‘Hope is the Thing with Feathers’ by Emily Dickinson.

What do you call that which assures you that everything will be fine? What is that makes us believe in a better tomorrow? What is that which lifts us out of our difficulties? The answer is hope. In this poem ‘Hope is the Thing with Feathers’, the poet Emily Dickinson praises hope and brings out its importance.

Hope is an abstract feeling and the poet gives this abstract feeling a shape of a bird. It sits on our soul and belts out tunes. These wordless tunes never cease. Hope doesn’t utter words of consolation and promises. It stands there supporting us, lending us strength by its tunes and ceaselessly does this routine.  

“Hope” is the thing with feathers –

That perches in the soul –

And sings the tune without the words –

And never stops – at all –

Of all the Gales present in the world, hope sings the sweetest tunes. Their sweet tunes make us forget our bitter experiences. They remind us of happy moments awaiting us.  Though the storm (our hardships and hurdles) snubs this little bird, it never leaves. During the hours of storms, hope gives us the warmth to survive the bitter coldness. It is really a wonder how this little bird (hope) keeps us together. 

And sweetest – in the Gale – is heard –

And sore must be the storm –

That could abash the little Bird

That kept so many warm –

Hope never leaves us even in our hardships. The ‘chillest land’ and ‘strangest Sea’ refer to our struggles in life. Even at this stage, hope gives everything it can to us and asks nothing in return. Hope pours itself into its songs and lends us a will to challenge our problems. It is to be noted that ‘ “Hope” is the thing with feathers-’. The hope which can fly away anytime leaving us to our problems never does so. Rather it stands by our side and guides us through our darkest hours.

I’ve heard it in the chillest land –

And on the strangest Sea –

Yet – never – in Extremity,

It asked a crumb – of me.

The poetess uses a poetic technique called enjambment in this poem. Enjambment is used to carry an idea from one stanza to another without any pause. Here, the poetess carries the idea of Hope singing to the next stanza by saying it sings sweet. 

It is an interesting study to know how this poem contrasts the poem ‘Hope’ by Emily Bronte. Emily Bronte considers hope as a ‘timid friend’ and as being indifferent to the poet’s struggle. Thus, the two poetesses view hope in a different light.  

RBI TRANSFERS RS99,122 CRORE SURPLUS TO CENTRAL GOVERNMENT

According to the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), the central government will receive a surplus of Rs 99,122 crore.

The decision was made at the RBI’s Central Board of Directors’ 589th meeting on May 21, 2021.

“With the change in the Reserve Bank’s accounting year to April-March (earlier July-June), the Board discussed the working of the Reserve Bank of India during the transition period of nine months (July 2020-March 2021) and approved the Annual Report and accounts of the Reserve Bank for the transition period. The Board also approved the transfer of Rs 99,122 crore as surplus to the Central Government for the accounting period of nine months ended March 31, 2021 (July 2020-March 2021),” RBI said.

The Reserve Bank of India transferred only 44% of its surplus to the government last year, totaling Rs 57,128 crore. Prior to last year, this was likewise the lowest surplus transfer in the previous seven years.

In 2019, the Reserve Bank of India transferred a surplus of Rs 1,23,414 crore to the government.

Every year, as the manager of government finances, the RBI distributes a dividend to the government from its surplus earnings to assist with the government’s finances. The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) was established in 1934 and operates under the Reserve Bank of India Act of 1934. The “Allocation of Surplus funds” clause of Chapter 4 of the Act demands that any profits earned by the RBI from its operations be remitted to the Centre.

According to Section 47 of the RBI Act, “after making provision for bad and doubtful debts, depreciation in assets, contributions to staff and superannuation funds 2 [and for all other matters for which provision is to be made by or under this Act or which’ are usually provided for by bankers, the balance of the profits shall be paid to the Central Government.”

“Mauryan Economy”

Introduction

The period c.200 bce-300bce was historically significant from several points of views. Craftspersons produces larger quantities and more varied goods than before, trade within the subcontinent and between its region and other lands flourished, and money was increasingly used as a medium of exchange. The sources for the history of these centuries are many and diverse. The Jatakas contain many stories of ordinary people,traders and travellers.

Archaeology continues to offer information on settlements patterns, specialized crafts and trade. In North India,the evidence from late NBPW and post NBPW levels reveals a significant expansion of urban centres.

