Scientists say the American lion is not a lion after all

first_img Explore further Panthera atrox skull. Image credit: Wikipedia. More information: Per Christiansen and John M. Harris, Craniomandibular Morphology and Phylogenetic Affinities of Panthera atrox: Implications for the Evolution and Paleobiology of the Lion Lineage, Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology 29(3):934-945. 2009. doi:10.1671/039.029.0314 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Male sabertoothed cats were pussycats compared to macho lions © 2010 PhysOrg.com The best preserved fossils of Panthera atrox have been found in the La Brea tar pits in Los Angeles and are mostly housed in the University of California Museum of Paleontology. Over the last 40,000 years the tar pits have trapped and preserved many animals in the thick asphalt deposits, because they were attracted to water that often covered and concealed the asphalt. Around 90 percent of the large animals found in La Brea were carnivores, presumably attracted to the area by the animals trapped in the sticky asphalt, and then becoming trapped themselves. The largest of the cat family found in the tar pits is the Panthera atrox.The new study, by Per Christiansen of the Zoological Museum in Copenhagen, Denmark, and John Harris of the George C. Page Museum in Los Angeles in the U.S. used a range of statistical and shape analysis methods to compare large numbers of skulls of modern and extinct pantherine cats. They analyzed 23 dimensions on the skulls and found P. atrox has some similarities to lions but also many differences. The mandibular morphology is closer to jaguars and tigers than to lions. The researchers concluded that P. atrox was evolved from a line of cats that immigrated into the Americas in the mid Pleistocene, and which gave rise in the late Pleistocene to P. atrox and the jaguar.Panthera atrox was one of the largest cats ever, weighing in at over 350 kg and attacking prey animals as large as the wild horse and bison. It is believed to have inhabited open habitats, like the largest individuals of the modern jaguar, and became extinct around 10-12,000 years ago. At its height the American lion ranged from Alaska and the Yukon to Mexico.The paper was published in the Journal of Vertebrate Paleontology. (PhysOrg.com) — There has been some debate over the last century or so about whether the extinct American lion, Panthera atrox, which dates from the Pleistocene, is related to present day African lions (Panthera leo) or to the jaguar (Panthera onca). Most paleontologists consider P. atrox as a lion, and have in the past even classified the American lion as Panthera leo rather than a separate species. Now a new study has challenged previous classifications and found the American lion was a distinct species and more similar to the jaguar than the lion. Citation: Scientists say the American lion is not a lion after all (2010, May 18) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-05-scientists-american-lion.htmllast_img read more

Quantum levitation could prevent nano systems from crashing together

first_img(Phys.org) — Since the first demonstration of microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) in the mid-‘80s, the technology has not proven as useful as originally anticipated. One of the problems is that the tiny components tend to stick together due to strong surface adhesion forces on the nanoscale, an effect that engineers call “stiction.” Now in a new study, scientists suggest that this problem might be solved by inducing quantum levitation between components, which they demonstrate by simply adding a thin metallic coating to one of the interacting surfaces. Journal information: Applied Physics Letters Explore further Researchers see exotic force for first time More information: Mathias Boström, et al. “Ultrathin metallic coatings can induce quantum levitation between nanosurfaces.” Applied Physics Letters 100, 253104 (2012). DOI: 10.1063/1.4729822 By preventing stiction, quantum levitation may offer a way to prevent surfaces used in MEMS and nanoelectromechanical systems (NEMS) from crashing together due to other attractive van der Waals forces that exist between them. Since the thickness of the nanocoating changes the dielectric properties of the interacting surfaces, researchers would have to precisely determine the correct thickness for a desired levitation distance. If the technique works, it may provide a much needed revitalization of the fields of MEMS and NEMS.In the future, the researchers plan to extend their investigations to other materials, such as zinc oxide and hafnia, which are widely used in microelectrical and microoptical devices. They also have an upcoming paper (arxiv.org/abs/1206.4852v1) in which they investigate the repulsive and attractive forces between excited Cesium atoms that are confined in a nanochannel, which are very different from those in free space.“Two Cesium atoms that are close together and in an excited state can form unusually large molecules when they are between two gold surfaces,” explained coauthor Mathias Bostrom of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim, Norway, and Australian National University in Canberra, Australia. “The effects from retardation for these excited state interactions between atoms are very similar to what we found for the Casimir-Lifshitz force between a gold-coated silica surface and a silica surface in toluene. Hence we found long-range attraction that brings the atoms together and short-range repulsion enabling bound states (preventing the atoms from crashing together, i.e., forming super large molecules).”Finally, the researchers plan to further investigate how quantum levitation may be used for NEMS systems by looking at anisotropic effects, which are the different properties that arise when parallel or perpendicular to the material interface.“Our colleagues in Oslo (Professor Clas Persson of the University of Oslo and his team) have calculated the actual optical properties of the materials (the dielectric function) for thin gold sheets which will be used to investigate how anisotropic effects may influence NEMS systems with gold nanocoatings. It is likely that the range with repulsive forces (preventing the system from crashing together) may be influenced in such improved calculations. Our aim is to do such calculations this autumn.” Two pieces of silica – one with a gold nanocoating – will experience a repulsive Casimir-Lifshitz interaction beyond a critical distance. Without the gold nanocoating, the interaction would be attractive at the same distance. Image credit: Boström, et al. ©2012 American Institute of Physics The team of researchers, from institutions in Norway, Australia, and Sweden, has published the study on quantum levitation between nanosurfaces in a recent issue of Applied Physics Letters.The odd thing about this levitation is that it stems from the Casimir-Lifshitz force, which has the unusual property of being either attractive or repulsive. As a type of van der Waals force, it arises between nearby particles due to their inherent electrical properties. In this study, the scientists looked at the Casimir-Lifshitz force that occurs between two silica surfaces in a liquid (either bromobenzene or toluene). Normally, this force is attractive, but it weakens as the silica particles move further apart. This weakening is called retardation, and the researchers found that they could decrease the distance at which retardation occurs by coating an ultrathin layer of gold on one of the silica surfaces. This small modification shifts the retardation regime from a separation distance of several nanometers down to a few nanometers by modifying the dielectric properties of the coated silica surface. In fact, retardation weakens the attraction so much that the force becomes repulsive when the surfaces are separated by a few nanometers or more, at a critical distance called the levitation distance. Below the levitation distance, the force again becomes attractive, while above this distance it becomes increasingly repulsive up to a maximum point. At still larger distances, the repulsion stabilizes below the maximum value. The ability to control the Casimir-Lifshitz force is not completely new. Scientists have known about these effects theoretically since the 1970s, but only recent advances in nanotechnology have allowed for experimental investigations. “The interaction between two silica objects in toluene is attractive,” coauthor Bo Sernelius of Linköping University in Sweden told Phys.org. “Previous studies have shown that, if one of the objects is replaced by a solid gold object, the interaction turns repulsive for distances beyond the levitation distance. Thus there is a potential barrier that reduces the chance for the objects to come close and stick to each other. We found, and this is new, that if instead of having a solid gold object we had a silica object with a thin gold coating, the levitation distance shrunk and the barrier became higher. The chance of preventing stiction increased considerably.” Copyright 2012 Phys.org All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. Citation: Quantum levitation could prevent nano systems from crashing together (2012, July 2) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-07-quantum-levitation-nano.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Graphene paper able to behave like animated origami w video

