Episode 254: The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri

He carried cables on a film set. He teamed up with friends named Arvind and Manish to save Delhi. He started a media company that said Boo to advertisers. Abhinandan Sekhri joins Amit Varma in episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen to speak about the many things he’s learned during his rich and unconventional life.

Also check out:
1. Abhinandan Sekhri on Twitter, Instagram and Newslaundry.
2. Subscribe to Newslaundry.
3. PG Wodehouse on Amazon.
4. War and Peace and The Thorn Birds.
5. The Return of the Native — Thomas Hardy.
6. Far From the Madding Crowd — Thomas Hardy.
7. Leo Tolstoy, Charles Dickens and William Shakespeare on Amazon.
8. Mills and Boon on Amazon.
9. Rang De Basanti.
10. Amusing Ourselves to Death — Neil Postman.
11. It is Obscene — Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
12. Highway on My Plate.
13. Gustakhi…

Episode 287: The Life and Times of Urvashi Butalia

…Seen and the Unseen (w Akshaya Mukul).
20. What Have We Done With Our Independence? — Episode 186 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Pratap Bhanu Mehta).
21. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Abhinandan Sekhri).
22. Towards Equality: Report of the Committee on Status of Women in India (1974).
23. The Kavita Krishnan Files — Episode 228 of The Seen and the Unseen.
24. Manjima Bhattacharjya: The Making of a Feminist — Episode 280 of The Seen and the Unseen.
25. Kamla Bhasin on Wikipedia.
26. Division of Hearts — Satti Khanna and Peter Chappell.
27. Heer Ranjha.
28. Kumar Gandharva sings Nirgun Bhajans.
29. Reshma sings Bulle Shah.
30. Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan on Spotify.
31. Ek Onkar — Harshdeep Kaur.
32. Chaudhvin Ka Chand — Guru Dutt.
33. Pyaasa — Guru Dutt.
34. A Question…

Episode 256: Pramit Bhattacharya Believes in Just One Ism

…Fight of the Century: Keynes vs. Hayek – Economics Rap Battle Round Two.
9. Conversation and Society — Episode 182 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Russ Roberts).
10. The Literature Machine — Italo Calvino.
11. Milton Friedman and Paul Samuelson on Amazon.
12. Farmers, Technology and Freedom of Choice: A Tale of Two Satyagrahas — Amit Varma.
13. Vidarbha’s Tryst With BT Cotton — Pramit Bhattacharya.
14. The State of Our Farmers — Ep 86 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Gunvant Patil, in Hindi).
15. India’s Agriculture Crisis — Episode 140 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Barun Mitra and Kumar Anand).
16. Thinking it Through — The archives of Amit Varma’s weekly column for Mint in 2007-8.
17. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Abhinandan Sekhri).
18. Elena Ferrante’s interview about her writing…

Episode 290: Karthik Muralidharan Examines the Indian State

…59. Urban Governance in India — Episode 31 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Shruti Rajagopalan).
60. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Abhinandan Sekhri).
61. The Tiebout Model.
62. Every Act of Government Is an Act of Violence — Amit Varma.
63. Taxes Should Be Used for Governance, Not Politics — Amit Varma.
64. The Effects of Democratization on Public Goods and Redistribution: Evidence from China — Nancy Qian, Gerard Padró i Miquel, Monica Martinez-Bravo and Yang Yao.
65. Sneaky Artist Sees the World — Episode 260 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Nishant Jain).
66. Science and Covid-19 — Episode 221 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Anirban Mahapatra).
66. Centrally Sponsored Government Schemes — Episode 17 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Pranay Kotasthane.).
67. India’s states can be laboratories for policy…

Episode 258: The Universe of Chuck Gopal

…The Bugle.
36. Freakonomics Radio.
37. Masters of Scale with Reid Hoffman.
38. Miss Excel on Instagram and TikTok.
39. How an Excel Tiktoker Manifested Her Way to Making Six Figures a Day — Nilay Patel.
40. Galaxy Brain — Charlie Warzen’s newsletter.
41. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
42. Persuasion — Founded by Yascha Mounk.
43. Faye D’Souza on Instagram. And also on YouTube and Twitter.
44. A Scientist in the Kitchen — Episode 204 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Krish Ashok).
45. Bad Thinking Requires Bad Writing — Amit Varma.
46. An Adman Reflects on Society & the Self — Episode 199 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Ambi Parameswaran).
47. Blackstratblues and Zero on Spotify.
48. Anuva’s Sky — Blackstratblues.
49. Son of Bosey — Anand Ramachandran.
50. Dave Gorman’s Googlewhack Adventure.
51….

