Books and Authors - Current Affairs for October, 2017
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▼ RM Nirmala Sitharaman launches first DDP coffee table book [10-30-17]
Raksha Mantri Smt Nirmala Sitharaman released a coffee table book on the Department of Defence Production (DDP), titled 'A journey towards self-reliance'.
The first ever coffee table book on the department, it chronicles the post-independence years of development, indigenisation and production of arms, ammunition and defence equipment, with a view to achieve self-reliance for the Armed Forces of India.
The contents of the book are a remarkable collection of past and current defence equipment produced in India.
Avid readers will find themselves immersed in a world of illustrations and remarkable photographs, captured at 'the' moments, and revealing relevant texts, which will be of interest to the 'defence technology-savvy' Indians.
The book epitomises the visionary approach of the Government of India seeking to establish India as a global manufacturing hub, under the 'Make in India' initiative.
It lends credence to the sincere efforts put in by thousands of unknown faces, to mould and shape the Indian defence industry.
▼ American author George Saunders wins Man Booker Prize [10-18-17]
American author George Saunders won the prestigious Man Booker Prize for fiction on Oct 17, 2017 for Lincoln in the Bardo, a polyphonic symphony of a novel about restless souls adrift in the afterlife.
It is the second year in a row an American has won the £50,000 ($66,000) prize, which was opened to US authors in 2014.
The book is based on a real visit President Abraham Lincoln made in 1862 to the body of his 11-year-old son Willie at a Washington cemetery.
By turns witty, bawdy, poetic and unsettling, Lincoln in the Bardo juxtaposes events from Lincoln’s life and the US Civil War through passages from historians both real and fictional with a chorus of otherworldly characters who are dead, but unwilling or unable to let go of life.
In Tibetan Buddhism, the bardo is the transition state between death and rebirth.
Baroness Lola Young, who chaired the Booker judging panel credited that the novel stood out because of its innovation, its very different styling, the way in which it paradoxically brought to life these almost-dead souls.
Saunders was awarded the prize by Prince Charles’ wife, Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall, during a ceremony at London’s medieval Guildhall.
The author said he resisted telling the story of Lincoln, an American icon, for 20 years.
But the novel, which took four years to write, turned out to be pointedly timely in a divided United States.
Lincoln in the Bardo is the first novel by the 58-year-old Saunders, an acclaimed short story writer who won the Folio Prize in 2014 for his darkly funny story collection Tenth of December.
A former oil industry engineer who teaches creative writing at Syracuse University in New York state, Saunders is probably best known outside literary circles for a commencement speech he gave in 2013 with the key message “Try to be kinder.”
Saunders beat five other finalists- New Yorker Paul Auster’s quadruple coming-of-age story 4321; US writer Emily Fridlund’s story of a Midwest teenager, History of Wolves; Scottish author Ali Smith’s Brexit-themed Autumn; British-Pakistani novelist Mohsin Hamid’s migration story Exit West; and British writer Fiona Mozley’s debut novel Elmet about a fiercely independent family under threat.
Saunders is the second American in a row to win the prize, founded in 1969 and until 2013 limited to writers from Britain, Ireland and the Commonwealth.
The 2016 winner was Paul Beatty’s The Sellout.
The move to admit all English-language writers spurred fears among some British writers and publishers that Americans would come to dominate a prize whose previous winners include Salman Rushdie, Ben Okri, Margaret Atwood and Hilary Mantel.
Prize organizers said 30 percent of the 144 books submitted by publishers for consideration this year were American, a figure slightly down from last year.
▼ Gauri Lankesh posthumously wins Anna Politkovskaya Award [10-9-17]
Gauri Lankesh posthumously wins Anna Politkovskaya award
Journalist-activist Gauri Lankesh, who was shot dead by unknown assailants on September 5, has been posthumously accorded with the prestigious Anna Politkovskaya Award.
This award is instituted by Reach All Women (RAW) in War.
RAW, in a statement, said that it was honoured to award the annual Anna Politkovskaya Award for women human rights defenders from war and conflict zones jointly to Gauri Lankesh posthumously, and to a brave Pakistani activist Gulalai Ismaial, who similarly is fighting against Islamic extremism.
Ms. Ismail has faced the death threats for speaking out against the Taliban in north-west Pakistan.
Gauri is the 12th woman to receive this prestigious award. Nominations Committee members have observed that they were deeply moved by Gauri and Gulalai's bravery and dedication to peace and human rights.
The announcement of the award was an emotional one, as Gauri's brother Indrajit Lankesh, mother Indira Lankesh and close friend M.S. Ashadevi struggled to find words to express their feelings on RAW honouring Gauri with this international award.
Gauri was awarded with Periyar Award posthumously by the Thinkers Forum on September 17 in Bengaluru.
Anna Politkovskaya: Know More
- Anna Politkovskaya, a Russian journalist was killed in 2006 in Moscow for her courage to speak out on behalf of the suffering of the civilians in the war in Chechnya.
- It is not by coincidence that Gauri's work, her personality and the way she was killed for her work reminded us so much of the way Anna lived and died for the truth.
- To mark the anniversary of Anna Politkovskaya's murder on October 7, 2006 and to honour Anna and the women like in the world, RAW in War annually presents the award to a female human rights defender from conflict zone.
▼ Noted Marathi writer HM Marathe is no more [10-4-17]
Eminent Marathi writer and journalist Hanumant Moreshwar Marathe passed away on Oct 2, 2017 owing to prolonged illness, said doctors operating him.
The 77-year-old writer, popularly known as ‘Ha Mo’, breathed his last at Dinanath Mangeshkar Hospital where he was undergoing heart-related treatment and had difficulty in breathing.
According to his relatives, Marathe was admitted to the hospital few days ago.
Born on March 2, 1940, Marathe wrote many books. Of them, ‘Nishparna Vrukshavar Bhar Dupari’ became very popular.
He started his career with teaching at a college in Kolhapur. He also worked in Tarun Bharat and Kirloskar magazine.