media, information, the contemporary

BioScope Volume 13 Issue 1, June 2022

We’re happy to announce the publication of BioScope vol. 13. no. 1.

The new issue of Bioscope has a special section on Media in the Pandemic. Pallavi Paul considers the media form of viral analysis, and different types of information-gathering and speculation that challenge the authority of medical expertise; Anirban Baishya looks at drone use during lockdown and the death-ravaged summer of 2021; Kuhu Tanvir explores the affective forms of the Zoom funeral; and Laleen Jayamanne captures the post-pandemic potentialities of Zoom in networks of political reflection on performative and disappeared bodies. Our main article section is devoted to Media Technologies and Publics. Isabel Huacuja Alonso develops a rich account of Radio Ceylon’s popular film song hit parade, Binaca Geetmala, analysing publicity practices based on measurement of record sales and a focus on listener voting that parallels the emergence of electoral democracy in 1950s India. Sagorika Singha situates the popularity of Reality TV in Northeast India in advances in telecommunications and the importance of listener voting by landline and mobile telephony. Spandan Bhattacharya, analysing the Bedeni (woman snake-charmer) genre of 1980s Bengali cinema, and other “new” popular genres explores the industrial, legal, and technological contexts of their emergence, including the importance of video as technology and aesthetic. Finally, as we move through the 50th year of Bangladesh’s independence, Srideep Mukherjee draws on Tanvir  Mokammel’s Chitra Nadir Pare (1999) to reflect on the tragic force of an ethno-religious nationalism  that originated with the Partition in 1947, and continues to challenge the Bangladeshi nation today. And there are book reviews by Alastair Phillips on Priya Jaikumar’s Where Histories Reside: India as Filmed Space, and Arpana Awwal on Harisur Rahman’s Consuming Cultural Hegemony: Bollywood in Bangladesh.


Ravi S. VasudevanRosie ThomasS. V. SrinivasSalma SiddiqueDebashree MukherjeeKartik NairLotte Hoek

Special Section: Media in the Pandemic

Mediatised Contagion: Some Propositions on Pandemic Media

Pallavi Paul

Chronicle of a Funeral Webcast: Mediating Death in the Time of COVID-19

Kuhu Tanvir

Through a Drone Darkly: Drone Media as Pandemic Witnessing

Anirban K. Baishya

A Critical Film Zone on Zoom

Laleen Jayamanne


Songs by Ballot: Binaca Geetmala and the Making of a Hindi Film-Song Radio Audience, 1952–1994

Isabel Huacuja Alonso

Vote for Visibility: Talent Hunts, Networked Infrastructures, and the Emergence of Northeast India’s First Reality TV Star

Sagorika Singha

Transgressing Boundaries, Transforming Film Culture(s): Tales of Bedeni and the Constructs of Female Performer Figure in the 1990s Bengali Cinema

Spandan Bhattacharya

Mangled Homes, Tangled Homeland: Religion and Gender in Tanvir Mokammel’s Chitra Nadir Pare

Srideep Mukherjee

Book Reviews

Book review: Priya Jaikumar, Where Histories Reside: India as Filmed Space

Alastair Philips

Book review: Harisur Rahman, Consuming Cultural Hegemony: Bollywood in Bangladesh

Arpana Awwal