• Third ICCR Professor successfully installed at Lund University
On Friday 12 October 2012, Surinder S. Jodhka, Professor of Sociology at the Centre for the Study of Social Systems, School of Social Sciences at Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU) in Delhi, was installed as the third Visiting Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) Professor at Lund University. He is hosted by the Department of Political Science during the academic year 2012/13, till June 2013.
An installation ceremony was organised at Lund University’s Palaestra auditorium, where Professor Jodhka gave an inaugural lecture on the theme ”Indian Village in the ‘Neo-Liberal’ Times: Changing Economies, Power and Identities”. The informed presentation was based on field work he has carried out in the rural areas of Haryana state in north India. The audience consisted of an interested crowd of Lund University researchers, students and others.
His lecture was preceded by a presentation by the Indian Ambassador to Sweden and Latvia, Ms. Banashri Bose Harrison, who had come to Lund specifically to participate in the installation ceremony. Introductory speeches were also given by Professor Tomas Bergström, Dept. of Political Science, and by Dr. Anna Lindberg, Director, SASNET.
The seminar ended with a short cultural programme with the Indian Choir of Lund, led by Bubu Munshi Eklund.
More information about Prof. Jodhka and the installation seminar.
Lars will mostly enjoy some free time with his family in Kolkata, interspersed with musical performances and other cultural activities, but he will of course also interact with SASNET networking partners at the universities in Kolkata, and set up a small SASNET office at his Sardar Sankar Rd residence. A week-long tour to Varanasi, Kanpur and Delhi is also scheduled, with visits to Banaras Hindu University (BHU), IIT Kanpur, the South Asian University in Delhi, and a number of other institutions on the programme. In mid-November, Lars will also visit Kathmandu for five days, and meetings are being planned for at Tribhuvan University.
On Thursday 15 November 2012, at 12.30, Associate Professor Jan Magnusson, School of Social Work, Lund University holds a SASNET lunch seminar on ”The Baltistan Movement and the Political Power of Pop Ghazals”, focusing on on the political role of pop ghazal music in Baltistan, an area in the western Himalayas on both sides of the border between India and Pakistan. It will be the third SASNET Brown Bag seminar for the fall semester 2012, held in collaboration with Arbetarnas Bildningsförbund (ABF) Lund, and Lunds konsthall. Venue: Konsthallen, Mårtenstorget 3, Lund.
Dr Magnusson will talk about his research on the political role of pop ghazal music in Baltistan. This region in the western Himalayas is characterized by its blend of Muslim Shi’ite and Tibetan culture, and its vernacular Tibetan dialect. The Balti pop ghazals are modern versions of an Arabic poetic tradition and present an alternative narrative of local history and belonging that is situated in a Himalayan rather than South Asian context. The pop ghazals have become symbolic in local resistance against attempts of India and Pakistan to integrate the Balti people in the postcolonial nationstates and are at the core of the so called Baltistan Movement’s activities. See the seminar poster.
In the No 7/2012 issue of Lund University magazine LUM, journalist Ingela Björck wrote an article on the seminar series. Read the article.
Indian writer Githa Hariharan held a SASNET lecture at Lund University on Friday 5 October 2012. She talked about ”Living Diversity, Living Many Indias”, on Indian literature for an interested audience. The seminar was organised in collaboration with the Nordic Centre in India (NCI), and the Centre for Theology and Religious Studies (CTR), Lund University. See the seminar poster.
Githa Hariharan’s published work includes novels, short stories, essays, newspaper articles and columns. Her fiction has been translated into several languages, but so far not Swedish. During the seminar she presented her literary works, from the first one, The Thousand Faces of Night (1992) that won the Commonwealth Writers’ Prize in 1993. In her presentation, she discussed the idea of diversity being part of formal policy in India – there is a powerful official form of diversity, spoken in the “language of the Indian nation”. Beginning with the hybrid and heterogeneous nature of Indian culture and cultural artefacts such as the novel, the poem or autobiography, Githa Hariharan examined what we can learn about the “many Indias” from selected novels, poems and autobiographies by those from the margins of official mainstream India – women, dalits, and the working class.
Githa Hariharan arrived in Lund as the final part of her tour to Scandinavia. She had been participating in a number of literary programmes in Denmark, including academic seminars organised by the universities of Copenhagen and Aarhus, as part of the ongoing 2012 India Today/Copenhagen Tomorrow Festival. More information.