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Explore further The work by the team was inspired by origami, an art form based on folding paper. In this instance, the paper was instead two types of one-atom thick sheets of graphene infused with hydrogen and oxygen compounds resulting in graphene oxide and graphene oxide-polydopamine. The former does not react to water but the second does. To create origami type structures, the team infused the latter with water molecules than bonded the two types of sheets together—when heat or light was applied to the second type, it would cause the water molecules to be released, making the paper shrink slightly, which in turn would exert a force that would pull against the second type of sheet. This allowed for the creation of hinges or joints which could be employed on command, which made the objects programmable in a sense.To demonstrate the usefulness of their idea, the team bonded sheets together in such a way as to cause a box to self-form. Another example was of a sheet that formed into a worm-shaped object that was capable of inching along a surface—the team found they could cause it to turn by heating just one side of it. The third was a claw-like object that was capable of grabbing onto something else and in some instances was able to lift other small objects. Play The photoactuation behavior of the self-folding box. Credit: Donghua University The researchers believe their research could lead to the development of a wide variety of objects such as remotely controlled robots, tissue engineering or even the development of a type of artificial muscle. For their next project, they want to see if it might be possible to create similar types of objects at a much smaller scale, perhaps down to nanosize—they believe the properties and performance of such tiny objects would be different at such sizes and are eager to find out what they may be. PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen Play The turning behavior of the wormlike walking device driven by an IR laser. Credit: Donghua University (Phys.org)—A team of researchers with Donghua University in China has found a way to cause tiny (0.8 to 6 centimeter) objects made of graphene sheets to move around in specific ways using just heat and infrared light—and it is based on origami. In their paper published in the journal Science Advances, the team describes the types of graphene they used, the types of objects they created and the ways in which the objects were able to be moved. Citation: Graphene ‘paper’ able to behave like animated origami (w/ video) (2015, November 9) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-11-graphene-paper-animated-origami-video.html A fast self-folding box driven by light. (A) Time profiles of self-folding movements of a cross-shaped piece of paper with and without NIR light irradiation. The sample was placed on the platform and illuminated with NIR light (100 mW cm−2) normal to its surface (light is incident from above). (B) IR images of the self-folding box with and without light illumination (100 mW cm−2, NIR light). Credit: (c) 2015 Science Advances (2015). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1500533center_img Journal information: Science Advances PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreen Researchers find electron chirality in graphene impacts current flow Play The walking behavior of the wormlike walking device driven on and off by an NIR light on and off (100 mW cm−2). Credit: Donghua University More information: J. Mu et al. Origami-inspired active graphene-based paper for programmable instant self-folding walking devices, Science Advances (2015). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.1500533 © 2015 Phys.org Play The grasping behavior of the “artificial/robotic hand” driven by light irradiation. Credit: Donghua University PausePlay% buffered00:0000:00UnmuteMuteDisable captionsEnable captionsSettingsCaptionsDisabledQuality0SpeedNormalCaptionsGo back to previous menuQualityGo back to previous menuSpeedGo back to previous menu0.5×0.75×Normal1.25×1.5×1.75×2×Exit fullscreenEnter fullscreenlast_img read more

Researchers discover a blazarlike narrowline Seyfert 1 galaxy

first_imgR band SDSS image of J2118-0732. Credit: Yang et al., 2018. Explore further Researchers have identified a new blazar-like narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxy that emits gamma-ray radiation. The new galaxy, designated SDSS J211852.96−073227.5, could offer insights into formation and evolution of jets of radiation produced by massive galactic central black holes. The findings are reported January 11 in a paper published on arXiv.org. More information: SDSS J211852.96−073227.5: a new blazar-like narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxy with flaring γ-ray radiation, arXiv:1801.03963 [astro-ph.HE] arxiv.org/abs/1801.03963AbstractWe report on the identification of a new γ-ray-emitting narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLS1) galaxy, SDSS J211852.96−073227.5 (hereafter J2118−0732). The galaxy, at a redshift of 0.26, is associated with a radio source of flat/inverted spectrum at high radio frequencies. The analysis of its optical spectrum obtained from the SDSS revealed a small line width of the broad component of the Hβ line (FWHM = 1590 km,s−1), making it a radio-loud NLS1 galaxy —- an intriguing class of AGN with exceptional multi-wavelength properties. A new γ-ray source centred at J2118−0732 was sporadically detected during 2009-2013 in form of flares by the {it Fermi}-LAT. Our {it XMM-Newton} observations revealed a flat X-ray spectrum described by a simple power law, and a flux variation by a factor of ∼2.4 in 5~months. The source also shows intraday variability in the IR band. The drop of the broad-band fluxes from the IR, optical to X-ray in 5 months can be modeled by a drop of both the non-thermal jet emission and the emission from an accretion disk, with a decrease of the Eddington ratio by several times, suggesting the coupling of the disk accretion and the jet launching. With the NLS1-blazar composite nucleus, the clear detection of the host galaxy and the synchronous variations in the multiwavelength fluxes and the disk component, J2118−0732 provides a new perspective on the formation and evolution of relativistic jets as well as the disk-jet coupling mechanism. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Citation: Researchers discover a blazar-like narrow-line Seyfert 1 galaxy (2018, January 22) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-01-blazar-like-narrow-line-seyfert-galaxy.html © 2018 Phys.org Narrow-line Seyfert 1 (NLS1) galaxies are a class of active galactic nuclei (AGN) that have all the properties of type 1 Seyfert galaxies, but show peculiar characteristic like narrow Balmer lines, strong Fe II emission, and extreme properties in the X-rays.Astronomers and astrophysicists are specially interested in the radio-loud (RL) NLS1 galaxies, which usually showcase a compact radio morphology with a one-sided core-jet structure. Previous studies indicate that some RL NLS1, due to their blazar-like characteristics, produce relativistic jets—beams of ionized matter accelerated close to the speed of light.Therefore, finding and studying new RL NLS1s could help us improve our knowledge about complex phenomena like relativistic jets as the process of their formation and evolution is still not well understood.Now, a team of researchers led by Hui Yang of the Key Laboratory of Space Astronomy and Technology in Beijing, China, has detected new RL NLS1 galaxy emitting gamma-ray radiation. SDSS J211852.96−073227.5 (or J2118−0732 for short) was confirmed as a gamma-ray-emitting RL NLS1 galaxy by observations conducted with Large Area Telescope (LAT) onboard NASA’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope and with ESA’s X-ray Multi-Mirror Mission (XMM-Newton), as well as by analysis of data provided by the Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS).”Here, we present our discovery of a new γ-ray-emitting NLS1–SDSS J211852.96−073227.5 by analyzing the SDSS spectrum, the Fermi-LAT and XMM-Newton observational data,” the scientists wrote in the paper.J2118−0732 was detected at a redshift of 0.26 and has an estimated black hole’s mass of about 33 million solar masses. According to the study, the galaxy’s Balmer and Fe II emission lines confirm its NLS1 nature. Furthermore, data obtained by LAT revealed the existence of gamma-ray emission from J2118−0732 at a relatively high state for about 4 years of observations. Moreover, XMM-Newton observations indicated that J2118−0732 is the brightest X-ray source in the field, exhibiting a large X-ray variability.The researchers noted that properties of J2118−0732 such as large radio loudness, with a flat and inverted radio spectrum and remarkably rapid infrared intraday variability of less than a day, confirm its blazer-like nature.In general, the authors of the paper concluded that the data presented in the study could shed new light on the formation and evolution of relativistic jets and jet-disk coupling.”The broadband SED (spectral energy distribution) can be well modeled by a one-zone leptonic jet model. And the synchronous variations in the multiwavelength fluxes and the disk component suggest the coupling of the disk accretion and the jet launching,” the researchers concluded. Astronomers discover 21 changing-look active galactic nucleilast_img read more

