Kickoff - Madhur Jaffrey
Opening Night :
Sir Salman Rushdie +Suketu Mehta
Festival Overview
Festival Schedule
Closing Night: Mira Nair + Sabrina Dhawan
Hunter College Site Map
Oct 24th Session 1A
Oct 24th Session 1B
Oct 24th Session 2A
Oct 24th Session 2B
Oct 24th Session 3A
Oct 24th Session 3B
Oct 24th Session 4A
Oct 24th Session 4B
Oct 25th Session 1A
Oct 25th Session 1B
Oct 25th Session 2A
Oct 25th Session 2B
Oct 25th Session 3A
Oct 25th Session 3B
Oct 25th Session 4A
Oct 25th Session 4B
Literary Pub Crawl
Press Release
Call For Submission

in collaboration with The English Department, Hunter College (West Building) at 68th Street and Lexington Avenue

OCTOBER 22-25, 2015

Sir Salman RushdieMadhur Jaffrey is the author of many previous cookbooks-six of which have won the James Beard Award-and was named to the Who's Who of Food and Beverage in America by the James Beard Foundation. She is also an award-winning actress with numerous major motion pictures to her credit. She lives in New York City.

Madhur Jaffrey is represented by Random House Speakers Bureau (

Sir Salman RushdieSir Salman Rushdie is the author of twelve novels: Grimus, Midnight’s Children(which was awarded the Booker Prize in 1981), Shame, The Satanic Verses, Haroun and the Sea of Stories, The Moor’s Last Sigh, The Ground Beneath Her Feet, Fury, Shalimar the Clown and The Enchantress of Florence,  Luka and the Fire of Life and his latest book Two Years, Eight Months & Twenty Eight Days. 

A Fellow of the British Royal Society of Literature, Sir Salman Rushdie has received, among other honours, the Whitbread Prize for Best Novel (twice), the Writers’ Guild Award, the James Tait Black Prize, the European Union’s Aristeion Prize for Literature, Author of the Year Prizes in both Britain and Germany, the French Prix du Meilleur Livre Étranger, the Budapest Grand Prize for Literature, the Premio Grinzane Cavour in Italy, the Crossword Book Award in India, the Austrian State Prize for European Literature, the London International Writers’ Award, the James Joyce award of University College Dublin, the St Louis Literary Prize, the Carl Sandburg Prize of the Chicago Public Library, and a U.S. National Arts Award. He holds honorary doctorates and fellowships at six European and six American universities, is an Honorary Professor in the Humanities at M.I.T, and University Distinguished Professor at Emory University. 
Suketu MehtaSuketu Mehta is the New York-based author of ‘Maximum City: Bombay Lost and Found,’ which won the Kiriyama Prize and the Hutch Crossword Award, and was a finalist for the 2005 Pulitzer Prize, the Lettre Ulysses Prize, the BBC4 Samuel Johnson Prize, and the Guardian First Book Award. He has won the Whiting Writers’ Award, the O. Henry Prize, and a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship for his fiction. Mehta’s work has been published in The New Yorker, The New York Times Magazine, National Geographic, Granta, Harper’s Magazine, Time, and Newsweek, and has been featured on NPR’s ‘Fresh Air’ and ‘All Things Considered.’

Mehta is an Associate Professor of Journalism at New York University. He is currently working on a nonfiction book about immigrants in contemporary New York, for which he was awarded a 2007 Guggenheim fellowship. He has also written original screenplays for films, including ‘New York, I Love You.’ Mehta was born in Calcutta and raised in Bombay and New York. He is a graduate of New York University and the Iowa Writers’ Workshop.
Amitava KumarAmitava Kumar is the author of several works of non-fiction and a novel. The New York Times described his book A Foreigner Carrying in the Crook of His Arm a Tiny Bomb as a “perceptive and soulful … meditation on the global war on terror and its cultural and human repercussions.” His writing has appeared in Granta, The Guardian, Bookforum, The Nation, The New York Times, Guernica, Caravan, and other publications. He is the Helenb D. Lockwood Professor of English at Vassar College in upstate New York. His website is and is on Twitter @amitavakumar.
Beena KamlaniBeena Kamlani’s fiction has been published in many magazines and anthologies and won a Pushcart Prize in 2009. She is also senior editor at Viking Penguin, where she worked closely with Saul Bellow until his death in 2005, and Robert Fagles on his translations of Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey, and Virgil’s Aeneid. She taught book editing at New York University for eighteen years, and was presented the university’s award for teaching excellence in 2002. She now teaches editing for writers and editors at Hunter College.

Born in India and educated in England, she has a B.A. (Hons.) and an M.A. in English and American Literature, and European Literature Since 1850.  
Priya DoraswamPriya Doraswamy founded Lotus Lane Literary in New Jersey in May, 2013. She has been an agent for a little over seven years and has sold books globally. Priya represents bestselling and award winning adult fiction and non-fiction authors. Prior to her agency career, Priya was a Deputy Attorney General, with the State of New Jersey, prosecuting securities fraud. Priya was born and raised in Bangalore, and immigrated to the NY area twenty five years ago. She travels to India every year for work and pleasure.
Rachel KahanRachel Kahan joined William Morrow as an Executive Editor in 2012, after many years as a Senior Editor at Putnam. A passionate advocate for commercial fiction, she has published numerous national and international bestsellers by authors such as Kate Mosse, Stuart Woods, Kate Jacobs, Nadia Hashimi, Stephanie Evanovich, Yangsze Choo, and Beatriz Williams. Earlier in her career, she was an editor at Crown Publishers, where she published a number of non-fiction bestsellers including The Sweet Potato Queens’ Book of Love by Jill Conner Browne and Tulipomania by Mike Dash. Kahan has also been a guest lecturer on publishing topics at Columbia University, Duke University, New York University, the College of William and Mary, and the City College of New York. She speaks frequently at writers’ conferences and book festivals in the US and overseas. Born and raised in Virginia, Rachel holds a degree in English and Spanish literature from the College of William and Mary and is a graduate of Harvard’s Radcliffe Publishing Course.
