Non-academic Talks and Activities

I regularly give interviews for national and local print media, television (mostly Channel 4 and BBC World) and radio (mostly Radio 3 and Radio 4) in the UK, in Europe and in India on Indian cinema and other topics for documentaries and news programmes.  I also contribute op-eds, reviews, and other features (see blog) and I give interviews to publications such as The Economist and The Financial Times and many Indian newspapers and magazines.


2020 — Invited speaker, Jaipur Literary Festival

2019 — Invited speaker, Dhaka Literature Festival

2019 — Speaker, Response to the UN Report ‘Nature’s Dangerous Design’, Window to the World session on tourism and wildlife

2018 — Speaker, British Museum

2018 — Invited speaker, Litro Festival, curated by Jaipur Literary Festival

2017 — Invited speaker, Jaipur Literary Festival (Jaipur and London); Apeejay Literary Festival, Kolkata; Kala Ghoda Festival, Mumbai

2016 — Delegate, ‘Film Bazaar’, National Film Development Corporation of India

2016 — Invited speaker:’ Sex in South Asia’, In partnership with DSC Prize Southbank

2016 — Invited speaker, Jaipur Literary Festival at the Southbank

2016 — Invited speaker, Interview with Chetan Bhagat, London Asian Film Festival

2016 — Invited speaker, Interview with Kranti Kanade, London Indian Film Festival

2015 — Speaker, ‘Undressing Shahrukh Khan’, Bradford Literary Festival

2015 — Speaker (with Ian Jack and Sunil Khilnani), National Theatre, ‘In context: Behind the beautiful forevers’.

2015 — Speaker, ‘Deconstructing Bollywood: beyond the cliches’, Jaipur Literary Festival at the Southbank

2014 — Speaker, ‘Bollywood via London’, Jaipur Literary Festival at the Southbank

2014 — Speaker, ‘Pakistan: What else you need to know’, curated by Kamila Shamsie at the Southbank

2014 — Speaker at Lahore Literary Festival: in conversation with Mira Nair and Mohsin Hamid, ‘Filming The reluctant fundamentalist’; in conversation with Naman Ahuja on ‘The body in South Asian Art’; in conversation with Mira Hashmi ‘The rise and fall of masala films’

2013 — Speaker, Times Literary Carnival, Mumbai. ‘The flawed heroine: Meena Kumari’, discussion with Mahmood Farooqui and Vinod Mehta;  ‘Junking the formula’, discussion with Anand Gandhi and Vikramaditya Motwane.

2013 — Speaker, ‘In the eyes of the other’, Reset-Dialogues on Civilizations, The Venice-Delhi seminars 2013,

2013 — Speaker at Jaipur Literary Festival: in conversation with poet, activist and scriptwriter, Javed Akhtar:  ‘Bollywood and National Narrative’; Chair of discussion on literary adaptation, with Zoe Heller, Tim Supple, Ariel Dorfman, Sebastian Faulks and Vikas Swarup.

2012 — Guest of Honour at inauguration of LSE India Week, 2012, organized by the India Society, SPICE

2012 — ‘Bollywood now’, Podcast for Financial Times,

2012 — ‘Book Review: Holy Land’, review of India: A Sacred Geography by Diana L. Eck, LiveMint.–The-holy-land.html

2011 — ‘Flying at Street Level’, Hidden Journeys, Mumbai-Delhi, Royal Geographical Society,

2011 — Jury member, Hassan Kutty Award for Best Debut Indian Film, International Film Festival of Kerala

2011 — Panel chair at ‘Names not Numbers’ organised by Editorial Intelligence, sponsored by the British Council and the Financial Times, Mumbai

2011 — Discussant in panel ‘Divided’ in discussion series ‘Continental Shifts’ at the Edinburgh International Festival

2011 — Discussant with Meera Syal, SOAS Alumni Event

2011 — Speaker, ‘Introduction to Bollywood’, National Film Schools Week

2011 — Speaker, ‘Bollywood for Beginners’, the Master’s Bollywood Evening, Worshipful Company of Tallow Chandlers

2011 — Lecture, ‘Bollywood’s India’ at the 2nd Karachi Literary Festival, 2011

2009 — Chaired panel at ‘Frame by frame’, organized by Akademi at the Royal Opera House

2009 — Chair, ‘Literature of the Cinema’, British Council event at the London Book Fair

2009 — Member of Marathi jury, 7th Pune International Film Festival

2008 — Member of main jury, Zanzibar International Film Festival

2008 — Lecture on Bollywood at Nyali cinema, Mombasa

2008 — Discussion with Konkona Sen Sharma on mental health in Indian cinema, Happy Soul Film Festival

2008 — Speaker on Bollywood, PWC dinner for former President of India, Dr Abdul Kalam

2007 — Consultant, programmes about India for Lion TV/Discovery Atlas India

2007 — Consultant, Bollywood documentary produced by Littlebird for BBC2 Storyville ‘Shot in Mumbai’

2006 — Speech, ‘Bollywood at BAFTA’, British Academy of Film and Television

2006 — Member of Advisory Board, Gujarat Studies Association

2005 — Interview with chief guest, Anurag Kashyap, ‘Bite the Mango’, International Film Festival, National Museum of Photography, Film and Television

2003 — London Film Festival, talk on South Asian diaspora film for Education Department screening

2003 — Patron, Tongues on Fire, Asian Women’s Film Festival

2003 — Interview with chief guest, Anil Kapoor, ‘Bite the Mango’, International Film Festival, National Museum of Photography, Film and Television

2003 — Interview with Safina Uberoi, ‘My mother India’, Institute of Contemporary Art, London

2002 — Judge, BBC Asian Achievement Awards

2002 — Book launch, ‘Yash Chopra: 50 years in Indian cinema’ in New Delhi and Bombay.  Telecast on national news channels

2002 — Interview with Yash Chopra, National Film Theatre, London

2002 — Advisory editor on Bollywood supplement, Vanity Fair

2001 — Book launch, the Habitat Centre, New Delhi: ‘Pleasure and the nation’

2001 — Participant, convention on the entertainment industry, Federation of the Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry

2001 — Interview, Govind Nihalani, Nehru Centre, High Commission of India, UK

2000 — Interview, Mani Ratnam, Nehru Centre, High Commission of India, UK

1999 — Judge, BBC Asian Achievement Awards

1999 — Interview with chief guest, Amitabh Bachchan, ‘Bite the Mango’, South Asian Film Festival, Bradford

1999 — Discussant, ‘Tongues of fire’, Asian Women’s Film Festival

1999 — Panelist, ‘Bombay Exposé’, London Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, National Film Theatre

1998 — Subtitler (from Hindi), ‘Dil to pagal hai’ (three-hour feature film)

1998 — Judge, BBC Asian Achievement Awards

1998 — Panelist, ‘In honour of Balraj Sahni’, paper read ‘The displaced man’

1997 — Panelist, ‘Bite the Mango’, South Asian Film Festival, Bradford

1995–6 — Member of committee and sub-committee on university MA: ‘NILE’ (New International Literatures in English)

1994 — Teacher on ERASMUS course, University of Leiden: Post-colonial literatures

1993 — Moderator, Civil Service Language Testing

1993 — Subtitler (from Gujarati), ‘Diamonds’, BBCTV

1992 — Consultant to International Distillers on Bombay

1992 — Examiner for Gujarati, the Institute of Linguists