A Nervous Nervous System

– Leeanne Patel, III BBA

(Written for my grandfather, who has been suffering from Parkinson’s disease for more than twenty five years)

The bees are at it again
They are thoughts, and his mind
Is a locked up beehive, no way out
Swarming, buzz, constant murmur
He sits, stares, waits for slumber

Bony Body, toothless mouth
“What?” response to his words unsung
His mind the only thing that speaks
What use? For it has no tongue

His main source of pain
Is heavy sedation
Hallucination generation
Alas! He cannot join the world of the hipsters

The buzzing gets louder
His body gets weaker
His wife gets sadder
He goes madder

His mind is Saint Peter, locked up
In his anatomy
Silent cries
Who will be his angel in disguise?

I want to
Reach into your beehive
Pull out all the bees
Speak to each of them
And know them well

I want to
Bring your tired body back to life
Push you down
Watch you get up
Please yell at me again for that spilled water cup

The nervous system is finally nervous
The bees have turned their beehive porous

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A Shade Too Strange

– Anoushka Fernandes, I BBA

Sitting at his desk Homer looked around the office. Each cubicle encompassed its own world. The smoking cigarettes and ringing phones were deaf to his ears, background noise. He looked at those sad souls, lost in life’s mundanity.

He strolled out of the office. His desk was left scattered with papers and unpaid bills. He didn’t care. At home, he was at ease. The small studio apartment was dimly light and a mess. Paint brushes and wooden strips scattered the hall table. Open food containers lay stacked up in the kitchen. 

shades_of_red_by_blackstar102889-d4op9kj

Homer had no family. Besides Todd and Jason, no one really spoke to him. He was a quiet guy to most, the sort that usually stays at bar in an office party. His tie hung loosely from the collar. He didn’t press his shirts anymore. His eyes drooped at the corners. He was thirty one but wrinkles were already beginning to show. He hardly smiled.


He painted for himself. Bad days were often symbolized by dark and bold strokes with shades of black, blue and grey. Of late, the shades were getting darker. Most of his paintings were on blank sheets stolen from the office. If ever he had painted for days on a single canvas, something significant had happened.


One would think that he was lonely. But he wasn’t. He had his mind and that was his greatest companion. He could spend hours sitting in isolation, entertained in solitude by the thousands of thoughts in his head. Looking at a flower he could prepare a detailed analysis of the color schemes ingrained in its petals. Every detail or everything caught his attention. Sometimes it drove him mad, to think about things that didn’t have to be thought of. 

Painting was his everyday escape. These paintings were often a summary of his day. Art lovers would hardly be able to decipher what his paintings meant. He painted for himself. Bad days were often symbolized by dark and bold strokes with shades of black, blue and grey. Of late, the shades were getting darker. Most of his paintings were on blank sheets stolen from the office. If ever he had painted for days on a single canvas, something significant had happened.

When Vanessa ended their one and a half year relationship, he painted that canvas like moulding pottery, ever so gentle, but with pressure, so as to meekly define it. He took a month to finish that one, his longest yet. The colors used were mixed, brown and rose on one end and orange and scarlet on the other. Strokes were changed from bold to thin and sometimes even smudged.

As he ruminated on the origins of his turquoise wall carpet, a knock on the door was heard.

“Good Evening Mr. Murphious. I’d like to ask you a few questions about Mrs. Greyford. May I come in?”

“Please do, Detective”,  he said in a cold tone.


“What more do you want to know? Vanessa and I dated for a year and five months, as I’ve said repeatedly . The beginning was magical. But things started dying out and I guess we didn’t love each other anymore.”


32ShadesOfRed

Detective Samuel Macy was a one of the brightest officers in the precinct. He was pushing forty but looked as young as a fresher on his first job. With his wit in hand nothing could escape his ever so watchful eyes. His crisp shirt and buttoned down sleeves made him look like a man of action, which he aspired to be.

As Detective Macy took his seat, Homer attempted to tidy the hall table.

“Can you tell me about your relationship with Mrs. Greyford again?”


“She’s been missing for a month now and we had no leads, except, we got a tip yesterday. Someone told us they saw Vanessa come to your apartment at 11:44 pm on the day she went missing. Is this true?”


