User:English Honours DDUC/Report on Events (09-10)

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ZEST organized a seminar on the nuances of painting and related arts on 27th July 2009. The seminar was solicited by the gracious presence of two renowned artists, Ms. Renuka and Ms. Alka Mathur. Ms. Alka Mathur is a visual artist living and working in New Delhi. She graduated in drawing and painting from Sir J.J School of Arts, Mumbai in 1979 and has traveled extensively. Her perspective as an artist has been enriched by her stay in Paris and Dhaka. She has also exhibited her work in Ahmedabad, Delhi, Kolkata, Banglore, Jaipur, Dhaka, Thimpu and Santa Fe.

Ms. Renuka has been running ‘Windows’, the Art and Craft corner, and also felicitating workshops for teachers to help them imbibe the philosophy of ‘Windows’ and to create an enabling environment for children in schools and classes.

The guests stated the binding concept of the seminar as “Colour”-the essence of the mood of our whole perception of the physical world. The students were bestowed upon with information of the concrete forms of painting and its other extensions like landscapes, which is the first stage in painting and which captured different shades of nature.We were also acquainted with the purpose of different strokes in paintings and in digital form. Besides the showcase of a presentation, they also invited critical analysis from the students on their work which were mostly paintings. This was done to highlight the fact that the viewer is equally the part of the painting as the painter. This made the session extremely interactive.

Later the students also participated in a fun filled workshop, which included making portraits on paper of our partner without lifting the pen or peeking into the sheet. The idea behind this activity was to light up the hidden artistic flame, which is otherwise really dim within us.

The guests talked about finding the hidden link between literature and art form that is creativity and imagination. The entire seminar was defiantly a huge success.

Harshleen Anand
English (H)-Ist Year

The ECPDT Experience

The ECPDT experience is a life time experience for me. It is a course where I felt for the first time that I can also perform very confidently in front of hundreds and thousands of people and can make my parents proud. It is a course where I got to know myself that who am I, what am I, what are my positive qualities, what are negative qualities. I was actually able to bring out my ‘self’ and show my ‘self’ to others people through this course. not only this ECPDT has also worked on our public speaking skills , leadership skills group and ,lot more which has enable me to fight this competition world in a better way. Above all, I have enjoyed each and every moment of the various activities of this course to the fullest and have also found very good friends of my life whom I will never forget as they are the ones whit whom I have shared this wonderful experience of life. At last I would like to say that all this moment are still alive in my memories very clearly and always will be alive throughout my life.

-Shikha anand


‘ZEST’ organised yet another thrilling session of a vivacious discussion of technology and geek stuff for literature students. The seminar was solicited and conducted by the renowned web guru, Mr. Niyam Bhushan, who is a computer graphics consultant for print and video, a leading technology editor and columnist. He also conducts professional workshops on Linux and graphic design. He composes music for selective projects, designs sounds and researches on colour. Having studied English literature himself, he highlighted the fact that literature belonged to the heart before it belonged to the scholarships.

His discussion laid emphasis on ‘encouraging the idea of sharing.’ He explained that we should not confuse communion with communication and should popularise the idea of ‘copyleft’, where we shape our ideas, culture and everything knowledgeable or entertaining and make them available for all, rather than following the concept of ‘copyright’, that restricts the others to use the idea or the source that is the brainchild of someone else. He mentioned a few informative sites that were helpful for us in downloading free books or uploading our personal stuff for others to view, and podcast. He also gave pointers on improving written and spoken English and explained the entwined relationship between technology and literature and how it can be used to our advantage. The seminar was interspersed with subtle humour and was an instant hit with the students and teachers. Mr. Nigam’s magnetic personality surely did rub off its effect on everyone before he left, in the form of student volunteers who volunteered to upload their stuff and share it with the world, inspired by ‘copyleft’ concept.

The discussion struck a chord with one and all and thus was declared a hit.



