This conference offers an intervention in the understandings of South Asia as reality and construct. By bringing together work across multiple disciplines from both indigenous and diasporic scholars working on the region, we hope to build upon the movement to decolonize the academy. This decolonial turn is critical because the academy functions as “a site of production and re-production of discourses that preserve certain colonial structures and maintain Euro-American hegemonies in the larger material world” (Davies and Peterson 2003). At the same time, that which exists outside the hegemonic perspective is rendered “invisible, is excluded from the real and is actively disdained, even unnamed” (Vazquez 2011), thereby highlighting the need for epistemic disruption that foregrounds and legitimizes emerging perspectives on South Asia.
By showcasing emerging scholarship on the region, this conference will work to challenge, resituate, and rename existing categories that essentialize South Asia given that “category creation itself is an act of power” (Cornwall and Lindisfame 2011). The conference will also enable scholars to generate newer critical paradigms to think through the “more complex and controversial…transformations of contemporary South Asia” (Bose 2003). In doing so, the conference will aim to dismantle reductive conceptions about South Asia, generate multidisciplinary knowledge(s) about the region, and enable academics to form transnational epistemic networks.
To this end, we invite paper and panel proposals based on research on India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Afghanistan, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan, Maldives, and the South Asian Diaspora. Papers and panels may engage with the following themes, but need not be limited to them:
- War, conflict, and regional (in)stability
- Arts, literature, film, and cultural construction
- History, coloniality, and hierarchy
- City, neoliberal modernity, and citizenship
- Challenging dominant governance paradigms
- Ethnicity, class, and social stratification
- Continuity and contestations of gender
- Environment, natural resource management, and precarity
- Religion, secularity, and ideology
- States and revolutions
- Education, autonomy, and reform
- Narratives of nationhood and subject formation
- Indigenous resistance and strategies of survival
The conference will be held on 10th and 11th April, 2019 at the Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS), Pakistan. The deadline for submission of all proposals is 15th November, 2018 to [email protected].
We welcome both individual paper and panel submissions. Individual paper submissions must include a 300-word abstract, paper title, and a two-page resume.
Panel proposal submissions must include a 300-word panel abstract. In addition, please provide paper titles, abstracts (300 words), names, affiliations, and contact information for each participant of the panel.
There will be limited funding available for accommodation and travel expenses, so we encourage participants to seek funding from their home institutions. If you have any questions, please write to us: [email protected]