“What more do you want to know? Vanessa and I dated for a year and five months, as I’ve said repeatedly . The beginning was magical. But things started dying out and I guess we didn’t love each other anymore.”

“Her husband told me you made quite the scene at their wedding.”

“I had too much to drink.”

“You broke chairs and…”

“Look, it was an impulsive move and I apologized”

“Did you take her Homer?”

“No.”

“She’s been missing for a month now and we had no leads, except, we got a tip yesterday. Someone told us they saw Vanessa come to your apartment at 11:44 pm on the day she went missing. Is this true?”

“No.”

“I’ve got a search warrant here and four officers waiting outside. I expect your full cooperation.”

“Okay”

The officers barged in, in their boisterous manner. They pushed down books and cleared the wardrobes. Homer’s paintings were scattered on the floor. He attempted to pick them up but they pushed him away, lest he should interfere in the “investigation”.

“That’s a nice painting Homer”, the detective commented as he passed by the canvas, set at the corner of the hall.

“I made it for Vanessa. The frame is hand made. She always wanted me to use red. Not my favorite color, but anything to make her happy.”

I’m a man of order and I declare this place a mess. How do you suppose to bring order in your life with no discipline.”

“Things haven’t been going so well Sam, I don’t suppose you’d understand how it feels to have someone in your life and then, the very next moment, she tells you she doesn’t love you anymore. She’s found someone else, a real man, and she intends to spend her life with him. It can drive you to a place where maddening solitude can be your only friend.”

After two hours of searching , the police came up dry. The apartment may have belonged to a broken man, but there were no signs of the victim. They left without a word of apology leaving poor Homer in a world of mess. His messy apartment was He glanced at the painting and smiled.

Once in the squad car, Macy was disappointed. Homer was a person of interest but there was no evidence. If there was anything that helped his career it was his keen eye for detail. He began to recap all the elements in the apartment as the other officers were discussing what the next step was to be.

“Why was there no red?”, he shouted out.

“What do you mean Macy?”


“Think about it, black and red gives brown, red and purple gives rose, yellow and red gives orange and blue and red gives scarlet. I saw all these colors on his canvas edge, expect red. He said Mrs. Greyford loved red. Why was there no red?”


“Think about it, black and red gives brown, red and purple gives rose, yellow and red gives orange and blue and red gives scarlet. I saw all these colors on his canvas edge, expect red. He said Mrs. Greyford loved red. Why was there no red?”

The car turned around heading back to the dingy apartment.

“Detective?”, said Homer.

“Move aside Homer, I need to see the painting again.”

He ran his hands on the frame. Homer stood silent.

“Officer Maple, take samples of the surface. I want the results now.”

As the hours passed by Homer remained calm. He occasionally glanced out the window of his tiny home to look at the traffic outside. He remembered waiting for Vanessa through the long hours, waiting for her to come home. He knew her car had arrived by the screech of the engine. He knew every little detail about her.

“What do the results say Maple?”

“There is definitely a mix of blood in the paint, Sir. I took a sample from the frame as well . The material is bone .”

“Bone?”

“Human bone sir. Also, if you measure the frame, it’s about 16 by 7 inches. Guess how long a female femur and ulna are?”

The room was silent. Homer had a smile on his face. Macy ordered the officers to arrest him.

Shades-of-Red“Do you have anything to say Homer?”

“I called the tip line.” After a long pause he continued, “People called her nasty for leaving me, for causing my grief, but I wanted you to see her in her best shade.”

 

 

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My Journey With The Phantom Menace

 – Kevin Stanley, I BBA

My name is Kevin Stanley and I’m Bi-polar. I have written this article just to describe my experience of five years in as short a way as possible. At this moment I’m proud to have gone through such an experience. Let me tell you, it’s an experience, not an illness.

Ever had a person follow you around? He creeps behind you as you go on with life. As time goes by you get used to him. In a crowd you hope he isn’t there, but when you’re alone, you want him. Years pass and he finally reveals himself. And now you want him behind you again.

It all started less than five years ago. I was a cool, confident, talented, smart and principled teen doing engineering. Well, that’s where it all started. The phantom menace revealed its face to me for the first time, but it was only a peak. When it took over, I was zapped of all my energy. All my talents and strengths that I had went away. I was neither able to sleep, nor stay awake.