Quantum ghost imaging improved by using fiveatom correlations

first_imgIn conventional imaging methods, a beam of photons (or other particles) is reflected off the object to be imaged. After the beam travels to a detector, the information gathered there is used to create a photograph or other type of image. In an alternative imaging technique called “ghost imaging,” the process works a little differently: an image is reconstructed from information that is detected from a beam that never actually interacts with the object. More information: Sean S. Hodgman, Wei Bu, Sacha B. Mann, Roman I. Khakimov, Andrew G. Truscott. “Higher Order Quantum Ghost Imaging with Ultra-Cold Atoms.” Physical Review Letters. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.233601Also at arXiv:1901.06810 [cond-mat.quant-gas] The key to ghost imaging is to use two or more correlated beams of particles. While one beam interacts with the object, the second beam is detected and used to reconstruct the image, even though the second beam never interacts with the object. The only aspect of the first beam that is detected is the arrival time of each photon on a separate detector. But because the two beams are correlated, the image of the object can be fully reconstructed.While two beams are usually used in ghost imaging, recent research has demonstrated higher-order correlations—that is, correlations among three, four, or five beams. Higher-order ghost imaging can lead to improvements in image visibility, but it comes with the drawback that higher-order correlated events have a lower probability of detection, which causes lower resolution. In a new paper, a team of physicists from the Australian National University in Canberra has achieved two firsts in higher-order ghost imaging: the first demonstration of higher-order ghost imaging with massive particles (they use ultracold helium atoms) and the first higher-order ghost imaging that uses correlated beams from a quantum source. As their quantum source, the researchers used two colliding Bose-Einstein condensates, which are clusters of atoms cooled to near absolute zero. At such cold temperatures, the atoms in a Bose-Einstein condensate clump together and behave like a single giant atom. In their work, the researchers performed experiments using correlations among up to five helium atoms. They demonstrated that, under certain conditions, higher-order ghost imaging with massive particles from a quantum source can improve the visibility of the image without affecting the resolution. “I think the greatest significance of our work is mostly being able to show that such a challenging experiment is possible,” physicist Sean Hodgman at Australian National University, first author of the paper, told Phys.org. “There are a very small number of multi-particle correlated events in a quantum source, which is partially why it has not been demonstrated previously with optics, and this means even after many tens of thousands of experimental runs only very few events are available to reconstruct a ghost image from.”The improvements demonstrated here could be especially beneficial for applications that demand high visibility but are easily damaged. This is because the technique has the potential to reduce the dosage rates, which reduces the potential radiation damage to the sample. One such application is atomic ghost lithography.”Atomic ghost lithography would be like normal atom lithography, but using correlated beams would allow real-time monitoring of the lithographic process,” Hodgman said. “Higher-order correlations would improve ghost lithography by allowing lower fluxes with the same signal quality, which is important as high fluxes risk damage to the sample.”With further work, higher-order quantum ghost imaging could also be used to perform fundamental tests of quantum mechanics, such as demonstrating entanglement among multiple atoms or, in a related vein, making Bell’s inequality measurements using three or more particles. Researchers demonstrate ‘ghost imaging’ with atoms Citation: Quantum ghost imaging improved by using five-atom correlations (2019, June 26) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-06-quantum-ghost-imaging-five-atom.html Journal information: Physical Review Letterscenter_img Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. © 2019 Science X Network Schematic of higher-order quantum ghost image demonstration. Credit: Hodgman et al. ©2019 American Physical Societylast_img read more

Heres What Your Favorite Music Says About Your Personality

first_imgYour taste in music could reveal insights into your personality, according to two studies published in Psychological Science. Previous attempts at finding links between music and personality traits didn’t necessarily represent a wide variety of people because the respondents tended to be younger – thus more likely to share similar music tastes – and had varying definitions of the musical genres they were listening to. This time around, more than half of the respondents were older than 22 and all were presented with 25 unfamiliar musical extracts pre-categorized by musicologists. “These results corroborate that music – a form of self-expression that is ubiquitous across human cultures – communicates meaningful information about basic psychological characteristics,” said the authors in their study. Read the whole story: IFLSciencecenter_img Researchers from Cambridge and US universities surveyed more than 21,000 people in two separate online surveys to see how five main personality types known collectively as the Big Five – those that are open-minded, extroverted, agreeable, neurotic, and conscientious – matched up with different genres of music. These included tunes that were mellow, unpretentious, sophisticated, intense, and contemporary. last_img read more

