All posts by walterha

2019 Rustgi Conference Program

Rustgi Undergraduate Conference on South Asia featuring keynote speaker Suraj Yengde (Nov. 2, 2019; University at Buffalo, SUNY)

Exploring Culture, Climate, and Connections

November 2nd, 8:30AM – 6PM
Capen 107, University at Buffalo, North Campus
Free and open to the public. Registration is required.
Register at: bit.ly/2019rustgi


Join fellow scholars and distinguished faculty from around the world for the 2nd annual Rustgi Conference on South Asia. Featuring keynote speaker Suraj Yengde, renowned scholar and activist from Harvard University.

This conference is made possible by a generous gift from Anil and Vinod Rustgi and their family, the University at Buffalo Asian Studies Program, Department of English, Department of History, Department of Comparative Literature, Department of Linguistics, Department of Anthropology, Department of Sociology, and Community for Global Health Equity. 


Click here for the Online Conference Program
Opening Remarks                                                                          8.30A

Panel 1: Migration and Climate Change                                     8.45-10.00A
Chair: Dr. Sharmistha Bagchi-Sen (University at Buffalo)

  • Mahwesh Buland (KIIT University), “Analyzing the Possible Impact of Climate Change Based Migration in South Asia and the Role of International Organisations.”
  • Phariha Rahman (Binghamton University), “The Effects of Climate Change on Bangladesh.”
  • Anuush Vejalla (Cornell University), “The Effects of Migration and Earthquake on Indigenous-Dalit Interactions within the Hill Region of Nepal.”

Coffee Break                                                                                10.00-10.15A
Panel 2: Conservation and Sustainability                               10.15-11.55A
Chair: Dr. Samina Raja (University at Buffalo)

  • Aditi Natarajan (Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts), “Exploring the ‘Gemeinschaft’: An Ethnographic Study on the Role of Community in Conservation in Uttarakhand.”
  • Francine Barchett (Cornell University), “Waste and Women: A Gendered Study on Solid Waste Management in Telangana, India.”
  • Jon Bessette (University at Buffalo), “Water Quality Pilot Study for Traditional Water Structure Revitalization in the Deccan Plateau of India.”
  • Shermeen Imam (University of Virginia), “The Integration of Both Class and Workshop Based Approaches to Development and Empowerment Creates Longer, More Sustainable Development Towards Equity.”

Lunch                                                                                          11.55-1.00P
Panel 3: Systematic Discrimination                                          1.00-2.40P

Chair: Dr. Shaanta Murshid (University at Buffalo)

  • Oishika Neogi (Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts), “Global to Grassroots Transformations:  The effect of the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) on Muslim Women in Bangladesh and India.”
  • Jordan Pilant (Yale University), “Sex Work in Bangladesh, India, and Pakistan: De Jure and De Facto.”
  • Rachel Alexander (University of Virginia), “Mental Healthcare Delivery in Bangladesh: A System Which Forgets its Women.”
  • Sarah Ahmad (Northwestern University), “Libraries, Partition, and the “Ahmadi Issue”: the intellectual development of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community.”

Coffee Break                                                                                  2.40-2.55P
Panel 4: Colonialism and Identity                                              2.55-4.10P

Chair: Dr. Peter Samuels (SUNY Geneseo)

  • Peter Diamond (Brandeis University), “Queer Citizenship, Caste, and the Literary Public Sphere in Contemporary India.”
  • Araxie Mehrotra (Ithaca College), “Love, Life, Marriage, Troubles, Alone: The Struggle for Indian Identity in Guyana.”
  • Rory Green (Newcastle University), “The Colonial Ghost Haunting Myanmar: The Rohingya Crisis in Historical Context.”