Jaya Aninda ChatterjeeJaya Aninda Chatterjee is Associate Editor for World History, Geopolitics, and International Relations at Yale University Press. Her authors include International Studies Association President Amitav Acharya, Harvard Belfer Center Fellow Jieun Baek, Harvard historian Kelly O’Neill, Columbia professor Stuart Gottlieb, Stanford political scientist David Laitin, award-winning journalist Salil Tripathi, and others. Jaya’s books have been favorably reviewed in Dissent, Arts & Letters Daily, the Guardian, the Literary Review, and other publications. Jaya began her publishing career at W.W. Norton & Company. After completing her degrees in English and Comparative Literature at Wellesley College and Columbia University, she joined Yale University Press in 2009. She is a graduate of the Yale Publishing Course for mid- to senior-level book publishing professionals, has spoken on panels about book publishing at Yale, Georgetown University, and American University, and has contributed book reviews and review essays to the Times Literary Supplement, the Los Angeles Review of Books, and
Kent Wolf Kent Wolf is an agent at Lippincott Massie McQuilkin. Some of the bestselling titles he’s represented included Oogy: The Dog Only a Family Could Love by Larry Levin, Confessions of a Prairie Bitch by Alison Arngrim, and The Clover House by Henriette Lazaridis Power. He is on the lookout for literary fiction, upmarket women’s fiction, memoir, pop culture, all types of narrative nonfiction, and select YA. He is a member of the Association of Authors’ Representatives and PEN.
Dr. Neal Hall Dr. Neal Hall is a medical-surgical eye physician and graduate of Cornell and Harvard Universities. An internationally acclaimed poet, he has performed poetry readings throughout the United States and internationally to include: Kenya, Indonesia, France, Jamaica, Morocco, Canada, Nepal, Italy and India. His poetry speaks not just to the surface pain of injustice and inhumanity but deep into that pain, we label and package into genteel socio-political-economic-religious constructs to blur the common lines of cause, that is our shared story. A shared story that should unite us in a common struggle to be free. Dr. Hall is the author of four books of poetry.
Rafiq KathwariRafiq Kathwari is the first non-Irish recipient of the Patrick Kavanagh Poetry Award, in the forty four-year history of the award. He lives in Ballyoonan (Baile Uí Mhaonáin), County Louth, but has lived most of his adult life in New York. Born, as he puts it, “a Scorpio at midnight” in the disputed Kashmir Valley, Rafiq has translated from the original Urdu selected poems of Sir Mohammed Iqbal, one of the handful of great South Asian poets of the 20th century writing in Urdu. He obtained an MFA in Creative Writing at Columbia University and a Masters in Political and Social Science from the New School University. He divides his time between New York City, Ireland and Kashmir. In Another Country is his debut collection. 
Manav Sachdeva MaasoomManav Sachdeva Maasoom is a Luce Foundation Poet Laureate 2015. Published first book, The Sufi’s Garland, by Roman Books Kolkata in 2011. Studied Poetry and Policy Studies in Master’s at Columbia University, and Harvard University Olympia Program in Comparative Literature, Society, and Culture through a full Kokallis Foundation Scholarship. Grew up in Ludhiana, Punjab, India till fifteen, went to high school and undergraduate in California, dropped out of seven year UCR-UCLA Biomed program for the love of poetry writing and social reform as a shock decision for a scion of doctors, pursued love of literature and languages through an arduous journey at various universities and through various loans and scholarships.
Vinay TuliVinay Tuli - Many Moons ago Vinay, arrived on the doorsteps of a wonderous world,The Lawrence School Sanawar. Up in the Himalayan Range in North India, this Pine Scented Red Roofed ageless charming Oldest Co Ed Residential School in the World enfolded her into its magical arms. Adventure seemed to beckon at every turn. This place gave a solid platform for many achievements, nothing seemed impossible. One or many Seeds were sown in the Mind....Never Give In ....was the motto of the school and it stood all in good stead. Vinay lives in Gurgaon India. She has taken part in many Poetry Readings and thus encouraged is in the process of Publishing her first Book. She has a collection of over a hundred poems.She is also compiling a slim book of essays and short stories.
Dr. Patrick BasuDr. Patrick Basu was born in an aristocratic family in Bengal from long lineage of literary geniuses such as Bankim Chandra Chatterjee. He went to Cambridge schooling and college in Cambridge, UK. He was accepted in the most prestigious medical school in India and graduated at the top of his class. Subsequently, he became an expert in virology and worked for state department of US in Asia. He pursued liver disease at Royal Free Hospital, London. In US, he trained in Medicine and Gastroenterology in Weil Cornell School of Medicine and Mount Sinai School of Medicine. He met his life partner Pina, a brilliant architect and designer who has been an inspiration to him, remains a strong scaffold of his life. The author's passion for poetry started in his teens in the solitude of the mountains, brooks and deep woods. His creativity is diverse from poetry, film making to script writing. He is an exceptionally astute clinician and investigator with unmitigated compassion for medicine. He is the combination of science,art and films entwined in single matrix. His work in poetry is a spectrum of life sculpted with stupendous challenge, that he experienced longing for friendship and love as a child, teenager and adult.