Delhi get ready to be played

Shoelace productions and Aranya brings to the Capital, a unique theatre festival – Prayog, offering three plays to entertain theatre enthusiasts. To be held at LTG auditorium from 26 to 28 October, the plays that will be staged include Illham, Park and Laal Pencil.Manav Kaul, veteran theatre personality, who has penned each of these plays says, ‘I’m quite excited about my plays being staged in Delhi. I’ve been performing in Delhi since 2004 and simply love to see the response of theatre lovers in the city.’ Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Deepak Dhamija, the brain behind Prayog, says, ‘I realised there was a scarcity of playwrights in India. Through this festival we wanted to provide a platform for young contemporary writers.’ Dhamija dubs Prayog as an ‘experiment’.Being staged on 26 October, Illham focuses on the tagline: is Bhagwan the epitome of the mundane? It’s about the life of a middle-aged banker, who is married and has grown up children. However, one day, while sitting on a decrepit park bench he stumbles upon ‘enlightenment’. Therein begins the battle between the world outside and his world inside. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixWhile the second in line is a play titled Park, being staged on 27 October, about any park, just about anywhere, with three regular benches, where three men squabble about the choicest of seats. Because each one’s claim is the greatest and the most fundamental one. Last in row, being staged on 28 October is Laal Pencil based on a Korean novel. It revolves around a young school girl, whose entire life changes when she acquires a magical red pencil. So select your play from Prayog and head to LTG, ensuring a sheer theatrical delight!LOG ON to www.indianstage.in to book tickets right away! read more

final touch

first_imgExperimentation. Entertainment. Instilled with energy. The third phase of Short and Sweet, organised by Shoelace Productions was a complete stunner. Not the conventional words to use in a play review maybe. But these are thoughts that came to mind as the festival draws to a close.Held at Epicenter in Gurgoan, these set of ten plays rocked, as festival director Deepak Dhamija made sure that festival-cum-competition sailed through smoothly.Unbelievably funny, Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Dickheads (offended anybody?) was my personal favourite, which was dished out as a surprise. Written by Ashwath Bhatt and directed by Vivek Shrivastava, this play is about the lives of two street children who eventually become superstars. The story is simple yet compelling, with splendid performances. While 2922, written and directed by Arnav Nanduri and Pranay Manchanda, gets audience attention through a musical journey laced with humour.Who’s the Boss makes you laugh all through, with a secretary sitting on her boss, caught in an uncomfortable situation, being tied together. The lesser said about Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixNine types of Ice the better. Designed and directed by Himanshu Mehta, Chup was more compelling.So was Chairpersons, written and directed by Rajiv Rajaram. It is a political satire, which encapsulates the contemporary Indian political scenario, comparing power dynamics to a game of musical chairs.Smart and slick writing, executed by amazing performances by Rajaram Sandeep John and Nikhil Sriram make this play a treat for theatre lovers.Solitary Creeper , which captures Delhi life as people bump into each other during metro rides was a fun watch. Arvind Gaur’s Khol Do was a compelling watch too with some actors making a lasting impact which includes Shilpi Marwaha and Gaurav Mishra. The evil effects of smoking was nothing more than a over-dramatic monologue. But even A Different Client directed by Vivek Mansukhani, experiments with a different concept complimented by a powerful performance by Mansukhani.After these three rounds, the list of ten plays who have made it to the finale of Short and Sweet, to be held this Friday at Kamani, was announced which includes – 2922, Chairpersons, Dickheads and A Different Client from this round. While from the earlier two rounds, plays which have made it include the superbly humorous Lyra directed and written by Aishwarya Jha Mathur, the amazingly directed The sum of your experiences with the stunning performance of Damandeep Sidhu, well conceptualised and executed Unit Test, superbly performed Between Romeo and Juliet, interestingly executed Gandhi, Chaplin and Salt and Juhi Goel’s fabulous Dhalti Shamein.Catch the the Gala- finale at Kamani on 14th December 7:30 pm, log on to www.bookmyshow.comlast_img read more

For a cause

first_imgStar India, the nation’s leading media and entertainment conglomerate, will strengthen on-going efforts at rehabilitation in flood-ravaged Uttarakhand by raising funds to help bring comfort to victims of this tragedy.Leading actors from Bollywood will join Star’s fund-raiser – a seven-hour marathon event on the occasion of Independence Day – in what’s the first such effort by the entertainment industry to alleviate the sufferings of people impacted by the floods. The entire advertising revenue generated through the event will be channelled to not-for-profit bodies that are working diligently to restore normalcy in Uttarakhand. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’‘The tragedy in Uttarakhand is a solemn opportunity for every Indian to lend a helping hand,’ Uday Shankar, CEO, Star India, said. ‘This occasion demands that people join forces to support those in need. It’s heartening that people are coming together and our role is only that of a catalyst.’Early confirmation of stars supporting the initiative include Indian cinema’s icons Amitabh Bachchan, Lata Mangeshkar, Ajay Devgn, Kajol, Anil Kapoor, AR Rahman, Boman Irani, Shankar-Ehsaan-Loy, Pritam, Prasoon Joshi, Mukesh Bhatt, Ayushmann Khurana and celebrities from top television shows of the Star network such as Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixDiya Aur Baati Hum, Pyaar Ka Dard Hai Meetha Meetha Pyaara Pyaara, Saraswatichandra, Savdhaan India, Devon Ke Dev Mahadev and India’s Dancing Superstars among others.Film Producers Guild, Federation of Western India Cine Employees, TV Artists Forum, Corporate Charity Trusts and several independent industrialists and donors will partner Star India’s marathon fund-raiser that will be attended by senior leaders from the state and central governments. ‘I am delighted that the Indian film industry has embraced our outreach plan and is partnering with us in this initiative to spread hope,’ Shankar added.last_img read more

Glimpses of those 40 years

first_imgDancer Geeta Chandran is marking four decades since her arangetram in 1974. To mark these 40 glorious year of dancing, Natya Vriksha, with the support of the Ministry of Culture and Pyramid Group is presenting the exhibition, In the Click of a Movment, of iconic photographs by photographer Rakesh Sahai.Sahai has been following the dancer on her creative journey since past five years, and from the dialogue between dancer and photographer has emerged this oeuvre of brilliant images. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’A universally celebrated artiste, a celebrity and a star-performer, Chandran is synonymous with the Indian classical dance – Bharatanatyam. She began learning Bharatanatyam from the tender age of five years under the tutelage of Swarna Saraswathy.In her dance presentations Chandran skillfully weaves abstract notions of joy, beauty, values, aspirations, myth and spirituality. She is celebrated not only for her deep and composite understanding of the art of Bharatanatyam, but also for her Carnatic music, her work in television, video and film, theatre, choreography, dance education,dance activism and dance-issue journalism. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixChandran is a recipient of several prestigious awards including the Lady Shri Ram College Illustrious Alumna Award, the Dandayudhapani Pillai Award, the Bharat Nirman Award, the NatyaIlavarasi, the Indira Priyadarshini Award, the Media India Award, the National Critics Award, the Guru Deba Prasad Das Award, the Sringar Mani and the NatyaRatna.When: 25 – 30 September Where: India Habitat Centre Lobby, Lodi Road Timing: 10 am to 8 pmlast_img read more

