I was born into a Bengali family part of which during the partitions of 1947 and 1971, gradually moved from what is now Bangladesh to India in Kolkata. I embody this historical loss and longing of departed lands that have come to form much of my thoughts today. I’m an academician by profession and a musician by passion. My engagement with the idea of intimacy, that is part of my ongoing research especially through reflections upon the philosophy of friendship, makes my profession and passion mutually co-constitutive. My name is Nabamita Das and I’m 35 year old woman who is now a mother of a 3 year old boy who we have named Borno Anonyo.
What’s your current profession?
I teach Sociology at Presidency University, Kolkata, India. My teachings involve graduate, post graduate and phd courses in the area of Gender and Sexuality, Personal Life and Intimate Relations, Philosophy of the Everyday, Narrative, Time and Memory.
Do you have a website?
No I do not have a website.
What are your top 3 achievements?
Every experience in life is humbling. That makes it difficult to see anything particularly as an achievement. At the moment, I see the process of raising a child who is now 3 year old, as both an achievement and a struggle, trying constantly to negotiate between a world of given and a world that is unfolding everyday, making me learn and unlearn. In a time that is easily alienating and dehumanising, some of us as friends are trying in our own little way to do music together, music that connects times and spaces and minds. Our first music album called Borno Anonyo, that is soon going to be released, could be seen as an achievement made possible through a collective effort of a few friends and as reflections of the times we collectively embody as Bengalis.
I completed Graduation and Masters in Sociology from Presidency College, India and then went to the University of Birmingham in the UK, from where I competed my PhD degree. Just after that, I came back to India and back to my college, Presidency which is now a University, to teach in the department of Sociology as an Assistant Professor.
What are your favorite platforms or which charitable organizations you admire most?
I would like to believe most charitable organisations are working hard for a noble cause. I am in no position to say which one is a ‘favourite’ or one that I ‘admire’ since I’ve not been a part of it or know very well. I can speak for the one I have known very closely as part of my extended family and also had the opportunity to work for. It’s the Kumudini Welfare Trust of Bengal in Bangladesh and its continuing service to humanity is documented in detail for public viewing.
What’s your dream job?
My dream job is to be able to have enough money one day when I could build a school for children and teach them music and languages without having to take money for it.
Who is your favorite role model?
Every person is unique and cannot possibly or desirably emulate anyone else. The idea of a role model doesn’t occur to me thus.
Ten years from now where do you see yourself?
10 years from now, I don’t know where I’m going to be or how I’m going to be, but as things stand now, I’d at least like to see myself more seriously pursuing music and writing as fiction all that I am unable to write right now from within the ‘discipline’ I am bound by.
How do you maintain work and life balance?
If your life becomes one with your thoughts that you teach and learn from, it becomes rather difficult to distinguish which one is work, and which one, a life without it. Of course there are specific work hours but thoughts continue to come within and even outside of it.
Making music with friends is both struggle and fun. Spending time with my child is both a struggle and fun.
Favorite Book (s):
There is no one or few. The name changes with states of mind, and emotion. But I can say most writings of Rabindranath Tagore, particularly his novels, unfailingly make me think and wonder and make to want to write more.
Favorite Musician (s):
They are far too many. But those who unfailingly move me whenever I listen to them are a 1970s Bengali band called Mohiner Ghoraguli. I’m heavily drawn towards folk and jazz music. At times I feel inspired by the singer song writer Kabir Suman. I adore the Argentine musician Gustavo Santaolalla. I love listening to Norah Jones and Eva Cassidy. My friend Satyaki Banerjee musically inspires me everyday but the one man who has influenced me the most, is Rabindranath and his lyrical music.
Favorite Movie (s):
It is a Bengali film called Meghe Dhaka Tara by Ritwik Ghatak
Favorite Actor (s):
No one in particular
Favorite Sport (s):
I am not too interested in sports. But I do watch cricket and football at times when there are friends to watch these with.
Favorite Athlete (s):
I really do not follow sports as much I should in order to be able to answer this.
Favorite TV Show (s):
I barely watch the TV
Favorite Place (s):
My home, my room.
Favorite Website (s):
Favorite Restaurant (s):
Tung Fong and Flurys in Kolkata. Nando’s in the UK.
Do you have any pets?
Yes. We’ve always had dogs. Mostly German shepherds. A few days back there was Rintin and her daughter, Tuki. Rintin has just left us a few months ago.