Meena AlexanderMeena Alexander, recently described in The Statesman as “undoubtedly one of the finest poets in contemporary times.” brings us a brilliant new collection of poems Atmospheric Embroidery (Hachette India, 2015) The poems in her latest book  evoke themes of migration, war, dislocation, conflict, love and divinity in lines of precise grace. Her poem `Bright Passage’ included in this book was featured on the wall of the Smithsonian for the 2014 exhibition `Beyond Bollywood: Indian Americans Remake the Nation’. Alexander’s Illiterate Heart won the PEN Open Book Award and she has received awards from the Guggenheim, Fulbright and Rockefeller Foundations as well as the Arts Council of England. Praise for her previous book Birthplace with Buried Stones: 'With one hand on the things and textures of the material world and the other reaching into the mysteries beyond us Meena Alexander does what poetry does best conveying us from the Known to the Unknown with grace and formal care.' - Billy Collins. For more information see
Cherien DabisCherien Dabis is an award winning film and television writer, director, producer and actor who received her M.F.A in Film from Columbia University. She began her career in television when she joined the writing staff of Showtime’s groundbreaking, original hit series THE L WORD in its third season. She wrote three episodes and was promoted from writer (2005-2006) to story editor (2006-2007) and co-producer (2007-2008) before going on to make her feature writing and directorial debut with AMREEKA. She has been an advisor for the Sundance Screenwriter’s Labs in both Turkey and Jordan and has taught in the graduate film program at Columbia University as well as the Vermont College of Fine Arts. Cherien is currently a senior writer and producer for Quantico. 
Sharbari Z AhmedSharbari Z Ahmed is an award- winning writer of fiction, plays and screenplays. In 2015 she joined the writing team for "Quantico", a TV show on ABC. Her debut short story collection The Ocean of Mrs. Nagai: Stories, was published by Daily Star Books in November of 2013. Her screenplay “Raisins Not Virgins” was accepted into the Tribeca All Access program held during the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival, where it was nominated for Best Original Screenplay. Her fiction has appeared in various publications, including The Gettysburg Review, Caravan Magazine, Wasafiri, The Asian Pacific American Journal, Catamaran, and in the anthologies, A New Anthem (Tranquebar 2009) and Lifelines (Zubaan, 2012) and the political journal Inroads (Canada). 
Khushwant SinghKhushwant Singh is a writer, TV show host, consulting editor, Day and Night Television, and writes the popular column, 'Punjabi by Nature' in the Hindustan Times. Apart from farming, his true love is writing, and post the success of his first three books - Maharaja in Denims; Sikhs Unlimited; and Turbaned Tornado, he is presently working on the biography of one of the most intriguing of Indian politicians, Capt. Amarinder Singh. Khushwant lives in Chandigarh with his wife and son.
Manreet Sodhi SomeshwarManreet Sodhi Someshwar trained as an engineer, graduated from the Indian Institute of Management, Calcutta, and worked in marketing, advertising and consulting, before writing snuck up on her. An award-winning writer (Commonwealth Broadcasting Association), and copy writer, she is a popular blogger as well. India Today (South Asia’s largest-selling weekly) called her debut novel, Earning the Laundry Stripes, “an enjoyable tale of a sassy girl’s headlong race up the corporate ladder.” Her second novel, The Long Walk Home, garnered critical acclaim - legendary poet-lyricist Gulzar called it “a narrative of pain that knows no borders.” Celebrated writer-historian Khushwant Singh hailed Manreet as “a gifted writer of great promise, a new star rising on the literary horizon.” Her third and fourth novels, The Taj Conspiracy, and The Hunt for Kohinoor are books one and two of a thriller trilogy, and have been bestsellers in India.
Sudipto Roy ChoudhurySudipto Roy Choudhury is a professional Mathematical Physicist in Orlando, Florida, but with a serious long-term record of publication in Film and literature, including novels, volumes of translation, and an extensive list of film and literary reviews. His published literary work includes I Shall Come Out as a Tremendous Comet, The Arabian Knights of Kolkata and Other Stories. He has written two novels - The Whispered Raga, and Between the Union Jack and the Rising Sun.
Rajika BhandariRajika Bhandari, writer and researcher, is the author of the nonfiction historical and travel book, The Raj on the Move: Story of the Dak Bungalow. Her writing has appeared in National Geographic Traveler, Passion Fruit: A Women’s Travel Journal, India Currents magazine, Man’s World magazine, InCulture Parent, The Guardian, The Chronicle of Higher Education, Times Higher Ed, and The Huffington Post. Rajika is also the author of five books on international education, including two on Asia. Originally from New Delhi, India, she currently lives in New York City.
Chandru HiraChandru Hira is a celebrated structural engineer both in England and Canada whose passions are cricket and jazz.  He has been telling children's stories with the same characters for the last 40 years to wide-eyed children in his extended family as well as the community.  He has finally put pen to paper and written one of his many tales in "The bedtime Story".  Chandru lives in Toronto, Canada.
Harish Gidwani Harish Gidwani graduated Marine Engineering at the age of 19 and was the youngest officer in the Merchant Marine.  He has spent most of his life out at sea or communing with nature - both kind and cruel. Harish is now a Marine Surveyor as well as a prolific writer although none of his musings have yet been published.  His only foray into Children's literature is this self-published story to his dearest grand-daughter Fathom. Harish lives in Seattle, Washington State.
Jaya KamlaniJaya Kamlani is an Indian-American author, poet, a former Silicon Valley information technology consultant, and a graduate of St. Xavier\'s College, Mumbai, India. She has been living in the USA since 1969 and presently lives in Atlanta, Georgia. Jaya is the author of the non-fiction book "To India, with Tough Love," (published 2013), memoir "Scent of Yesterday" (2014), and a poetry collection “Garden of Life” (2015). As a human rights activist in the new millennium, she wrote the books with the intent to bring awareness of issues and ultimately change to the world.