Keynote                                                                                         4.10P
Suraj Yengde (Harvard University), “Global Impacts on Caste and Racism”

CfP: Rustgi Undergraduate Conference on South Asia, University at Buffalo, November 2, 2019 (deadline August 1)

2019 Rustgi Undergraduate Conference on South Asia

Exploring Culture, Climate, and Connections

November 2, 2019

University at Buffalo, SUNY

We present the second annual Rustgi Undergraduate Conference on South Asia by reflecting upon the rich history of South Asia, and its connection to present day conditions regarding culture and climate. We invite papers on the theme of “Exploring Culture, Climate, and Connections,” where climate may be interpreted broadly, whether in its social, political, or environmental sense. The conference will feature a keynote lecture from Suraj Yengde, award-winning scholar and activist from India.

Undergraduate participants from all disciplines, working on any topic relating to the region, are welcome to submit proposals. Possible topics of discussion include:

  • Social issues, human rights issues, LGBTQ issues, gender and caste concerns in present-day Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.
  • Literary genres, artistic movements, new and old technologies, trends in South Asian cinema and pop culture.
  • Sustainability and environmental revitalization efforts.
  • Human migration, population shifts, and related environmental issues.
  • Modern social movements.
  • The ebb and flow of religious factions and fundamentalisms within Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, and Sikhism.   
  • Trends in domestic and international law, including NGO and INGO work.
  • The impact, or lack thereof, regarding education and the spread of accurate information.
  • Wars, genocides, ethnic or political violence, and refugee issues (in recent or long-standing conflicts).
  • Responses to climate change in entrepreneurship, infrastructure, urban planning, science, engineering, and finance.

While this list of suggestions is by no means exhaustive, we encourage papers that address less commonly researched sociopolitical issues, communities, or theories. We hope to organize panels with presenters addressing similar issues from a variety of disciplinary perspectives.

Please click http://bit.ly/2019rustgiconference to submit proposals. Accepted applicants who submit complete proposals by August 1, 2019 may be eligible for a travel subvention of up to $400, with several options for reimbursement of accommodations. Applicants should also seek funding from their home institutions. The conference organizers will assist participants in seeking affordable accommodations in Buffalo.

Format

The conference will be held on Saturday, November 2, 2019 at the University at Buffalo. Student presenters should plan for 15-minute presentations. Each panel will include 30 minutes for discussion.

Deadline

Proposals, including 250-word abstracts and the contact information of a faculty supervisor, must be submitted via the online submissions portal (http://bit.ly/2019rustgiconference). Those seeking travel subventions must submit their complete application (including a brief justification of expenses and efforts to seek supplemental funding) no later than August 1, 2019. Submissions will be accepted after this date on a rolling basis, space permitting, until September 7, 2019. Applicants will be notified about the status of their submissions and the availability of travel subventions beginning in late August 2019.

When submitting abstracts, applicants must affirm that they will be enrolled as undergraduate students at the time of the conference. Those in graduate programs or not currently enrolled in an undergraduate program will not be permitted to present. The organizers reserve the right to confirm student status with their advisor and home institution. The organizers regret that they are unable to assist international applicants who require visas to enter the United States.

Inquiries

Please contact rustgiconference@buffalo.edu for more information about the conference.

The second annual Rustgi South Asian Undergraduate Research Conference is made possible by a generous gift from Dr. Vinod Rustgi and his family.

 

November 3: 1st Annual Rustgi Undergraduate Conference on South Asia at the University at Buffalo, featuring a keynote by Sujatha Gidla

Rustgi Conference Logo

Origins of the Contemporary​

November 3rd 8:30 am to 6 pm

Capen 107, University at Buffalo, North Campus

Free and open to the public

(registration required http://bit.ly/rustgiregistration2018)

 

Gidla headshot

Please join fellow scholars and faculty for the first annual Rustgi Undergraduate Conference on South Asia at the University at Buffalo. The conference will feature a keynote lecture by Sujatha Gidla, acclaimed author of Ants Among Elephants: An Untouchable Family and the Making of Modern India (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2017). Undergraduate presenters from institutions located throughout the United States will share their current research on South Asia. Undergraduate scholars based in South Asia will be joining us via Skype.