Films have become an integrated part of our lives in the last few decades but rarely do we analyze films as we do for books. Here comes in the arena of film studies, A whole new world that needs to be explored.
The seminar organized by ZEST on 3rd of August 2009 was all about films, the topic being ‘ FILMS AS TEXT ’ and the speaker was Dr.Nirmalya Samantha. The agenda behind this seminar was for the English department to pick up film studies.
A film was never a part of academies. Films were mere sources of entertainment and pleasure. In the last 20 years films are being studied and the interest of general masses in film studies is growing continuously.
To explain exactly the nature of film studies Dr.Samantha explained the role played by gender and patriarchy in two super hit and most loved movies, i.e. ‘Kuch Kuch Hota Hai ’ and ‘ Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam ’.
He then explained what constitutes film studies. Film making is a young art. Movie is seeing things in movement and cinema, since it’s beginning, has been a similitude of reality. The initial cinema used to be silent. It was in the 1920’s that films evolved into an interesting art. So, the first thing to be studied is the history of cinema.
The first Indian film made was ‘Raja Hrishchandra’ in 1930 by Dada sahib falke. Now by studying it’s history, we come to the history of Indian which then leads to the social and economic realities of the country as well as the world.
The next thing to be studied is the language of cinema. With language, he meant, the angles of a particular shot and the visual language involved.
Next he talked about different film movements all over the world, i.e. the Italian neo-realism, the French New Wave film movement and the Indian film movement.
The next aspect of film studies is genre. Films could be divided into different genres, i.e. horror, romance, comedy, tragedy etc. A film study has different aspects the last being the techonology. The easiest way elaborate this is to workout the difference in a hall, PVR and TV. The seminar ended by him showing some movie clips that are still considered to be the best shots in the world cinema like the murder scene in ‘ Psycho’
Thus the seminar left the students with a much clearer view of films and the way films could be read and analyzed too.



The Department of English (Zest) organized an educational trip to Jodhpur and Jaisalmer in January 2010. It was enthralling to come so close to ancient history of Rajasthan. During our trip we were reminded of the images that were created in our minds while we studied about Indian history during our school days. The trip included not only visits to ancient monuments we also had various other experiences including life in a desert while in Jaisalmer. The experience was one of its kinds; it had a life of its own.

16th January 2010, day one, we arrived at Jodhpur, which is the second largest city in Rajasthan. It is also referred to as the Blue City due to the indigo tinge of the whitewashed houses around the Mehrangarh Fort. We visited the famous Mehrangarh Fort in the afternoon. It is the oldest fort of Jodhpur enclosed by imposing thick walls. Inside its boundaries there are several palaces, which are known for their intricate carvings and sprawling courtyards. We enjoyed the view of the entire blue city from 400 feet above on rooftop of the fort. The most remarkable memory of this day was when the girls danced to the beats of the men playing the welcome song on one of the entries of the Fort. Everyone enjoyed this moment and a special dedication was made to Dr. Anubha Mukherji Sen.

On the same day our last stop was a Umaid Bhawan, the palace of the Prince of Jodhpur. It is one of the largest private residences of the world. A part of this palace is maintained by Taj Hotels. Named after Maharaja Umaid Singh, grandfather of the present owners of the palace, this monument has 347 rooms and serves as the principal residence of the erstwhile Jodhpur royal family. Umaid Bhawan Palace was called Chittar Palace during its construction due to its location on Chittar Hill, the highest point in Jodhpur. Unfortunately, we could not meet the Prince but had a good time in the evening watching the sunset together in its lawns.

17th January 2010, day two, we left for Jaisalmer in our bus. It was a six hour ride to the Sam Dunes where we spent our entire day. I believe that this was the best day of the entire trip as all of us enjoyed staying in the tents in middle of the vast desert. In the evening, after a 5 km camel ride, we reached the sunset point. The soft sand and the beautiful sunset were simply amazing. In the night, under the clear sky we had a bonfire where we saw a Rajasthani folk dance performance. Although we had some water problems the night we stayed in tents can never be forgotten.

18th January 2010, day three, we visited the popular Jaisalmer Fort. Jaisalmer Fort is one of the largest forts in the world. The fort stands proudly amidst the golden stretches of the great Thar Desert, on Trikuta Hill and had been the scene of many battles. We visited the famous Raj Mahal inside it. An entire township is located within this fort and thus, it is one of the major tourist attractions. This was the last day of our site visitng. The day ended with shopping and like every other day, dancing to the beats of famous bollywood songs.

The last day was dedicated entirely to traveling. Most of the bus journey was spent on sleeping and listening to Dr. Ratnakar’s famous Haikus. As it is said “Every good thing must come to an end…”, so was the case with us. 20th January 2010, all of us were back in Delhi, we parted from our friends from the railway station and everyone had tears in there eyes. This only proved how immensely the trip was enjoyed by each and everyone.



The English society of DDUC, Zest, invited the famous British author Mr. Melvin Burgess on 17th February 18, 2010. He came to our college with Mr. Mike Welche, the Head of British Council Library. Mr. Burgess had come to our college to talk about twenty first century writing. His target audience is totally different. They are the teenage group of the society. He enlightened us with a different genre of writing and talked about his two most popular and controversial books, Junk and Doing It .

