I was always discouraged by my liberal arts/management educator parents to take up the humanities even after I did a NUS engineering masters that too on a scholarship at NTU as it was seen to be not profitable enough. I studied sociology coursework and researched at NTU on a fascinating program. Fortunately, my interest in public policy catalysed in me reading modules at LKYSPP. The story however is slightly deeper.
My interest in history and politics is intrinsic, as read books on WW2 and gobbled up India Today magazine and The Outlook and The Week while I grew up. This interest in the humanities has evolved into writing as a state of being. As I was today renewing the WordPress subscription of my online repository of dispersed meditations aka blog changethinker.com , something struck within me that this blog has been more than a site of cultural production in the form of analysis, aphorisms, criticism, spoken word and photography over the past eight years and 20.5k hits. It has become a genealogical understanding of me a person, an understanding of me as a writing as I believe in Prof Amit Chaudhuri’s writing-living continuum. It has been a way of pivoting out of mediocrity, engineering prominence, that I have a voice sunk under gelf migrant middle class utilitarian thinking expressing in an engineering education. Writing is politics with a small p, activism as a small a and civic engagement for a non important engineering consultant, who scribbles and takes photos on an old I phone.
Writing is entrepreneurship as the market for ideas is crowded. I have used the skills picked up in consulting for thought leadership. Creating content, marketing it on social media and pushing the envelope by lobbying literary, media, non profit and academic gatekeepers to get my word through, literally as have not read a MFA program yet. I am thankful for friends to care to read my work.
My blog has been paradoxically entrepreneurial venture without having earned a single cent out of it. Writing is political, yet deeply personal. It is living and engaging with the wonderful spirit called life.