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Somnath Batabyal is a backpacking social theorist. When not travelling, he teaches at SOAS, University of London.

Home is where the writer’s heart is
29th Aug 2015
Home is where the writer’s heart is

Sometimes, staying in the dull, grey routinised life of London I worry about this column business every two weeks. What will I write about? It is the same walk to the office from my residence, which t

The many myths of conservation and preservation
25th Jul 2015
The many myths of conservation and preservation

Som, should I buy this haveli? What do you think, Somi? Irritated, I ignored the voice, looking out of the opposite window, blocking out the ruins of yet another grand dwelling that dots the landscape

The unforgettable Glastonbury blues
4th Jul 2015
The unforgettable Glastonbury blues

The moment I walked into the caravan, it felt like being upgraded to first class. A comfortable double bed, bunks for kids, an attached loo and a kitchen; in the context of how people survive during t

Poverty tourism and the paradox of the ‘traveller’
30th May 2015
Poverty tourism and the paradox of  the ‘traveller’

I've recently returned from a 12-day conducted cultural tour around Assam during Bihu. I grew up here during the language agitation, and as a Bengali, much that was beautiful was shielded from me by o

No time for pleasure, none for leisure, we need more time
25th Apr 2015
No time for pleasure, none for leisure, we need more time

We came out of the Park Street Metro station sweaty and more than a bit bedraggled. The ride hadn't lasted more than 30 minutes but our year-and-a-bit son had managed to get his cheek pinched every mi

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london calling
lakshman menon
perfect on paper
isha singh sawhney
culture mulcher
deepanjana pal
high table
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nomad notes
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guardian angel
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the grumbling gourmand
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