50th independances


For Maya (Vasudha Joshi, 1997)

The house in the hills opens to the lilting velvet of Shubha Mudgal’s thumri. Ranjan Palit’s camera, suffused with compassion and melancholy, tracks up the stairs of an ancestral mansion, steeped in the past. Maya, the daughter of film-maker Vasudha Joshi, playfully circles a pillar, beginning a new arc, as four generations of women and their stories unfold.

Constructed through conversations, interviews and candid family moments, For Maya (1997), a remarkable film by Vasudha Joshi, revisits the space of the familial. It is a voyage that brings forth not spectacular acts of violence, but the quotidian force fields of female power and resistance, through an autobiographical narrative that draws the viewer into its gentle vortex of memory—memories of subjugation of women over generations. A new kind of feminist ethnography unfolds. For Maya, made as a part of a series of films to mark the 50th anniversary of India’s Independence, marks a shift in the Indian feminist film-making, a shift towards interweaving the personal with the political, through an exploration of middle-class `normality’, a gentle, non-polemical introspection, which foregrounds everyday struggles in women’s lives.

As the sun nudges shadows in the long corridors of memories, Joshi, in a letter to her sister, Meenu, writes about a dream, a premonition about her mother, on her journey back to her maternal home in Almora. As Joshi walks through the chiaroscuro of empty corridors in her natal home, an old mute gramophone, empty vessels, forlorn memorabilia—the detritus of lives gone by—reveal themselves. Leafing through faded photographs, the film-maker stumbles upon the stories of her grandparents. 

The viewer learns about Joshi’s unnamed grandmother not through her own words. She is silent and silenced, a shadowy figure, who smiles out of an old photograph, whose story echoes the stories of many women of her era and years to come. Meenu shares memories of their grandmother, who was never allowed to play as a young girl: the beginning of a long haul of denial, subtle subjugation and resistance…

– K. P. Jayasankar & Anjali Monteiro, “Reimagining the Familial” in A Fly in the Curry: Independent Documentary Film in India (2015)


October 30th 1735: John Adams born

On this day in 1735, the American Founding Father John Adams was born in Quincy, Massachusetts. A direct descendant of Puritan settlers from the Massachusetts Bay Colony, Adams was educated at Harvard University and became a lawyer. Adams long held reservations about British colonial rule, but raised eyebrows when he defended British soldiers accused of killing civilians in the 1770 Boston Massacre. He played an active role in the American Revolution as a representative at the First Continental Congress in 1774 and helped draft the Declaration of Independence in 1776. Adams was also one of the delegates sent to Paris to negotiate the end of the war with Britain. In 1789 Adams was nominated for the American presidency but came second to George Washington and, per Constitutional provisions at the time, became Vice-President. He served as Washington’s Vice-President for the duration of his two terms and after Washington left office Adams ran for President of his own accord. Adams won the election in 1796 and became the second President of the United States. As President, Adams successfully kept the United States out of the ongoing European war with France. However the public supported the war and Adams lost his 1800 re-election campaign to Thomas Jefferson. Adams then retired from public life and died on July 4th 1826, the 50th anniversary of American independence, the same day as his friend Jefferson. Adams’s son John Quincy became the sixth President in 1825.


“Prince Harry is presened with a headdress by dancers in Sumara Village in the Guyana Hinterland on day 13 of an official visit to the Caribbean on December 3, 2016 in Sumara, Guyana. Prince Harry’s visit to The Caribbean marks the 35th Anniversary of Independence in Antigua and Barbuda and the 50th Anniversary of Independence in Barbados and Guyana.” 

Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images


Prince Harry plays with students during his visit to Holy Trinity Primary School and Nursery on the third day of an official visit on November 22, 2016 in Barbuda, Antigua and Barbuda. He joins the school children preparing celebrations for the school’s 93rd anniversary of their Founders’ Day. Prince Harry’s visit to The Caribbean marks the 35th Anniversary of Independence in Antigua and Barbuda and the 50th Anniversary of Independence in Barbados and Guyana.

Your Excellency President of Malta, Honourable Prime Minister, Honourable Ministers and Parliamentarians, Excellencies, Ladies and Gentlemen – thank you so much for such a warm welcome on the occasion of Malta’s fiftieth anniversary of independence.

While I know that you were not expecting me until a few days ago, I must admit that I feel honoured to be able to represent Her Majesty in a country so beloved by her.

Catherine has asked me to say how very sorry she is that she couldn’t be the one to pass on The Queen’s greetings to you all.  She was looking forward to coming here, and I know she hopes very much that she will be able to visit in the future.

It is now a great privilege to deliver a message to the people of Malta from Her Majesty The Queen.

