Friday, 8 March 2013

Politics in India



Politics in India takes place within the framework of a federal Westminster-style Parliamentary democratic constitutional republic, in which the President of India is head of state and the Prime Minister of India is the head of government. Nominally executive power is exercised by the President and is independent of the legislature. Legislative power is vested in both the government and the two chambers of the Parliament of India, the Lok Sabha and the Rajya Sabha. Federal and state elections generally take place within a multi-party system, although this is not enshrined in law. The judiciary is independent of the executive and the legislature, the highest national court being the Supreme Court of India. India is the world's largest democracy in terms of citizenry.

India is a nation that is characterized as a "sovereign socialist secular democratic republic". Like the United States, India has had a federal form of government since it adopted its constitution. However, the central government in India has greater power in relation to its states, and its central government is patterned after the British parliamentary system. The national government has the power to dismiss state governments under specific constitutional clauses or in case no majority party or coalition is able to form a government. The central government can also impose direct federal rule known as president's rule. Locally, the Panchayati Raj system has several administrative functions and authorities.

For most of the years since independence, the federal government has been guided by the Indian National Congress. The two largest political parties have been the INC and the Bharatiya Janata Party. Although the two parties have dominated Indian politics, regional parties also exist. From 1950 to 1990, barring two brief periods, the INC enjoyed a parliamentary majority. The INC was out of power between 1977 and 1980, when the Janata Party won the election due to public discontent with the promulgation of emergency by Prime Minister Indira Gandhi in 1975. In 1989, a Janata Dal-led National Front coalition, in alliance with the Left Front coalition, won the elections but managed to stay in power for only two years.

Thursday, 10 May 2012

Ascocentrum


Ascocentrum, abbreviated as Asctm in horticultural trade, is a small genus belonging to the orchid family (Orchidaceae). The type species is Ascocentrum miniatum (Lindl.) Schltr. ex J. J. Sm. (originally as Saccolabium miniatum Lindl.).

They occur mainly in warmer to intermediate, humid climates of the foothills of the Himalayas, in Myanmar, Thailand, Malaysia, the Philippines, Java and Borneo.

These monopodial epiphytic orchids grow on deciduous trees. They have a short, simple to bifurcate stem (max. 15-18 cm) with an upright, compact, conical to racemose inflorescence, consisting of smaller brightly colored flowers. These flowers have a prominent spur and a strap-like lip. Their bright colors vary between yellow, orange, red, orchid or cerise.

The chromosome number is 2n = 38.

They are popular among orchid lovers because they resemble the compact Vanda-like species. Nevertheless their cultivation is rather difficult.

Wednesday, 29 February 2012

Cinema, World War I and its aftermath

Before World War I French cinema had a big share of the world market. Hollywood used the collapse of the French production to establish its hegemony. Ever since it has dominated world film production not only economically but has transformed cinema into a means to disseminate American values.[citation needed]

In Germany the Universum Film AG, better known as UFA, was founded to counter the perceived dominance of western propaganda. During the Weimar Republic many films about Frederick II of Prussia had a conservative nationalistic agenda, as Siegfried Kracauer and other film critics noted.[citation needed]

Communists like Willi M├╝nzenberg saw the Russian cinema as a model of political cinema. Soviet films by Sergei Eisenstein, Dziga Vertov and others combined a partisan view of the bolshevist regime with artistic innovation which also appealed to western audiences

Friday, 4 November 2011

Political cinema

Political cinema

Political cinema in the narrow sense of the term is a cinema which portrays current or historical events or social conditions in a partisan way in order to inform or to agitate the spectator. Political cinema exists in different forms such as documentaries, feature films, or even animated and experimental films.

The notion of political cinema

Political Cinema in the narrow sense of the term refers to political films which do not hide their political stance. This does not mean that they are necessarily pure propaganda. The difference to other films is not that they are political but how they show it.
Even ostensibly "apolitical" escapist films, which promise "mere entertainment" as an escape from everyday life, however, fulfill a political function. The authorities in Nazi Germany knew this very well and organized a large production of deliberately escapist movies.

In other entertainment movies, for example westerns, the ideological bias is evident in the distortion of historical reality. A "classical" western would rarely portray black cowboys, although there were a great many of them. Hollywood Cinema, or more generally speaking so called Dominant Cinema, was often accused of misrepresenting black, women, gays and working class people.

More fundamentally not only the content of individual films is political but also the institution of cinema itself. A huge number of people congregate not to act together or to talk to each other but, after having paid for it, to sit silently, to be spectators separated from each other. (Of course the behaviour of the public is not always the same in all countries.) Guy Debord, a critic of the society of the spectacle, for whom "separation is the alpha and omega of the spectacle" was therefore also violently opposed to Cinema, even though he would make several movies portraying his ideas.