Diligent Candy is a blog managed by Amrita Das.
Hi, I am Amrita. Welcome to my blog.
I have lived in Amsterdam since 2006. This is the longest I have continuously lived in one place, that is if you count out the brief stint in Singapore.
I was born in Cuttack, Odisha, in India, a small sleepy town steeped in history. The ayah who helped my mother bring up her two opinionated children once reprimanded me for eating from the ladle off the pot, “Someone who eats from the pot lives very far from home.” I did not pay heed to her prophetic words and continued my gluttonous escapades.
I was born to parents of different cultural backgrounds and have lived in different villages, towns, cities, and countries. I have redefined and modified what home means and signifies.
My references are flooded with the locations that have filled me as I have filled them.
Thus, as I admire the delicate flakiness of a poached kabeljauw, today, in an Amsterdam restaurant. I have had the privilege of gulfing down fried hamour while sitting on the deck of the Dubai Creek. Or for that matter, the wholesomeness, of devouring freshly caught pohola on a bed of steamed rice on a trawler in Chilika lake. (I could go on about this).
Although the settings have transformed and environments have altered, I have grown to appreciate the multifariousness of experiences that life has presented me with. I hope through the blog, and through my workshops, I bring my enthusiasm for different cultures into practice, sharing how change feeds creativity.
I used to be a corporate communications specialist, then I became an academic, I have always remained a writer. I teach and I facilitate workshops on diversity. I enjoy teaching and coaching, and strongly believe in safe classrooms and active learning environments. I love discussing and researching on cultural mobility, inclusion, and representation. I like to draw and take pictures. I am an INTJ, a voracious reader, proud mother of an almost eleven-year-old, and an indulgent wife to my college sweetheart.
I am working on my PhD [NWO Mozaiek doctoral scholarship]: The American Ghazal: an immigration of an Arabic Poetic Form (1960-2010). My thesis contributes to the transnational turn in the humanities, which investigates how cultural influence moves across borders. I often give Guest Lectures for Global English, New Voices and New Genres, poetry, especially on the ghazal.
My personal journey across several countries: India, United Arab Emirates, Mauritius, England, Singapore, and The Netherlands, entangles with the themes that I have dealt with in my PhD dissertation. Namely, the changes occurring from border crossing; in the definition of home, in the different understanding of gender, in self awareness and expression of sexuality, in complicated intersectionality, and in the representation of race and ethnicity.
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