My identity as a person changed. I could hardly talk to anyone because my mind was empty. I didn’t have the ability to think, reason, sing, speak or innovate. I felt powerless.

My identity as a person changed. I could hardly talk to anyone because my mind was empty. I didn’t have the ability to think, reason, sing, speak or innovate. I felt powerless. I had always strived to live an optimistic life and have a positive outlook towards all things, but I became the face of negativity. I had many close friends but they did not notice it. I eventually shrugged it off as a phase and moved on. This lasted for about six months.

Then something happened. One day I got up and it’s all gone. I thought the phantom had left me for good. I had such a strong drive and vigour for life. This was when I was suddenly able to do multiple things efficiently. I got what I needed and grabbed what I wanted. I led a party life and succeeded in everything I did. I didn’t need sleep because I wanted to be productive. I was in love with everything and everyone around me.

All seemed to be going well when a sudden blow came. There was a mix-up in counting my attendance and that really should have struck me hard, but it didn’t. My phantom saved me from this grief without me knowing it. I continued in trying to be productive and I was, until one day when I got up and all my energy was gone. I did not feel like getting out of the bed. Every morning I woke up and wished the day ended soon so that I could go back into my cocoon, my lair of sorts. It was dreadful. I again thought it was just depression and shrugged it off and moved on.

Oh! Wait! Hallucinations! My imagination ran wild. I felt like a king, an angel, the devil. I created my own little world inside my head and made it my reality. 

I starting going to college again and in a week my vigour and energy was back. I felt more sharp and powerful than I ever was. I did things people wouldn’t usually do at my age and succeeded at it. Oh! Wait! Hallucinations! My imagination ran wild. I felt like a king, an angel, the devil. I created my own little world inside my head and made it my reality. At times people didn’t know what to make of me. I lost a lot of friends and gained many too.

I had forgotten about the phantom in me. It had grown very powerful. My temper flared at everyone and I refused to listen to reason. Logic left me. I always stood my ground no matter what. My hallucinations and perception of the world went haywire. Then I suddenly woke up and wanted the day to end quickly, again. I was back to my lair again. This time it was for a year. So many people couldn’t identify the phantom. Depression, ADHD, schizophrenia and hypertension were some of the names given to it. Finally, the menace, the phantom that tormented me for five years was found out. His name was BI-POLAR.

My name is Kevin Stanley and I’m Bi-polar. I have written this article just to describe my experience of five years in as short a way as possible. At this moment, I’m proud to have gone through such an experience. Let me tell you it’s an experience, not an illness. The only difference is that a few tablets have to be taken to be ‘normal’ and that is fine. We are all ‘normal’ in our own ways.

For all who are suffering from any kind of mental illness, let me tell you, it always gets better. Be positive, have the right people around you and you will truly shine. I never ever thought of suicide because I always had hope; never lose hope. To those who don’t have any mental illness, I urge you to be aware of the people around you. Mental illness is not a crime, it’s a sickness. Understand them and help them recover. I hope to write more articles about mental illness soon and make a bigger impact.

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Smoke and Fire

– Saghar Ada

Even if my wings are broken
Even if my mouth has been sealed shut
Even if the devils and predators of our time
Are sitting on my way and blocking my path
Still, I am not hopeless, neither am I tired.
As I’m liberated within, from heart and mind
I will not longer be enslaved as your captive.
I am a free soul whose path liberty has inspired.

A weak willow Tree is not who I am
Who would easily tremble with fear.
Whatever storm you bring my way
I have the courage to hold my frontier.
My decision I will not reverse no matter
How much pain you bring my way.

I stand tall with my stature, thoughts as high as the sky
Even if the sting of your tongue brings tears to my eyes
Or if the blade of your gaze tries to cut my soul and cause my demise.
Bring forth no matter what you can
I won’t bow to you no matter what you plan
Because I know the day will finally come
When to my sky high thoughts you will finally succumb.

I am from the generation of smoke and fire
You better be aware!
I have tested and tried death for a lifetime
You better be aware!
Don’t you dare question my path or forbid my thoughts!
I am smoke, I am fire
You better be aware!

(Saghar Ada is a BBA student at SJCC and is from Afghanistan)

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A Keyboard Poem

– Rakshitha Sridhar

As I sit here
Typing out another poem
Another one about you
Another one whose existence hides in your plain sight
I wonder
If this poet will ever be your muse.

