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Handmade Tale

Can a kitchen appliance change your life? In this episode, student-producer Shriya explores the art of making chapatti, a flatbread that is a staple in households around the world. She discusses the laborious process of making chapatti by hand and shares the sounds of learning this art from her grandmother. Then she introduces the Rotimatic, an automatic chapatti maker designed to revolutionize this labor-intensive task and liberate women from the kitchen. What is gained and what is lost when a new appliance enters the home?

Note:

  1. We have reached out to the makers of Rotimatic for comments on the device but were not able to get back a response in time.
  2. The reviews in this podcast were obtained from the official Rotimatic site. A special thanks to Kamakshi Sharma and Usy Aliya for voicing the reviews of the podcast. 

Sound effects from freesound.org. Music from audioblocks.com.

Read the transcript

Listen to Season 1 here

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – References – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

– Chapman, Tony (2004). Gender and Domestic Life: changing practices in families and households. London: Palgrave.

– Cowan, Ruth Schwartz (1983) More Work for Mother: The Ironies of Household Technology from the Open Hearth to the Microwave. Basic Books.

Additional Links about Labor-Saving Devices:

– Dr. Jayati Bhattacharyahi Profile – http://profile.nus.edu.sg/fass/sasjb/

– Rotimatic Official Website – https://rotimatic.com/

– Shriya and Chris during a recording session for this episode

– A Rotimatic Machine
Image Source: Rotimatic Official Website

– Introduction of the Rotimatic

– Review of the Rotimatic by CNET

Published in Podcast Episodes S2

One Comment

  1. Dr. Jayati Bhattacharya

    Great way to link the advancing technologies and helpful machines with the changing mindset of the consumerist world. The podcast has linked between generations, family bonding time, changing ideas of home and kitchen in the social construct of South Asian families. Congratulations to Prof. Chris McMorran for guiding the students to new thoughts and ideas that are so relevant, and to Shriya Sharma and her team for the wonderful work.

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