Melvin Burgess was born in Sussex in 1954. He lived in Bristol for a couple of years where he lived until he was thirty. According to him it was a great place to live, with a big racial and cultural mix. He learnt a lot there and got his feeling for life. His book Junk is based on Bristol in those years, and although it is not biographical, you can pick up a lot of the atmosphere and meet a few of the people in its pages. His book The Cry of the Wolf, was shortlisted for the Carnegie medal.

The seminar began with the welcome speech by Vicas which included a short presentation on the author and our society. After the presentation we observed a one minute silence for the Pune blast victims. This was followed by the speech by Mr. Welche. He talked about LitSutra programme of the British Council Library. Melvin Burgess is visiting India as a part of this programme. In association with The London Book Fair, 53 Indian writers representing 15 Indian languages, and their British counterparts, took part in the British Council’s India 09: Through Fresh Eyes cultural programme. This was the biggest festival of Indian writing ever held outside the subcontinent, taking place in nine cities across the UK. More than 90 Indian publishers exhibited at The London Book Fair’s Market Focus pavilion. The Lit Sutra is a follow up for this.

Mr.Melvin Burgess began by sharing with us the exciting journey he had in India. He had already visited Kolkata and Mumbai before coming to Delhi. He feels that India has a tremendous wide culture of writing. He was pleased to be a part of this exciting and wonderful journey where he got an opportunity to talk about his writing with students of high school, graduation and post-graduation. According to him, he was surprised to find people in India so open minded about the issues that his books rise. His most controversial books are about teenage heroin addiction and sexual joys as described by a teenager.

He later discussed his novels. First he talked about The Cry of the Wolf which was published in 1990. He had written it as a children fiction but he was surprised when Anderson Press wanted to publish it under teenage fiction because teenagers don’t read that much. His target audiences were the children between the age group of eleven to twelve years olds. His book was with plus fifteen written on it. This was a con on part of the publishers because according to them if sold otherwise it would be categorized as a children’s book with adult themes in it.

Next he talked about his two controversial novels Junk and Doing It. Junk was intended to be shown in theaters but it never came on the stage as the audience for whom it was intended would not have been allowed inside. So later BBC adopted it as a film, which according to Mr. Burgess was ver ‘bland’. He said that how he wanted it was never made. No one makes serious films for teenagers; they are either romantic comedies or action films. But films are never made about what goes on in a teenager’s mind. When he wrote this book the “Punk” era was going on in UK. He wanted his book to be authentic so he based it on real people and real place. The characters are real in this book they are based on the people he knew personally. Each character speaks to the reader directly which creates a three dimensional feeling. The reason why there was such a great fuss on the book, he explained, was because teenage fiction was a new phenomenon. The book shocked everyone. They believed that the innocence of youth has gone after reading this book. But many readers and educators strongly welcomed it. Mr. Burgess believes that real people like real discussions. Doing It was essentially about desire and lust. He was rather surprised at our request to him to read certain controversial portions of the book. But he gladly read it for us. He said that he believes that people in India, Germany and Holland are more open minded than people “back home”, i.e. in UK.

He ended his lecture by answering some of our questions. He talked about his struggle as an author. He was lucky to have it not too tough. His mother wanted him to have a job at the age of nineteen and after so many years he still remembers what his father told his mother. He said ‘Melvin has a job; it is just that he has not been paid yet’. He initially did experiment a lot but was lucky to end up successful.

It was an honour to have such a successful and famous author of the United Kingdom to among us.



February 19th, 2010
"...My talk at Delhi university that morning follows the pattern already established. It takes us hours to get there – partly because of the horrendous traffic and partly because no one knows where the university is, exactly. Indian streets are usually very far from being named, and you have to make your way around by getting in the vicinity, asking a local and then j=jumping nearer and nearer (hopefully) in this way, until eventually someone points to a building over the road and says, “There.” I'm not sure I'm on top form – this is the fifth time I've =delivered a similar talk in eight days, I', beginning to be haunted by a sense of ...”Did I just tell you that?” But the students love it. They ask once again to be read the “controversial” bits from Doing It. I comply, although I still feel awkward abo9ut talking about knob cancer and fannies, albeit it humorously, in public in a room full of brown faces, sari-clad girls and their professors. But once again I'm shown to be a bigot – it goes tremendously well. I get asked more questions here than anywhere, and in the end, we have to be stopped when they run out of time..."

Melvin Burgess Stuff:needs must when the devil drives