Photos of AIIS in Ballygunge and the train station at Baghajatin that leads to the school
I’ll have to give an update on my life, which I have repeatedly put off the for the past week.
Recently people have asked me what exactly am I doing in Calcutta. Not in sense of my grant, which is to ostensibly focus on early newspaper history in the city, but what I am actually doing on a day to day basis.
To this, I reply, I am taking Bangla classes intensively at the American Institute of Indian Studies in Calcutta, in Ballygunge. That is, from 9-2 every day, Monday to Friday, I go to class. It’s a humid, sweaty, diesel fume-choked 45 minute bus and auto ride after which I arrive fairly exhausted.
I’ve been going since September 1st and will be taking classes in this fashion until around January. After these first four months, I will begin the official part of my research on the newspapers. For the first few weeks I arrived, I was “settling in,” meaning dealing with bureaucracy, meeting my contacts, affiliates and surveying site locations. Since catalogues are not generally posted online in India, I travel to each institution and ask around to understand their resources.
I’ve been to, or intend to go to, the below: