Letter: Pondicherry’s ‘Mother’
www.nytimes.com: April 13, 2008 To the Editor:
My husband and I were excited to read Matt Gross’s article “French Connection” (March 30). As frequent visitors to Pondicherry , we couldn’t agree more that it is “just too beautiful and relaxing.” However, we were surprised by some notable omissions from this otherwise excellent article.
Somewhat to be expected, by focusing on the lingering French influence, Mr. Gross ends up ignoring the rich local Tamil culture and fails to make any reference to Sri Aurobindo Ashram and the “Mother,” a French woman whose influence in Pondicherry remains as ubiquitous as her pictures.
She was the driving force behind Auroville and the Ashram’s many fabulous craft industries, such as silk marbling, handmade paper and incense, quality products that should be on any shopper’s list. Chantal Brandon Lafayette, Ind.