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A Personal History of the Family

 – V

“Unhappy that I am, I cannot heave
My heart into my mouth. I love your Majesty
According to my bond; no more nor less.”

— Cordelia, King Lear (Act I, Scene I)

We love our family without question, be it our parents, grandparents, siblings, etc. It’s a universally accepted rule that “Family comes first”. When it comes to relationships family is given the first priority in most cases or at least we’ve always been told to do so. We Indians are extremely family oriented people. From what I’ve observed and seen in my family our culture is such that we’ve been made to believe that love for family should eclipse friendships and even romantic relationships. Hell, even romance is a family affair here. My grandmother’s sisters, her third son’s wife’s brother’s dog has more of say in whom I love than I do. I’d like to explore if we’ve incessantly been romanticising the concept of family and if it’s all that it’s made up to be.

Hell, even romance is a family affair here. My grandmother’s sisters, her third son’s wife’s brother’s dog has more of say in whom I love than I do.

I find it rather awkward to tell my parents I love them. Not because I don’t love them but because it was never really a practice. Their love for me manifested in the form of remote controlled cars and Pokémon cards. Coming from a fairly well off family, I was often reminded by my parents that I had been given “everything” and therefore I had no excuse to fail in studies or in life. From being sent to arguably one of the best schools to going on exotic vacations, having the latest video games, dining at the fanciest restaurants, the whole shebang, I was constantly told how grateful I should be.

The only emotions I was allowed to have was about physics, chemistry and biology. In her head, I was only the sum of my exam marks.

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Death of Merit – Rohith Vemula’s Death Note Through Alisha’s Art

Death of Merit – Rohith Vemula’s Death Note Through Alisha’s Art

Death of Merit – Rohith Vemula’s Death Note Through Alisha’s Art

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ಭಾರತದ ಪ್ರಜ್ಞೆಯನ್ನು ಬಹಳ ಕಾಲ ಕಾಡುವ ವೇಮುಲ

campaign english new-page-001– ರೋಶಿನಿ ಇನ್ಛೆಂಟೀನಾ (Roshini Infenteena)
ದ್ವೀತಿಯ .ಬಿ.ಕಾಂ (II B.Com)

ಮಾನವನ ಹುಟ್ಟು ಒಂದು ವಿಶೇಷವಾದ ವರದಾನ ಹುಟ್ಟಿದ ಮನುಷ್ಯ ಕೆಲವು ದಿನ ಭೂಮಿ ಮೇಲೆ ಇದ್ದು ಏನಾದರೂ ಸಾಧಿಸಬೇಕು ಎಂಬುದು ಎಲ್ಲರ ಆಸೆಯಾಗಿರುತ್ತದೆ. ಪ್ರತಿಯೊಬ್ಬರಲ್ಲೂ ಗುರಿ ಎಂಬುದು ಇರಬೇಕು.ಆ ಗುರಿಯನ್ನು ಸಾಧಿಸಲು ಮನುಷ್ಯ ಏನೆಲ್ಲ ಕಷ್ಟಪಡಬೇಕು ಎಂಥೆಂಥ ತೊಂದರೆಗಳನ್ನು ಎದುರಿಸಬೇಕು ಎಂಬುವುದಕ್ಕೆ ಆಂದ್ರ ಪ್ರದೇಶದ ಗುಂಟೂರು ತಾಲ್ಲೂಕಿನ ರೊಹಿತ್ ವೇಮುಲ ಎಂಬ ಯುವಕನ ಆತ್ಮಹತ್ಯೆಯೇ ಉದಾಹರಣೆಯಾಗಿದೆ.

