Author: Prof. Ashoka Jahnavi Prasad

Sir VS Naipaul: A Literary Giant; an Apparent Bundle of Contradictions

Reading Time: 5 minutesSir Vidiadhar Surajprasad Naipaul was a very misunderstood character and the interesting part is that he never made any effort to erase that misunderstanding wither through his writings or his personal life. He could be disarmingly charming, but for that to happen, the other person would have to make an effort to see what was […]

Bowlby: Expressions of Loss, Grief, and Anxiety in a Child and Psychoanalysis – IX

Reading Time: 6 minutesBowlby makes the common observation that the psychoanalytic theory of normal development is almost entirely based upon work with adult patients. Obviously, in clinical practice, the psychoanalyst is constantly preoccupied with the understanding of defences that, although once useful for survival, are now obsolete. When these findings are projected back onto the theory of infant […]

How was the Distance of the Sun Discovered?

Reading Time: 4 minutesThe first accurate calculation of the distance from the earth to the sun, of the size of the solar system, and even of the size of the universe as discovered by Giovanni Cassini, in the year 1672, informs Prop Ashoka, in the weekly column, exclusively for Different Truths. Our understanding of the universe depends on […]

Bowlby: Normal and Pathological Processes of Mourning in Response to Separation and Loss – VIII

Reading Time: 5 minutesBowlby looks at human loss and distress on two levels: first, the inevitable grief, anger, and despair that result when ties are broken, and second, the ways we organize ourselves to deal with these painful and often conflictual feelings. Just as in his study of affectional ties Bowlby first searched for regularities in the attachment […]

Melting Glaciers, Climate, and Water Quality: Are We Heeding to the Environmental Warnings?

Reading Time: 8 minutesThe link between climate and water quality is perhaps most poignantly illustrated through the lens of coastal and freshwater eutrophication: the delivery of excessive nutrients–nitrogen and phosphorus are typically the most concerning– to water bodies from agricultural production as well as from urbanisation and other human activity. The effects of eutrophication are many, but some […]

The Story of Can Openers

Reading Time: 3 minutesProf. Ashoka tells us about the invention of can openers, whose legacy might be traced back to 1850. He tells us about its evolution, in the weekly column, exclusively for Different Truths. By 1822, canned food was available in Britain, France, and the United States. The first cans weighed more than the food they contained […]

Bowlby: The Cognitive Map of Attachment of a Child to his Mother – VII

Reading Time: 5 minutesA child’s pattern of attachment usually correlates with the way his mother treats him. By preschool age, this matrix will have become a function of the child himself or herself. This internalisation or, in Bowlby’s terms, “cognitive map” of attachment may also correlate with the child’s participation in the regulation of his or her care […]

How Were Fossils Discovered in 1669?

Reading Time: 3 minutesFossils are the remains of past living organisms. It was discovered by Nicholas Steno in 1669. His work represents the beginning of our modern process of dating and studying fossils and the development of modem geology, informs Prof. Ashoka, in the weekly column, exclusively for Different Truths. The only way we can learn about the […]

Bowlby Proposes a Large Array of Potential Pathways at Birth – VI

Reading Time: 4 minutesPersonality disorders derive their form from stages that were normal at some earlier phase of life. In normal development, the individual is thought to progress through the oral, anal, phallic and genital stages. If fixations occur, the person “regresses” back down the ladder. Thus, the various disorders of later life repeat phases of a healthy […]

How was Instant Coffee Invented?

Reading Time: 2 minutesThe antiquity of instant coffee could be traced back to 1771, when it was invented in Britain. The first American version was developed in 1853 during the Civil War. The journey continued till 1963, says Prof. Ashoka, in the weekly column, exclusively for Different Truths. Instant coffee, also called soluble coffee or coffee powder, is […]