Interview: Suman Ghosh - Economics Professor turns Filmmaker

August 30, 2007
Tony Tharakan

Meet Suman Ghosh. This professor of economics at the Florida Atlantic University has an unusual hobby - making films.

Beginning with a documentary on Amartya Sen, the world-famous economist who won the Nobel Prize in 1998, Ghosh has now moved on to directing feature films.

Ghosh's Bengali film 'Footsteps' (Podokkhep) was screened in July as part of the Indian competition section of the Osian's Cinefan film festival in New Delhi.

Ghosh told Toe Knee Unplugged he is now working on an English film.

How has the response been for your debut feature Footsteps?

Footsteps has already been to around 10 film festivals worldwide. I was surprised by the overwhelming reaction. It felt nice to find out that certain issues cut across cultures. Though I had framed the film with respect to a Kolkata background it was pretty universal. It was really satisfying to see people in Canada, Prague and other places react to things the same way.

Footsteps was released in Kolkata in January. Unfortunately in India regional films do not get a release nationwide.

You have worked with Nandita Das and Soumitra Chatterjee in your Bengali film. Which actors do you want to work with in the future?

I have no particular targets as far as working with so and so is concerned. It depends on the particular role. I can only say there are actors that I like currently, but as I said it does not necessarily mean that I will cast them and work with them. That said, I think Saif Ali Khan and Konkona are the two actors that are consistently churning out amazing performances. They never cease to amaze me.

What project are you working on next?

I am working on an English film next. I can't say anything more about the project now.

A professor who's also a filmmaker - how hard has it been juggling the two vocations?

I never think of it that way - juggling two vocations. I think one must enjoy whatever one is doing. So the fact that I am pursuing two professions is an artifact of the excitement involved. The moment I will stop getting excited about making films or doing research in Economics, I will stop it. I can't see myself forcing into something.

But yes, I would say that I am good at compartmentalizing my vocations. When I was making the movie in India - for six months I just forgot about my existence as an economist. Similarly, when I am working on a research project I seem to forget about films. I can manage this changeover quite effectively.

20-something scribe based in New Delhi. Now also authors a tennis blog at
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Interview: Suman Ghosh - Economics Professor turns Filmmaker


Author: Tony Tharakan


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keta meera sahebu
August 30, 2007
11:14 AM

dear sir,
your efforts to bring the concepts of economics to all deserves all the media is a wonderful thing to disseminate these ideas to common man
If we are looking for a great India with novel ideas there is another way of doing this. This is described in my web
By the use of reverse principle we can bring in a quantum jump
The very life style of every one changes in this method
I love to discuss with you some of these things
I look forward to meet you
with personnel regards

Prof keta meera sahebu

August 30, 2007
12:42 PM


please write a synopsis of the coming fourth revolution for desicritcs (1000 words OR LESS)


Keta Meera Sahebu
August 30, 2007
02:30 PM

Keta Meera Sahebu

The inventions and innovations that took place from 16th century onwards has brought great changes in our living style.People begin to produce goods on a mass scale using machines.

In the year 1776 Adam Smith brought out the book The Wealth of Nations highlighting some of these issues.We may say capitalism has made a beginning logically at this point

During the past 200 years the world has made great strides under capitalism.The wealth of the nations grew enormously. GDP increased several folds.Our life style has changed to a large extent.Today even a common man gets many things which the kings 300 years back has not got.

The instruments of capitalism are free trade,gold standard and representative government.People can have private property under this .This further appealed to many.

But then there are many drawbacks in capitalism.For capital to grew we have to invest.For investment we must have savings. But then the savings of common man are meager.It is the profits of the companies and industries that contributed greatly to the wealth of the nations
Save before we invest is one drawback.And the huge profits by a few another aspect which is not liked by many.People begin to see wide disparity among the poor and rich
Communism wanted to over come these problems of capitalism. Karl Marx and V.I.Lenin contributed in formulating this doctrine.The poor peasants who were struggling under the Czarist empire quickly revolted under Lenin in 1917.Communism came into existence in many countries.

Though it was looking attractive at the beginning its weak points are slowly getting surface as time progressed.The repressive methods which the governments used,lack of freedom of speech and the central planning in communism were the major weak points that made many to feel this was not a model for the future.As a result communism collapsed in Russia in December 1991

China although following communism ,very intelligently adopted some of the capitalistic concepts while running their industries.This resulted in 14% GDP growth rate. This is surprising many

Therefore from the above we learn two things.We must employ all but follow capitalist model then our growth rate will be very high.

The 'Reverse Principle' is based on these concepts
All to work, all to produce and all to share using the principles of capitalism.

Therefore we can say reverse principle is the brain child of capitalism and communism.

It takes one idea from communism 'All to Work' and every thing else from capitalism. The fusion leads to 'Reverse Principles' .

By the use of this principle a quantum jump is possible.From the start to finish in a country like India it takes 5 years. Within this short period work force gets more than doubled.Our standard of living doubles. Life style undergoes dramatic changes
The ills of capitalism that we are talking of as of now will vanish. It is a knew model for the coming age.That is how I say it is the fourth revolution.

In the coming fourth revolution that will bring in a new spin in our life style every one's life is taken care from birth to death.
During education every one goes up only through his merit. Even before one goes out of college he gets job.After retirement every one can live in old age hostels or in his own house with only pension money.There will be only joy in living for every one
The next revolution will be a spiritual revolution that may come after several centuries from now.
All these issues are discussed at length in my web
The details of this web has been send to President, prime minster, governors, ministers, secretaries and hundreds of professionals throughout the world.
And I do hope World will adopt this model for bringing out a new world order on this planet earth.

Prof Keta Meera Sahebu

August 30, 2007
02:36 PM

KMS: I think it was amply clear in the interview that Ghosh's films are not about economics. He just happens to be an economics professor.

August 30, 2007
02:37 PM


correction sir - what i meant is to submit this as an article here:)

zero unemployment is an interesting thought - perhaps only in shangri la


don't take my word for it - i don't know even simple economics:)

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