Taliban attack another foreign guesthouse in Kabul Official

first_imgTaliban militants launched an attack on a foreign compound in Kabul on Saturday, officials said, the latest in a series of strikes in the Afghan capital during the final weeks of NATO’s 13-year war against the insurgents.Gunfire and explosions erupted as elite commando police fought with the attackers in west Kabul, not far from the parliament.The attack came two days after the Taliban attacked a foreign guesthouse in the diplomatic district of the city and a suicide bomber targeted a British embassy vehicle in a blast that killed six people.Kabul has been hit by at least nine attacks in the last two weeks, with targets including US military convoys, foreign security contractor compounds and a female Afghan member of parliament.On December 31, the US-led NATO combat mission in Afghanistan will end and be replaced by a follow-on mission tasked with supporting the Afghan army and police who have taken over responsibility for thwarting the Taliban.last_img read more

Panchayat polls Calcutta High Court extends stay on election process

first_imgKolkata: A single Bench of the Calcutta HC on Monday extended a stay on the Panchayat election process in Bengal till the next date of hearing as an appeal on the maintainability of a petition by the BJP is pending before a division Bench. Justice Subrata Talukdar directed that he will take up the matter on Tuesday at 2 pm after going through Monday’s order of the appeal Bench.The State Election Commission and the Trinamool Congress had moved the division Bench comprising justices D Somadder and Arindam Mukherjee challenging the single Bench order which had accepted the maintainability of the petition at this stage. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe division Bench said it does not want to interfere in an “intra-court matter” at this stage and made it clear that the petitions would be heard before the single Bench of Subrata Talukdar. However, the division Bench maintained that the hearing has to take place expeditiously and if necessary, it might take place every day. The decision of the division Bench has made it clear that the single Bench will now hear the petitions by the opposition parties as well as by the State Election Commission (SEC) and ruling Trinamool Congress on Tuesday. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedKalyan Banerjee, advocate for Trinamool Congress said: “Day-to-day hearing will take place from Tuesday. I had raised my doubts over maintainability of the petition and had argued that it is not maintainable. We will argue our matter in Calcutta High Court only and would not go to the Supreme Court.”Welcoming the order, BJP’s Bengal unit general secretary Pratap Banerjee said: “The division Bench has rejected the ruling party’s appeal to vacate the single Bench order.” Banerjee on Monday furnished a bond of Rs 5 lakh as fine imposed by the court on the party for “misrepresenting facts” by moving both the Supreme Court and the High Court on the same plea. Justice Talukdar also permitted state Congress president Adhir Chowdhury to become a party in the case.It may be mentioned that the single Bench of Justice Talukdar had stayed the election process on March 12 and had fixed the hearing in the case for on Monday. It had directed the SEC to present a comprehensive report on the election process which was furnished by the latter on Monday. Petitions on the rural polls came up for hearing both in the single Bench and the division Bench after the ruling TMC moved the division Bench against the single Bench’s stay. On April 9, the State Election Commission had extended by a day the last day for filing nominations after the BJP and opposition parties alleged that the ruling party was resorting to muscle power and violence to prevent its candidates from filing nominations. The next morning, it withdrew the order citing legalities.As per the original schedule, the nomination process ended on April 9. The polls are scheduled to be held on May 1, 3 and 5 with counting on May 8.last_img read more

Movie tribute to legendary Uttam Kumar

first_imgTo pay tribute to legendary Bengali actor Uttam Kumar, the government of West Bengal organised a retrospective of his films at Muktadhara Auditorium in the city. This is second such festival featuring his movies within a span of two months.The festival was inaugurated in the presence of Rajesh Kumar, ADG and Officer on Special Duty, government of West Bengal, and other senior officials of the Office of the Resident Commissioner, New Delhi. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The three films screened at the retrospective were Antony Firingee (1967) and Deya Neya (1963), both directed by Sunil Bannerjee and Chowringhee (1968), directed by Pinaki Bhushan Mukherjee. Uttam Kumar — popular matinee idol and the first megastar of Bengali film industry — has left an indelible mark in the history of cinema of Bengal, especially the period which is regarded by critics as its “golden age”. The initiative by the Office of the Resident Commissioner, Government of West Bengal, was an endeavour to bring some of the gems of Kumar’s long and distinguished career to the movie buffs of the capital city. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThe West Bengal Information and Cultural Centre, under the Office of the Resident Commissioner, West Bengal, regularly holds special screening of critically acclaimed movies for the connoisseurs of the national capital.On July 24, a one-day retrospective of films of Uttam Kumar was organised which received warm appreciation from the film lovers of Delhi, especially the members of the Bengali community.last_img read more

Tribal craftsmanship at its best

first_imgNational Tribal Crafts Mela Aadishilp, organised by Tribal Cooperative Marketing Development Federation of India Ltd. (TRIFED), was inaugurated by Jual Oram, Union Tribal Affairs Minister at Dilli Haat on November 5. On this occasion, Union Tribal Affairs Minister, Jual Oram said, “These kinds of exhibitions provide our tribal artisans an important platform to showcase their talents through their products to urban India. TRIFED, through its 44 sales counter all over the country, is providing much needed marketing system for tribal products.”The main objective of organising Aadishilp is to give tribal artisans an opportunity to showcase and sell their traditional art and craft works directly to the customers and get their feedback which would help them in having valuable design related and other inputs. It also provides them a platform for direct interface with art and craft lovers, share their talent with the urban elite and know the customers’ taste and preferences for adapting their product designs and creations accordingly. Commenting on the importance of encouraging tribal artisans of the country, he said, “Ministry of Tribal Affairs will provide more and more such platforms for tribal artisans so that they can sell their products directly to the consumer without middlemen”. He also urged media, NGOs and particularly urban youth to come forward to popularise the tribal products and bring the tribals into the main stream of the society. TRIFED, which focuses on training for skill upgradation and capacity building of tribal artisans and minor forest produce gatherers, has been taking a number of promotional initiatives for marketing of tribal products. From a single sales outlet of TRIBES India in 1999 at 9, Mahadev Road, Delhi, it has established 34 outlets of its own and 10 Consignment outlets across the country. TRIFED has also initiated the concept of sourcing tribal products by organising Tribal Artisan Melas (TAMs) to identify new artisans and products from different regions/ states where tribal artisans are invited to display their products for selection and inclusion in the range of products marketed by TRIFED.The exhibition, which will be open till November 11, will have hand crafted items, handloom products, dry flowers, cane and bamboo products, tribal jewellery, Dhokra craft, tribal weaves, embroidery, tribal paintings etc, showcased at the venue.last_img read more

