september 2012 programmes


saturday 1st september
6.30 pm  - ‘Amu’ - a film screening and discussion with Shonali Bose

Based on the 1984 genocide against Sikhs, Amu, written, produced and directed by Bose won two National Awards (Best Film, Best Director) – India’s highest award given by the President of the country and the FIPRESCI Critics Award amongst ten international awards. The film was an official selection at the Berlin Film Festival, followed by Toronto (TIFF) and many others. The film was released theatrically in North America by Emerging Pictures and in India by Shringar and won both popular and critical acclaim. Bose was asked to convert the screenplay into a novel by Penguin. The novel released in India simultaneously with the film, making her the first Indian to be a filmmaker and author.

  Shonali Bose did an MA in Political Science at Columbia University followed by an MFA in Directing from the UCLA School of Theater Film and Television. As a student at UCLA she received a number of awards: Ely Award for Best Documentary, Wasserman Award, Jack Sauter Award, Hollywood Radio and Television Society International Broadcasting Award, Motion Picture Association of America Award. After graduating she taught at NYFA, Universal Studios for a year before starting to write her debut feature film – Amu.

Bose co wrote and co produced Chittagong with director Bedobrata Pain. The film has been receiving raves and standing ovations at screenings and festivals in North America (Opening film – IFFLA and NYIFF) and is slated for theatrical release soon.

Shonali is the first Indian to receive the prestigious Sundance-Mahindra Global Filmmaker Award for her new script ‘Margarita, with a Straw’. The award was presented at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival. She is currently in pre production on the film.



The Foundations of Western Civilization – an education in 24 evenings.  An Attic video presentation from The Great Courses taught by Prof. Thomas Noble, University of Notre Dame.

You can discover the essential nature, evolution, and perceptions of Western civilization from its humble beginnings in the great river valleys of Iraq and Egypt to the dawn of the modern world.

This series of 48 half hour lectures - 2 per evening will be introduced by an eminent professor/personality who will also answer questions. The events and the course are free. The title of each lecture is listed below.


monday 3rd september

6.30 pm The Foundations of Western Civilization – a video presentation

Lecture 13 – “Plato and Aristotle”

 The writings of Plato and Aristotle are the pillars on which western thought stand. After an Athenian jury condemned Socrates to death for ‘corrupting the young’, His student Plato dedicated himself to defending his brilliant masters teachings. The goal of this lecture is to explain why Raphael's famous painting, The School of Athens, has Plato pointing up and Aristotle pointing down, and why both are defending and extending the work of Socrates.


Lecture 14 – “The Failure of the Polis and the Rise of Alexander”

 Why couldn't thinkers as brilliant as Plato and Aristotle conceive of a non-imaginary alternative to the polis, and why does the career of one of Aristotle's students mean that in the end, such a shortcoming may not have mattered anyway?


saturday 8th September
1-2 pm Food Meditation # 26

The Attic and Anaam continue with the 26th Food Meditation event. THe aim of this series is to eat simple, nutricious and organic food in silence and discuss after the meal various aspects of eating in the Indian and Western traditions.


Dum Aloo (slow cooked potato curry in sealed container)

Mixed Vegetable

Brown Rice

Madua Roti (Finger millet bread)

Jal Jeera (spiced cumin drink)


Dum’ means to ‘breathe in’ and ‘Pukht’ to 'cook'. Dum Pukht cooking introduced to India by the Nawabs of Awadh uses a round, heavy – bottomed pot, a handi, in which food is tightly sealed and cooked over a slow fire. There are two main aspects to this style of cooking; bhunao and Dum, or ‘roasting’ and ‘maturing’ of a prepared dish. In this style of cuisine, Herbs and spices play an extremely critical role. The process of slow roasting gently persuades each to release maximum flavor. And the sealing of the lid; the sealing of the lid of the handi with dough achieves maturing. Cooking slowly in its juices, the food retains all its natural aromas and becomes imbued with the richness of flavors that distinguishes the cuisines.

Madua (or Ragi) - Finger Millet grows well in the Himalayas and is an important crop due to its high nutritional values - fibre, protein, B vitamins, and minerals such as iron and zinc. We cannot emphasize enough the value of eating a multi grain diet instead of just wheat and rice.