Gidla book cover

The first annual Rustgi South Asian Undergraduate Research Conference is made possible by a generous gift from Dr. Vinod Rustgi and his family. The University at Buffalo Asian Studies Program, Department of Anthropology, Department of English, Department of History, Department of Linguistics, Honors College, Office of International Education, and Humanities Institute have provided additional support and funding.

For more information, please contact rustgiconference@gmail.com

Program

Opening Remarks (8:30 am)​

Panel 1 (8:45-9:45 am) Social and Political Currents

Chair: Dr. Shaanta Murshid (University at Buffalo, SUNY)

Abhishek Shah (Northwestern University), “Approaches to News Production on and from Kashmir”

Sadique PK (English & Foreign Language University, Hyderabad), “Post-Left Islam: Citizenship Politics and Emerging Muslim Youth Activism in South India”

Panel 2 (9:45-11:00 am) Literature and Media: Classical and Contemporary Perspectives

Chair: Dr. Natalie Sarrazin (SUNY Brockport)

Brigette Meskell (SUNY Brockport), “Escaping the Fire: The Construction of Female Same-Sex Desire and Identity in Hindi Cinema”

Fatima Afzal (Lahore University of Management Sciences), “Prime Time ‘Akhlaq’: Selling Ethics in the Subcontinent”

James Batten (University of Colorado Boulder), “National Pride, Nukes, and the Meaning of the Mahābhārata”

Coffee Break (11:00 – 11:15 am)

Panel 3 (11:15 am-12:15 pm) Health, Medicine, and Policy

Chair: Dr. Claude Welch (University at Buffalo, SUNY)

Sailakshmi Senthil Kumar (University of California Berkeley), “Lingual Choices”

Madison Weisend (Marymount Manhattan College), “Exploring Water Scarcity Through the Dynamics of Social Power: The Case of the Thar Desert”

Lunch (12:15-1:30pm) Free for those who register by October 31, 2018

Panel 4 (1:30 – 2:45 pm) Religions, Theory, and Practice

Chair: Dr. Mark Nathan (University at Buffalo, SUNY)

Emily Sadler (University of Colorado Boulder), “Queer Hindu Theology and Philosophy and their Social Applications”

Sharmain Siddiqui (Northwestern University), “Unani Tibb as Resistance: Bodily Practice at the Intersection of Colonial and Postcolonial Systems of Power”

Ethan Seeley (University at Buffalo, SUNY), “The Strange Case of Bhagat Singh Thind: Citizenship and Spirituality”

Panel 5 (2:45 – 3:45 pm) Art and Diaspora

Chair: Dr. Christopher Lee (Canisius College)

Sarah Robinson (Vanderbilt University), “Anarcho-Sufism in America: A Musical Analysis of Omar Waqar”

Courtney Johnson (The Ohio State University), “The Bifurcated Bride: Gender, Nationalism, and Identity in Amrita Sher-Gil’s The Bride’s Toilet

Coffee Break (3:45 – 4:00 pm)

Keynote: Sujatha Gidla (4 pm)

Book Signing (until 6pm)

November 3, 2018: Rustgi Undergraduate Conference on South Asia, University at Buffalo (deadline August 1)

2018 Rustgi Undergraduate Conference on South Asia

Origins of the Contemporary

​November 3, 2018
​University at Buffalo, SUNY​

We inaugurate the first annual Rustgi Undergraduate Conference on South Asia by reflecting upon the great body of historical work done in this field and bringing historical analysis and context to the study of contemporary issues. We invite papers on the theme of “Origins of the Contemporary.” We may think of these origins as fixed dates or as strands of ideas and events buried in the colonial and pre-colonial past. The conference will feature a keynote lecture by Sujatha Gidla, acclaimed author of Ants Among Elephants: An Untouchable Family and the Making of Modern India (Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2017).