Tribute to Nabin Chandra Das Bagbazar to host 3day Rosogolla Utsav

first_imgKolkata: In a bid to pay tribute to Nabin Chandra Das, the inventor of Rosogolla, Bagbazar O Rosogolla Utsob Executive Committee is going to hold a three-day Rosogolla Utsav from December 28 at Bagbazar.A statue of Das will be unveiled during the inaugural programme. A postal stamp dedicated to him will be published. Firhad Hakim, Mayor of Kolkata, will inaugurate the festival. Deputy Mayor Atin Ghosh will also be present at the programme. According to Bagbazar O Rosogolla Utsob Executive Committee, Nabin Chandra Das had invented Rosogolla. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeThough he opened a shop in Jorasanko but got success after he moved to Bagbazar in 1886. In 1868, he invented Rosogolla which later became famous all across the world. Dr Shashi Panja, MLA & chief convener of the Committee, said: “I am very proud to say Rosogolla has been invented in Bagbazar that comes into my constituency. The reason behind this Utsav is to celebrate the 150th year of Nabin Chandra Das’s unique invention, Maa Sarada’s Janmatithi and 100 years of Bagbazar Sarbojanin Durgotsab. We believe Bagbazar has a long and great tradition in the array of Bengal’s culture, history and renaissance and the utsav will focus on the all-round involvement of North-Kolkatans to rejuvenate the memories and traditions. The three-day festival will witness various performances by eminent personalities.” Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedOn Thursday, famous Indian artist Suvaprasanna and others present at the press conference said people will get to taste several famous sweets from all over the state for three days. The three-day festival will witness performances by Hariharan, Humsufi, Indranil Sen, Aditi Munsi with Doharband, Chandrabindoo, Jagannath Basu and Urmimala Basu, Rasia, Srikumar Chattopadhyay powered by Maitreye Mitra and Satinath Mukhopadhyay followed by adda session with Actor Kanchan Mullick, Tanima Sen, Manasi Sinha and Biswajit Chakraborty. The festival will also hold programmess like Rosogolla cooking competition, quiz contest by Dr Parthasarathi Mukherjee, Rosogolla eating competition to make it more mesmerising for the visitors. This will be one of the largest sweet festivals of the recent time, which will have sweets from leading brands to districts from Nadia to Burdwan.last_img read more

There is nothing called Writers Block

first_img“I never call it Writer’s Block because I know I have to write anyway. I write bad pages if I am feeling blocked and eventually I end up losing them which is painful. But everyday’s hard work is sort of inspirational,” Greer said at the 10th edition of Apeejay Kolkata Literary Festival. The American, who bagged the Pulitzer for his comic novel ‘Less’ in 2018, said he is not going to write anything on his new novel while “in India because it is too much fun here and I am taking a break”. Asked to share some tips for aspiring writers to keep their creativity alive, the man with six fictions in his kitty said: “I think that one should write from their weakest part and about things they are scared to share.” Also Read – Add new books to your shelfHe elaborated that if there is anything hard to write about oneself, it is truly about the person. So it is good to be imaginative to be able to reveal those things in writing. “If someone says to a writer that he/she puts too many dragons in his writing, he should put a full dragon. That is my advice and one shouldn’t let people make them mediocre and become oneself,” he explained. Geere had been writing ‘Less’ as a tragedy and it was not really working when he actually decided to start making fun of the protagonist and while swimming one day he made up his mind to write this book as a comedy. He wanted to celebrate joy. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveAsked if such recognition can be beneficial for any genre which is going out of fashion, he said: “I hadn’t thought about it, but yes it is possible that this will give courage to other writers to write literature that is a comedy or all of those things that people are bit ashamed to speak about. And especially it gives me a chance to write more on such topics.” ‘Less’ is about Arthur Less, a writer fleeing the humiliation of love, middle-age and failure. In his book, a character actually wins the Pulitzer Prize. “I am confident that this is the only book which talks about Pulitzer and then actually wins it. It never occurred to me that I would actually win it,” he said. The protagonist wears a bright blue suit for the awards which, according to Greer, symbolises his innocence and he wears it with confidence. He thought he would choose something sober for himself in real life but on a friend’s advice he “wore a red suit” for the awards as it symbolises joy.last_img read more

Flames erupt at building on Lenin Sarani none injured

first_imgKolkata: A major fire broke out at a multi-storied building located on Lenin Sarani near Lotus Crossing on Sunday evening. Six fire tenders doused the fire within a few hours. None got injured or trapped in the incident.According to sources, on Sunday at around 5:30 pm locals saw smoke coming out of a building’s roof located at 171, Lenin Sarani. Immediately, Bowbazar police station and the fire brigade were informed. Initially four fire tenders were pressed into action and later two more were called in. A hydraulic ladder was also sent. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataLocal residents informed that there is a guest house at the said building. On Sunday, fire broke out on a temporary structure and spread to the fourth floor. As the building was evacuated before the fire spread, none was hurt. On the roof a temporary structure had been made, but the purpose of the structure is not clear yet. Some locals stated that it was being used as the kitchen for the guest house, whereas others claimed that an undergarment factory used to run there. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateTo control the blaze, firefighters went to the roofs of other adjacent buildings and started spraying water in ‘zig zag’ method. The hydraulic ladder was used to spray water from Lenin Sarani. While firefighters were dousing the fire, the temporary structure on the roof collapsed. Meanwhile, occupants of the other adjacent buildings got panic stricken and went outside. Also due to thick black smoke, some locals felt uneasy and breathless. At around 7 pm, the fire was controlled. Later, Fire minister Sujit Bose went to the spot and interacted with the fire brigade officials. “Our men are working. Fire has been controlled. Anything more can be said only after inquiry,” said Bose. MLA Nayna Bandyopadhyay also went to the spot. It has been alleged that the temporary construction which was made on the roof of the building, is illegal. But it is yet to be confirmed from the Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) whether any permission was given to erect such a structure. Sources informed that whether the building owner and the guest house owner had obtained all the necessary permissions from the competent authorities or not will be checked. If any flaw is found, the fire brigade may lodge a complaint against the building owner and the guest house owner.last_img read more

