quinta-feira, 18 de janeiro de 2018

2nd Semester: Agra (India)

 The country (India)
Flag of India (Read more)
India is one of the oldest civilizations in the world with a kaleidoscopic variety and rich cultural heritage. It has achieved all-round socio-economic progress during the last 70 years of its independence. It’s also one of the largest country in the world, India stands apart from the rest of Asia, marked off as it is by mountains and the sea, which give the country a distinct geographical entity. Bounded by the Great Himalayas in the north, it stretches southwards and at the Tropic of Cancer, tapers off into the Indian Ocean between the Bay of Bengal on the east and the Arabian Sea on the west.  [Read more] 


Agra is a city on the banks of the river Yamuna in the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, and is also one of the most populous cities  in India. Agra is a major tourist destination because of some famous touristi spots, for exemple : Taj Mahal, Agra Fort and Fatehpur Sikri. The city was first mentioned in the epic Mahabharata, where it was called Agravena, Agravena meaning "the border of the Forest”.

▪ Tourist spots

▪ Taj Mahal
People from all around the world may not have heard about Agra, but everyone knows the beautiful ivory white-mausoleum Taj Mahal. This wonder of the world is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and it continues to hold the magical appeal, attracting approximately eight million touristis a year.

▪ Agra Fort
Agra has one of the finest Mughal forts in India, this red sandstone and marble architecture exudes power and grandiosity. Agra Fort was primarily begun by Emperor Akber in 1565 as a military structure and was later transformed into a palace by his grandson Emperor Shah Jaha.

▪ Tomb od Itimad-ud-Daulah
Itimad-ud-Daulah is sometimes referred to as the “baby Taj” or a draft of the Taj Mahal, as it has been constructed with the same elaborate carvings and cut-out Stone work inlay techniques.
(Read more)

▪ Kinari Bazar
Is the perfect place to visit. Located in the narrow streets behind Jama Masjid where multitutes of colorful little shops spill over, women bargain and cars dodge one another. You can found clothing, shoes, authentic snack stalls and Agra´s famous marble-work.  (Read more)

▪ Cuisine

▪ Chickpea Curry
A classic and easy chickpea curry, is one of the favorites in India and has become a worldwide sensation It’s a perfect for a crowd , especially if you serve it hot along with fried Indian leavened bread like poori and bhatura.
(Check out the recipe) 

▪ Palak Paneer (Spinach and Cottage Cheese)
The most popular paneer recipe at Indian restaurants is, by far, palak panner. It’s nothing more than spinach and cheese and it’s a mildly flavored dish  that is super healthy too. (Read more) 

(Check out the recipe) 

▪ Ras Malai
 Ras Malai is sweet dumplings made from cottage or riccotta cheese soaked in sweetened, thickened milk delicately flavored with cardamom. Serve it chilled and garnished with slivers of dried fruit. (Read more)

Check out Ras Malai Recipe

▪ Gulab Jamun
Gulab Jamun is, by far, the most famous sweets or dessert in India.This delicius dessert consists of dumplings traditionally made of thickened or reduced milk, soaked in rose flavored sugar syrup. (Read more)

Check ou Gulab Jamun recipe

▪ Habits

The people of Agra are known for their charm and serene nature. They have a traditional style of dressing and contemporary lifestyle. Agra has always had strong focus on education and a unique cultural heritage, influenced a lot by the Mughals who had transformed the city into a centre of commerce, art and learning.

▪ Extra 

segunda-feira, 15 de janeiro de 2018


Author: Mary Shelley
Genre: Horror, Gothich Literature, Cientific Fiction, Romance.

Frankenstein; or, The Modern Prometheus is a novel written by English author Mary Shelley that tells the story of Victor Frankenstein, a young scientist who creates a grotesque but sapient creature in an unorthodox scientific experiment. Shelley started writing the story when she was 18, and the first edition of the novel was published anonymously in London in 1818, when she was 20. Her name first appeared on the second edition, published in France in 1823.

Shelley travelled through Europe in 1814, journeying along the River Rhine in Germany with a stop in Gernsheim which is just 17 km (10 mi) away from Frankenstein Castle, where, two centuries before, an alchemist was engaged in experiments. Later, she travelled in the region of Geneva (Switzerland)—where much of the story takes place—and the topic of galvanism and other similar occult ideas were themes of conversation among her companions, particularly her lover and future husband, Percy Shelley. Mary, Percy, Lord Byron and John Polidori decided to have a competition to see who could write the best horror story. After thinking for days, Shelley dreamt about a scientist who created life and was horrified by what he had made; her dream later evolved into the novel's story.

Frankenstein is infused with elements of the Gothic novel and the Romantic movement. At the same time, it is an early example of science fiction. Brian Aldiss has argued that it should be considered the first true science fiction story because, in contrast to previous stories with fantastical elements resembling those of later science fiction, the central character "makes a deliberate decision" and "turns to modern experiments in the laboratory" to achieve fantastic results. It has had a considerable influence in literature and popular culture and spawned a complete genre of horror stories, films and plays.

