When Music, Truly, Is Unbound: By Kunal Purohit

By Kunal Purohit|December 11, 2017|Caste, General, India, Literature, Pakistan, Politics, Religion, SSAI|0 comments

Music and poetry transcend boundaries of time, of space, of culture. This is known. But, not often does a 15th century Kabir effortlessly flow into a 20th century John Lennon creation. Or that you find, in Leonard Cohen’s work, the echoes of Asian poets from the 17th and 13th centuries. Similarly, when injustices of caste and class even in the United Kingdom find articulation in the works of Dalit poets. This, then, is when music, truly,

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Memories of Partition – 70 years on by Farzana Whitfield

By rk24|August 24, 2017|Conflict, Culture, India, Pakistan, Politics, Religion|1 comments

Farzana Whitfield is the subject librarian for South Asia and Development Studies at SOAS. Here she looks back on her family’s personal experience and memories of Partition. This article has previously appeared on SOAS’s library blog.  This August marks 70 years of India’s independence from British rule (15th August) giving birth to 2 nations- a Hindu majority India and a Muslim majority Pakistan (14th August). Subsequently there were 3 wars between

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‘Systems in flux: constitution-making, patronage and post-war politics in Nepal and Sri Lanka’ by Jonathan Goodhand and Oliver Walton

By Rosa Vercoe|October 14, 2016|Elections, General, Nepal, Politics, Sri Lanka|0 comments

Jonathan Goodhand is Professor in Conflict and Development Studies in the Department of Development Studies at SOAS University of London where he teaches courses on Development Practice and War to Peace Transitions. Oliver Walton is a Lecturer in International Development  in the Department of Social and Policy Sciences at the University of Bath. He specialises in NGO politics, conflict and peacebuilding.  Sri Lanka and Nepal may have turned their backs on protracted and

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‘Jaffna University, Sri Lanka – when entitlement is rejected’ by Annemari de Silva

By Rosa Vercoe|August 15, 2016|Conflict, Culture, Education, General, Sri Lanka|1 comments

Annemari de Silva is Chevening Scholar to SOAS reading for an MA South Asian Area Studies, major in the Politics of Culture in Contemporary South Asia. On the 16th of July, a clash between students at the University of Jaffna erupted over the inclusion of Sinhalese cultural spectacles in the welcome event. Established in 1974, Jaffna University is located at the heart of the Tamil majority North of Sri Lanka. Although

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‘The pathologies of trust and distrust in Pakistan’ by Amina Yaqin

By Shreya Sinha|July 13, 2016|Conflict, Culture, General, Pakistan, Religion|2 comments

Amina Yaqin is Senior Lecturer in Urdu and Postcolonial Studies in the Department of the Languages and Cultures of South Asia, SOAS. The recent assassination of the renowned qawwali singer Amjad Fareed Sabri in the name of piety in Pakistan has revived the question of the permissibility of music in Pakistani culture. Sabri was shot on June 22nd 2016 by attackers on a motorcycle while he was driving his car in Liaquatabad,

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‘Africa Day’ by Simona Vittorini

By Shreya Sinha|June 20, 2016|Conflict, Education, General, India, Politics|0 comments

Simona Vittorini is a Senior Teaching Fellow in the Department of Politics and International Studies where she lectures undergraduate and postgraduate courses on the comparative politics of Asia and Africa. A diplomatic crisis was narrowly averted last week in Delhi when the African Heads of Missions finally agreed to participate in the Africa Day celebrations organised by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations (ICCR) in New Delhi. A few days

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A Survey of Delhi Garment Workers Suggests Poverty Comes in Many Sizes

By Shreya Sinha|May 23, 2016|Development, General, India|0 comments

Alessandra Mezzadri is lecturer in Development Studies at SOAS, University of  London. Her research interests focus on globalisation and processes of labour informalisation; materialist and feminist approaches to global commodity chains and global industrial systems; labour regimes, labour standards and CSR; gender and globalisation; and the political economy of India. Three years after Rana Plaza, garment workers worldwide still endure poor working conditions. The industry has witnessed several ‘minor’ disasters

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‘The Relevance of Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar – Today and Tomorrow’ by Professor David Mosse

By Shreya Sinha|May 23, 2016|Caste, General, India|0 comments

David Mosse is Professor of Social Anthropology and Head of the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at SOAS. His research combines interests in the anthropology of development and activism, environmental history and natural resources management, in the anthropology of Christianity, South Asian society and popular religion. Professor David Mosse was invited to give a number of speeches for the celebration of the 125th  birth anniversary of Dr Ambedkar in Nagpur on

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Borderlands, Brokers and War to Peace Transitions in Nepal and Sri Lanka

By Shreya Sinha|April 25, 2016|Conflict, Development, General, Nepal, Politics, Sri Lanka|0 comments

Jonathan Goodhand is a Professor Conflict and Development Studies at the SOAS Department of Development Studies.   His research focuses on the political economy of conflict, war to peace transitions and increasingly on the role of borderlands, with a particular focus on South and Central Asia. Oliver Walton is a Lecturer in International Development at the University of Bath in the Department of Social and Policy Sciences. His research focuses on

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SSAI News: Opening of the Everlasting Flame Exhibition at the National Museum, Delhi

By Jennifer Ung Loh|March 30, 2016|Culture, General, India, Religion, SSAI|0 comments

A SOAS Exhibition organized in collaboration with the British Library, National Museum of Iran and UNESCO Parzor Foundation, Delhi The Everlasting Flame Exhibition, which is currently ongoing at the National Museum in New Delhi, was inaugurated on 19 March 2016. The exhibition was originally produced by SOAS, University of London, in 2013. In 2016, to mark SOAS’ centenary year celebrations, the exhibition has been taken to Delhi. Dr. Najma Heptulla, Hon’ble Minister for Minority

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