Books to read this weekend

first_imgThis weekend, go through the fictional story of a woman with unexpected inheritances and the transformation that ensued; travel with a Buddhist monk who decided to venture out of his comfortable monkhood; and finally in the 100th year of Kaifi Azmis birth, read some of his greatest poems and ‘nazms’. Small Days and Nights by Tishani Dosh Written by Forward Prize-winning author Tishani Doshi, ‘Small Days and Nights’ is the story of a woman caught in a moment of transformation, and the sacrifices we make to forge lives that have meaning. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfEscaping her failing marriage, Grace has returned to Puducherry for her mother’s funeral. Once there, she finds herself heir to an unexpected inheritance. First, there is the strange pink house, and then there is the sister she never knew she had – Lucia, who has spent her life in a residential facility. Soon Grace sets up a new and precarious life in this lush, melancholy wilderness, with Lucia, village housekeeper Mallika, dryly witty auntie Kavitha and an ever-multiplying litter of puppies. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveIn Love with the World: A Monk’s Journey Through the Bardos of Living and Dying by Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche At 36, Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche was a rising star within his generation of Tibetan masters and a respected abbot of three monasteries. Then one night, telling no one, he slipped out of his monastery in India with the intention of spending the next four years on a wandering retreat, following the ancient practice of holy mendicants. His goal was to throw off his titles and roles in order to explore the deepest aspects of his being. He immediately discovered that a lifetime of Buddhist education and practice had not prepared him to deal with dirty fellow travellers or the screeching of a railway car. But when he ran out of money, he began his life as an itinerant beggar in earnest. Soon he became deathly ill from food poisoning and his journey took a startling turn. Kaifi Azmi: Poems, Nazms by Kaifi Azmi Coming on the great poet’s 100th birth centenary celebrations, ‘Kaifi Azmi: Poems, Nazms’ contains 50 carefully chosen poems from his lifetime’s immense oeuvre. The English-Hindi collection is produced by a group of fine translators, poets, scholars, and filmmakers.last_img read more

Robert Capa – Life and Work of The Greatest War Photographer in

first_imgAs a photojournalist and war photographer, Robert Capa provided visual evidence of the wars that raged around the world in the first half of the 20th century. Risking his life, Capa covered World War II across Europe; on Omaha Beach, he was the only photographer who landed on D-Day. He also covered the Spanish Civil War from 1936 to 1939, the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, and in 1954, the First Indochina War. He was born in 1913 named Endre Friedmann into a Jewish family in Budapest, then part of Austro-Hungary. While barely 18 years old, Capa left Hungary due to accusations of Communist sympathies, and after settling in Vienna and later Prague, he finally moved to Berlin. In the new city, he started studying journalism at Berlin University. To support himself, he took a part-time job as a darkroom assistant and later found employment as a staff photographer at Dephot, the German photographic agency.Although he initially wanted to become a journalist, working as a photographer made him see he must switch paths. In 1932, he captured his first published photo of Leon Trotsky while the exiled Communist revolutionary was making a speech in Copenhagen. His career as a photographer was just starting to blossom when he was caught up in the rise of the Nazi Party, which instituted restrictions on Jews, prohibiting them from attending universities and colleges.In 1934, Capa moved to Paris, where he changed his birth name to avoid religious discrimination, something that was common in France at that time. The same year, he met Gerda Pohorylle, also a photographer who had fled Germany for the same reasons. She adopted the name of Gerda Taro, under which she became famous in her own right. The couple lived together in Paris, and in 1936, they both traveled to Spain with the intention of documenting the civil war there.Gerda Taro.In 1937, while Capa was on a brief trip to Paris, Gerda was working in Madrid, covering the Battle of Brunete. As she was returning from the assignment, her car was crushed by an out-of-control tank and Gerda was killed. Capa was deeply traumatized by her death. He never married.During the Spanish Civil War, Capa took one of his most famous photographs, “The Falling Soldier,” in which he captured the death of a Republican soldier. The photo was at first published in French magazines, but soon it reached Life magazine and the British photojournalism magazine Picture Post, which regarded the 25-year-old author as “the greatest war photographer in the world.”Armed woman of the Republican army during armament training. Image by Gerda Taro.While in Spain, Capa befriended Ernest Hemingway and accompanied him, photographing the war as they went, which the writer later described in his 1940 novel For Whom the Bell Tolls. Hemingway’s article about his time in Spain was published in Life magazine, along with many photos taken by Capa.In 2007, three boxes with film rolls that contained 4,500 35mm negatives of the civil war, taken by Capa, Chim (David Seymour), and Taro and which had been considered lost since 1939, were discovered in Mexico. A movie about those photographs, The Mexican Suitcase, directed by Trisha Ziff, was made in 2011.In 1938, Capa traveled to the city of Hankou, in China, where he documented the resistance to the Japanese invasion, and the photos were also published in Life. The following year, again escaping Nazi persecution, Capa left Paris and moved to New York City to search for work. He was working for Collier’s Weekly when World War II was declared, but he was fired soon after and started shooting regularly for Life. He traveled to various European destinations, taking photos of the war, and was known as the only “enemy alien” photographer for the Allies.In July and August 1943, Capa was with American troops in Sicily, in the village of Sperlinga, which was heavily defended by the Nazis. The photographer captured the sufferings of the people during the bombing and their happiness at the arrival of the American soldiers. He shot one of the most world-famous photos in the village, of a Sicilian peasant indicating the direction of the German troops. On the 7th of October, 1943, while he was accompanying the Life reporter Will Lang Jr. in Naples, Capa captured photos of the Naples post-office bombing.On D-Day, Capa landed on Omaha Beach alongside the American troops, where they confronted one of the heaviest resistances from the German forces. Capa took 106 pictures while under constant fire. Almost all of his photos–11 survived–were destroyed in an accident in a photo lab in London. That surviving group, again published in Life magazine, in June 1944, became known as “The Magnificent Eleven,” and are considered the most significant photos taken by Capa.In 1943 he became romantically involved with Elaine Justin, who was still married to the actor John Justin at the time. Their relationship lasted until 1945, when Elaine left Capa and married Chuck Romine. After a few months, Capa became Ingrid Bergman’s lover and followed her to Hollywood, where for a brief spell he worked for American International Pictures. However, the relationship ended the next summer when Capa went to Turkey.On the April 18, 1945, Capa took another photo that became known as one of the world’s most famous. He was in Leipzig, Germany, and photographed a fight for a bridge. One of these photos captured the death of the American infantryman Raymond J. Bowman by sniper fire and was published in Life with the title “The picture of the last man to die.”Before the invasion of Italy in 1943, Capa shared a room in a hotel in Algiers with the American writer John Steinbeck, and the two became close friends, reconnecting later in New York. In 1947 they traveled together to the Soviet Union, where Capa was photographing a nation torn by war, and Steinbeck was working on his book A Russian Journal. Capa took photos in Moscow, Tbilisi, Kiev, Batumi, and also among the ruins of Stalingrad. Their friendship lasted until Capa’s death, which Steinbeck took very hard.John Steinbeck.While he was living in Paris, Capa had shared a darkroom with the French photographer Henri Cartier-Bresson. In 1947, the two established Magnum Photos, the first photographic cooperative agency, to manage the work for and by freelance photographers. Other members of Magnum Photos included David Seymour, William Vandivert, and George Rodger. That same year, Capa was awarded the Medal of Freedom by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, for recording World War II in photographs.Henri Cartier-Bresson (left) and a young intern at the Rencontres internationales de la photographie in Arles 1974. Author: Rolph31000. CC BY-SA 4.0In 1948, Capa traveled to Israel and documented the people and places there during the formation of the country and while it was being constantly attacked by neighboring states. His photos accompanied Report on Israel, a book by Irwin Shaw, another friend of Capa’s.In 1952, Capa became the president of Magnum Photos. The next year, along with Truman Capote and John Huston, he went to Italy, where he photographed the making of the film Beat the Devil. In their free time, the photographer, the screenwriter, the director, and the actor Humphrey Bogart enjoyed playing poker.After he had finished his work in Italy, the president of Magnum Photos went to Japan for an exhibition associated with the cooperative. During his stay there he got a proposition from Life magazine to take an assignment in Southeast Asia, to record the ongoing war there, the First Indochina War in which the French had been fighting for eight years. Even though, only a few years back, Capa had said that he was done with war, he took the assignment and joined the French forces, along with Jim Lucas and John Macklin, journalists from Life and Time.Hungarian commemorative stamp issued in 2013.The group was traveling through a dangerous area that was constantly under fire when Capa decided to leave the vehicle to record the advance. Soon after leaving the jeep, he stepped on a mine and died. He was 40 years old.Read another story from us: Roger Fenton, the very first war photographer, captured the grim reality of the Crimean WarRobert Capa coined the term Generation X which he used as a title for his photo essay dedicated to the young people who were reaching adulthood right after World War II. Regarding his essay, Capa said, “We named this unknown generation, The Generation X, and even in our first enthusiasm we realized that we had something far bigger than our talents and pockets could cope with.”His approach to work redefined wartime photojournalism.last_img read more

