A digital magazine on sexuality in the Global South


एक लंबी सनसनाहट

एक अलग जेंडर के शरीर के लिए मेरी इच्छा निरंतर और बेदर्द नहीं थी। ये तेज लहर सी होती और हमेशा मुझे उस शरीर के साथ काफ़ी संतुष्ट छोड़ जाती जो मेरे पास था। बृहन्नला का अवतार उस प्रकार की अस्थायी और पलटने योग्य संभावना के लिए एक संदर्भ बिंदु या आदर्श रूप बन गया।
Photograph of a live performance of Subhadraharanam. Pic Source: icultist via Flickr
Photograph of a live performance of Subhadraharanam. Photo Credit: Flickr

नृत्य और इच्छा की अभिव्यक्ति – देवदासियों से आधुनिक कथावाचकों तक का सफ़र

किसी शास्त्रीय नृत्य को देखने वाले एक आम दर्शक के रूप में मुझे लगा कि यह सब किस तरह से मुझसे और मेरे जीवन से सम्बद्ध है। इन नृत्य प्रदर्शनों में दिखाए जाने वाले कथानक अक्सर वे कहानियाँ होती है जिन्हें मैंने बचपन से सुना है फिर भी मुझे इसमें कोई विशेष रूचि नहीं लगती। लेकिन सुश्री रत्नम के दृष्टिकोण के आधार पर, पुराने कथानकों को आधुनिक रूप देने के उनके प्रयासों और किसी पुरानी परंपरा के लुप्त हो जाने पर दुःख प्रकट करने के स्थान पर नृत्य को एक नया रूप देने का के प्रयास को देखते हुए भरतनाट्यम और अन्य शास्त्रीय नृत्य अब और अधिक प्रसांगिक हो जाते हैं जिनसे आप आसानी से जुड जाते हैं।
In Plainspeak English Audit In Plainspeak English Audit 100% 10 Painting of a woman playing sitar, sitting on a bench in a park. She is wearing an orange saree and a black blouse, and has her hair tied in a low bun. Screen reader support enabled. Painting of a woman playing sitar, sitting on a bench in a park. She is wearing an orange saree and a black blouse, and has her hair tied in a low bun.

The Editorial: Music, Dance and Sexuality

"Does my sexiness upset you? Does it come as a surprise that I dance like I have diamonds at the meeting of my thighs?" Maya Angelou Through dance and song we explore deep and intricate connections between our lives and issues related to sexual desire, pleasure and agency. In a way, music and dance are…
Anita Ratnam in an orange saree doing Bharatnayam outside an old temple.

Interview: Anita Ratnam

In December TARSHI interviewed Anita Ratnam, who is a leading Bharatanatyam dancer and choreographer based in Chennai. In her own words, she is in dance, “because this is my own way of connecting with myself and the world.  I consider myself a contemporary classicist.” As a supporter of contemporary Indian dancing, she spoke about the…
Stage performance of Persian dance. Two women hold a chunni above the head of a woman dancing in between them. They all wear colourful full-length, full sleeves clothing.

Brushstrokes: Persian Dance

Persian dance in spite of its remarkable history has become a less known form of dancing from the Middle East, perhaps because of the present political situation in the countries of Iran, Afghanistan and Tajikistan where it originates from. Where it is known, it is confused with and compared to Arabic dance, which is popular…
Two men dancing on a stage with red flourescent lights. The dance pose shows the man in front turning over his shoulder to kiss the man standing behind him.

When Transparency Meets Fluidity, Dance Is Born

I just celebrated my twenty years in India last October and designed a performance for the occasion: ‘What is dance?’ As I was writing the text for the brochure of the show, looking back at this most amazing journey, I realised that if I had to choose one word to encapsulate the essence of this…
A boy performing Bharatnatyam on stage. He wears kajal, and an orange dupatta hung around his neck falls from both sides till his waist. The photo ends at his torso.

A Lingering Tingle

I started learning Bharatanatyam in 1988, when I was six years old. Looking back, it feels like beginning to learn to dance was, somehow, a key moment in my personal gender and sexuality history. It was the time I started, formally, to condition and train my body to move in specific ways. Earlier, in school,…
A woman wearing a blue saree and an orange blouse performing Kathak. She is wearing colourful bangles and jewellery on top of her forhead, ears, and neck. She is wearing kajal, a black bindi, and her hair is tied.

Brushstrokes: Desire In Dance

This series of images captures a few Indian dance forms that have over time told stories of desire. Kathak, a courtesan’s dance, performed by both men and women has evolved from a form of entertainment for the elite to a dance form that has reached a wide audience, particularly through Bollywood films ranging from Mughal-E-Azam…
A man and a woman perform Kathakali on stage, wearing typical Kathakali costumes of red and white and elaborate headgear. A lamp is lit on the stage. Their makeup and dresses show beautifully in contrast to the darkened stage.

Dances of Desire: From Devadasis to Modern Storytellers

It is not entirely impossible to imagine that classical Indian dance is timeless or that the stories narrated in these dances have been handed down untouched and unshaped from ancient unrecorded times. Through dance it is easy to seek kinship with the apsaras in the epics, with the devadasis and courtesans, or watch the sensual movements and mudras…
Photo of performance artist and theatre personality Maya Krishna Rao. She is wearing black and her left hand raised in a dramatic pose. She has long white hair and there is a red bindi on her forehead.

In conversation with Sheema Kermani

Sheema Kermani is a cultural activist, theatre practitioner, theatre director and a known Pakistani exponent of Indian classical dance. She had studied Bharatanatyam under Leela Samson and Odissi under Aloka Panicker during her previous visits to India. In 1979, she founded a women's organization called Tehrik-e-Niswan. TARSHI: You have chosen a very unconventional and powerful mode of protest in the…