Participation is by registration on payment only. Call The Attic 23746050 or email:

 Charges:  Rs 150


monday  10th September
6.30 pm ‘Re-Generations’ A Multi Media Presentation by Annu Palakunnathu Matthew

Flipping through a family album, we become more cognizant of the histories and memories of our and other families. Using digital technology, I reorient the viewer’s connection to time as I collapse the presumed progression of its borders, so the past and present appear here in the same virtual space.   In this photographic project ‘Re-Generations’, I explore time (past, present and future) and the warping of cultures over time. The final ephemeral animation is a combinat ion of a scan of an archival image and recent photographs of three or more generations of women that magically flow one into another. These animations weave in and out of spaces of time, allowing the viewer to simultaneously ponder the history, future and aging of the subjects. This malleable flowing object leaves the viewer to wonder where the past and present overlap and warp. Here, history is distorted, evoking a new dimension of memories, which is uniquely digital.  

I started this project in India two years ago and continued it in Vietnam and Israel. As ‘Re-Generations’ has progressed, I have come to appreciate how economic, social and cultural norms, as well as political events shape the way that different families gather, keep, and appreciate family photos. When families move as voluntary or involuntary immigrants, one thing that is irreplaceable is the family album, with the histories and memories contained therein. During my Fulbright in India this Autumn, I am looking to expand the project to include images and audio from families affected by the Partition in 1947.   

Matthew is Professor of Art (Photography) at the University of Rhode Island in Kingston, Rhode Island and is represented by Sepia EYE, New York City & Tasveer Gallery, India. She is in India on a 2012 Fulbright- Nehru Fellowship. Annu Matthew’s recent exhibitions include Sepia International, New York City, the RISD Museum, Newark Art Museum, 2009 Guangzhou Biennial of Photography, China, 2006 Noorderlicht Photo Festival in Netherlands, the 2005 Le Mois de la Photo à Montréal Photo Biennale in Canada and Gallery Z2O in Rome, Italy.


thursday 13th september

6.30 pm Zubaan Talkies, Take # 7 "Celebrating the Seven Sisters".


monday 17th september

6.30 pm The Foundations of Western Civilization – a video presentation

Lecture 15 – “The Hellenistic World”


  The world after Alexander was cosmopolitan, prosperous, and dominated by Greeks and Macedonians all over the Mediterranean and far out into the old Persian Empire. Literature, science, and new philosophies flourished.


Lecture 16 – “The Rise of Rome”


  This lecture is about the foundations on which Roman history rests, including the geography of Italy and the two centuries or so of monarchical rule—ending tradition in 509 B.C.—that the republic overthrew.





"Western", "Civilization" and "Foundations"


History Begins at Sumer


Egypt-The Gift of the Nile


The Hebrews-Small States and Big Ideas


A Succession of Empires


Wide-Ruling Agamemnon


Dark Age and Archaic Greece


The Greek Polis-Sparta


The Greek Polis-Athens


Civic Culture-Architecture and Drama


The Birth of History


From Greek Religion to Socratic Philosophy


Plato and Aristotle


The Failure of the Polis and the Rise of Alexander


The Hellenistic World


The Rise of Rome


The Roman Republic-Government and Politics


Roman Imperialism


The Culture of the Roman Republic


Rome-From Republic to Empire


The Pax Romana


Rome's Golden and Silver ages


Jesus and the New Testament


The Emergence of a Christian Church


Late Antiquity-Crisis and Response


Barbarians and Emperors


The Emergence of the Catholic Church


Christian Culture in Late Antiquity


Muhammad and Islam


The Birth of Byzantium


Barbarian Kingdoms in the West


The World of Charlemagne


The Carolingian Renaissance


The Expansion of Europe


The Chivalrous Society


Medieval Political Traditions I


Medieval Political Traditions, II


Scholastic Culture


Vernacular Culture


The Crisis of Renaissance Europe


The Renaissance Problem


Renaissance Portraits


The Northern Renaissance


The Protestant Reformation-Martin Luther


The Protestant Reformation-John Calvin


Catholic Reforms and "Confessionalization"


Exploration and Empire


What Challenges Remain?








Mapping Indian History: A New Historical Challenge by

Arundhati Virmani  Exhibition and talk at India International Centre Annexe ( see dates below)  

monday 24th septe