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Reflections: Handicrafts, Sustainability, and Livelihoods A Collection of My Essays

Author Name: Swasti Pachauri | Format: Paperback | Genre : Business, Investing & Management | Other Details

Ref lections: Handicrafts, Sustainability, and Livelihoods is a collection of the author’s previously published essays on arts, crafts, traditions, and anecdotal imagery inspired by nature. The work attempts to amalgamate the author’s observations from her field experiences with some of her interpretations, as those have evolved over the years. The contents of this collection have previously appeared in various fora such as Down to Earth, and the online editions of publications such as Hindustan Times, and The Indian Express.

Primarily, the work attempts to showcase the potential of artisans and the self-help groups (SHGs), their human and creative capital using the principles of entrepreneurship, sustainability, and natural resource management. It provides an insight into how the rural communities are adept at creating something beautiful with minimum resources despite being constrained with factors of capital and time. From the eco-friendly crafts of the central Indian plains, beads, and jewels of Alirajpur, to the unique Chhind and Khajoor crafts, artisans not only exhibit their finesse and deftness with these beautiful spectacles but also demonstrate their entrepreneurial and ecological acumen.

Additionally, the dedicated sections on local tourism, nature, and sustainability capture the ethereal beauty of the fruits of ecology around us. From the f lower clocks and green infrastructure of Geneva; the blooming trees of Delhi; anecdotes associated with the flowers of Palash and ‘Shravan Tal’ in Kanha; legends associated with festivals, craft-fairs; to finally finding Mogli in the dense forests of Madhya Pradesh – the book is a modest attempt at condensing most of the author’s field experiences. 

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Swasti Pachauri

Swasti Pachauri is a student of policy and governance with a professional experience of over ten years with the government(s), academia, and the big four consulting firms in India. A gold medallist in Economics, an alumna of Hindu College (University of Delhi) and the Tata Institute of Social Sciences, Swasti served under the aegis of the ‘Prime Minister’s Rural Development Fellowship’ during 2012-2014. She has also worked with the development advisory teams at Ernst and Young, KPMG, and PwC.

Currently, she is engaged as a Fellow with the Delhi Assembly Research Centre. Over the years, she has written extensively on craft-based rural livelihoods; issues concerning women in agriculture, public policy; and commentaries on nature for prestigious publications – some of which have also featured in the repositories of eminent institutions/organisations.

Swasti is a bilingual author and writes in English and Hindi. In her moments of leisure, she practises music; and pursues folk painting under the aegis of her not-for-profit, ‘Swasteeshilp’.