On Thursday 11 October 2012, Dr. Anna Lindberg, SASNET’s Director, held a well-attended lunch seminar on ”Paradise Limited: Marriage and Dowry in Kerala”.
The South Indian state of Kerala is known to many for its green natural surroundings and beautiful beaches. It is advertised as “God’s own country” – a paradise on earth. It is also reputed for its high social indicators in education and health care, including a higher status for women than elsewhere in India. However, Anna challenged the general view. if we look into less conventional indicators, such as gender-based violence, suicide, and mental health, women in Kerala are not doing so well. It has also been claimed that preferences for male children and dowry-related violence were absent in Kerala due to the matrilineal family system in the region. During the early twentieth century, only a few Christian groups and a small number of patrilineal Brahmins practiced dowry. In the past fifty years, however, dowry has spread to almost all groups in Kerala, including the “lowest” castes and classes, and to most Muslim groups as well. A major financial goal for many parents has become the accumulation of large dowries for their daughters’ marriages in order to secure good spouses. This development has interrupted the process of women’s empowerment. How has dowry become so well-established in Kerala that it is taken as almost self-evident, while at the same time it is condemned as a social evil? See the seminar poster.
On Friday 15 October 2012, new Indian Ambassador to Sweden, Mrs. Banashri Bose Harrison, made her premiere visit to Lund University. Besides participating in the installation seminar of the new ICCR Professor at Lund University, the Ambassador was invited to attend a meeting with prominent Lund University researchers working on India related projects. The meeting was organized by SASNET, and was held at the Division of External Relations (ER). During her full day programme at Lund University, the Ambassador also met with the Vice Chancellor, Professor Per Eriksson. More information.
Professor Surinder Jodhka, Visiting ICCR Professor at Lund University during the academic year 2012/13 holds a SASNET lecture on ”What’s happening to the countryside: Agrarian Change and the Social Order of Caste in Northwest India” on Thursday 1 November 2012, 13 – 15. The seminar is organised in collaboration with the Department of Sociology. Venue: Dept. of Sociology, Conference room 1, Paradisgatan 3, Lund.
Surinder Jodhka is a renowned sociologist from Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi who is specialized in rural transformation in Northwest India. Among his many books are: Caste. Oxford India Short Introductions. Delhi: Oxford University Press. 2012. Village Society: Culture, Politics and Social Life in Rural India: Orient Blackswan. Edited. 2012. Changing Caste: Mobility, Ideology, Identity. New Delhi: Sage Publications. Edited. 2012.
In the lecture/seminar Jodhka will focus on his panel study of two Haryana villages, first in 1988-89 and then in 2009. There are significant changes and transformations like generally higher income, a changed division of labour, a sharp increase in non-farm income, and exit of Dalit labourers from agriculture. This is then compared with other studies in the region. See the seminar poster.
• More information about SASNET and its activities
See SASNET’s page, http://www.sasnet.lu.se/sasnet-news
Research Community News
• ISP support to Bangladeshi research institutions evaluated
• More information about South Asia related research at Swedish and Nordic universities
See SASNET’s page, http://www.sasnet.lu.se/research-community-news
• Indo-Swedish collaboration on the use of puppets in education
See SASNET’s page, http://www.sasnet.lu.se/education-news
Seminars and Conferences in Scandinavia
• Bupinder Zutshi lectures in Stockholm on Indian Higher Education
Professor Bupinder Zutshi from the Centre for the Study of Regional Development, Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), New Delhi, India, holds a lecture at Stockholm University on Thursday 18 October 2012, at 14.00. He will speak about ”Higher Education: Challenges and Opportunities in India”. The seminar is organised by the Institute of International Education (IIE) at Stockholm University. Venue: IIE, Frescativägen 54, room 1503.
