Reviews

“If They Come For Us” Plaintively Explores the Legacy of Partition

August 8, 2018

Fatimah Asghar’s much-anticipated debut collection of poetry spans the divide of Partition, community, loss, and love. Motion connotes a certain amount of freedom. It belongs in the air, in the depths of the ocean, in the fingertips of flames reaching for something greater, more infinite. But the movement of Partition relied on boundaries to restrict … Read More

“Marriage of a Thousand Lies” Relishes in the Uncertainty of Love

August 3, 2018

In Marriage of a Thousand Lies, Lucky, the restless romantic, ruminates on queerness and notes that, “most people think the closet is a small room. They think you can touch the wall, touch the door, turn the handle, and walk free. But when you’re inside it, the closet is so vast. No walls, no doors, just empty darkness stretching … Read More

Surina & Mel. Shows Brown Lives in All Their Normalness

July 30, 2018

In a short 55 second trailer, Surina & Mel. shows us what television shows could look like. Even though it’s not out yet, Surina & Mel. from actors Surina Jindal and Melanie Chandra and former Family Guy writer Sameer Gardezi, has us excited. Besides having two South Asian women as the show leads, Surina & Mel. promises to show … Read More

Akil Kumarasamy’s “Half Gods” Troubles the Idea of Homeland

July 23, 2018

There is something particular about hearing the same stories repeated again and again by family members. A loving frustration. There are the looks shot between siblings, across kitchen tables, of “this again?” There is the conviction with which a grandfather or a mother or an uncle tells the story, each time like it’s going to … Read More

Bollywood’s Commodification of the Delectable Urban Indian Feminist

July 16, 2018

“My Choice,” the infamous video released by the #VogueEmpower campaign in 2015, creates a narrative arc through visual and auditory spectacle. The two and a half minute film featuring Bollywood darling Deepika Padukone begins with slow shots cutting between a seemingly heterogenous group of ninety nine women. The music is sombre, ominous. The women are … Read More

“Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows” Explores Female Sexuality Without Men

July 5, 2018

At Hindu weddings, a line of married women take their turns whispering words of wisdom in the bride’s ear. I’ve watched this tradition take place countless times, and recently I was visiting my parents when my mom divulged the secret at a dinner table conversation. Apparently, the women all say the same thing – akhand … Read More

Porochista Khakpour’s “Sick” Tackles America’s Illnesses

June 25, 2018

“America is a sick country.” This is the refrain Porochista Khakpour recalls hearing from her Iranian immigrant relatives, spoken “in every meaning of the sentence possible.” In her new book Sick: A Memoir, Khakpour dives deep into her experience as an Iranian-American author living with late-stage Lyme disease, which she contracts from a tick bite. … Read More

“Breaking The Bee” Highlights the Dynasty of South Asian Spellers

May 29, 2018

Director Sam Rega sat down with Kajal Magazine to discuss his documentary on South Asian-American success in the Scripps National Spelling Bee The Scripps National Spelling Bee has, for years, showcased some of the America’s top young spellers from across the country. In the last two decades, the uber-competitive world of spelling has seen what … Read More

Michelle De Kretser’s “The Life to Come” Serves Shade to the Lucky Country

May 15, 2018

Michelle De Kretser’s The Life to Come, released last September, is the Sri Lankan-Australian Miles Franklin Award winning author’s fifth full length novel. If, like myself, you’re a young(ish) Australian who has benefitted from the country’s long running economic boom, conflates running out of pages on your passport with wisdom, and really doesn’t know when to shut … Read More

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