These centuries are often labelled as ‘ shunga-kushana’. This period is also labelled as dark period. The emergence of urban centres, crafts production , trade and coins of different metals could be seen.

For the study of this period, several texts are available of these the most important ones are the Jatakas tales, purans, bharaneskastra as well as texts like kalida’s ‘malvika’, agninitrane, harshacharita etc. The Graeco-Roman texts written by Arian , Starbo & Pliny are also considered important. Apart from this several kinds of inscription and archaeological sources are also important.

Urban proliferation

One of the most conspicuous development that were registered during this period was the emergence of urban centres in the Deccan and south India. During this period, the second urbanisation registered it’s peak phase. The process of urban formation began in the Ganga valley in seventh-sixth century BC , the most mature and prosperous phase of the second urbanisation in Indian history was during the period from 200 bc to 300 ad. 

In North Western India, several urban centres like pushkalavati, taxila, sagala, purushkpur were the prominent urban centres.

In the Indo-Gangetic divide and the upper Ganga valley the important urban centres that grew further were AHICHCHHATRA,SANGOL,  HASTINAPUR,RAJGIR & others. In the areas of mid-ganga valley. One of the most important urban centres was Mathura. The other important cities of the mid-gangetic plains like shravasti,kaishamti,Varanasi and patliputra not only continued but seemed to have attained their most phase during this period. The important urban centres of the Ganga delta and the northern part of Bengal and Orissa were Mahasthangart,Bangarh,   Chandraketugarh,Taruralipta, shizhupalgarh,Javgada etc. Aloka parashaar has pointed out that the impact of the mauryan rule & the indo-roman trade on the urbanisation in the Deccan have been overemphasized & that insufficient attention has been paid to the internal process of the cultural changes. The two important sites that have been excavated in the Maharashtra are Bhokardan and Adane. The site of Bhokardan has given evidence of two periods of occupation 1. Associated with pre-satvahana phase 2. With the late satvahana phase one of the most important site in the south is Nagarjunkonda. The combined testimony of the sangana texts and the archaeological material point to the emergence of cities in the far south also. R.Chanepak Lakshmi has brought to light the Kaveripattna particular prominence of . An important urban centre of the pandya kingdom was Madhurai.

The area of Deccan & far south has been turned as secondary urbanisation by B.D chattopadhya and other historians. The primary urban centres were the centres located in the Ganga valley and the close interaction with which resulted in the emergence of urban centres in the Deccan and far south.

Agriculture

The significant changes are noticeable in the economic situation of this period the there were indeed elements of continuities. The most important facet of the continuity in material life was ongoing dependence on agriculture as the mainstay of economic life. The spread of sedentary agriculture for the first time to Peninsular India. The place name Dhanyakataka, a famous Buddhist centre in the Eastern Deccan, literally means rice-bowl, is an indication of the general spread of the fully sedentary agrarian society in the Deccan. Of the variety of crops, paddy was of course the most important and the sali continued to be the rice excellence. The Milindapanho shows an awareness of the difference between the sali(for royal dietary practice) and the coarse Kumudbhandiki rice (consumbed by slaves). The production of sugarcane figures in pliny’s account, which also speals highly of the Indian cotton. 

Agriculture became so common placed that stages of agricultural operations right from removing weeds from the field to the final harvesting and winnowing of crops.

Agricultural tools- mostly of iron- like the ploughshare, axes ,adzes,spade and sickle from taxila and sanchi found from archaeological findings.

Taxila has yielded several such instances of the excavations of tanks and Wells in the early centuries of the Christian era.The spread of agriculture and the diversity of crops were also associated with the growing complexities in the agrarian economy.

Trade

The period c.300bce-300ce saw a significant expansion of trade activity, both within the subcontinent and between the subcontinent and the other lands. The petty or ordinary merchants was known as vanik and vaidehaka, the leader of the caravan merchants himself was called the sarthavaha. The Tamil sangam literature knew the salt-dealer as uppu-vanikam, dealing obviously in an essential and bulk commody. 

According to the same source, the merchant in gold was distinguished from the others as ponivanikam, he evidently traded in a luxury and prestige commody. A lohavanija, who dealt in iron/iron tools – once again,an essential commodity- figures as a donor in Mathura inscription. The most eminent among merchants was certainly the settings who enjoyed great prominence in Buddhist and jaina sources.

