My Republica

Swasti Gautam

The contributor for Republica.

Imagining a motherland: Gender and nationalism

Published On: July 9, 2020 11:00 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

The boundaries set by the nation, state, families and societies often do not allow a woman to become a citizen. This leads to women not becoming the part of the nation but just a national embodiment.

Easing the lockdown and its impact on women

Published On: June 6, 2020 01:38 PM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

As the world, including Nepal, progresses towards easing the lockdown, it is imperative for Nepal to find its way through this new world order post the COVID-19 pandemic. However, due to the rising COVID-19 cases, there are various challenges in the forefront that need to be dealt with economic and political foresightedness. Especially for women in Nepal, easing of the lockdown has potential to further compound pre-existing gender inequalities based on caste, class, geographical location and various religious conventions and beliefs. There is a possibility that the current situation could be worsened by an inevitable economic crisis given the distinct lack of consideration by the state to accept women as equal citizens rather than a ‘category’ that needs to be considered while ticking a few boxes. A particular focus on women and their needs is crucial to ensure that we traverse to the second stage of this pandemic smoothly.

State and citizenship

Published On: May 30, 2019 01:00 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

The geographical location of Nepal between two emerging superpowers has been used as an excuse to deny women the rights they deserve as equal citizens of Nepal

Why I will return

Published On: January 23, 2019 01:00 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

Living in London, I have realized how Nepali migrants have been relegated to second class citizens. They don’t question, they don’t demand, they don’t ask

A repository of Nepali history

Published On: September 21, 2018 07:52 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

Established in 2014, the Taragaon Museum primarily aims to document and preserve the culture, tradition, rare maps, photographs, and architectural heritage of Kathmandu Valley. This beautiful museum is located inside Hyatt Residency Kathmandu and was originally built in 1972 by an architect named Carl Pruscha.

Women who drive

Published On: August 31, 2018 10:41 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

One of the most popular jokes on the internet about women who drive goes like this: ‘Why do you think women cannot drive? Of course women can drive, they can drive a man crazy.’ This is a blatant example of everyday sexism that women face all over the world and Kathmandu is no different. Out of the ten women we spoke to in the valley, eight of them said that they had been subjected to sexism at least once while driving. Our society is one that expects its women to be in the private sphere and not in the driver’s seat, and quite literally so.

Learning Chinese

Published On: August 24, 2018 09:58 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

She carries a copy of The New Practical Chinese Reader wherever she goes. Manita Chaulagain, who is pursuing her bachelors’ in social work at Baneshwor Multiple Campus, says she doesn’t go anywhere without this guide even though it’s not a part of her course. But she is attending Chinese language (Mandarin) classes at Biswo Bhasha Campus at Exhibition Road in Kathmandu.

Multipurpose jewelry

Published On: August 24, 2018 09:32 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

Preeti Agrawal’s jewelry studio in Sundhara, Kathmandu, is unlike any other studio in town. It’s much more than just a space where Agrawal designs and crafts beautiful pieces. Located in one of the many small gallis that pepper the area, the space reflects Agrawal’s passion for crystals and her connection with the spiritual world. For her customers, it’s a calm and soothing place to find the perfect stone that resonates with them. Each piece of jewelry has its own meaning, memory, and purpose.

Mad over

Published On: August 17, 2018 10:30 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

What makes so popular among the youth, you ask? The answer is simple: It is easy to use and extremely clever videos can be made and shared online in no time at all. is so entertaining that in a very short span of time it has turned into an addiction among many. Something as simple as lip-syncing to songs and even dialogues can be taken to an entirely new level with this application.

The power of confidence

Published On: August 17, 2018 10:05 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

“It’s important to be rooted but it’s even more important to spread your wings and fly,” says Kul Chandra Gautam giving us an insight on how he has lived his life so far. His Wikipedia page describes him as a distinguished diplomat, development professional, and a former senior official of the United Nations. But Gautam is much more than just that.

