On Wednesday evening my family watched Dhamaka. The word means “explosion”, and the film certainly lived up to its title – in the sense that it was, well, explosively bad.

The storyline follows a news anchor named Arjun Pathak, who gets a mysterious call from a man named Raghubeer Mhata…

Eliza Ann “Annie” Chapman and John Chapman on their wedding day, 1869. Source.

The last time I visited London, at the age of seventeen, there was one thing I desperately wanted to do. Okay, two things: buy a lot of interesting old books… and go on the Jack the Ripper Walking Tour. I was prepared for that walk. Heck, I was sure I…

That’s something I used to believe. That’s something I felt passionately about. As a teenager I resented it when people told me that more women should enter the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. To me, that statement seemed to carry an implication of: “women aren’t smart enough to…

Kenneth Anderson and the Superficial Friendliness of Colonialism

One of my most vivid memories is from when I was thirteen, and spending the summer in India. I lay on my cot in the muggy Chennai evening and, with bated breath, watched a man-eating panther creep across a branch.

Well, alright…

Tropes like the ‘Disposable Sex Worker’ are harmful

Red dresses float from tree branches, a stark reminder of the thousands of missing and murdered Indigenous women and girls in Canada and the US. Source: Vogue.

There is a trope which seems ubiquitous across crime literature: the Disposable Sex Worker. She is faceless, nameless save perhaps for a pseudonym. She may belong to queer or racialised identities, as many sex workers do in real life: 47% of Black trans women have engaged in sex work in…

…but maybe he should have.

Image description: A cartoon by David Horsey, implying that it’s unfair to criticise Thomas Jefferson for being a slaveowner, coloniser, and rapist because he was born in the eighteenth century.

I disliked Hamilton when it first came out. This is, perhaps, a surprising confession, because I was exactly its target audience: a brown teenager with a bit (okay, a lot) of an American history obsession and a diehard love of musicals. But at 19, when…

What it is… and what it isn’t

Image description: A partial close-up of a North Indian woman’s eyes and forehead. In between her eyebrows, a red sticker bindi is visible. Source: Wikipedia.

I wore a bindi for nearly the entirety of my senior year of college.

It’s not that I was particularly traditional: I was raised by semi-practising, liberal, agnostic parents who themselves were raised in very orthodox families. As a toddler I had an aksharaabhyaasam, the traditional South Indian ritual which…

Image description: A picture of an Indian character from Steven Universe. She has medium-brown skin, a slightly hooked nose, and no lips.

That is Connie Maheswaran, a character from Steven Universe. I’ve never seen the show, but I know of Connie. After all, she’s one of the few Indian American…

Aditi Ramaswamy

Software engineer; emerging author; almost certainly not a changeling. I write about the uncomfortable parts of Indian & American history & culture.

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