Conclusion:-

The post-Mauryan economy was based on the growth of agriculture, internal and long distance trade and on crafts and arts.

The most important development of the period was the flourishing trade between India and the Western world.

Improved internal communication system under the Mauryas was responsible for the growth of trade and commerce in the post-Mauryan phase.

“Bijoya – Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay”

Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay, alternatively spelt as Sarat Chandra Chatterjee (15th Sept. 1876 – 16th Jan. 1938) was a Bengali novelist and short story writer of the early 20th century. Most of his works deals with the lifestyle, tragedy and struggle of the village people and the contemporary social practices that prevailed in Bengal.

A long story (badadidi) was published in two installments in his own name in Bharati(1907). He was the first novelist in India to live in some comfort on the returns of his output. Some of his stories are very striking for their obvious sincerity and basic realism. These include Bindur Chele, Ramer Sumati, Arakshaniya etc. Sarat Chandra’s earliest writings show striking influence of Bakin Chandra Chatterjee. He is certainly critical of his own ideas but never flouts the accepted moral basis of the Hindu society of anytime.

STORY OF THE NOVEL

“Datta” is one of the most popular novel by Sarat Chandra Chattopadhyay. It is a romantic novel set in Victorian Bengal with a backdrop of Bengali society fragmented into Hindu and Brahmo (Brahma Samaj).

The story begins with the description of three friends – Jagdish, Banamali and Rashbehari who used to study in a same school which is situated near Hugali. The economic condition of Jagdish was worse than Banamali and Rashbehari. They used to go to the school together and had promised several things to each other like – to not to marry in future, wanted to become lawyers and promised to live together in future. But with each passing days, the situation had changed and these three took a decision to marry. The condition of Jagdish was worse but Banamali and Rashbehari had all luxuries of life. 

They even didn’t talk to each other regularly. Once Jagdish wrote a letter to Banamali and asked if he will have daughter in future then Jagdish would  love to do a marriage of his daughter to his son. But Jagdish passed away and Banamali was at the stage of death, so that time he confessed his daughter Bijoya about the promises he made to his friend Jagdish that he wanted Bijoya to marry Jagdish’s son Naren. Banamali told everything about Naren to her daughter that he was a doctor, received every good quality from his mother but the thing was that Banamali himself didn’t see him.

At that time Bijoya had very radical view towards Naren and she was totally against to forgive the debt of his father. After the death of Banamali, Bijoya went to Krishnapur (Bengal) related to some Zamindari work and wanted to seize the land of Naren’s father and to built a temple for Brahmo Samaj in that place. Rashbehari and his son Bilaas used to handle all her Zamindari work. And her marriage was also being fixed with Rashbehari’s son Bilaas.

But when the days has passed, Bijoya came in contact with Naren, she started showing her interest in him and at once she realised that she fell in love with Naren. After all in spite of so many ups and downs Bijoya a Brahmo girl get married to a Hindu boy Naren in Hindu tradition.

Complicated Pregnancies For the Leads

Once in our lifetime we have seen the sitcom F.R.I.E.N.D.S or have heard about it. In this post We are going to look at the complex pregnancies given to the lead female actors, Rachel, Monica and Phoebe.

F.R.I.E.N.D.S is set in the New York city. It has a crazy fan following since it first started to air on the television. Not only in the U.S but in every nation there’s a corner in the heart for ‘So no one told you life was gonna be this way…’. Anytime you open the Netflix among the top 10 shows we’ll always find this show in the list.

With this crazy fan following, the show did not have even one normal pregnancy. All the three lead actress had a complicated pregnancies, not medically but socially.

Monica and Chandler had adopted the twins, Phoebe was a surrogate for his brothers’ triplets and Rachel gave a birth to Emma as a single Mother. All three were aimed towards breaking the typical stereotypes society has around normal pregnancy. Along with the most popular show, it also aimed towards normalizing the pregnancy norms in the then society.

In Today’s time it is normal to adopt a baby or have a surrogate mother or being a single mother. But in 90s it was something not familiar and thus being the most popular sitcom and indeed one of the influential ones, it targeted to bring a change in the society by this simple and yet beautiful step.

With the changing times in the society, there are many places where women are still criticized for not having a normal pregnancy. We as people must normalize and accept their choices making it easier for them to survive in such a society. And those who face such problems always remember, ‘I’ll be there for you…’