Episode 259: The Loneliness of the Indian Woman

…Kennedy School in 2018. (Minute 5 onwards.)
26. In Service of the Republic — Vijay Kelkar and Ajay Shah.
27. Superforecasting — Philip Tetlock and Dan Gardner.
28. Listen, The Internet Has SPACE — Amit Varma.
29. Raees: An Empty Shell of a Gangster Film — Amit Varma.
30. The Baptist, the Bootlegger and the Dead Man Walking — Amit Varma.
31. Bootleggers and Baptists-The Education of a Regulatory Economist — Bruce Yandle.
32. Episodes of The Seen and the Unseen with Jai Arjun Singh and Uday Bhatia.
33. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
34. Films, Feminism, Paromita — Episode 155 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Paromita Vohra).
35. Modi’s Lost Opportunity — Episode 119 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Salman Soz).
36. Women at Work — Episode 132 of The Seen and the Unseen…

Episode 260: Sneaky Artist Sees the World

Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
43. r/vancouver, r/mildlyinteresting and r/interestingasfuck.
44. Some Reddit posts by Nishant Jain: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6.
45. David Letterman and Bill Gates talk about the Internet.
46. Exhalation — Ted Chiang.
47. Kurt Vonnegut on Amazon.
48. Catch 22 — Joseph Heller.
49. V for Vendetta — Alan Moore and David Lloyd.
50. Watchmen — Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons.
51. Alan Moore on Amazon.
52. Identity — Francis Fukuyama.
53. The Anarchy — William Dalrymple.
54. Dynasty: The Rise and Fall of the House of Caesar — Tom Holland.
55. The Origins of Political Order — Francis Fukuyama.
56. Political Order and Political Decay — Francis Fukuyama.
57. Bluebird — Charles Bukowsky.

Check out Amit’s online courses, The Art of Clear Writing and The Art of Podcasting.

And subscribe to The India Uncut Newsletter….

Episode 263: The Life and Times of Mrinal Pande

…Mrinal Pande’s pieces for Pragati on women in Indian agriculture: 1, 2.
22. The controversy over the misogynist CBSE paper.
23. Vijaydhan Detha on Amazon.
24. The Loneliness of the Indian Woman — Episode 259 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Shrayana Bhattacharya).
25. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
26. The Life and Times of Vir Sanghvi — Episode 236 of The Seen and the Unseen.
27. The Barkha Dutt Files — Episode 243 of The Seen and the Unseen.
28. The Prem Panicker Files — Episode 217 of The Seen and the Unseen.

This episode is sponsored by CTQ Compounds. Check out The Daily Reader and FutureStack. Use the code UNSEEN for Rs 2500 off.

Check out Amit’s online course, The Art of Clear Writing.

And subscribe to The India Uncut Newsletter. It’s free!…

Episode 267: Dhanya Rajendran Fights the Gaze

Indian mainstream media tends to see our country with the gaze of a privileged North Indian man. That is changing. Dhanya Rajendran joins Amit Varma in episode 267 of The Seen and the Unseen to talk about her journey in setting up The News Minute, and in deepening our journalism and the conversations we have.

Also check out:
1. Dhanya Rajendran on Twitter, Instagram and The News Minute.
2. Support The News Minute.
3. Cut the Clutter.
4. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
5. The death of Savita Halappanavar.
6. Steven Van Zandt: Springsteen, the death of rock and Van Morrison on Covid — Richard Purden.
7. Some regional publications: Newsmeter, The Cue and Truecopythink.
8. 7 Indians are hostages in a conflict between Houthi rebels and Saudi coalition in Yemen — Sanyukta Dharmadhikari.
9….

Episode 269: The Life and Times of Nirupama Rao

…— AK Ramanujan.
19. I Never Dreamed You’d Leave In Summer — Joan Baez.
20. Joan Baez, Maria Callas, Renée Fleming and Marian Anderson on Spotify.
21. The Collected Tintin.
22. Ekla Chalo Re.
23. A Meditation on Form — Amit Varma.
24. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
25. In Praise of Shadows — Junichiro Tanizaki.
26. Some Prefer Nettles — Junichiro Tanizaki.
27. The Book of Tea — Kakuzo Okakura.
28. MS Subbulakshmi on Spotify.
29. The Country without a Post Office — Agha Shahid Ali.
30. The Lark Ascending — Vaughan Williams.
31. Norma — Vincenzo Bellini.
32. Casta Diva — Maria Callas.
33. Connais-Tu Le Pays — Ambroise Thomas.

This episode is sponsored by CTQ Compounds. Check out The Daily Reader and FutureStack. Use the code UNSEEN for Rs 2500 off.