ರೋಹಿತ್ ವೇಮುಲನು ಜನವರಿ 30 ರಂದು 1989 ರಂದು ಆಂದ್ರ ಪ್ರದೇಶದ ಗುಂಟೂರು ತಾಲ್ಲೂಕಿನಲ್ಲಿ ಜನಿಸಿದನು. ಈತನ ತಂದೆ ಮಣಿಕುಮಾರ್ ತಾಯಿ ರಾಧಿಕಾ.ಈತನು ದಲಿತ ಜಾತಿಗೆ ಸೇರಿದವನಾಗಿದ್ದನು. ಪ್ರತಿಯೊಬ್ಬರ ಹುಟ್ಟು ಆಕಸ್ಮಿಕ ಆದರೆ ತನ್ನ ಹುಟ್ಟು ಮಾರಣಾಂತಿಕ ಅವಘಡ ಎಂದು ಬರೆದಿಟ್ಟು ನೇಣು ಹಾಕಿಕೊಂಡ ರೋಹಿತ್ ವೇಮುಲ ಮಾತ್ರ ಭಾರತದ ಪ್ರಜ್ಞೆಯನ್ನು ಬಹಳ ಕಾಲ ಕಾಡುತ್ತಾನೆ. ಮರಣ ದಂಡೆನೆಯಂತಹ ಘೋರ ಶಿಕ್ಷೆ ಇರಬಾರದು ಎಂದು ಪ್ರತಿಭಟಿಸಿದ್ದ ವೇಮುಲ ಈಗ ತಾನೇ ನೇಣಿನ ಕುಣಿಕೆಗೆ ತಲೆ ಒಡ್ಡಿದ.ತನ್ನ ಸುತ್ತಲ ವ್ಯವಸ್ಥೆಯ ತಪ್ಪಿಗೆ ತನಗೆ ತಾನೇ ಶಿಕ್ಷೆ ವಿಧಿಸಿಕೊಂಡದನ್ನು ಕಂಡು ನನಗೆ ಬೇಸರವಾಗುತ್ತಿದೆ. ಪ್ರತಿಭಾವಂತ ವಿಧ್ಯಾರ್ಥಿಯಾದ ರೋಹಿತ್ ಮತ್ತು ಗೆಳೆಯರು ವಿಧ್ಯಾರ್ಥಿ ವೇತನ ಪಡೆದು ಸಂಶೋಧನೆಗೆಂದು ವಿ.ವಿಗೆ ಬಂದವರು. ಅವರಿಗೆ ಬೇರೆ ಆದಾಯದ ಮೂಲಗಳಿರುವುದಿಲ್ಲ ಅಂತವರಿಗೆ ಇರಲು ಜಾಗ ಕೂಡದೆ ಹೊರಗೆ ನೂಕುವುದು ಘೋರ ಅಪರಾಧ. ನನ್ನ ಪ್ರಕಾರ ಇದು ನ್ಯಾಯವೇ ಅಲ್ಲಾ.
ರೋಹಿತ್ ವೇಮುಲ ಶಿಕ್ಷಣ ಪಡೆಯಲು ಸೇರಿದ ಸಂಸ್ಥೆಯೇ ಅವನ ಆತ್ಮಹತ್ಯೆಗೆ ಕಾರಣ. ಆತ್ಮಹತ್ಯೆಗೀಡಾದ ಹೈದರಬಾದ್ ಕೇಂದ್ರಿಯ ವಿವಿಯ ದಲಿತ ಸಂಶೋಧನಾ ವಿಧ್ಯಾರ್ಥಿ ರೋಹಿತ್ ವೆಮುಲಾ ಹಾಗೂ ಇತರ ನಾಲ್ವರ ವಿರುದ್ಧ ಕ್ರಮ ಕೈಗೊಳ್ಳುವಂತೆ ಕೇಂದ್ರ ಮಾನವ ಸಂಪನ್ಮೂಲ ಅಭಿವೃದ್ಧಿ ಸಚಿವಾಲಯ ವಿವಿಗೆ 6 ಬಾರಿ ಪತ್ರ ಬರೆದಿದ್ದ ವಿಚಾರ ಇದೀಗ ಬಹಿರಂಗವಾಗಿದೆ.

