SOAS Honours Human Rights Lawyer Vrinda Grover 

By Sunil Pun|August 2, 2018|General|0 comments

By Shailza Sharma Advocate Vrinda Grover was honoured and awarded an honorary Doctorate of Laws at the July 2018 SOAS graduation ceremony for her decades of human rights activism and legal work. In presenting the citation for Vrinda Grover’s award at the ceremony, Dr. Navtej Purewal, Deputy Director of the South Asia Institute, stated: “Her work in interrogating the structures which produce violations and violence; in highlighting injustice in the

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Approaching South Asia: Challenges, Connections and Creativity

By Sunil Pun|July 5, 2018|General|0 comments

One-Day PhD Conference, Friday 29th June 2018, SOAS South Asia Institute, University of London  – by Jonathan Galton and Adrija Dey How do we approach South Asia in the 21st Century? For academics, the region presents a unique set of challenges arising from its socio-cultural diversity, its complex political landscape and entrenched economic disparities. Moreover, the region is arguably as divided as it has ever been and there is an

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Snigdha Poonam in conversation with Edward Simpson (Director of the SOAS South Asia Institute) about her book ‘Dreamers: How Young Indians are changing the world’

By Sunil Pun|May 9, 2018|India, SSAI|0 comments

600 million Indians, more than half the population, are under twenty-five. This generation lives between extremes: more connected and global than ever, but with narrow ideas of Indian identity; raised with the cultural values of their grandparents, but the life goals of American teenagers. These dreamers are the face of a new India. Angry, and frustrated with being marginalised by both globalisation and India’s old politics, they place hope in

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Giulia Battaglia in conversation with Edward Simpson (Director of the SOAS South Asia Institute) about her book Documentary film in India: An anthropological history.

By Sunil Pun|May 9, 2018|History, India, Media, SSAI|0 comments

Documentary film in India: An anthropological history maps a hundred years of documentary film practices in India. It demonstrates that in order to study the development of a film practice, it is necessary to go beyond the classic analysis of films and filmmakers and focus on the discourses created around and about the practice in question. The book navigates different historical moments of the growth of documentary filmmaking in India

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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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