Makeup mania: The art of extreme makeup

Published On: August 10, 2018 11:52 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

Makeup is an art. It is a known fact that makeup artists have the power to transform people. They alter appearances and enhance people’s beauty. But there are also some artists who can take their skill to an entirely different level altogether. From converting into famous celebrities to trying out goofy Halloween makeup, there is no limit to what these incredibly talented artists can do.

More than just acting

Published On: August 10, 2018 11:45 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

If you want to establish yourself in a field as unconventional as theater, doing what you like may not be easy. It does not matter which part of the world you belong to, pursuing your passion most of the time can be extremely challenging. But Akanchha Karki was ready to confront any kind of challenges when she established Katha Ghera, a self-sustaining theater circuit, with her friend, Gunjan Dixit.

Unpredictable explorations

Published On: August 10, 2018 10:07 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

28-old-year Rajat Khadka never actively seeks travel companions. He rather likes making friends along the way. For him, traveling solo is a way to explore his own limits, weaknesses, and strengths. And that is one of the reasons why Khadka calls himself a ‘travel-junkie’. He is almost addicted to traveling, with friends or without. Ever since he was a teenager, he liked traveling to different places of Nepal. He recalls one of his first solo trips when he was just 18 years old. “I used to love traveling on my motor bike, mountain bike, or by foot. I was never scared or apprehensive before any trip. I would just be excited about the adventures ahead,” says Khad

Bold and courageous

Published On: August 3, 2018 12:06 PM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

Maya Thakuri, a renowned and celebrated woman writer of Nepal, claims that she has never received any formal education. She describes her journey of writing as a revolution and a struggle to achieve what many women like her have been deprived of.

The gateway to better roads

Published On: July 27, 2018 11:00 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

Finding solutions outside formal planning process for economic and ecological prosperity has become a trend in both developed and developing nations. Many countries now believe that economic growth can complement environment conservation. Important policies have been formed and implemented targeting solid waste management system in most nations. However, according to Bimal Bastola, co-founder of Green Road Management Company, this level of consciousness seems to be lacking among our policy makers. Very few policies are made in Nepal keeping in mind its impact on the environment.

Surviving the show business

Published On: July 27, 2018 09:15 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

Movie critic Dipendra Lama believes the movie Loot, which hit cinema theaters in 2012, introduced some groundbreaking features and techniques in the entertainment business. It changed the entire dynamics of filmmaking in our country making audiences look forward to a new Nepali release. Yet, Lama also believes that the same movie also became a huge setback for the industry.

Rethinking fashion

Published On: July 20, 2018 08:59 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

Nepal is changing. And so is its taste in fashion. There is now a growing craze among Nepalis for superior quality brands that are made in Nepal. Many of these brands have not only flourished in Nepal but have also been able to make a mark in the global market. Anu Shrestha is the founder and designer of one such brand that has been gaining steady popularity in the recent times. Kallisto Designs is her clothing brand that makes amazing hand-painted silk wears and accessories.

Serene and subtle

Published On: July 20, 2018 07:56 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

Discovering the patriarchy entrenched culture of Kashmir through a marriage ceremony

Best of both worlds

Published On: July 20, 2018 07:14 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

With their YouTube instrumental cover of Despacito, the Skin and Bones team has been able to win many hearts not only in Nepal but all over the world as well. Their beautiful combination of guitar and ‘sarangi’ speak to the youth of Nepal who are rooted in their traditions as well as heavily influenced by the western society.

Trials and triumphs

Published On: July 13, 2018 10:00 AM NPT By: Swasti Gautam

When Krishna Lal Shrestha left his village for Kathmandu about 40 years ago, he had just Rs 45 in the pockets of his trousers. He had sold a baby goat for the money, after which he left the village with his wife and child. Today, the same man has assets worth quite a substantial amount of money in Kathmandu. His success wasn’t the result of sheer luck or fortune but the willingness to work hard and live life with the motto, ‘work is worship’.