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We welcome you to the third issue of Etihas.in, an online video magazine of history, arts and culture of India and South Asia. Each month, Etihas.in features short videos containing interviews with experts, mini documentaries, audio podcasts, and recordings of performing arts among many other items that we hope will entertain and inspire you, and arouse your appetite for more about our rich and diverse pasts.
In our third issue, we bring you the following short videos and segments:
1. Sunil Sharma on the Evolution of Indo Persian Literature
2. Manto's Allah ka Bada Fazl Hai, recited by Sadia Wahidi
3. List of oral and folk history archives on the Internet (part 2)
4. Featured Video:Legacy: The Origins of Civilization - India (documentary by Michael Wood)
5. Notes for contributors to etihas.in
1. Prof.Sunil Sharma on the Evolution of Indo Persian Literature and Culture
2. Manto's essay Allah ka Bada Fazl Hai, recited by Sadia Wahidi
Urdu's short story writer, Saadat Hasan Manto, needs no introduction. But how could his writings be relevant for history? Well, this essay (By the Grace of God) was written immediately after Manto migrated to the newly created Pakistan, and saw the cleansing of the country's culture and arts scene by the new government. We believe this write-up is still relevant not only for Pakistan but probably today's India as well, where culture, arts and the freedom of expression are all being cleansed and even silenced in the name of a bogus sense of nationalism and uniform cultural identity often laced with religion. But it is for the reader/viewer of this video to decide how true that claim is. Enjoy the bitterness of quintessential Manto. This video features some excerpts. The entire write-up can be read in the Manto’s collection of stories titled Upar, Neeche aur Darmiyan, (Delhi: Saqi Book Depot, 1989). A basic English translation could be found on this blog.
This is our growing list of archives of folk and oral history that are available online and offline.
4. Featured Video: Legacy, The Origins of Civilization - India, Empire of the Spirit
Written and presented by Michael Wood (Duration: 52 mins)
“What can the past teach us about the present? In this profound and provocative documentary, historian Michael Wood travels the globe to trace the origins of six great civilizations.” This part, Empire of the Spirit, presents an overview of India's history connecting the ancient with the modern. Michael Wood, the writer and presenter of this film, has recently presented a newer TV series on India's history, titled 'The Story of India' (which you may easily find online). But this one is a slightly older film that typically portrays India as a land of spiritualism (as opposed to the west which believes in materialism). Michael starts with the images of the grand Kumbh mela of Allahabad and concludes his journey with the Nehruvian conceptualization of India. According to his last words in the film, "... perhaps it is still true at the end of the 20th century, true for nations as well as people, that we may know our ends by our beginnings."
Produced and directed by Peter Spry-Leverton for Central ITV. The quality of video as available in this youtube version is rather poor. One could probably purchase the DVD online.
We welcome suggestions and contributions in the form of new content. Since Etihas is currently a voluntary effort of a few individuals with no financial support, we would be very glad to receive your support to run this initiative. Please watch and post these videos widely on social media. To get the address of each video, you may right-click on the video screen and choose "Copy video URL". Then you can paste the URL in your posts and feeds anywhere, including email to friends. Please subscribe to the online magazine by sending a request to email@example.com