Miral SattarMiral Sattar is CEO of Bibliocrunch, an award-winning platform that matches authors with trusted, prescreened book publishing professionals. Members of our community have worked for some of the largest publishing houses in the world, including Simon & Schuster, Penguin Random House, and HarperCollins. Bibliocrunch has helped numerous authors hit the Amazon best-seller list. Miral  has worked in the media industry for 11 years, most recently at TIME where she launched several digital initiatives including an iPad and mobile site, mobile apps, a video and podcast channel, blogs, and SEO. She and her writing have both been featured in numerous media outlets including BusinessWeek, BBC, TIME, Forbes, Money Magazine, Consumer Reports, PBS, and other media publications. She has a  MS in Publishing (NYU) and a BS in Computer Engineering (Columbia). You can follow Miral on Twitter @bibliocrunch or @miralsattar. 
Anjali SinghAnjali Singh started her career in publishing in 1996 and spent 5 years scouting American books for foreign publishers; she then moved on to be an editor at Vintage Books (where she acquired Marjane Satrapi's Persepolis and Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie's Half of a Yellow Sun) , and later worked as a senior editor at Houghton Mifflin Harcourt and Simon & Schuster, where she acquired and edited many literary authors, among them Samantha Hunt, Preeta Samarasan, Brigid Pasulka, Kalyan Ray, Elissa Schappell and Lara Vapnyar. Before becoming an agent at Ayesha Pande Literary Agency, she was most recently Editorial Director at Other Press, a list focused on international literature. At Other Press the books she edited include Andrea Gillies' The Enlightenment of Nina Findlay and, forthcoming, Saleem Haddad's debut Last Stand at Guapa, Bruce Bauman's Broken Sleep, and Baz Dreisinger's Incarceration Nations, a non-fiction reportage on prisons around the world.
Rajdeep PaulusRajdeep Paulus - Award-winning author of Swimming Through Clouds, Seeing Through Stones, and Soaring Through Stars, Rajdeep decided to be a writer during her junior year in high school after her English teacher gave her an "F" but told her she had potential. She studied English Literature at Northwestern University, and she writes masala-marinated, Young Adult Fiction, blogging at rajdeeppaulus dot com. Raj lives with her Sunshine and four princesses in New York. When Paulus is not tapping on her Mac, you can find her dancing with her four princesses, kayaking with her hubs, coaching basketball, or eating dark chocolate while sipping a frothy, sugar-free latte.
Sangeeta MehtaSangeeta Mehta has worked in the book publishing field since the late 1990s. She has been an acquiring editor at both Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (the children's division of the Hachette Book Group) and Simon Pulse (the teen paperback division of Simon & Schuster). She later returned to Hachette to freelance-edit a New York Times bestseller. She currently consults on book projects for corporate and independent book publishers (with current and recent clients including Algonquin, Harlequin, Macmillan, and Workman Publishing), boutique literary agencies, and individual authors.
Sree Sreenivasan Sree Sreenivasan (@sree) is the first Chief Digital O fficer at The Metropolitan Museum of Art. At the Met, he leads a 70-person world-class team on topic s he loves: digital, social, mobile, video, apps, email, interactives, data and more. He joined t he Met in 2013 after spending 20+ years at Columbia University as a full-time professor at Columbia Journalism School and a year as the university's first Chief Digital Officer. In 2009, h e was named one of Ad Age's 25 media people to follow on Twitter; in 2010 was named one of Poynter's 35 most influential people in social media; and in 2014, was named one of the most influential Chief Digital Officers by CDO Club. You can find him on Twitter at and on the web at
Leah SouffrantLeah Souffrant, M.F.A., Ph.D, is a poet and critic. She is a faculty member of New York University. Souffrant holds degrees from Vassar College, the Bennington Writing Seminars, and The Graduate Center, CUNY. Souffrant has been recognized as a New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA) Fellow in Poetry and her poetry and recent theoretical writing on poetics and visual culture can be found or are forthcoming in publications including Jacket2, EOAGH, Poet Lore, the Burnside Review, WSQ, the Pennsylvania Literary Journal and elsewhere.
Raghu KarnadRaghu Karnad is an Indian journalist and editor, and the author of Farthest Field: An Indian Story of the Second World War. He has worked at two national newsweeklies, Outlook and Tehelka, writing articles that won prizes including the European Commission’s Lorenzo Natali Award, the Every Human Has Rights Award, and the Press Institute of India Prize for Reporting on Conflict. Between 2009 and 2011, he was editor of Time Out Delhi. He has also been published in Granta, the Financial Times in London, the journal n+1 in New York, and the Caravan in New Delhi. His essay on uncovering WW2 in India's north-east won a prize in the inaugural FT-Bodley Head international essay competition in 2012.
Meera SubramanianMeera Subramanian is an award-winning journalist whose work has been published in the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Nature, Salon, USA Today, Dissent, Discover, Audubon, Smithsonian, Virginia Quarterly Review, Bidoun, Grist, as well as internationally in Caravan, Open, India Today, and Geo in India and in France, Russia, South Africa and Italy. Her long-form feature, “India’s Vanishing Vultures,” published in the Virginia Quarterly Review in 2011, received numerous accolades including the Staige D. Blackford Prize for Nonfiction and first place for outstanding feature story from the Society of Environmental Journalists 11th Annual Awards for Reporting on the Environment. She is an editor for Killing the Buddha, an online literary magazine about religion, culture, and politics, and her essays have been anthologized Best American Science and Nature Writing, Believer, Beware: First-Person Dispatches from the Margins of Faith (Beacon Press, 2009) and multiple editions of The Best Women’s Travel Writing (Travelers’ Tales, 2011, 2012, 2013). Meera received a Fulbright-Nehru Senior Research Fellowship for her work on A River Runs Again.
