Kolkata Literary Meet
The Global Calcuttan at Kalam, 2014:
THE BRAVE NEW ASIAN:
S.B. Veda in conversation with Man Booker nominee, author, Tash Aw, W.H. Smith First Book Award winner, Shyam Selvidurai, and Former Wall Street Journal correspondent, Anita Raghavan in a session called The Brave New Asian in which Asian aspirations are discussed. Tash’s recent novel, Five Star Billionaire chronicles the quests three Malaysians of Chinese origin, as they travel to the land of their ancestors – not for cultural reinvigoration but rather for material gain; The Five Star Billionaire, himself, shows them how this is done. Shyam’s book The Hungry Ghosts is about a gay man, who, in escaping the oppression of his homeland in Sri Lanka with his depressed mother, struggles to find it in the racially intolerant gay community of Toronto; he returns home to a different kind of struggle, battling a domineering grandmother. Anita’s reporting for the Wall Street Journal led her to chronicle the meteoric rise and fall of Rajat Gupta, who immigrated to the USA from India, MBA from Harvard in hand, rising to become the only three term CEO of McKinsey Consulting; she paints a portrait of contrasts between Gupta, his Billionaire associate, Raj Rajaratnam, and his honourable father, whose sacrifices led Rajat to leave India in the first place.