Thursday, 12 October 2017

Company for some Spook and Science- Report on QLC Meet- 15.9.17.

Finding Our Inner Shell
Q.L.C. decided to explore some diverse genres in English literature in its meet-up on the 15th of September 2017. 

Chandana Deals
With The Last Question
Dr. Sumitra Jaiswal gave a brief introduction about the themes for the day- Gothic, corporate, and science fiction. She talked in particular about Prof. Jayant Narlikar, one of the first Indian writers in the genre of science fiction.

Sumitra Ma'am
 Talking Science Fiction
We began with Viola, Madhuri, Chandana, Meghana and Rakshita, who presented Isaac Asimov’s The Last Question, under the science fiction category. The story deals with the development of a series of computers called Multivac and their relationships with humanity through the courses of seven historic settings, beginning in 2061. It tries to answer the question how the threat to human existence posed by the heat death of the universe can be averted. In each of these eras someone decides to ask the ultimate "last question" regarding the reversal and decrease of entropy, which is often interpreted as the degree of disorder or randomness in the system, which only increases over time. The answer is eventually unearthed only after the universe is dead. The story ends on a cliffhanger, challenging the boundaries of both science and theology.

Mahveen's Take on Company
We then proceeded to a world of constant entropy, as presented by Seema and Mahveen in the story Company by Max Barry under the Corporate fiction category. Company is an office-novel, a take on life in the modern American Corporation and on the management fads that influence how they are run. The story is both disturbing and hilarious in parts. The plot-twist leaves one caught off-guard, and raises various ethical questions about the corporate world. 

"That's the thing u learn about values,they are what people make up to justify what they did."

Megha and Team Bringing Ghosts into the Room

This was followed by a skit by Megha, Apoorva, Manisha, SreeLekha, Sumana and Keerthana. They portrayed a hostel room of girls and showed how different people have different perceptions on the existence of supernatural elements. Their performance made it easier to believe that they had brought a ghost into the room, and definitely send some shivers down our spines. 

Krutika Presents No Complaining Rule

Then there was a presentation on Jon Gordon’s  No Complaining Rule by Krutika,Grace and DhanaLakshmi. It dealt with wide-spread negativity at workplaces in the corporate world. The story revolves around a single-parent Vice President of an MNC who struggles with the challenges of her life, and is often pessimistic. The twist comes when Hope decides to stop complaining, and start finding solutions to the problems she is faced with. Then a survey was conducted to find out how many of us were complainers, and surprisingly, I turned out to be one.

Kirti, Rama and Gayatri then came up with a unique skit which seemed to revolve around a girl called Shell. Shell, who appeared to be lost in her own world, was often shown to be struggling with every-day tasks that most girls are adept at. All of her flaws were received with hearty laughter from the members. However the club suddenly turned introspective, when in the climax, Shell is somehow interpreted to be living inside all of us- like she is the one who adds essence the ­shell of our bodies.
The skit, although a little unsettling, made us look at ourselves differently, and allowed us to be more accepting of our own inner “weirdness”.

Navya Looking for an Alternate Ending

 Chetan Bhagat’s One Night @ Call Center was the next text to be tackled under the corporate fiction category. Presented by P. Navya, V. Navya and Meghana, who explored the problems faced by the six protagonists of the novel, the story wanders into the supernatural spectrum, when the characters get "a phone call from god". There followed a discussion on some interesting alternative endings for the plot, while we also analyzed the problems  that the call center workers were depicted to be facing in the book.
Asfiya Introducing
 the Kafkaesque

The next presentation was done by Asfiya, Hari Priya and Juveria on Franz Kafka’s The Metamorphosis. In true Kafkaesque fashion, it deals with themes like absurdity of life, the disconnect between mind and body, the endurance of the sense of alienation. The presentation also asked us to explore the limits of our own sympathy, when we were asked what our reactions would be if our own family members turn into a "monstrous vermin", like the protagonist of the story, Gregor Samsa. It was also about discovering the true sense of metamorphosis in the novel, which was made all the more interesting by Kafka's cryptic writing style.

Time for Some Spook-
Deeksha, The Ghost.
To wind up, we had a truly spooky performance by Deeksha and Aanshika, who dealt with the legend of the popular horror film, The Exorcism of Emily Rose. The chilly room, the dimmed lights, and videos of Emily Rose's exorcism playing on the big screen made for a perfect ending for a meeting that had us all down various lanes in the vast world of literature. 


Report by K. Meghana.