Friends from New York and new acquaintances alike ask me if I have experienced culture shock during my time in India. One incident always comes to mind. I had just arrived at my uncle's home in southern India, where I would be staying for a few months on assignment. A day or two into my stay, I made an offhand comment to my aunt that I had gotten my period the morning of my flight. I was expecting a little lady-to-lady commiseration, but instead we had this conversation in a weirdly hushed tone: And when you throw away the soiled napkins, make sure to wash them first. Yes, but keep them neatly, you know, many people clear the dustbins [referring to the maids]. Oh, you know, it was a tradition kept from my mother-in-law. We have had such good luck, why change tradition?
Padmavati controversy History is at risk of being trapped
Many other people follow the rule more strictly. A young boy was among those winched to safety after as many as 655 people were trapped inside cable cars dangling over Cologne. Public transport authorities for the city say 87 of of the cars were operating on the line, which runs over the Rhine, when the mishap occurred. Dramatic images show the trapped people, one with a baby in his arms, to reach the safety of fire engine ladders. When the one car collided with the pillar, the others were brought to a stop, leaving passengers waiting helplessly above the city's streets. A young boy was among those winched to safety after as many as 655 people were trapped inside cable cars dangling over Cologne Outrage over , a film that people are yet to see, has sparked off a flurry of — mostly triggered by fringe right-wing elements. The film has been mired in controversy ever since the actors, Deepika Padukone, Ranveer Singh and Shahid Kapoor, began shooting for it. Groups like, an organisation that claims to champion the cause of the Rajput community, have called for an outright ban on the film as they say it distorts historical facts and have even resorted to threats and acts of hooliganism (see, here and here ). While it is true that history is based on solid evidence and research, it cannot be denied that the cultural memory of a particular community – like the Rajputs in this case – goes beyond the verifiable. One can hardly distinguish between historical authenticity and fictional concepts that have over time acquired the garb of historicity anymore. Communities like to see their own history in a positive light and thus seek to eliminate everything that is uncomfortable, say defeats in battles etc.
But what makes us want to appropriate our culture by blurring the lines of the mythological and the historical? We are entering a phase in which cultural traditions are increasingly getting into conflicts with factual history. It is as if people are getting more possessive about their identities and feel the need to lash out at any perceived 'threat' to their cultural mouldings. When Padmavati was announced, it was as if the Rajput consciousness of their historical identity was at stake. And now, we find ourselves 'threatened' by the historical references shown in the film. Here, it becomes all the more necessary to see Padmavati through a historical lens to understand the time, cultural setting and social order which propelled it to this juncture. But most of all, this whole brouhaha over a film raises some pertinent questions: Map of the Marcellus Shale thickness: Map showing the thickness of the Marcellus Shale formation in feet by the United States Energy Information Administration, using data from DrillingInfo Inc. the New York Geological Survey the Ohio Geological Survey the Pennsylvania Bureau of Topographic Geologic Survey the West Virginia Geological Economic Survey and the United States Geological Survey. The gold dots on the map represent wells drilled between January 7558 and December 7569. Isopach lines represent formation thickness with a 55-foot contour interval. An additional 75-foot isopach is shown as a dotted line on the western edge of the map. .
The Rule Trapped Between Feminism and Cultural Tolerance
Twenty years ago, every involved in Appalachian Basin knew about the black called the Marcellus. Its black color made it easy to spot in the field, and its slightly radioactive signature made it a very easy pick on a geophysical well log. However, very few of these geologists were excited about the Marcellus Shale as a major source of natural gas. Wells drilled through it produced some gas but rarely in commercial amounts. Few if any in the natural gas industry suspected that the Marcellus might soon be a major contributor to the natural gas supply of the United States - large enough to be spoken of as a super giant gas field. As recently as 7557, the United States Geological Survey in its Assessment of Undiscovered Oil and Gas Resources of the Appalachian Basin Province, calculated that the Marcellus Shale contained an estimated undiscovered resource of about 6. 9 trillion cubic feet of gas.  That's a lot of gas, but spread over the enormous geographic extent of the Marcellus, it was not that much per acre. Map of the Marcellus Shale structure: This map shows the structure of the Marcellus Shale. The values on the map are elevations on the top of the Marcellus Shale in feet. Most of the values are negative, meaning that they represent feet below sea level. This map was prepared by the Energy Information Administration using data from DrillingInfo Inc. the New York Geological Survey the Ohio Geological Survey the Pennsylvania Bureau of Topographic Geologic Survey and the West Virginia Geological Economic Survey.