Celebrating a Grand Journey
As we complete our twelfth year of the Star Weekend Magazine which has been renamed The Star, we urge our readers to take the time to savour this special 116 page anniversary issue. It is to celebrate our journey together, the magazine and you, to find a unique voice, a platform for new writers, alternative viewpoints and a search to bring out new dimensions to the events happening around us. Readers will notice that although the magazine continues to be in essence, what it has always been in terms of basic identity and intention, a significant change has taken place in its look as well as content. This is a special, bumper issue and a gift to our valued readers but it is also a precursor of what is to come. The Star as it will be called from now on, has gone through a major overhaul. We hope to bring with our stories, features and columns, an even more refreshing, stimulating as well as entertaining magazine every Friday. While we will continue to strive to bring news-related stories, we will also focus on what is not always in the news, what is hidden but in need of attention. In addition to this we will have our usual coterie of columns to give fresh insight to everyday situations and provide a window to the outside world. Our arts and society section will have regular art reviews, interviews, latest updates on music, fashion trends, what's happening in theatre and film, book reviews, new books, health tips, comics as well as a revived Write to Mita section.
The cover story for this special anniversary issue is an in-depth look into the media, particularly the new waves in the different branches of media in Bangladesh-- print, television, radio, film and advertising. Is print journalism on the way to extinction? Is television providing more infotainment? Has FM created a storm among young listeners? Is commercial film getting any better? Has the advertising industry become more professional? These are some of the issues that we have attempted to discuss by interviewing key people in each field.
As always each of our regular columnists and some of our contributors have contributed in this issue. This includes the ever popular Chintito, an enlightening feature on the evolution of Bangali cuisine (View from the Bottom), the quirkiness of Dhaka signboards (Food for Thought), the youth conundrum (One Off), an eloquent dissection of the tourist's psyche (A Roman Column), a take on American politics (Writing the Wrong) and a feature on three young boys setting up an organisation for the environment (Straight Talk).
In addition, we have our regular panels-- human rights, politics, sports, lifestyle (on Adivasi fashion), art, music, books, health plus exclusive interviews. A short story translated from the Bangla version is also a part of this collection.
As the highest circulating English magazine which has established a significant niche in the market, we have much to be grateful for. We are indebted to our readers who justify our existence, to our advertisers who provide much needed financial viability as well as all the people working behind the scenes: the people in production, marketing and management. There are also those who need special mention for their invaluable contribution to the magazine over the years. Our editor and publisher of The Daily Star Mahfuz Anam, whose mentoring, guidance and continuous support has been the anchor on which we have embarked upon a journey which we continue to pursue. Manan Murshed, our graphics artist, who has shaped the magazine with his artist's eye for many years and is responsible for the magazine's new layout and design, Monirul Islam Bhuiyan who has diligently worked in the formatting side from the very beginning. Our present magazine team of course deserves special recognition for bringing to this publication a youthful and unique perspective. Our core writing team are a group of remarkably talented, intelligent and lively young men and women, each of whom have contributed to the magazine with their particular skills and unstinting dedication. We must also acknowledge the unwavering devotion of our photographer Zahedul I Khan, whose photographs have complemented our stories or have become stories in themselves as well as his ability to provide comic relief in the most trying of circumstances. Chintito, our most popular columnist, must be given kudos for coming up with witty, provocative and entertaining articles week after week. In addition are our other columnists, regular contributors who have been loyal and generous friends by never failing to give us much-needed contributions. Speaking of friends, Sharier Khan's regular cartoon series and other cartoons have been a priceless addition to the magazine.
We also thank Ashraf Hussain for providing our daily quota of perfectly-made coffee to revive us in our darkest hours.
As we leave our twelfth year behind, we do note with great fondness the legacy of incredibly gifted writers who have been part of the magazine at different points in time. They will always be part of the magazine's journey to success and responsible for shaping it into its distinctive form.
At the same time, we are far from being complacent and acknowledge that there are still many unexplored avenues and areas to improve upon. Thus we will continue with our relentless efforts to improve the quality of the magazine and make it more relevant and attractive to our readers.
On this wonderful occasion we again sincerely thank our readers and patrons for being with us for all these years and for having the patience and tenacity to see us through our growing pains.
Aasha Mehreen Amin
Copyright (R) thedailystar.net 2008