“India’s history is a curiously unpeopled place. As usually told it has dynasties, epochs, religions, and castes—but not that many individuals,” Sunil Khilnani writes in his book “Incarnations: India in Fifty Lives.” In “Incarnations,” also released as a BBC radio series and podcast, Khilnani explores how the lives of fifty Indians across 2,500 years have shaped India’s history as we know it. We hear from Khilnani about a few of these figures, including the Buddha, poet Mirabai, and filmmaker Satyajit Ray. Khilnani is author of “The Idea of India” and professor of politics and director of the India Institute at King’s College, London.
At the Salon of 1882, just one year before his death, Édouard Manet exhibited a painting depicting the actress and model Jeanne Demarsy. This portrait of a chic young woman holding a parasol against a background of lush foliage is viewed as a testament to Manet’s command of color and brushwork, and was one of the few resounding public and critical successes of his career. Scott Allan, associate curator of paintings at the J. Paul Getty Museum, takes us to the Getty’s galleries where the painting is on view and explores the significance of this extraordinary work.