Tag Archives: Writing

Editor Type Answers

Nilakantan Rajaraman S wants to know my opinion as an editor to this piece. Very quickly:

  1. I don’t find it badly written.  It is not great writing, but if someone thrusts it before me and asks me to edit it, it will probably pass muster.
  2. But before it can be placed before me for editing, it has to pass a tollgate where someone decides whether to publish it or not. If I were that someone, I would not publish it. The hurdle is not quality of writing, but quality of the content.
  3. But the reason to publish something written by someone with the name of Sitaram Yechury is not the content. It is the name. His views will be published for the news content, if you know what I mean.

On Editing

Most of my readers should have already downloaded and read the July 2008 edition of Pragati. If you have been remiss, please do so now. It is focused on India’s foreign policy and contains many high-quality articles, as Pragati always does.

Here are some thoughts on writing and editing, based on the few months of poring over submissions and editing that I have done as an editor of Pragati:

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Fresh Off the Post-Modernism Generator

Did we ever have to be bothered by a kind of discursive scheme about right & wrong, good & bad, virtue & vice, prevailing in varying degrees at any place on earth inhabited by humans and from time immemorial, which is absolutely constructed on the foundations of gender- ie; on the worst of arbitrary division of the entire humanity into men, women, transsexuals, trans gendered, eunuchs, etc.?

This is how it starts. It only gets better from here.  (via Blogbharti)

Unclear on the Concept

I tend to write after thinking, which makes writing difficult. Usually, what I actually put on the screen is a fraction of the thinking I do on a subject.  Which is why I am in utter awe of someone who can write like this:

Solutions for Reducing Corruption

1. Replace the Fiat currency system with more viable energy based currency system. Replace the Fractional Reserve Banking with absolute reserve banking this can be done by introducing online clearing of cheque and all banks has to settle the outstanding on weekly basis, so that banks are not able to create money from thin air through book entries, they can only loan out money they have as deposit or equity. This will enable better allocation of resources and better distribution of wealth and will result in reduction of corruption in the society.

There is more in that fine comment, all of it completely meaningless.

Tea Leaves Blocking a Sink – I

I am starting a new series. The theme will be clear if you can decipher the title of this post and recognise the allusion.  The first person to guess the allusion gets a big hug from me… if you want it, that is.

For many, governance post-1991 is a simple shift to map. Uncomplicated marketisation, privatisation and other -ations and -isms have invaded all spheres of our lives and made the state and all else redundant. I don’t think the picture is this simple. Easy as the pleasure of the damning critique is, and ample the ammunition to do so is, “neoliberalism writ large” offers us little nuance and even less hope. As a great fan of hope, let me suggest another track. Much more useful is an analysis of how an economic logic has entered and shaped our politics, insitutions, and notions of justice and citizenship. We must look, therefore, not for a “neoliberal” state and economy, but a state that uses technologies and techniques of neoliberalism, selectively and not always with full control, and not without other logics and motivations in contexts that vary greatly. Spotting these techniques in particular sites offers us the first articulations of effective counter-discourses. Sometimes, this is a far easier task than one might imagine. Sometimes your prime minister simply questions democracy in a leading daily. (source)