SHIFTING IMAGES | The Daily Star
  • Crossing cultures through fashion

    The term well-dressed has multi-layered connotations—especially in today's diverse world, where the concept of fashion is constantly changing and there are no fixed standards or norms.

  • Testing the limits of sexual harassment

    Earlier this month, The New York Times published an explosive story on allegations of sexual harassmenagainst Hollywood mogul Harvey Weinstein. The report was based on accounts of multiple women accusing him of all forms of sexual misdemeanour ranging from rape to verbal abuse.

  • “We the people”

    Of late, I have started avoiding social gatherings. The reason? Friends and acquaintances have become somewhat edgy and contentious, so that even civil discussions quickly rise to high decibel levels. Needless to say, the divisive issues mostly relate to world affairs and politics, with conversations rotating in circles!

  • Reweaving a lost past

    It is not always easy to travel back in time. For, we have a tendency to block the memories that generate emotional turbulence of some sort.

  • It's all in a word

    “I'll miss you… may God be with you, etc.” Her response? A text with a single emoji, that of a crying face.

  • Long walk to coexistence

    Who would have thought that a car could be employed as an instrument of terror? Only twisted minds, demented spirits, and agents of evil can harness a seemingly innocuous vehicle to mow down innocent pedestrians going about their business…

  • Redefining cultural borders

    Some years ago, at a tea party in our home, an English friend devoured five samosas and exclaimed: “I just love these "triangular starters"—you must share the recipe with me!” The guests laughed, relishing the quaint nomenclature for a samosa—a South Asian

  • Time to take a pause

    The truth is that taking a break from the routine activities frees our mind to perceive the sights and sounds that are often hidden by the noises in the system. Thank God that Rabindranath Tagore was not fixated on “doing”.

  • We need activism more than ever

    Recently, I watched a TV news clip of protesters in the United States demonstrating against the Health Care Bill that, if passed by the Senate, would deprive millions of basic medical benefits. What struck me most was the image of a young protester in a wheelchair struggling with the security guards trying to forcefully evict her.

  • Expanding the frontiers of connectivity

    The debate about “art for hedonistic pleasure or art for a greater cause” is ongoing and will continue. But there is broad consensus on one issue: a good work of art can connect you to your senses, not just your mind. In our fragmented world, it's important for people not only to comprehend adversity with their minds, but also to feel it emotionally and spiritually. This might motivate some of us to turn compassionate thinking into compassionate actions!

  • Is this the “tolerant society” we wanted?

    Is this the “tolerant society” we envisaged as the outcome of our independence struggle?

  • Bollywood, please spare us your Muslim stereotyping

    Films are powerful tools that shape ideas, attitudes and social norms. But as any art form, the message can be diffused or even distorted if it's not presented in the right way.

  • Coping with 'otherness'

    Some years ago a South Asian friend shared an interesting anecdote with me. When she landed her first job in the corporate banking sector in London, she bought herself a new wardrobe of business suits and dresses.

  • The bell also tolls for you

    The Pahela Baishakh festivities bring out the best in us Bangladeshis. Apart from its creative and cultural aspects, Pahela Baishakh

  • Being Muslim – a pre-existing condition?

    Recently, I have started reflecting on the implications of being a Muslim in a world that is predisposed to think that Islam is a religion of violence and hate.

  • Love – the best revenge

    There is no silver bullet for raising a child since parenting is a complex task with uncertain outcomes. Perhaps the hardest part of parenting is imparting a value system to children. It's hard because values are often subject to cultural, ethnic and social biases.

  • What's in a word?

    Nelson Mandela aptly said: “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart”.

  • “Then they came for me”

    In his bestselling book, The Black Swan (2007), Nassim Nicholas Taleb developed an interesting theory.

  • Barack Obama

    Goodbye, Barack Obama

    All good things must come to an end, but some things leave us with a lingering “feelgood” emotion. Such was the Presidency of Barack Obama.

  • The complexity of simplicity

    Recently, I have been reflecting on the act of giving gifts. My thoughts were partially triggered by the frenzied shopping sprees I witnessed during the Christmas season in the United States.

  • Living in a post-truth world

    I have been racking my brain for a positive New Year message. But the US election outcome, the humanitarian disaster unfolding in Aleppo, the brutalities against the Rohingyas in Myanmar have plunged me into despair.

  • Cuba:Looking back to move forward

    Following Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro's death on November 25, numerous columns and articles have been written about his achievements and failures.

  • An open letter to Donald Trump supporters

    Let me begin by congratulating you on a stunning victory after an unprecedented campaign that your candidate conducted for more

  • The politics of misogyny

    The media is replete with analysis and counter analysis of the ongoing US presidential race. So far, I have refrained from adding my voice to the cacophony because politics is not my cup of tea!

  • Living in the now

    I truly believe that happiness can flow from small things. Time spent with loved ones, an uplifting word from a casual acquaintance, a chance meeting with a long lost friend; all these seemingly mundane things can make us happy.

  • While Aleppo bleeds…

    You would think that the Information Age (spurred by the internet) has made us more aware and well informed about the challenges

  • The "Me" factor

    Consider the following situation: You meet someone at a social event and within seconds you are subjected to a monologue about her posh home, luxury car, high performing kids and a doting husband.

  • the audacity

    The audacity of hope

    We live in a world of instant news and communication, with its enormous

  • One swallow can make a summer

    While speaking at the Democratic National Convention last month, President Obama observed: “People outside of the United States do

  • Life must go on

    More than three weeks have elapsed since the carnage at the Holey Café and Bakery in Dhaka. Despite assurances by the government to combat terror and assertions by the police about strengthening surveillance, the city remains in a state of deep shock and partial paralysis.

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