Pankaj Mishra, born in North India, graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce from the Allahabad University before completing his MA in English Literature at the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi. Mishra writes literary and political essays for the New York Times, the Guardian, the New Yorker, London Review of Books, among other American, British and Indian publications. His books include Age of Anger: A History of the Present and Bland Fanatics: Liberals, Race, and Empire (Liberals, the West and the Afterlives of Empire).
Deepa Mehta is an Oscar-nominated filmmaker. Her films include the Elemental Trilogy: Earth, Fire, Water (which received an Oscar nomination for best foreign language film), Bollywood/Hollywood, Heaven on Earth, Midnight’s Children based on Salman Rushdie’s three-time Booker Prize winning novel and Anatomy of Violence. Deepa directed the pilot and second episode for the Netflix Original series, Leila, and the pilot episode, The Manager, for Apple TV’s Little America. Her latest feature film Funny Boy, based on the award winning novel by Shyam Selvadurai, received awards for Best Adapted Screenplay, Best Original Score, and Best Director at the 2021 Canadian Screen Awards and for Best Motion Picture and Best Supporting Performance Female at the 2021 Leo Awards.
Nandana Dev Sen is a writer, actor, and child-rights activist. She has written six children’s books (translated into more than 15 languages globally), and starred in 20 feature films (from four continents, in numerous languages). She has represented UNICEF, RAHI and the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights to fight against child abuse, and to end human trafficking. Winner of the Last Girl Champion Award (and multiple Best Actress Awards), Nandana is Child Protection Ambassador for Save the Children India. Nandana is on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter (all three at Nandana Dev Sen). For news and updates, please swing by nandanadevsen.com.
Diksha Bijlani is the winner of India’s first National Youth Poetry Slam, runner-up in Button Poetry’s video contest and featured poet in events such as College Unions Poetry Slam Invitational in Chicago, India’s first Mental Health Festival in Delhi, and India’s first spoken word festival Spoken in Mumbai, among others. She is a Public Policy graduate from Harvard Kennedy School, and currently works in climate change at the World Bank. Diksha’s work touches cultural identities, mental health and women’s general awesomeness—with the belief that our personal stories, and empathy for others’, is the most powerful force in the world.