ವಿವಿಯ ಅಂತರಿಕ ವಿಚಾರದಲ್ಲಿ ಕೇಂದ್ರ ಸಚಿವರಾದ ಬಂಡಾರು ದತ್ತಾತ್ರೇಯ ಮತ್ತು ಸ್ಮೃತಿ ಇರಾನಿ ಪದೇ ಪದೇ ಒತ್ತಡ ಏರುತ್ತಿದ್ದರು ಎನ್ನುವ ವಿಚಾರವು ಈಗ ಬೆಳಕಿಗೆ ಬಂದಿದ್ದು.ಇಡೀ ಪ್ರಕರಣಕ್ಕೆ ತಿರುವು ನೀಡಿದೆ. ಇದರಿಂದ ಎಚ್ಚರಗೊಂಡ ವಿದ್ಯಾಥರ್ಿ ವಲಯ ಕೇಂದ್ರ ಸಚಿವರಾದ ಬಂಡಾರು ದತ್ತಾತ್ರೇಯ ಮತ್ತು ಸ್ಮೃತಿ ಇರಾನಿ ರಾಜೀನಾಮೆಗೆ ಆಗ್ರಹಿಸಿದೆ. ಅಲ್ಲದೇ ಇದು ರಾಜಕೀಯ ತಿರುವು ಪಡೆದುಕೊಂಡಿದ್ದು ಕಾಂಗ್ರೆಸ್ ಸಿಪಿಐ ಕೇಂದ್ರ ಸಚಿವರ ತಲೆದಂಡಕ್ಕೆ ಆಗ್ರಹಿಸಿವೆ. ಈ ಆತ್ಮಹತ್ಯೆ ಸಂಬಂದ ದೇಶಾದ್ಯಂತ ವಿಧ್ಯಾರ್ಥಿಗಳು ನಾನಾ ಸಂಘಟನೆಗಳು ಪ್ರತಿಭಟನೆ ಮುಂದುವರಿಸಿದ್ದಾರೆ. 26 ವರ್ಷದ ದಲಿತ ಸಂಶೋಧನಾ ವಿಧ್ಯಾರ್ಥಿ ರೋಹಿತ್ ಸೇರಿದಂತೆ ವಿವಿಯ ಐದು ವಿದ್ಯಾಥರ್ಿಗಳ ಮೇಲೆ ಎಬಿವಿಪಿ ನಾಯಕರೊಬ್ಬರ ಮೇಲೆ ಹಲ್ಲೇ ನಡೆಸಿದ ಆರೋಪ ಹೊರಿಸಲಾಗಿತ್ತು. ಆಗ ಐವರನ್ನೂ ಕಾಲೇಜಿನಿಂದ ಸಸ್ಪೆಂಡ್ ಮಾಡಲಾಗಿತ್ತು. ವಿವಿ ವಿಚಾರಣೆ ಬಳಿಕ ರೋಹಿತ್ ಸೇರಿ ಎಲ್ಲರನ್ನು ಆರೋಪ ಮುಕ್ತಗೊಳಿಸಲಾಗಿತ್ತು.

Students of St. Joseph's College of Commerce protesting in solidarity

Students of St. Joseph’s College of Commerce protesting in solidarity

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A Message from Afghanistan

 – Saghar Ada

Naturally people wish for things they don’t have. For example, during the daylight when one sees others wearing sunglasses, she wishes for having like those sunglasses so that she could protect her eyes from the sun rays. But exactly unlike her, those already wearing the sunglasses don’t enjoy from wearing what another may wish for; instead, they also wish for another thing they don’t have. That is, maybe, wishing for having a good car driving to wherever they want.

To make my point clear, I will give you another Afghan-Hindi example. I am Saghar. On the day I was born a rocket hit a corner of our house. Fortunately nobody was hurt. However, I and my mom did have nightmares and frightening dreams. Later when I started going to school I could see that there were holes on school walls, hit by bullets, and after a while the whole school premise was no more at all as they burned it to ashes. Time went on and I grew up, and one day accidentally I came to read one of India’s newspapers in which I saw a picture of Indian girls studying in a classroom. Observing that, I wished I was born in India and was studying like one of them and that my school had safe walls too. Nonetheless, those girls studying in the safe classrooms may not even bother thinking about the privilege of going to school peacefully.

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Ellipsis 2015

Ellipsis is the intra-collegiate literary festival of St. Joseph’s College of Commerce to be held on 11 August 2015.

Ellipsis, a sequence of three dots, can express what a lot of words can’t. It is the silence after speech. It communicates more than words. This festival is an attempt to explore the interstice between speech and silence; words and the three dots. It hopes to create an atmosphere where words acquire meaning through silence and silence through words.

The festival has two sections:

Breaking Waves – Speaking events

Drifting Earth – Writing events

The festival will conclude with Divergence Debates, a grand student debate on a contemporary issue. Continue reading

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