Grimms' Fairy Tales

Author: Brothers Grimm
Genre: Fairy Tale, Foklore.

Collected by the German Grimm brothers, these folk tales have captured the imaginations of children and adults alike since they were first published in 1812. The best-known stories such as The Golden Goose, Hansel and Gretel, The Frog Prince, and Snow-White and Rose-Red remain as popular today as when first told, although there is an underlying darkness and violence to the original stories that has softened over time. [Read more]

The Hunchback Of Notre-Dame

Author: Victor Hugo

Genre: Gothic Literature, Romantism, Fiction.

'Love is like a tree, it grows of its own accord, it puts down deep roots into our whole being.'

Set in medieval Paris, against the backdrop of the brooding Cathedral of Notre-Dame, Hugo's take on the classic story of Beauty and the Beast tells of the hunchbacked, grotesque bellringer, Quasimodo. Rejected by Parisian society because of his appearance, Quasimodo resides in Notre-Dame, harbouring a love for the only woman that pities him, a gypsy named Esmerelda. However, a sinister archdeacon also covets Esmerelda, and when his advances are spurned, he seeks to destroy her.

The Hunchback of Notre-Dame (French: Notre-Dame de Paris) is a French Romantic/Gothic novel by Victor Hugo, published in 1831. The original French title refers to Notre Dame Cathedral, on which the story is centered. English translator Frederic Shoberl named the novel The Hunchback of Notre Dame in 1833 because at the time, Gothic novels were more popular than Romance novels in England. The story is set in Paris, France in the Late Middle Ages, during the reign of Louis XI. [Read More]

The Best of Sherlock Holmes

Author: Arthur Conan Doyle
Genre: Detective fiction.

The Best of Sherlock Holmes is a collection of twenty of the very best tales from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's fifty-six short stories featuring the arch-sleuth.
Basing his selection around the author's own twelve personal favourites, David Stuart Davies has added a further eight sparkling stories to Conan Doyle's ' Baker Street Dozen', creating a unique volume which distils the pure essence of the world's most famous detective.  Within these pages the reader will encounter the greatest collection of villains and the weirdest and most puzzling mysteries ever seen in print. And there at the centre, in a London swathed in eddies of fog and illuminated by gaslight, is to be found the remarkable character of Sherlock Holmes and his staunch companion, Doctor John H. Watson. Few will be able to resist this invitation to step aboard the waiting hansom cab and rattle off along cobbled streets into unimagined dangers and intrigues.

A Midsummer Nights Dream

Author: William Shakespeare
Genre: Fantasy, Comedy, Fiction.

A Midsummer Night's Dream is a comedy written by William Shakespeare in 1595/96. It portrays the events surrounding the marriage of Theseus, the Duke of Athens, to Hippolyta. These include the adventures of four young Athenian lovers and a group of six amateur actors (the mechanicals) who are controlled and manipulated by the fairies who inhabit the forest in which most of the play is set. The play is one of Shakespeare's most popular works for the stage and is widely performed across the world.

A young woman flees Athens with her lover, only to be pursued by her would-be husband and by her best friend. Unwittingly, all four find themselves in an enchanted forest where fairies and sprites soon take an interest in human affairs, dispensing magical love potions and casting mischievous spells. In this dazzling comedy, confusion ends in harmony, as love is transformed, misplaced, and - ultimately - restored.  [Read more]

The Hound of the Baskervilles

Author: Arthur Conan Doyle
Genre: Detective fiction

The Hound of the Baskervilles is the third of the crime novels written by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle featuring the detective Sherlock Holmes. Originally serialised in The Strand Magazine from August 1901 to April 1902, it is set largely on Dartmoor in Devon in England's West Country and tells the story of an attempted murder inspired by the legend of a fearsome, diabolical hound of supernatural origin. Sherlock Holmes and his companion Dr. Watson investigate the case. This was the first appearance of Holmes since his apparent death in "The Final Problem", and the success of The Hound of the Baskervilles led to the character's eventual revival.
In 2003, the book was listed as number 128 of 200 on the BBC's The Big Read poll of the UK's "best-loved novel." In 1999, it was listed as the top Holmes novel, with a perfect rating from Sherlockian scholars of 100.

Les Misérables

Author: Victor Hugo
Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance.

Les Misérables is a French historical novel by Victor Hugo, first published in 1862, that is considered one of the greatest novels of the 19th century. In the English-speaking world, the novel is usually referred to by its original French title. However, several alternatives have been used, including The Miserables, The Wretched, The Miserable Ones, The Poor Ones, The Wretched Poor, The Victims and The Dispossessed. Beginning in 1815 and culminating in the 1832 June Rebellion in Paris, the novel follows the lives and interactions of several characters, particularly the struggles of ex-convict Jean Valjean and his experience of redemption.

Examining the nature of law and grace, the novel elaborates upon the history of France, the architecture and urban design of Paris, politics, moral philosophy, antimonarchism, justice, religion, and the types and nature of romantic and familial love. Les Misérables has been popularized through numerous adaptations for the stage, television, and film, including a musical and a film adaptation of that musical. [Read more]