Check out Amit’s…

Episode 270: Aakar Patel Is Full of Hope

Things are bad — so bad that he’s written two books about it. Aakar Patel joins Amit Varma in episode 270 of The Seen and the Unseen to discuss politics, the media and his reasons for being hopeful in spite of all the doom and gloom.

Also check out:
1. Aakar Patel on Twitter, Amazon, Deccan Chronicle, Business Standard and the Times of India.
2. Our Hindu Rashtra: What It Is. How We Got Here — Aakar Patel.
3. Price of the Modi Years — Aakar Patel.
4. The Intellectual Foundations of Hindutva — Episode 115 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Aakar Patel).
5. The Tank Man video. (And the Wikipedia page.)
6. August Landmesser, who may have been the man who didn’t salute.
7. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
8. Amit Varma’s…

Episode 271: Crossing Over With Deepak Shenoy

…Secret Life of Walter Mitty — James Thurber.
9. Mungerilal Ke Haseen Sapne (on Wikipedia and YouTube).
10. The Truman Show — Peter Weir.
11. Losing My Religion — REM.
12. With or Without You — U2.
13. Conversation and Society — Episode 182 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Russ Roberts).
14. Econ Talk (by Russ Roberts) and Conversations with Tyler (by Tyler Cowen).
15. The Prem Panicker Files — Episode 217 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Prem Panicker).
16. The Connell Guide to How to Write Well — Tim de Lisle.
17. Amitava Kumar Finds the Breath of Life — Episode 265 of The Seen and the Unseen.
18. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
19. Rukmini Sees India’s Multitudes — Episode 261 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Rukmini S).
20. Addiction by…

Episode 284: The Life and Times of Nilanjana Roy

…la Mare.
24. Lessons from an Ankhon Dekhi Prime Minister — Amit Varma.
25. George Saunders and Barack Obama on Amazon.
26. A life in 5,000 books — Nilanjana Roy.
27. Surender Mohan Pathak, Ibne Safi and Gabriel Garcia Marquez on Amazon.
28. The Power Broker — Robert Caro.
29. The Death and Life of Great American Cities — Jane Jacobs.
30. JRR Tolkien, Ursula Le Guin and Terry Pratchett on Amazon.
31. Forget reading Thomas Piketty. Try a bit of Terry Pratchett — Robert Shrimsley.
32. Fifty Shades of Grey — EL James.
33. Ankur Warikoo, Aanchal Malhotra, Manu Pillai and Ira Mukhoty on Amazon.
34. Mahashweta Devi and Naiyer Masud on Amazon.
35. The former homes of Hurree Babu and Putu the Cat.
36. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
37. Om Namah Volume — Amit Varma.
38….

Episode 285: The Life and Times of Montek Singh Ahluwalia

…of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
11. India’s Problem is Poverty, Not Inequality — Amit Varma.
12. On Inequality — Harry Frankfurt.
13. The Cantillon Effect: Because of Inflation, We’re Financing the Financiers — Jessica Schultz.
14. Population Is Not a Problem, but Our Greatest Strength — Amit Varma.
15. State Building: Governance and World Order in the 21st Century — Francis Fukuyama.
16. The Origins of Political Order — Francis Fukuyama.
17. Political Order and Political Decay — Francis Fukuyama.
18. James Buchanan on Amazon.
19. Jawaharlal Nehru’s speech about our “tryst with destiny.”
20. Fixing Indian Education — Episode 185 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Karthik Muralidharan).
21. Education in India — Episode 77 of The Seen and the Unseen (w Amit Chandra).
22. Fund Schooling, Not Schools (2007) — Amit Varma.
23. Our Unlucky Children (2008) — Amit Varma.

Episode 288: Chandrahas Choudhury’s Country of Literature

To immerse yourself in literature is to immerse yourself in the world. Chandrahas Choudhury joins Amit Varma in episode 288 of The Seen and the Unseen to chat about reading, writing, friendship, Mumbai and the guests at his fantasy dinner table.

Also check out:
1. Chandrahas Choudhury on Instagram and Amazon.
2. The Middle Stage — Chandrahas Choudhury’s blog.
3. My Country Is Literature — Chandrahas Choudhury.
4. Days of My China Dragon — Chandrahas Choudhury.
5. Clouds — Chandrahas Choudhury.
6. Arzee The Dwarf — Chandrahas Choudhury.
7. Bamana Arzee — Chandrahas Choudhury, translated by Sindhubala Choudhury.
8. The Life and Times of Abhinandan Sekhri — Episode 254 of The Seen and the Unseen.
9. Two Men Who Left Third Man Alone — Amit Varma and Chandrahas Choudhury.
10. The Curse of Knowledge.
11. Eunice De Souza on Amazon.
12. House of the Dead —…