“Prince Philip and I send our congratulations to the President, the Prime Minister, and the people of Malta, on the occasion of the 50th Anniversary of Independence.

We have such fond memories of your country at different stages of our lives, first as a young married couple when we lived in Malta, and then again when we returned at the time of our 60th wedding anniversary in 2007.

Over the years we have seen Malta grow and develop into the confident and proud nation we see today.  Next year you will showcase your country as hosts of the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting.

Prince Philip and I are grateful to the people of Malta for always making us, and our family, feel so welcome.

I send my warmest good wishes to you for your celebrations this week, and for the continued success and prosperity of Malta in the future.”

Your Excellency, Honourable Prime Minister – thank you so much for your warm and generous hospitality.  This really is a most beautiful country.  I very much look forward to exploring more of it in the next 24 hours and hope that you all have a wonderful evening.

- A speech by The Duke of Cambridge at Independence Day celebrations in Malta.


Recap Day Eleven (Barbados) - Caribbean Tour 2016

November 30: Due to torrential rains, the event scheduled for the morning was postponed. Prince Harry instead made an impromptu visit to Queen Elizabeth Hospital, a place he visited in 2010, where he was able to meet staff and patients. During this unscheduled visit, Harry spoke with Dr Kumar about Barbados’s success in eradicating mother to child HIV transmission. That afternoon, Harry joined guests at the Officers’ Mess at St Ann’s Fort, where the Prime Minister delivered a speech and raised a ‘Toast to the Nation’. Afterwards, he attended the reveal of the 50th Anniversary of Independence National Monument which had been postponed previously due to bad weather. Harry concluded his night by attending the Golden Anniversary Spectacular Mega Concert. This extravaganza, held at the Garrison Savannah, highlighted the last five decades of Barbadian history with live performances featuring the best of Barbadian talent - from singers and dancers, to orchestras, icons and celebrated entertainers, one of whom was Rihanna. Here, Harry took in the celebrations, and delivered a short speech before the concert kicked off.

Social media goes into meltdown over Harry’s Caribbean tour
Following Kensington Palace's announcement that Prince Harry is set to visit the Caribbean this autumn, female fans have been sent into a frenzy on social media, vowing to track him down.

Does he need a plus one?’ Female fans go into meltdown after news of Prince Harry’s Caribbean tour is announced on Instagram

  • Harry is to visit Barbados this autumn, Kensington Palace has announced
  • Trip is part of a whistle-stop Caribbean tour including St Kitts and Nevis
  • The news sent female fans into a frenzy on social media yesterday
  • While others offered to accompany him on the seven-leg trip

News of Prince Harry’s upcoming tour of the Caribbean has sent female fans into a frenzy on social media.

Kensington Palace announced yesterday on Instagram and Twitter that the 31-year-old royal would be visiting the region this autumn on a whistle-stop tour including Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, and Grenada.

The post, which clocked up more than 31,000 comments in a matter of hours, was inundated with comments from female fans - with some vowing to plan their holidays around the royal’s tour itinerary.

Taking to Instagram, bethlynnhoskins wrote: 'As I stated on Twitter my bags are packed & I’m ready to accompany him.’

Fellow Harry enthusiast stacefacekiller tagged a friend, writing: 'Shall we meet him out there?’ while allysonmarek wrote: 'Does he need a plus 1?’

Mlunda39 added: 'Time for a vacation’ and Lovelois2 wrote: 'Must follow him to each and every island.’

Others offered to be his holiday companion, asking to 'hitch a ride’, with Pipdoyle29 writing: 'If he needs a mate to go with him just let me know.’

One enthusiastic Instagrammer, annabradders, wrote: 'It’s destiny!!!!!!! Better get wedding dress shopping!’


While hannahlillyc told her friend: 'Change of holiday plan - we’re going to all of the above.’

Other followers commented on the accompanying photograph of a bearded Harry, with valestatrumpet gushing: 'Love Harry’ and hayley.leah commenting: 'Rugged manly Haz.’

Dzamandzan joked: 'I need some ginger ale’ and chicavasquez said: 'Bae looking good.’ Fellow fan beesyed wrote: 'Find out the dates; I’ll be there!’

Aoife_maria_mcevoy wrote: 'Handsome Prince Harry has a lot to look forward to as always! SOunds like such a beautiful tour of duties, a little piece of paradise for you to enjoy. A x’

Scottnga commented: 'I never dreamed he’d turn out more handsome than his brother but he did!’ While Mshuezo1825 gushed: 'Omg! Can i marry you!! #bluelove you are soooooooo handsome!’

Harry will also visit Guyana, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, and St Vincent and the Grenadines on his seven-leg tour.

