We welcome our readers to Anveshi’s Broadsheet on Contemporary Politics. The purpose of the Broadsheet is to provide a forum for the discussion of emerging issues in the national and regional context. This is a series we hope to bring out on an approximately quarterly basis, in a bilingual format. Each issue contains essays already written in popular media in Urdu and Telugu, with some fresh essays written in English and Telugu. All the essays are presented to the readers in both English and Telugu.
Five issues have been brought out so far on contemporary issues of discussion in the public sphere. One of the problems with living political discussion is that it is often conducted without any thought to record and retrieval. Essays momentarily animate scattered news columns and public meetings and are lost to memory soon after. The importance of their voice in pointing to the need to think afresh is lost. The Broadsheet will bring together a selection of important articles on the chosen issue from different locations. We hope that the publication of at least a sample of these in one place will help preserve the liveliness and insight of these eruptions for future readers. A difficulty with heated debate in media is that it is not too well thought through. It responds to the pressure of the moment, with some insight, much opinion and occasional wisdom. On the other hand, theoretical knowledge enters late, moves slowly and demands rigour. It finds public discussion too rapid and superficial. Theory usually appears in learned journals. Thus media discussion and theoretical writing are separated by both speed and location. In this forum, we will try to go beyond this familiar split between high theory and local discussion, in an attempt to find effective ways to think about the questions and crises that confront us. The Broadsheet is expected to provide a common location where ideas, ways of arguing and thinking, and ‘theory’ can speak to each other.
The Broadsheet will provide a milieu for the editorial group [this will be different for each issue] in which they select the writings to be reproduced, and if they feel so compelled, write essays for the broadsheet. Thus on the one hand, the choice of what to reproduce in this compilation will be determined by the editorial group’s insight, purpose and agenda in relation to the issue being covered. On the other hand, an essay specially written for this purpose is an offering, in humility, of a point of view. As with all offerings and gifts, it may be only worth throwing away! That is for the reader to decide. We encourage the readers to continue the debate in letters to the editor. A strong intervention through letters will result in a new, related edition of the broadsheet in the following months, looking at the new material and sharpening the perspective further.
While editorial groups will have specific agendas and perspectives, Anveshi as an organization has its own – i.e., providing a forum in which such discussion can take place. In our understanding a forum is a space for discussion, concurrence and difference. Conceived in this manner, it forces us to look at the possibility that the way we think currently may not meet the need of the situation. A forum helps us think in richer, more responsible and responsive ways. The direction such thinking will take is not predictable. This critical agenda is guided by Anveshi’s unique position in political debate and theoretical intervention as an organization that is dedicated to finding ways of thinking that are effective in our predicament.
Translation provides a continuing and dynamic series of problems with each issue. One can imagine the enterprise of translation as replete with possibilities not merely of rendering new concepts, ways of thinking, and argument but also of incorrectness, missed opportunities and failure. This recognition, whether gained individually or collectively, would force the translation enterprise to be attentive to the politics, texture and nuance of the material under translation. And, this has been a part of the editorial team’s learning during the translations of the essays in this issue across three languages, Urdu, English and Telugu. Bringing a debate from one language to another invariably encounters ‘equivalent’ terms in the two languages with two different connotations. Dealing with these different connotations is an active practical engagement with ideas and theories of translation. Another issue arises when an author explicitly introduces a conceptual term which is new to the language world into which it is translated. Should one be content with rendering it once and for all by a ‘suitably matching’ term? When we render it in the receiving language with such a term, how does one deal with the meanings, uses and the referential worlds the term already has?
We hope you enjoy reading this series of broadsheets. We welcome letters of comment and criticism in response to this issue. Kindly address your letters to:
The Editorial Team,
The Broadsheet on Contemporary Politics, Anveshi Research Centre for Women’s Studies, 2-2-18/2/A, D.D. Colony, Amberpet, Hyderabad 500013.
Email letters may be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Responses will be published in the following issue of the broadsheet, provided the content is found to be free of abusive language, hate speech and personal allegations.
Produced quarterly in English and Telugu.
- 2.1 – Health Care on the Agenda
- 1.4 – Food Politics and Hegemony
- PDF copies of the Broadsheet