Bupinder Zutshi has more than 35 years of teaching and research experience at graduate, post-graduate and M. Phil/ Ph. D research level. His fields of research interest includes studies on demographic aspects of population. He has researched on status and situation of elementary and higher education in India, child labour conditions and situation, status and conditions of differently abled persons and human trafficking issues in South Asia. He has completed research projects supported by UN Women (UNIFEM), UNESCO (New Delhi), International Bureau of Education (IBE, Geneva), United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (Geneva), Ford Foundation (New Delhi), International Labour Organization (New Delhi), the Policy Science Centre, Inc. USA (supported by the Learning and Research Program on Culture and Poverty of the World Bank), US AID, Global March Against Child Labour, National Human Rights Commission of India and Indian Council for Social Science Research.
The Swedish Development Forum (Föreningen för Utvecklingsfrågor, FUF) is a non-governmental organisation founded 1972 and based in Stockholm. FUF aims to provide information and raise awareness on global development issues, to support mutual understanding and cooperation. By offering an independent forum for discussion and exchange of ideas between people with different experienes and opinions, FUF hopes to contribute to enhanced knowledge about global development and dedication to a sustainable world.
To celebrate the organisation’s 40 years anniversary, FUF organises an event on Tuesday 23 October 2012, 17.30–23.00, at Kägelbanan, Södra Teatern, Mosebacke 3, Stockholm. It is entitled ”En kväll för framtidens utvecklingsfrågor” and is devoted to discuss issues on 50 years of Swedish development assistance. Invited speakers include the economist Stefan de Vylder and writer Helena Torfinn. Full information.
Professor Mary E. John from the Centre for Women’s Development Studies (CWDS) in New Delhi, holds an open lecture at Lund University on Monday 29 October 2012, at 14.00. She will speak about ”Gender and Higher Education in the Time of Reforms”. Venue: Centre for East and South-East Asian Studies (ACE), Scheelevägen 15, room Alfa 1010, Lund.
The current moment of higher education reforms in India has yet to receive sustained attention from scholars and activists. Historically speaking, women’s education occupied a central place from the nineteenth century to the first decades of India’s independence, but, curiously, lost prominence with the onset of the women’s movement and the introduction of women’s studies in the academy in the 1980s and since then. Although the participation of women in higher education shows steady improvement and a narrowing of the gender gap, the article examines national-level data to reveal the complex and elusive forms being currently assumed by gender discrimination. This includes recognising that disparities among women from different social groups are greater than those among men of the same groups. Secondly, many of the contexts where gender gaps have closed are also characterised by adverse child sex ratios due to practices of sex selection. Taken together, the current era of expansion in higher education demands analysis from a gendered perspective.
Caste discrimination is one of the world’s most serious human rights issues and a main cause of poverty. Affecting an estimated 260 million people, mostly in South Asia where they are known as Dalits, caste discrimination leads to massive violations of civil, political, economic, social and cultural rights. Danish Minister for Development Cooperation, Christian Friis Bach, will open the hearing. Participants should register their attendance to firstname.lastname@example.org no later than 25 October (and preferably sooner). More information and programme
Professor Arun Bandopadhyay from the Dept. of History, University of Calcutta, Kolkata, holds a Forum for South Asia Studies Lecture at Uppsala University on ”Technological Education in a Colonial Context: Bengal Engineering College in late Nineteenth Century India”, on Thursday 1 November 2012, 14.15–15.45. The seminar is organised by the university’s Forum for South Asia Studies. Venue: Department of History, Room 1-1060, Thunbergsvägen 3 A, Engelska Parken, Uppsala.
Development of engineering education in Bengal is a major area of historical research and investigation. It has multifaceted aspects on which our research has mainly focused on. In much of colonial India, Bengal was the core area of all round development especially in the field of education. However, engineering education in India in the late nineteenth century was directly related to ‘the colonial expansionist programme’ and was imposed from above without any educational demand for it at that point in time.
Arun Bandopadhyay is currently Nurul Hasan Professor of History and formerly Dean of the Faculty Council for Post-graduate Studies in Arts at the University of Calcutta. His research interest covers a wide range of areas: agrarian history, business history and history of science and environment.