By opening up the conference to both historical and contemporary analyses, we invite undergraduate ​participants from all disciplines, working on any topic. These topics include but are in no way limited to:

  • Modern political movements including Hindutva and New Right in India, ethnic and caste-based parties, leftist and Maoist movements.
  • Independence movements and postcolonial trends in present-day Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burma, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka.
  • New religious movements as well as reform movements and fundamentalisms within Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, and Sikhism.
  • Trends in domestic and international law, including NGO and INGO work.
  • Social issues, human rights issues, LGBTQ issues, gender and caste concerns.
  • Wars, genocides, ethnic or political violence, and refugee issues (in recent or long-standing conflicts).
  • Human migration, population shifts, and environmental issues.
  • Literary genres, artistic movements, new and old technologies, trends in South Asian cinema and pop culture.

While this list of suggestions is by no means exhaustive, we encourage papers that address less commonly researched sociopolitical issues, communities, or theories. We hope to organize panels with presenters addressing similar issues from a variety of disciplinary perspectives.Please visit http://bit.ly/rustgiconferencesubmissions to submit proposals.

Accepted applicants who submit complete proposals by August 1, 2018 may be eligible for a travel subvention of up to $200. Applicants should also seek funding from their home institutions. The conference organizers will assist participants in seeking affordable accommodations in Buffalo.

Format

The conference will be held on Saturday, November 3, 2018 at the University at Buffalo, SUNY​. Students presenters should plan for 15-minute presentations. Each panel will include 30 minutes for discussion.

Deadline

Proposals, including 250-word abstracts and the contact information of a faculty supervisor, must be submitted via the online submissions portal (http://bit.ly/rustgiconferencesubmissions). Those seeking travel subventions must submit their complete application (including a brief justification of expenses and efforts to seek supplemental funding) no later than August 1, 2018. Submissions will be accepted after this date on a rolling basis, space permitting, until September 7, 2018. Applicants will be notified about the status of their submissions and the  availability of travel subventions beginning in late August 2018.

​Inquiries​

Please contact rustgiconference@gmail.com ​with questions or ​for more information about the conference.

The first annual Rustgi South Asian Undergraduate Research Conference is made possible by a generous gift from Dr. Vinod Rustgi and his family.

October 27: In Silence the Secrets Speak – Lecture and Workshop on Gold-Leaf Painting by Seema Kohli

Seema Kohli

Visiting artist from India

Hosted by the Asian Studies Program & Art Department, UB with Triveni Collaboration

The lecture traces the influence of ancient and modern Indian traditions (legends & myths) to Seema’s own spiritual quest and expression in her art.

The workshop is on Gold-Leaf Painting – an ancient, traditional Indian art form. Workshop is limited to 20 participants. To register, please visit https://www.eventbrite.com/e/seema-kohli-workshop-tickets-37811777043?aff=es2

  •        Friday, 27 Oct. 2017
  •        Lecture          12:30 PM – Screening Room, Center for the Arts, UB
  •        Workshop     2:30 to 5:00 PM – Art Studio, Center for the Arts, UB

Visiting artist Seema Kohli (India) has offered a rare opportunity for the UB and Buffalo area community to join her in a gold-leaf painting workshop. The gold-leaf painting workshop focuses on an ancient, traditional Indian art form.

The workshop is limited to 20 participants, and a ticket is required (register here). The workshop runs from 2:30pm to 5pm on Friday, October 27, 2017. The workshop is free, but is limited to 20 participants. All materials will be provided.

The workshop is directly after Seema Kohli’s 12:30pm public lecture “In Silence the Secrets Speak” (CFA Screening Room, UB North). The lecture traces the influence of ancient and modern Indian traditions (legends & myths) to Seema’s own spiritual quest and expression in her art. Registration for the 12:30pm lecture is NOT required.

Seema Kohli poster

Rustgi South Asian Language Awards for summer 2018 (deadline January 5, 2018)

Current UB undergraduate and graduate students are invited to apply for funding to attend intensive summer language programs offered by the American Institute of Indian Studies. Applications for funding will be evaluated by UB Asian Studies Program faculty and staff. Rustgi South Asian Language Awards support the full cost of tuition and roundtrip airfare to India. An additional subvention for living expenses may also be available based on funding levels. We anticipate awarding two student awards for summer 2018.

