When it comes to legacies, complicated or otherwise, what we choose to frame in the foreground and what we relegate to the background is inherently political. Legacies are, after all, about posterity and memory."

Entertainment

Pasta experiments: Learning to be mindful and indulgent from Italian nonnas and Stanley Tucci

My foray into Italian cooking somewhat resembles – at least on a visual level – the kind of pasta I saw on TV as a child, when I spent hours watching cooking and travel shows with my mother.

long-reads

In Mumbai’s sea, a group of swimmers finds thrill, respite from the city, and a sense of community

Open sea swimming as a test of resilience, a sense of escape, and a way to build a community — Neerja Deodhar and Zahra Amiruddin document the Mumbai Sea Swimmers in action, in Part 4 of the series 'Leisure & Loiter'.

Arts & Culture

Inside an NFT art auction: Prinseps' founder on adopting new tech, the future of crypto art in India

Mumbai-based auction house Prinseps will be holding two NFT auctions: of 1950s artist Gobardhan Ash’s artworks, and Oscar-winning costume designer Bhanu Athaiya’s fashion sketches.

Arts & Culture

Watch: Poet Asmaa Azaizeh on Palestine's arts and culture scene, enduring relevance of Mahmoud Darwish

In a conversation with Firstpost, Asmaa spoke about what it means to write about love and other themes during a time of strife and conflict.

Lifestyle

Separating fact from fiction: Anirban Mahapatra on writing a book about COVID-19, challenges of pandemic scholarship

The answer to whether the world could have predicted the occurrence of a pandemic like COVID-19, in Anirban Mahapatra’s estimation, is unequivocally yes.

Arts & Culture

Rooftops as an antidote to the lockdown: A photographer documents people's shared joys, closeness on terraces

On a rooftop, it is possible to convince yourself that not everything has changed since the pandemic: it’s still possible to spend time with family outdoors, to play the odd game of cricket, to meet friends and relatives.

Entertainment

Kani Kusruti, on her own terms: Actress discusses how theatre shaped her craft, and why her social media is promotion-free

The work and achievements of many people go unnoticed every day. To be heard in the film industry, you need to be a certain type of celebrity or have a certain stature, says Kani Kusruti.

Arts & Culture

Literature and climate change: Vinita Agrawal, Ranjit Hoskote and Sumana Roy on politics, intimacy of writing about nature

As the issue of climate change becomes more urgent, the work of writers becomes vital, to remind us of what is at stake, and what is already lost.

Arts & Culture

Discovering Ramchandra Siras: Beyond pathos, knowing the AMU professor through his award-winning poetry

Anish Gawande talks about translating a poem by Ramchandra Siras, and what his story means in the larger narrative surrounding Section 377.

India

Beyond the Kashish Film Festival controversy, members of Mumbai's queer community allude to a widening rift

The Kashish Film Festival row has brought to the fore differing opinions about whether Pride overlaps with political issues, as well as the discrimination that trans individuals face within the Indian queer community

India

Cow vigilantism, deconstructed: What Gau Premi, a new documentary, found by trailing a group of 'rakshaks' in Gujarat

Gau Premi, shot in Gujarat’s Rajkot, captures how cow vigilantes prowl the streets at night in coordinated attempts to catch ‘smugglers’. They see themselves as eradicating a societal “disease”.

Entertainment

Danish Sait, a voice of the lockdown: Comedian-actor on his alter egos, developing a unique style and responding to critics

For his videos which satirise the conversations people are having during the lockdown, Danish Sait employs a number of personas and draws heavily on the vocabulary and obsessions of Bengaluru's residents. He also makes ingenuous – if sometimes bizarre – use of props, from cloth bags to his pet cat

Lifestyle

Bereavement, grief and mourning are complicated experiences. The pandemic has made them tougher to navigate

Though death has assumed a sort of omnipresence during the pandemic, we operate on the hope and belief that we will not be touched by it. The passing of a loved one undoes this hope.

Lifestyle

Sindhustan: Sapna Bhavnani retraces roots, tattoos history onto her body in a new documentary

In Sindhustan, Sapna Bhavnani interviews people from the Sindhi community, and turned their stories into tattoos on her legs, thus becoming a human map of Partition.

long-reads

Re-thinking productivity during the pandemic, countering a culture obsessed with being 'useful'

In a more well-adjusted world, we would not expect ourselves to be constantly productive during a pandemic. But our world is dysfunctional at best, and we need reminders about how we’re not working from home but rather "at home during a crisis, trying to work", to stop feeling disappointed in ourselves

India

With a 'Legal Cell' on Twitter, Ungender aids women seeking information about workplace laws, harassment redressal

Ungender, an organisation that has been working on the implementation of the anti-sexual harassment act and other gender-centric laws at the workplace, is offering counselling on its Twitter account. Managing partner Pallavi Pareek outlines the ways in which women are discriminated against at the workplace, and why top leadership should be more empathetic to those who raise complaints