The Amazing Survival of the Oldest HumanPlanted Tree in the World

first_imgThe oldest human-planted tree in the world has been around for over 2,000 years. Amazing if you think about it. As you walk around city streets, parks, and other locations and see all the different trees towering around you, have you ever wondered how old they truly are? How long have they been standing? When were they first planted? Well, we have evidence to show that trees can live for thousands of years, far outlasting the lifespan of any animal on Earth. According to Live Science, the oldest tree known to man is over 5,000 years old and located in the White Mountains of California, but the oldest human-planted tree can also be classed as relatively ancient, dating all the way back to 288 BC. The tree’s name is the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi. It’s located in the Mahamenwa Gardens of Anuradhapura in Sri Lanka.Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi in 1891Not only is the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi an ancient tree with historical significance, it’s also seen as a very important spiritual symbol for many people too.It is believed that this sacred fig tree was grown from the iconic Sri Maha Bodhi tree in India. The Sri Maha Bodhi is the tree under which Lord Buddha is said to have attained enlightenment, over two thousand years ago.Sacred Bodhi before c.1913 and in recent past. Photo by MediaJet CC BY 2.0Naturally, this spiritual significance means that the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi has a very special place in the heart of the world’s Buddhists, particularly those in Sri Lanka. It’s seen as one of the most important ancient relics of the Buddhist faith, with Buddhists from all over the world coming to visit and pay their respects each and every year.Related Video:The story goes that back in the 3rd century BC, the tree was brought all the way to Sri Lanka from India by Sangamitte Theri, daughter of Emperor Asoka. Sangmitta founded her own order of Buddhist nuns at her home in Sri Lanka. The tree was then officially planted by King Devanampiya Tissa. It was given pride of place in Mahamevnawa Park.Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi, a sacred fig tree, the oldest living human-planted tree in the world with a known planting date, in the Mahamewna Gardens, Anuradhapura, Sri LankaAs time went by, other kings and rulers visited the site of the tree and made their own contributions. King Vasabha, for example, in who ruled into the first century BC, placed several statues of Buddha around the tree. King Voharika Tissa, who ruled in the 3rd century AD, provided new metallic statues.King Mahanaga, who had a very short reign from 569 to 571 AD, made a water canal all around the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi, while King Sena II of the 9th century helped with renovation and restoration of the various statues and relics left by his predecessors.Anuradhapura, Sri Lanka – February 7, 2015: Dirt field and south compound steps lead to sacred Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi or Bodhiya fig tree in AnuradhapuraA large wall was also erected around the tree to keep it safe from wild elephants back in the 18th century, and a golden fence was also put up in the 20th century.Buddhists can be seen visiting the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi all through the year. Many make pilgrimages to the tree, traveling great distances to see it with their own eyes, and many people choose to leave special spiritual offerings. A lot of Buddhists also state that by leaving offerings at the tree, they later experience positive things in their own lives.Mahabodhi Vihara in AnuradhapuraAnother traditional custom is to visit the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi when expecting a baby. Buddhists ask the tree for their babies to be born happy and healthy, and some also visit to wish for cures to their illnesses and ailments. Local farmers bring a sample of their first rice harvest to the tree in the hopes that their crops will be kept safe from the elements and animals.Read another story from us: Buddha’s Head Hiding Inside a Tree in Thailand Continues to AmazeIn spite of the wall and fences around it, as well as the constant protection and surveillance of Buddhists and the tree’s year-round caretaker, the Jaya Sri Maha Bodhi has suffered a little damage over the years. It lost a couple of branches in the early 20th century due to storms, but is mostly intact and will surely keep standing for many, many more years to come as a powerful symbol of both spirituality and nature.last_img read more