Hindol SenguptaHindol Sengupta is the author of six books including Recasting India: How Entrepreneurship is Revolutionizing the World's Largest Democracy (Palgrave Macmillan, Fall 2014) which is the only Indian book ever to be shortlisted for the Hayek Prize given by the Manhattan Institute for original writing in economics in memory of the Nobel laureate F A Hayek. His next book Being Hindu is being released by Penguin Random House in Fall 2015. He is Editor-at-Large for Fortune India and founder of the Whypoll Trust which worked on India's first women safety mobile app and gender mapping of Delhi. He was invited to present his research on Hinduism and technology at the XXI World Congress of the International Association for the History of Religion. He is the co-founder of the South Asia Media Project incubated in Lund University, Sweden and an alumni of the Australia-India Youth Dialogue. He is a TEDx speaker, and spoken at the Manthan Samvaad, India's annual TED-like event.
Moustafa BayoumiMoustafa Bayoumi is the author of the critically acclaimed How Does It Feel To Be a Problem?: Being Young and Arab in America (Penguin), which won an American Book Award and the Arab American Book Award for Non-Fiction, and This Muslim American Life: Dispatches from the War on Terror. His writing has appeared in The New York Times Magazine, New York Magazine, The Guardian, The National,, The London Review of Books, The Nation, The Chronicle of Higher Education,The Progressive, and other places. His essay “Disco Inferno” was included in the collection Best Music Writing of 2006 (Da Capo). Bayoumi is also the co-editor of The Edward Said Reader (Vintage) and editor of Midnight on the Mavi Marmara: the Attack on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla and How It Changed the Course of the Israel/Palestine Conflict (O/R Books & Haymarket Books). With Lizzy Ratner, he also co-edited a special issue of The Nation magazine on Islamophobia (July 2-9, 2012). He has been featured in The Wall Street Journal,The Chicago Sun-Times, and on CNN, FOX News, Book TV, National Public Radio, and many other media outlets from around the world. Bayoumi is a professor of English at Brooklyn College, City University of New York. In 2015, he was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Humane Letters by Southern Vermont College. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.
Kavitha RajagopalanKavitha Rajagopalan is a senior fellow at the Carnegie Council for Ethics in International Affairs and at the World Policy Institute, where she specializes in global migration and diverse cities. She is the author of Muslims of Metropolis: The Stories of Three Immigrant Families in the West (Rutgers University Press 2008), which was the finalist for the Twelfth Asian American Literary Award in Nonfiction. She writes and comments widely on various issues related to migration and diversity, previously as an oped columnist for PBS and Newsday, as a contributor to various policy magazines and scholarly journals, as a reviewer for The Feminist Review and The LA Review of Books, and as a contributor to two books on education in pluralist societies. She is co-author of a book on educational assessment (Palgrave Macmillan 2015) and is at work on a literary nonfiction book about undocumented migration worldwide. She holds an MA from Columbia University’s School of International Affairs and a BA from the College of William & Mary, and is the recipient of a Fulbright Scholarship, a John J. McCloy Journalism Fellowship and a Foreign Language and Area Studies Fellowship.
Tanwi Nandini IslamTanwi Nandini Islam is a writer, multimedia artist, and founder of Hi Wildflower Botanica, a handcrafted natural perfume and skincare line. Her writing has appeared on,, and, and in the Feminist Wire, Open City, and Hyphen magazine. A graduate of Vassar College and Brooklyn College’s MFA program, she lives in Brooklyn. You can visit her website at
Marina BudhosMarina Budhos is an author of award-winning fiction and nonfiction, for both adults and young adults. Her latest book, Sugar Changed the World: A Story of Magic, Spice, Slavery, Freedom & Science, co-authored with her husband Marc Aronson, was a 2010 Los Angeles Times Book Award Finalist, a finalist for the YALSA Excellence in Nonfiction, and was cited by The New York Times as exemplary nonfiction for children. Budhos will next publish two books: Watched (Wendy Lamb/Random House), a follow-up novel to her award-winning Ask Me No Questions, about surveillance of Muslim communities in our post 9/11 era. With Marc Aronson, she will also publish The Eyes of the World: Robert Capa and Gerda Taro & the Invention of Modern Photojournalism (Henry Holt and Company) in 2017. Ms. Budhos has received an EMMA (Exceptional Merit Media Award), a Rona Jaffe Award for Women Writers, and has twice received a Fellowship from the New Jersey Council on the Arts. She has been a Fulbright Scholar to India, given talks throughout the country and abroad, and is currently an associat
Mala KumarMala Kumar is an international development practitioner based out of New York City. She is grateful her hard work and degrees paid off in landing her innovative jobs for some of the most prestigious institutions in the world, including the United Nations. An expert in passionately explaining what it means for her to be several kinds of minority, she is taking this novel as a primary tool for social justice, women’s rights, and so much more. When not immersed in work or writing, you can find Mala exploring NYC’s latest culinary adventure, in an intense workout at the gym (often to mitigate the effects of said culinary adventure), planning her latest international excursion, or blocking out the subtitles on the latest French film.
John BurbidgeAustralian-born John Burbidge has lived and worked in Belgium, Canada, India and the United States. For many years, he was communications director for an international NGO engaged in community and organizational development, before becoming an independent writer/editor. His articles on a variety of subjects have appeared in magazines, newspapers, periodicals and books in several countries. He has edited volumes on civil society, rural development and memoirs, and is the author of a biography of Australian writer, Gerald Glaskin. He lives with his husband in Washington State, USA.
Chaya BabuChaya Babu is a writer, journalist, and activist based in Brooklyn, New York. Her work, which focuses largely on race, migration, and gender and sexuality, has appeared in The Feminist Wire , Huffington Post, The Wall Street Journal, Racialicious, and more. She is a feature writer for India Abroad, a blog editor at The Brooklyn Quarterly, an organizer with East Coast Solidarity Summer (a political education program for desi youth), and a board member of the South Asian Women's Creative Collective. She is currently working on her first novel.