The royal has planned his trip to coincide with the 50th Anniversary of Independence for Barbados, the 50th Anniversary of Independence for Guyana, and the 35th Anniversary of Independence for Antigua and Barbuda.

The fifth in line to the throne visited Barbados in January 2010 when he met with locals and dignitaries, ate spicy food alongside Prince Seeiso of Lesotho, and famously danced the calypso on stage during a charity concert.


The Duke of Cambridge visiting Malta on behalf of his grand mother, Queen Elizabeth II. This visit is on the occasion of the country’s 50th anniversary of independence. On his visit today, the Duke has met with the President of the country, Marie Louise Coleiro Preca. He also visited National Library and planted a tree in the San Anton Palace Gardens.

Source: Daily Mail


R.I.P. Mr. Lee Kuan Yew, 1st Prime Minister and founding father.
It’s the end of an era for a country as young as ours. 

I don’t think I’ve ever thought about the national anthem while singing it 200 times a year (of which I actually sing- 0. I observe.) Today was a first. We’ve been talking about our 50th year of independence since our 47th… this year will be an epic celebration in his honour. 

Him in that last pic -us ejected from Malaysia in 1965- teared for the uncertain future. Iconic how Singapore achieved developed status in just one generation. The true spirit of LKY- never say die. 

I feel unnaturally, uncomfortably patriotic (tho it won’t last).

Prince Harry to Meet Rihanna on Caribbean Royal Tour
Prince Harry will appear with music superstar Rihanna during his upcoming two-week royal tour of the Caribbean. Harry, 32, will join Rihanna at a celebration to mark the 50th anniversary of Barbados’ independence from British rule. Rihanna, a native of Barbados, is expected to sing the national...
By ABC News

Prince Harry will appear with music superstar Rihanna during his upcoming two-week royal tour of the Caribbean.

Harry, 32, will join Rihanna at a celebration to mark the 50th anniversary of Barbados’ independence from British rule. Rihanna, a native of Barbados, is expected to sing the national anthem at the celebration, accompanied by a choir of children.

Harry will tour nine different countries and Commonwealth realms throughout the Caribbean from Nov. 20 to Dec. 4. Harry, who is now one of the monarchy’s best weapons at diplomacy, will be there to generate goodwill in the Caribbean.

The tour will focus on themes important to Harry, including social issues, young people and the military and conservation efforts that will include visiting baby sea turtles and exploring the natural beauty of the region.

“Prince Harry holds special memories of his last visit to the Caribbean, and of the warmth, friendliness and sense of fun that comes so naturally to this region,” Kensington Palace said in a statement. “His Royal Highness is greatly looking forward to meeting more of the people who call it home, and for the opportunity during this tour to be visiting some countries for the first time.“

Harry, fifth-in-line to the British throne, has made two previous official visits to the Caribbean, where he often spent holidays as a child with Prince William and their late mother, Princess Diana.


Hear Me - The Very Best (featuring Chris Baio on bass)

We wrote this song in May 2014, only days before the Malawi general elections. It was also the 50th anniversary for Malawi independence from colonial rule. One day we where sitting outside the house listening to the radio and Joyce Banda (the president that day) was talking about something to do with the election and progress, or lack of progress for Malawi as a nation. we put an iPhone next to the radio and recorded some her voice. thats the voice you can hear in the beginning of the song. Esau really wanted to write a song about the corruption, poverty, struggle of Malawi, and how frustrated he was about the fact that very little has changed since independence. We recorded the whole song that day, and the ext day we asked the local church choir to come in and record some choir vocals for it. As with most vocals and instrumentation on this record, we recorded them outdoors, on the beach, singing the bridge and last chorus with Esau. Back in London a month later Chris Baio from Vampire Weekend came in and played bass on the song.


NOVEMBER 20: Prince Harry arrives at V.C Bird International Airport on the first day of an official visit to the Caribbean on November 20, 2016 in Antigua, Antigua and Barbuda. Prince Harry’s visit to the Caribbean marks the 35th Anniversary of Independence in Antigua and Barbuda and the 50th Anniversary of Independence in Barbados and Guyana.

Photo by Chris Jackson/Getty Images

Details of the Duchess of Cambridge’s first solo foreign tour - to Malta - on behalf of the Queen have been released by Kensington Palace. Kate will undertake some 10 engagements during the visit to mark Malta’s 50th anniversary of independence…. The Duchess’s itinerary includes meetings with Malta’s President at the San Aton Palace, where she will be staying, and Prime Minister. The Duchess will also view a re-enactment of an historical event in the Palace Square at Valletta and visit the National Library…..