About the Language Program

Participants are expected to devote their energies to activities that will increase their proficiency in all skills—speaking, listening, reading, and writing. For eight weeks at each AIIS language center, there will be at least four hours a day of classroom instruction and individual tutorials with regular out-of-class assignments requiring interaction with community members. Attendance is mandatory in class as well as at other activities such as cultural visits, films, and plays. There is special emphasis on connecting with the local speech community and self-management of learning. Participants are encouraged to identify and prioritize their language learning needs and keep track of their language development. Students are encouraged to stay with host families. Note that this is not a research program. Participants are expected to devote all their energies to learning the target language. For more information, please visit the AIIS Language Programs website.

 

Eligibility

  • Full-time enrollment as an undergraduate or graduate student at the University of Buffalo in good academic standing at the time of application
  • Those applying for Bangla, Hindi, Tamil, and Urdu must have completed at least one year of language study before attending the program. Two years of prior language study are required for Sanskrit. Applicants for Gujarati, Malayalam, Marathi, Punjabi, Telugu, and Kannada may apply at all levels, including beginning. Applications for other South Asian languages (Pali/Prakrit and Mughal Persian) will also be considered.
  • At the time of application for this award, applicants must have already applied to an AIIS summer language program. The deadline for submitting materials to AIIS is December 31, 2017.

Criteria for Selection

  • Awards will be based on academic merit and seriousness of purpose
  • The applicant agrees to be an ambassador for Asian Studies at UB by sending occasional posts and photos of their experiences while in-country for use on the Asian Studies Program’s social media and website. The applicant must also be willing to talk with other students about their study abroad experience upon returning to UB.
  • The applicant’s plans to enroll in additional South Asia-related courses including a required 1-credit South Asia seminar in the fall semester following their return from India.
  • Preference will be given to students seeking to learn “critical need” languages (Bangla, Hindi, Punjabi, and Urdu).
  • Preference will be given to students who can demonstrate that they have also applied for the Critical Language Scholarship(deadline November 15, 2017) and/or Boren Awards (UB internal deadline November 15, 2017)

Required Application Materials

1)     Completed AIIS Language Application in a single PDF file including

  1. Application form (available as both a word and pdf document on the AIIS web site);
  2. One-page (less than 500-word) statement of purpose describing your academic reasons for selecting a particular program, detailing how the study abroad program will fit into your overall academic program and goals, and how the program benefits your personal, academic, and professional development. This may be the same statement prepared for the AIIS application.
  3. Evaluator Worksheet (available on the AIIS web site)
  4. Transcripts: Applicants should scan their undergraduate and graduate transcripts (from U.S. or Canadian universities only) and include them in the single pdf file.
  5. Confirmation (email or scanned document) from AIIS indicating receipt of complete AIIS summer language program application

2)     Recommended: documentation confirming submission of completed applications for the Critical Language Scholarship and/or Boren Scholarship

3)     Applicants should also submit two (2) letters of recommendation emailed as an attachment directly from their professor or instructor. Instructors may also mail their recommendations in a sealed envelope signed by the professor to Asian Studies Program, 412 Clemens Hall, Buffalo NY 14260.

Deadline

4 pm Friday, January 5, 2018. 

Unless otherwise indicated, all materials must be emailed to Asian-Studies@buffalo.edu

Please contact the Asian Studies Program at Asian-Studies@buffalo.edu or 716-645-3474 if you have any questions.

Dauji Gupta Flyer

September 15 Asia@Noon: Roundtable with Dauji Gupta

Lucknow: A Historic Indian City in the Twenty-first Century

A Roundtable Asia@Noon presentation featuring:

  • Dr. Dauji Gupta, Former Mayor of Lucknow
  • Dr. Walter Hakala, UB Department of English and Asian Studies Program
  • Dr. Ashima Krishna, UB Department of Urban and Regional Planning
  • Ms. Kayleigh Reed, UB Asian Studies Program, Boren SAFLI Fellow in Lucknow
September 15, 12 pm in 280 Park Hall, UB North Campus

All are welcome.

