Motherhood as fungible

Fungibility is defined as the property of a commodity, the components of which are essentially interchangeable. Although the term is most used in the fields of economics and engineering, it has recently become a personal favourite for many reasons. An important one is its possible applicability to human relationships. In this essay, I use it to discuss a quality of mothering.

Risk and protection: Addressing real and imagined fears we have as parents

Some months ago, we received a piece from Bhavna Negi about a family conversation. With the post, we wish to initiate a discussion of our anxieties as parents, and to question why, although our lives have become more secure, fears have also escalated. We are more worried about children’s safety than ever before. What can […]

Can the best of intentions have negative outcomes?

Campaigns, claims and consequences With Gabriel Scheidecker On our Kadak Chai posts that address more serious stuff, we bring you a joint essay, co-authored with Gabriel Scheidecker that addresses some ethical and scientific concerns about Volunteerism and Humanitarian Aid campaigns, with specific examples from the Global South. About Gabriel: “I am a Social Anthropologist based […]

The Elephant, the King and Silly Mama

The Elephant, the King and Silly Mama (Adapted from The Story of Ribhu[1]) One day, a young child named Rinku was going with his mother to a mela when they saw a king’s procession passing by. The king was sitting on an elephant. Playfully, the mother asked him: “What is happening here, Rinku?” “That is the […]

‘The Wig That Was Caught For Stealing’ and Other Stories

‘The wig that was caught for stealing’ and other stories by Shashi Shukla From my father’s side, we are six cousins; four girls and two boys all born between 1978 and 1985. My father and his older brother were working in jobs away from their ancestral village, and annually, we would travel from our respective homes […]

The Sister Knot!

Everyone in our family is in a growing up phase! We’ve recently become 5-year-old parents and our two daughters are continuing their journey into and out of toddlerhood.  Having two little girls with great articulation abilities, ever-curious minds and immense physical energy, I endorse the saying “Having one child makes you a parent; having two […]