Padma LakshmiPadma Lakshmi was originally known as a model and actress, but her career really started with her writing. Meet the author of two cookbooks and the ex syndicated columnist for the New York Times and style columnist of Harpers Bazaar as she discusses how her work as a writer launched her career in food and TV, including two culinary shows on the food network as well as her Emmy nominated role as host and executive producer of the hit series Top Chef; the world of retail table top hard goods with the Padma Collection as well as her culinary company Easy Exotic, which sells teas, and organic frozen rice.
Priya KrishnaPriya Krishna is the Marketing Manager of Lucky Peach and the author of the college-centric cookbook, Ultimate Dining Hall Hacks. Her writing has appeared in Lucky Peach, Cherry Bombe, BuzzFeed, The Infatuation, The Food Network, and others. Follow her on Twitter @PKGourmet. 
Tania JamesTania James is the author of the novels The Tusk That Did the Damage and Atlas of Unknowns, which was a New York Times Editor’s Choice, an Indie Next Notable, a Barnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers selection, and a Best Book of 2009 for The San Francisco Chronicle and NPR. Her story collection Aerogrammes, was a Best Book of 2012 for Kirkus Reviews, Library Journal, and The San Francisco Chronicle. Her stories have appeared in Boston Review, Granta, Kenyon Review, One Story, and A Public Space. She is the recipient of fellowships from the Ragdale Foundation and the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities. From 2011-2012, she was a Fulbright fellow to India living in New Delhi. She lives in Washington DC with her husband and son and teaches creative writing at the University of Maryland.
Maya LangMaya Lang is the first-generation daughter of Indian immigrants. Her debut novel, The Sixteenth of June, was longlisted for the 2014 Center for Fiction First Novel Prize. She was awarded the 2012 Bread Loaf-Rona Jaffe Foundation Scholarship in Fiction, and was a finalist for Glimmer Train‘s Short Story Award for New Writers. Lang has appeared on television and radio, and been a guest speaker at numerous conferences, college campuses, and literary events. The Sixteenth of June was featured in The Washington Post and The Philadelphia Inquirer, and CBS called it “one of the summer’s hottest reads.” Her short work, focused on the immigrant experience, has appeared in the Virginia Quarterly Review, Publishers Weekly, Five Chapters, and others. A graduate of Swarthmore College, Lang earned her Master's from NYU and her Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from SUNY Stony Brook.
Mira JacobMira Jacob is the author of the critically acclaimed novel, The Sleepwalker’s Guide to Dancing, which was shortlisted for India’s Tata First Literature Award, honored by the APALA, and named one of the best books of 2014 by Kirkus Reviews, the Boston Globe, Goodreads, Bustle, and The Millions. She is the co-founder of much-loved Pete’s Reading Series in Brooklyn, where she spent 13 years bringing literary fiction, non-fiction, and poetry to the city’s sweetest stage. Her recent writing and short stories have appeared in Guernica, Vogue, the Telegraph, and Bookanista, and earlier work has appeared in various magazines (RED, Redbook, i-D, Metropolis, STEP), books (Footnotes with Kenneth Cole; Simon & Schuster; Adios Barbie, Seal Press), on television (VH-1's Pop-Up Video), and across the web. She has appeared on national and local television and radio, and has taught writing to students of all ages in New York, New Mexico, and Barcelona. She currently teaches fiction at NYU. In September 2014, Mira was named the Emerging Novelist Honoree at Hudson Valley Writer’s Center, where she received a commendation from the U.S. Congress.
Sujata MasseySujata Massey is the author of 12 novels set in India and Japan that have won major awards and nominations in the mystery genre. Her 2013 book, The Sleeping Dictionary, is a historical novel set in Bengal. Her upcoming book is a short fiction collection titled India Gray: Historical Fiction. Sujata lives in Baltimore, Maryland with her family and is an active member of the Mystery Writers of America and Sisters in Crime.
Vikas KhannaVikas Khanna - One of Vikas Khanna's favorite places in the world growing up was the garden he and his grandmother planted at their home in Amritsar, India. He would rush home from school to tend to the aromatic basil and cardamom, tomatoes, peas, and squash. His intimate knowledge of spices and produce would guide him on his journey to become the Michelin-starred chef at one of New York's most highly regarded Indian restaurants, Junoon. And this knowledge of nature's bounty and its seasons informs his inspiring and beautiful cookbook, in which vegetables are the star ingredients. Vegetables have always been integral to Indian cuisine, and Khanna's dishes expertly showcase their natural goodness, their flavor and color and hidden nuances.
Suvir SaranSuvir Saran - New Delhi-born chef Suvir Saran has nurtured a lifelong passion for the traditional flavors of Indian cooking to become an accomplished chef, cookbook author, and organic farmer.

As Executive Chef at Devi in New York City, Saran shares the flavors of Indian home cooking, earning three stars from New York magazine, two stars from The New York Times, and the only U.S. Indian restaurant to earn a Michelin star.  Saran serves as Chairman of Asian Culinary Studies for The Culinary Institute of America and has participated in culinary festivals around the world. Saran’s cookbooks include “Indian Home Cooking” (Clarkson Potter, 2004) and “American Masala” (Clarkson Potter, 2007).  Saran was also the only U.S.-based contributor to the largest Indian cookbook ever published, “India Cookbook,” (Phaidon Press, 2010). When not traveling, Saran and partner Charlie Burd live and care for American Masala Farm in upstate New York, with their heritage-breed animals and pets. 
Saransh GoilaSaransh Goila is an Anchor and Chef Consultant for Food Food channel and has been a Food Columnist with Discover India magazine. He hosted India’s biggest food travelogue show ‘Roti, Rasta aur India’ where he set a record in Limca Book of Records, 2014 of being the first Indian chef to travel 20,000 kms by road in 100 days. He is currently hosting ‘The Spice Traveller’, an international food travelogue exclusively designed for the web. Saransh was a food enthusiast at an early age, making his first Jalebi for his family at the age of 12. Graduating from Institute of Hotel Management, Saransh got a degree in BA Hons in Culinary Arts in 2008.
