Writer and researcher Pooja Mittal Biswas, joined us last year to deliver two projects for Academia Lunare.
In February we released Gendering Time, Timing Gender: The Deconstruction of Gender in Time Travel Fiction; delving into gender studies, queer theory and literary studies, the book offers a comprehensive and entertaining analysis of how time and gender intersect in speculative fiction.
The second project, A Diasporic Mythography: Myth, Legend and Memory in the Literature of the Indian Diaspora, is now ready for pre-orders and will be released on the 25th of May. It is a collection of essays on how diasporic Indian authors living in the West use myth and legend to reconnect with India.
Join us for the YouTube premiere of the book launch, on Friday 16th at 9AM UK time, to better fit with Pooja's Australian time. The video will of course remain available on our channel, and it already has the time stamps for the content breakdown, in the info. It's always fascinating talking to Pooja, so come and take a look at those topics!
About A Diasporic Mythography
A Diasporic Mythography: Myth, Legend and Memory in the Literature of the Indian Diaspora is a collection of essays on how diasporic Indian authors living in the West use myth and legend to reconnect with India. Salman Rushdie, Shashi Tharoor, Suniti Namjoshi and Vikram Chandra each have an essay dedicated to them.
In this book, I will argue in favour of three major points: first, that the Indian diaspora is a crucible for myth-making, in which psychology, history and postcolonial politics are inextricably entwined; second, that the nature of diasporic mythography reveals an essential human need to connect to an origin, however mythical it might be; and third, that no connection to an origin is possible without simultaneously revisioning it.
The authors studied in this book will be consulted as mythographers, each contributing a new understanding of the diasporic experience and culminating, by the end of the book, in an interconnected whole that will reflect on the literary tools and techniques used in the construction of a contemporary diasporic Indian mythography, including the postcolonial ramifications of such a mythography.
Each of the four authors I examine in this book use myth and legend in different ways—some to revision India’s past, some to reconnect with its present and others to create a hybrid mythology that partakes of both East and West. Salman Rushdie and Shashi Tharoor revision India’s past using mythical allegory, Vikram Chandra reinvents the mythical archetype of the journey, and Suniti Namjoshi focuses on feminist retellings of traditionally patriarchal narratives.
These are the three major aspects of diasporic mythography that this book will be exploring: revisionism, hybridisation and feminism, each bringing to light different aspects of the continual negotiation of liminal, diasporic, mythographic identities.
About the Author
Pooja Mittal Biswas was born in Nigeria to Indian parents and has lived in several countries. She is now pursuing a PhD in English from the University of Sydney, Australia. Biswas holds a Master of Research degree in Creative Writing from Macquarie University and teaches Novel Writing at the University of Sydney’s Centre for Continuing Education. Her research interests include postgenderism in speculative fiction, the literary deconstruction of the gender binary, the intersection of postcolonialism and queer theory, the literature of the South Asian diaspora, and creative writing pedagogy.
Biswas is the author of four books, and her fifth book, a fantasy novel titled Earthstone, is slated for release in April 2020. She has been reviewed and interviewed in The Age, The Australian and ABC Radio’s The Book Show, and has been anthologised in both The Best Australian Poems and The Best Australian Poetry. Biswas has written for Writer’s Digest and has been widely published in literary journals such as Meanjin, Hecate and Jacket. She was also selected as a national representative for UNESCO’s Babele Poetica project.
We are very excited to bring you these two new projects in 2021.
Once again, welcome to Luna, Pooja!
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