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Thirty years ago, these aspirations may not have been misplaced, but today the economic realities and failures of India’s own education system, mixed with a global capitalist agenda, are what ultimately sustain Indians leaving the country, year after year.

What happens when the places we’ve built up as utopias of opportunity show us their dysfunction and injustice? The ICE decision, like many pro-nationalist policies that seek to limit foreign immigration, throw open massive gaps in our discourse on educational inequality.

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HOMEGROWN

Nothing excites an audience more than action-packed, propaganda-filled hero movies. And no group has been more vilified and caricatured in cinema than Muslims.

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THE SWADDLE

Would the average upper caste/class Indian respond with the same empathy and shock to the institutional murder of Rohith Vemula as they would to George Floyd? 

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Not unlike America, pop culture here has contributed substantially to normalizing sexist humour and misogynistic behaviour. 

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While the show has faced several reckonings from fans in America, I fear the damage it’s still doing at home.

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HOMEGROWN

"When an Indian performer puts on a bindi, their record sales will be crazy. But the aunty in Jackson Heights has been wearing a bindi all her life – there’s nothing cool about it, she’s an outsider who has to work a minimum wage job and her bindi is a marker of her otherness."

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Not only does the show fail to address the racial and political undercurrents that come with being brown in America, but it also ends up self-stereotyping the community to the point of completely whitewashing it. 

Every movement that challenges age-old social structures is bound to have a few disparagers. Some of these are predictable, like the mass of men instinctively crying “ false accusations!“ or those that make flippant, dismissive remarks instead of confronting uncomfortable truths. But some are subtler and more complex — like women that decisively shun the movement and, if they have social and cultural clout, undermine any chance of a united resistance.

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What so many men consider benign eve-teasing or casual flirting is an annoying, scary and exhausting reality for women everywhere.

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Especially in a country where everyone feels emboldened to express their views on your body, the journey towards becoming comfortable in your skin is longwinded and not always linear.

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Even those directors acclaimed as the “pioneers” of modern cinema are ultimately only paying lip service to diversity, in a way that is as self-congratulatory as it is ignorant.

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DOWN TO EARTH

More than half our GDP is singularly dependant on coal, and one of the main goals of the Modi government is to bring India to a $5 trillion economy. Privatizing energy and agricultural sectors will bring India closer to its economic goals — but at the cost of its climate ones.

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Even in the midst of a pandemic, the way the government allocates public funds — particularly the money spent on subsidies — is telling of how low a priority both climate change and public health truly are.

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The push towards cutting consumer tariffs for renewable energy has resulted in its unviable production for private companies. With infrequent and insufficient government subsidies, the cost of going green effectively cuts off access to low-income communities.

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HOMEGROWN

A thoroughly haunting and deeply emotional portrait of one of South Asia’s most fearless writers, Manto is a compassionate story of a man with a fractured identity who sought to mend a broken world.

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It’s a deeply disheartening fact: women trafficking other women is a growing problem. Where no number of theory-laden women’s solidarity movements can address that, Love Sonia's spot-on characters give us crucial glimpses.

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HOMEGROWN

Nothing excites an audience more than action-packed, propaganda-filled hero movies. And no group has been more vilified and caricatured in cinema than Muslims.

HOMEGROWN

When culinary tradition is so intrinsically linked to the celebration of culture, what happens to the histories of foods that carry with them generations of pain?

HOMEGROWN

Activism and art are both vital to a thriving democracy, but too often in India’s blood-stained past, these freedoms have been denied by the political elite.

homegrown

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Cinema has historically always told stories of women, with women, but rarely have they been told by women – especially in India.

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His award-winning work has transcended conventional understandings of space and architecture, and forged itself as an emotionally-charged, ethical approach to art within chaos.

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The rise of independent Indian cinema, championed by student filmmakers across the country, is exemplified in Lata. It centres the story of a young domestic worker as she navigates the upper class home where she works.

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 In his three-track EP, Duur, Ankur Tewari has managed to beautifully capture the dialectic feelings of loneliness, nostalgia and love. "I want people to feel comfortable enough to feel." 

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At the age of 12, Kazi used his passion for science and technology to invent ERVIS, an intelligent ship that sucks in waste from the surface of the ocean and actually cleans it. 

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Prateek Kuhad’s ‘cold/mess’ Video: 

An Intimate Look Behind-The-Scenes

A carefully constructed music video that captures the raw, emotional ups and downs of a relationship – the effortlessness of a first love, the pain of heartbreak, and everything in between. 

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An architecture student turned theatre actor and full-time drag queen, everything about Suruj is deeply inspiring. His effortless smile is contagious as he goes through ups and downs of his unconventional life.

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Food is central to Tibetan identity. Dishes like tsampa, made from roasted barley, have become the fabric that ties the diaspora together in the fight for a free Tibet.

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Prashant Mistry wears many hats in the music industry. A wonderful, passionate musician, he opens up about his journey, his cultural identity, inspiration and experiences in a changing world.

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She invented Tethys, named after the Greek goddess of fresh water: a quick, portable, low-cost test to detect lead contamination in water using carbon nanotubes. 

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Kalyan’s ethereal sounds and bold aesthetic reflect and challenge the sociopolitical invisibility he straddles every day.

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For island nations, the climate crisis is amplified since their economies are dependent on the natural resources. Ameenah Gurib Fakeem discusses her role as a leader in addressing these unique challenges.

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From the inconic jingles we instinctively hum to age-old tag lines we drop in daily conversation, the deeply influential world of advertising was mastered singularly by Alyque Padamsee. 

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Their electrifying, progressive content is shaped with narrative fluidity and technical skill. Their fresh approach to extreme and daring stunts will leave you captivated and thoroughly entertained. 

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Documentary photographers are tasked with preserving emotional truths and capturing the socio political realities of our time. Here are five of the best under-the-radar photographers in India.

interviews & features

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SLATE

Somewhere in the course of his preparation for the Hill,  Zuckerberg  was probably advised to address each questioner by his or her title as much as humanly possible.​

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SLATE

Before a court hearing Monday, Michael Cohen’s attorneys said Cohen had three clients in 2017: Donald Trump, Republican fundraiser Elliott Broidy, and a third person he declined to name. This is what happened at the reveal.

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SLATE

Reynolds Woodcock, the obsessive, controlling fashion designer played by Daniel Day-Lewis in Phantom Thread, inhabits a beautiful, rarified world that does not smile on intrusions. 

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