Nandita GodboleNandita Godbole, MSc., M. Landscape Arch. A native of India, Nandita is an emerging indie author, who had once only dabbled in creative writing. After a decade in the USA as a student, designer and independent researcher, a homesick Nandita rediscovered true her passions: her cultural and culinary traditions. She launched Curry Cravings™ to showcase the dynamic Indian culture and cuisine and also channel her private exploration of self-identity. Her cooking classes evolved into a successful supper club in Georgia (2005). Encouraged, Nandita crowd sourced support for her first cookbook: A Dozen Ways to Celebrate, giving tangible form to a tapestry of culinary knowledge and oral histories, delighting readers who welcomed its illustrative style, photography and poignant narration. Through both her written and culinary endeavors Nandita remains an enthusiastic advocate for the Indian culture, bridging gaps between its perception and ‘consumption.’ A keen observer, she inquires about cultural overlays on our personal and social environments. She orchestrates dining events setting the stage for such dialogues, asking how and where ‘ethnic’ and personal ideologies collide with convention. Whether it is dinner or chai, her blog segment \'Kitchen Island’ or cookbooks, Nandita crafts holistic food and conversation for both mind and body.
Pia PadukonePia Padukone is the author of the acclaimed novel Where Earth Meets Water. Pia and her husband maintain a reading and eating blog, Two Admirable Pleasures: she reads, he cooks, they both eat. A finalist in Seventeen Magazine’s Fiction Writing Contest, and most recently a winner of the Women on Writing Flash Fiction Contest, Pia has written for Star News and the Associated Press (UK). Pia’s second novel, The Faces of Strangers, is the story of two families in Tallinn, Estonia and New York City, whose lives are forever changed by their participation in a high school student exchange program. The Faces of Strangers will be published in April 2016 by Harlequin Mira. 
Rahul DeokarRahul Deokar grew up in Juhu, a western suburb of Mumbai, India, famous for its sprawling beach and home to Bollywood celebrities. He graduated with top honors from VJTI, one of the oldest (founded in 1887) engineering colleges in Asia. He emigrated to USA as a student pursuing a Masters in Computer Engineering and later an MBA at Iowa State University, New York University, and Santa Clara University. Rahul rode the customary roller coaster start-up journey in the Silicon Valley technology industry, being eventually acquired by a leading software company. Today as a seasoned executive, the excitement of innovation and passion continue to enthrall him. In his debut novel, he brings together two worlds, and takes you on a thrilling romantic adventure where East meets West, technology talks to tradition, and hope dances with despair. He currently lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with his loving Wife 1.0 and two adorable kids.
Zubin J. ShroffZubin J. Shroff writes unique, entertaining, eclectic novels, many of which contain elements of satire, drama, and surrealism. He was born in 1975 in India, and he studied the sciences at the Cathedral School in Mumbai, philosophy at Lawrence University in Wisconsin, and the fine arts (of business) at Columbia University in New York City. He lives in Minnesota, USA.
Sameer PandyaSameer Pandya was born in India and came to California when he was eight. He earned a BA from the University of California, Davis and a PhD from Stanford University. His fiction has appeared, among other places, in Narrative Magazine, Other Voices, and Faultline, and his non-fiction has appeared in The Atlantic, ESPN, Salon, and Sports Illustrated. Pandya currently teaches literature and creative writing in the Department of Asian American Studies at UC Santa Barbara. The Blind Writer: Stories and a Novella is his first book.
T. DasuT. Dasu is a published author of both nonfiction and fiction, including Spy, Interrupted: The Waiting Wife,which came out in November 2014 and is the first in the Spy, Interrupted trilogy. She enjoys classic stories of love and longing, such as Gabriel Garcia Marquez's Love in the Time of Cholera, and is hooked on literary espionage, exemplified by Graham Greene's Our Man in Havana.  By day, Dasu is a research scientist working on problems in statistics, stream mining, and machine learning, which allow her to put her PhD in mathematical statistics to good use.
Nayana CurrimbhoyNayana Currimbhoy is a New York based writer and journalist. She has written articles film scripts and published three works of non-fiction. Miss Timmins' School for Girls is her first novel. Nayana grew up in India, and lives now in New York City with her husband and teenage daughter.
Akeel BilgramiAkeel Bilgrami got his first degree in English Literature at Elphinstone College, Bombay and then went to Oxford as a Rhodes Scholar for another Bachelor's degree in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics. He has a Ph.D in Philosophy from the University of Chicago. He is the Sidney Morgenbesser Chair of Philosophy at Columbia University, as well as a Professor in the Committee on Global Thought as well as the Director of the South Asian Institute there. His publications include Belief and Meaning (Wiley, 1992), Self-Knowledge and Resentment (Harvard, 2006), Secularism, Identity, and Enchantment (Harvard, 2014).
JJ RobinsonJJ Robinson has worked as a journalist for 10 years, including four as editor of the Maldives’ first independent English-language news outlet. He covered crooked elections, political riots, Islamic extremism, human trafficking, grand corruption of the judiciary and was among the only foreign witnesses to the 2012 coup d'état that toppled the country’s first democratically-elected government. He was the Maldives' Reuters correspondent and its Reporters Without Borders representative, and has appeared on the BBC, Radio Australia, Al Jazeera and others as a Maldives expert. He has guest-lectured on journalism and the Maldives at universities in Australia and Sweden, and appeared on regional freedom of expression advisory panels for the UN. Prior to the Maldives he worked for a family-run newspaper in the Australian outback town of Narrabri, and a business/technology magazine in London. He is a Fulbright scholar and recipient of the Alistair Cooke Award in Journalism. After receiving his MA from the Columbia School of Journalism in 2015, he worked with Columbia's School of International and Public Affairs and the Open Society Foundation studying how independent media outlets around the world innovate to survive. He also has a BA in Journalism with Honors in English from Charles Sturt University in Bathurst, Australia.
