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Indians have Taken to Bold Writing: Rochelle Potkar

Apr 04, 2016   15:23 IST 
Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Rochelle Potkar, author of the literary-erotica book, ‘The Arithmetic of Breasts and other stories’ launched Four Degrees of Separation - a poetry book in the presence of renowned Anglophone poet, architect, and translator, Mustansir Dalvi.


During the book unveiling and reading, both discussed the way Indian audience have opened up to not only listening to poetry, but also reading all kinds, including the bold and the erotica.


During the conversation Dalvi said, “I have written variously-themed poems, but have not yet written about being a man. What prompts you to write about being a woman?”


To which Rochelle said, “The society and world obsesses about a woman’s body and I’ve picked up that obsession that funnels through my writings. As much as we want orbits-of-respect around our bodies, we don’t want --as women-- that our sexual desires be misinterpreted. As intense an emotion as rage I possess… over the way we standardize beauty perceptions, body-image, fashion imperatives, as much of an intense emotion as love and desire I suffer from, for that very body.”


She went on to read her noted poem, Biscooti Love that speaks of many things over the subtext of erotica.


“I am glad that Indians are reading bold fiction”, She added.


Four Degrees of Separation is a collage of a meandering path from small town to big city life in 60 free verse poems. Rochelle is originally from a small town Kalyan and the new book depicts her journey and bitter-sweet experiences she came across, while establishing herself as an author in the maximum city - Mumbai. 


It is published by Paperwall Media & Publishing.


These poems – accessible and direct in tone -- are relevant for today’s generation.


The book is priced at Rs. 300 and will be available for sale on and Amazon.


About Rochelle Potkar

Rochelle Potkar is an Indian fiction writer and poet based in Mumbai. Her book, 'The Arithmetic of breasts and other stories' – a collection of 7 ½ short stories was shortlisted for The Digital Book of the Year Award 2014, by Publishing Next. 


Widely anthologized, a few of her short stories have won awards.  Her poem, ‘Knotted inside me’ was shortlisted for The RaedLeaf Poetry Award 2013. She won a second place for her poem ‘Swing’ at the Wordweavers contest 2014. She has read poetry at several interfaces/festivals in Mumbai, Goa, Hyderabad, Chennai, Hong Kong, and Iowa.


‘Four degrees of separation’ (Paperwall, 2016) is her first book of poetry. She is working on a novel and two collections of short stories.  She conducts poetry, fiction, and haibun writing workshops in India. She blogs at:



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