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Invited Article

The partition of Bengal in 1947 brings forth significant changes in the society, culture, economy and politics that have long term consequences. The article offers a deep insight into one more dimension associated with the event – the psychological metamorphism of the common people which is still alive and controlling the socio-economic-political landscape of the West Bengal.

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The present study entitled effect of drama on enhancing vocabulary learning in English for secondary school students in Yemen is an attempt to find out the impact of drama as a tool of teaching on improving vocabulary learning for students of secondary schools in Yemen. The participants of this study were 76 male students of 10thgrade from secondary school in Taiz City; Yemen included rural and urban students with high and low socio-economic levels. The sample was selected randomly and divided into two groups, experimental and control groups. The researcher selected some vocabulary lessons from the English course syllabus of 10th grade. The experimental group students were taught through the drama method, whereas the control group students were taught by the traditional method. Pre and Post-tests were administered to explore the impact of drama on vocabulary. The researcher used the statistical techniques, namely descriptive statistics to analyze the collected data and describe the research participants and their level in vocabulary in English. This study took 21 working days with forty-five minutes a day for each group in the academic year 2018-2019. The results of the study indicated that drama has a significant effect on improving and developing vocabulary in English.

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  • The term ‘liminality’– derived from the Latin word Līmen meaning a threshold, introduced by Arnold Van Gennep in the context of analyzing rituals in small-scale societies, and theorized by Victor Turner in the late 1960s, has gained popularity in the field of contemporary refugee studies and has been considered by various scholars to be one of the distinct characteristics of the diasporas. On the backdrop of the historical partition of the Indian subcontinent and consequent mass migration, present work tries to understand how the notion of class-status-power-authority and especially gender played crucial roles to create the disjuncture into the habitual way of being of the East Bengali Hindu people during and aftermath of the partition. These East Bengali Hindus fled their homeland, became refugees in the newly formed province of West Bengal in India, and continued thereafter, living through an almost life-long passage, which remained betwixt and between ‘what they had been’ and ‘what they came to be’. Based on the fieldwork experiences of the author in a refugee settlement of West Bengal, this article tries to analyze refugee accounts on dislocation to shed light on how life in limbo challenged the agency of the refugees pushing them into a stage of continuous contestation and negotiation; and thereby started for them the process of shaping and reshaping their way-of- being, and structuring and restructuring of ‘self’ and identity.

  • In India, public, private and community radio stations air several radio programs for development. It is essential that in a developing country like India, the active participation of women is crucial to lead development plans successfully and for programs related to family, education, health, and nutrition, etc. There is awareness regarding the importance of women and the problems faced by them. Though women based radio stations are very less in India, the commercial radio stations tend to regularly broadcast programs that are based on timely women-centric issues. In this connection, the present study intends to analyze whether women based programs are useful. The study reveals that the programs of All India Radio (AIR) act as a tool for sharing knowledge and information intended for women’s development and for achieving gender equality. Private radio stations use social media more than public broadcaster for popularizing their programs and events conducted for women’s development. The campaigns conducted by private radio stations created awareness on the safety of women and the facilities available to ensure women’s safety and encouraged women to learn self-defence. Due to the health awareness programs aired by the community radio stations, women in the community got information about remedies and treatment for women-related problems, thereby resolving their fear about health problems.

  • Paintings and sculptures, especially the early ones, showcasing daily life, are useful to study for learning about society and its people. In India, from the paintings of different eras, we may come to know about the social, religious, and cultural life of a particular period and region. Namavali shawls are those ritualistic shoulder clothes, woven or printed in multifarious materials and worn by the Indian Hindu priests or devotees, preferably males, performing ceremonial rites. These shawls are also termed as Ramanami dupattas, in the northern and western part of India. In many states, including West Bengal, other than worships, these are also used to cover the heavenward corpse, during his last journey. It can be assumed that the tradition of using namavali shawls, started with the Bhakti movement emerging in India during the 15th Century. As the Vaishnavite culture flourished in eastern India with Sri Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, the sixteen word ‘Hare Krishna’ mantra became famous. Therefore, it started appearing on the namavali shawls too. In the paintings titled ‘Bhakta Chhipa, the devout cloth printer’, ‘Raja Balwant Singh of Raghogarh with his son Jai Singh worshipping Rama and Sita’, ‘Lady on the Steps’ and ‘Three Women performing propitiatory and purificatory rites by the River Bank’, the painters has showcased namavali shawl as an important element, to emphasize more on the central characters of the paintings. So, these paintings are undoubtedly great treasures of Indian Art.

  • The music of any country has its own historical and cultural background. Social changes, political changes, and patronage changes may influence the development of music. This may affect the practices in the field of music. This present study does the scrutiny of the broad sociocultural settings in context to the music conferences of India. The study then mainly probes and explores the prime music conferences of India, with special reference to Kolkata, from a century ago till the present time. It shows the role of music conferences in disseminating interest and appreciation of Classical music among the common public. The cultural climate shaped under the domination of British rule included the shift of patronage from aristocratic courts to wealthy persons and a mercantile class of urban Kolkata. This allowed the musicians to earn a livelihood, and at the same time, provided them with a new range of opportunities in the form of an increasing number of music conferences. This happened at a time when a new class of Western-educated elites was formed in Kolkata. Analyzing the present scenario, made it clear that Kolkata still leads in the number of music festivals / Classical music conferences. The present study also points out the contemporary complexities that conference organizers face, and to conclude, incorporates suggestions to sustain the culture of the conference.

  • The development of Muslim politics in Bengal was somewhat different from the upper Indian Muslim politics because of the strongly agrarian connection of the Bengali Muslim masses. The zamindars and moneylenders happened to be Hindu. As a result of the first half of the twentieth century, the peasant revolt against the zamindars for the protection of their tenurial rights took somewhat communal character. In the urban area, the Muslim educated middle classes were latecomers in the job sectors, and naturally, they have to face stiff competition to find their foothold. In this situation, by the 1930s it became open for any Muslim party to mobilize the Muslim masses in their favour providing that it would safeguard their interests. In light of this changes, this present study will try to find out what were the ideology and programmes of the Khaksar movement and why did it fail to capitulate the existing situation in Bengal and make a stronghold in Bengal.

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