Susan AdelmanSusan Hershberg Adelman MD is a pediatric surgeon who has had a distinguished career in medicine. She also is an author, an artist and jeweler. Born in Rochester, New York, she went to the University of Michigan to study geology. She graduated from Wayne State University School of Medicine, did an internship and General Surgery residency at Henry Ford Hospital, and a Pediatric Surgery fellowship at Children's Hospital of Michigan. A pioneer female surgeon in her time, Dr. Adelman practiced pediatric surgery for almost 30 years, most as a solo practitioner, later as part of the University of Michigan faculty. She was the first woman President of the Wayne County Medical Society and of the Michigan State Medical Society. She served on the American Medical Association Council of Medical Service, then the AMA Board of Trustees. She was Editor of the Detroit Medical News for 17 years and wrote a monthly column in AMNews for 10 years. Dr. Adelman continues to paint, sculpt and she has become a jeweler and silversmith, as seen on Dr. Adelman speaks five languages and reads several others.
Devika KewalramaniDevika Kewalramani is a partner and co-chair of Moses & Singer LLP’s Legal Ethics & Law Firm Practice which advises other law firms, lawyers and legal departments on ethical and legal aspects of law practice. She also currently serves as the firm's general counsel. Devika counsels clients on issues relating to legal ethics, professional discipline, law firm risk management, and lawyer licensing and admissions. A frequent lecturer, panelist and author on legal ethics, Devika speaks to law firms, corporate legal departments, bar associations and other professional organizations on legal ethics. The editor of New York State Bar Association’s Journal magazine recognized Devika as author of one of the best articles of 2010: “Up Close and Professional with New York’s Engagement Letter Rules” (Sept. 2010). Her article “Demystifying ESQrow Ethics” was featured on the front page of the New York State Bar Association Journal’s May 2013 edition. Devika is a member of the International Board of Advisors of Jindal Global Law School in Sonipat, India. She is Chair of the Committee on Professional Discipline of the New York City Bar Association. In 2014 and 2015, Devika achieved Super Lawyer status in the Metro Edition of New York Super Lawyers.® She was appointed as a member of the New York Commission on Statewide Attorney Discipline in 2015 and served as a Co-Chair of its Subcommittee on Transparency and Access.
Mira NairMira Nair is the rare prolific filmmaker who fluidly moves between Hollywood and Independent Cinema. After several years of making documentary films, Mira Nair made a stunning entry onto the world stage with her debut feature film Salaam Bombay! (1988). Now hailed as a classic, the film has received more than 25 international awards including an Academy Award nomination for Best Foreign Language Film in 1988, the Caméra d’Or Award at the Cannes Film Festival. Her second film, Mississippi Masala (1991) won three awards at Venice. Since, Nair made films such as The Perez Family (1993), Kama Sutra: A Tale of Love (1996), My Own Country (1998), The Laughing Club of India (1999). In 2001, Monsoon Wedding won the Golden Lion at the 2001 Venice Film Festival, becoming one of the highest grossing foreign films of all time. Nair then directed the Golden Globe winning Hysterical Blindness (2002). After making William Makepeace Thackeray’s epic Vanity Fair (2004), she directed a film based on Jhumpa Lahiri’s best-selling novel The Namesake (2006). This was followed by the Amelia Earhart biopic, Amelia (2009) starring Hilary Swank and Richard Gere. In 2012 Nair directed The Reluctant Fundamentalist, a thriller based on the best-selling novel by Mohsin Hamid. It opened the 2012 Venice Film Festival to critical acclaim, and was released worldwide in early 2013. She is currently directing the Disney production Queen of Katwe starring Lupita Nyong’o and David Oyelwo. The film is based on the true story of the Ugandan chess prodigy, Phiona Mutesi. She is also working on the musical adaptation of Monsoon Wedding, scheduled to open on Broadway in 2016. In 1998, she used the profits from Salaam Bombay! to create Salaam Balak Trust which works with street children in India. In 2012, Mira Nair was awarded the Padma Bhushan - India’s second highest civilian honor - by the President.
Sabrina DhawanSabrina Dhawan graduated from Columbia University’s graduate film program in 2001 with her debut feature as screenwriter, Monsoon Wedding. Amongst other awards, it won the ‘Leon D’Oro’ at the Venice Film Festival and received a Golden Globe nomination. At Columbia, her student short Saanjh - As Night Falls won ‘Best of the Festival’ at the Palm Springs Film Festival; ‘Most Original Film’ from New Line Cinema, ‘Audience Impact’ Award at Angelus Awards, and was nominated for a Student Academy Award. Sabrina’s other produced screenplay credits include Kaminey, directed by Vishal Bharadwaj for UTV; Ishqiya, directed by Abhishek Chaubey, for Shemaroo. 11.9.01, directed by Nair for Canal Plus; Cosmopolitan for PBS; She served as co-producer on Bollywood Hero, a mini-series for IFC and as story consultant on Bharadwaj’s Matru Ki Bijli Ka Mandola and wrote a documentary Greatest Love Story Ever Told to celebrate 100 years of Indian cinema for UTV and Shekhar Kapoor. Sabrina is an Associate Professor at the Tisch School of the Arts, New York University. She has taught at filmmaking labs around the world, including Uganda, Tanzania, India, and the continental USA. Sabrina is currently working on a Broadway musical adaptation of the movie Monsoon Wedding and on a feature film, Rangoon co-written with Vishal Bharadwaj and Matthew Robbins. She was raised in Delhi and lives in New York City.
Henry BeanHenry Bean is a writer and filmmaker. His novel False Match won an LA Pen award in 1982. Recent stories have appeared in McSweeney’s and Black Clock. The Believer, won the Grand Jury prize at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival. He lives in New York.
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