Dr. Dauji Gupta is a former mayor of Lucknow, served as a State Senator, and is an author, poet, and linguist. His PhD is from the University of Lucknow, and he also has studied in Lucknow Christian College and the University of Vermont. In addition to his work as a politician and a scholar, Dr. Gupta led and was a member of movement for the emancipation of Dalits and the abolition of the caste system in India. Dr. Gupta was born in Lucknow, grew up there, and is deeply influenced by the cultural traditions of the city.

Dauji Gupta Flyer

Mitra Sharafi, “Corruption and Forensic Experts in British India,” Baldy Center Distinguished Speaker (March 3, 2017)

Photo of Prof. Mitra Sharafi

“Corruption and Forensic Experts in British India”

March 3, 2017, 12:30 pm. Lunch served at 12:00 pm.

509 O’Brian Hall, University at Buffalo North Campus

Mitra Sharafi

Associate Professor of Law, University of Wisconsin, Law School

 

About the speaker: Mitra Sharafi is a legal historian of South Asia. She holds law degrees from Cambridge and Oxford (the UK equivalent of a JD and LLM) and a doctorate in history from Princeton. Sharafi’s book, Law and Identity in Colonial South Asia: Parsi Legal Culture, 1772-1947 (Cambridge University Press, 2014) won the Law and Society Association’s J. Willard Hurst Prize for socio-legal history in 2015. The book explores the legal culture of the Parsis or Zoroastrians of British India, an ethno-religious minority that was unusually invested in colonial law. Her research interests include South Asian legal history; the history of the legal profession; the history of colonialism; the history of contract law; law and society; law and religion; law and minorities; legal consciousness; legal pluralism; and the history of science and medicine. Sharafi is a regular contributor to the Legal History Blog. Since 2010, her South Asian Legal History Resources website has shared research guides and other tools for the historical study of law in South Asia. Follow her blogposts and follow her on Twitter @mjsharafi  Read more.
DOWNLOAD PAPER: “Corruption and Forensic Experts in Colonial India” (573 KB)

Daniel Majchrowicz (Northwestern University), “The Case of the Vanishing Maharaja: Urdu Travel Literature and Princely Politics in South Asia” (March 10, 2017)

Asia@Noon

Daniel Majchrowicz (Northwestern University)

The Case of the Vanishing Maharaja

Urdu Travel Literature and Princely Politics in South Asia

Friday, March 10, 2017

12 to 1 pm

280 Park Hall

Holkar In 1851, the young Tukoji Holkar, Maharaja of Indore, went missing under suspicious circumstances. Some said his regent wanted him out of the picture. Others speculated that he’d been kidnapped and taken to Calcutta by nefarious colonial agents. In truth, he’d  skipped town to make a clandestine tour of of North India. After his return, Holkar did something that was doubly unprecedented for a Persian-speaking court of his time: he wrote a travelogue, and he wrote it in Urdu. Following his lead, other princes across the region began to write their own, increasingly elaborate travel accounts. By the end of the 19th century, writing about travel have become a well established expression of princely praxis. Focusing on two narratives in Urdu from 1851, this talk will argue that the decision to write a travel account – and to do so in Urdu – reflected Holkar’s, and the princely states’, desire to use travel literature to stabilize their legitimacy at a time when colonial predations had rendered it increasingly precarious.

Daniel Majchrowicz

Daniel Majchrowicz is an Assistant Professor of South Asian Literature and Culture at Northwestern University. He received his PhD from Harvard University in 2015. He is currently working on two manuscripts. The first is a study of Urdu travel writing from 1830-1950, tentatively titled “Travel and the Means to Victory: Travel and Travel Writing in Modern South Asia.” The second is a collaborative project aimed at producing a scholarly anthology of Muslim women’s travel writing from across the world, entitled “Veiled Voyagers.”

Supported by the UB Honors College and Asian Studies Program.