The Asia Research Centre at Copenhagen Business School (CBS) organises a public postgraduate student lecture series on ”The Political Economy of Transition in India” during the month of November 2012. The lecture series is arranged in cooperation with Contemporary South Asian Studies at Oxford University; and the Centre of Development Studies at Cambridge University, UK. The lectures take place over the course of five Thursdays, and every time from 10.00 till 12.00. Lecturers include Dr. Mathew McCartney, Oxford University, who will speak about ”Liberalization and the Role of the State in India 1980-2012”; Dr. Shailaja Fennell, Cambridge University, who will speak about ”Challenges and Opportunities for Indian Agriculture in a Globalized Food Market”; Professor Anthony D’Costa, Asia Research Centre, CBS, who will speak about ”Compressed Capitalism and the New India”; Professor Sebastian Morris, Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad and current ICCR Visiting Professor in Indian Studies at CBS, who will speak about ”The Politics and Economics of Public Service Failure in India and the New Mantra of PPPs”; and Professor Barbara Harriss-White, Oxford University, who will speak about ”Capitalism and the Common Man – The Big Problem of Self-Employment In India”.
The lectures are free of charge and everybody is most welcome, but please register by writing to email@example.com. Registration begins on October 1. Venue: Copenhagen Business School, Dalgas Have 15, Frederiksberg.
Full information. See the seminar series poster.
Dr. Kaushik Roy, ICCR Visiting Professor to Aarhus University, Denmark, lectures on ‘Democracy and its Perils in South Asia’ on Tuesday 6 November 2012, at 14.15. It will be the First Aarhus University ICCR Lecture on India. Venue: Building 1455, Room 127, Jens Chr. Skou’s Vej 1, Aarhus.
Dr. Roy is Reader in History at Jadavpur University, Kolkata and Research Fellow at the Peace Research Institute in Oslo (PRIO). Dr. Roy has published extensively on warfare and military history in a broad social context both within South Asia and globally. His latest book ”Hinduism and the Ethics of Warfare in South Asia” will be published by Cambridge University Press in December 2012. Other publications include ”War, Culture and Society in Early Modern South Asia, 1740-1849” (Routledge, 2011) and the edited volume ”War and Society in Colonial India” (Oxford University Press, 2010).
See SASNET’s page, http://www.sasnet.lu.se/lectures-in-scandinavia
Conferences and workshops outside Scandinavia
• Central Eurasian Studies Society’s Annual Conference in Bloomington
• Other conferences connected to South Asian studies all over the World
See SASNET’s page, http://www.sasnet.lu.se/conferences/conferences
South Asia related culture in Scandinavia
An Indian version of the classic story of the classic Russian ballet Swan Lake, entitled ”Swan Lake – Revisited”, will be set up at stages in Copenhagen and Stockholm during October 2012. The Rhythmosaic Dance Company gives two guest performances at the Royal Danish Theatre in Copenhagen on 20th and 21st October, as part of the ongoing India Today/Copenhagen Tomorrow festival. It will be the Word Premiere for the show. The Embassy of India in Stockholm organises a performance at Nybrokajen Theatre in Stockholm on Monday 29th October 2012.
A separate Workshop on Kathak Dance and its choreographic approaches will be organised in Stockholm as well. It will be led by Dr. Mitul Sengupta (photo), Mr. Gianin Loringett and Ronnie Shamik Ghose with Rhythmosaic Dance Company on Sunday 28th October. The workshop is organised by Den Asiatiska Dansakademien in Sweden. Send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Swan Lake Revisited is a project by the French choreographer Gianin Loringett in collaboration with the two Indian choreographers Shambik Ghosh and Mitul Sengupta, who have exchanged ideas and steps across time zones and borders to come up with an alternative, modern bids on the classic Swan Lake. The audience will get a taste of the traditional Indian dance Kathak. The performance is similar to the ballet version in that case that it’s a love story, where the evil Von Rothbart has turned Princess Odette into a swan by day, and Prince Siegfried falls in love with her one night – where she is the human ego. But even if the theme is similar to the original story, so is the plot of Swan Lake Revisited pulled up to the present. More information on the Copenhagen performances.
More information on the Stockholm performance.
New and updated items on SASNET web site
• Swedish departments where research on South Asia is going on
Constantly added to the list of research environments at Swedish universities, presented by SASNET. The full list now includes nearly 300 departments, with detailed descriptions of the South Asia related research and education taking place! See the full list of departments here: http://www.sasnet.lu.se/institutions/reserch-environments
• Useful travelling information
Look at our Travel Advice page. Updated travel advises from the The British Foreign & Commonwealth Office about safety aspects on travelling to the countries of South Asia.
SASNET/Swedish South Asian Studies Network