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Call for Papers: South Asia by the Bay

A Graduate Student Conference at Stanford University on May 9-11, 2012
When May 09, 2012 12:00 PM to
May 11, 2012 12:00 PM
Where Stanford University
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As South Asia experiences rapid and unprecedented transformation, both scholarly and public interest in the region has grown dramatically in recent years. A large new generation of graduate students working on South Asia in the humanities and social sciences is in the process of rethinking approaches to the study of South Asian culture, society, politics, economics, law, history, literature, and the arts.

South Asia by the Bay is a brand new initiative based in the San Francisco Bay Area. It aims to establish an annual forum where graduate students from across disciplines and institutions in North America, who work on South Asia, can meet to discuss their work with each other, and with South Asia affiliated faculty from the organizing institutions (Stanford University, University of California, Berkeley, University of California, Davis, and University of California, Santa Cruz).

Plenary addresses will be given by Kamran Ali from the University of Texas, Austin, Raka Ray from University of California, Berkeley, Anjali Arondekar from University of California, Santa Cruz, Sudipta Sen from University of California, Davis, Priti Ramamurthy from the University of Washington, Marc Galanter from Stanford University, and Sharika Thiranagama from Stanford University and the New School. 

Additionally, there will be an interactive session with faculty on the international job market in South Asian studies, film screening by and discussion with Mumbai based filmmaker Surabhi Sharma, art exhibitions, and social events for conference participants.

We invite papers and submissions under a number of themes. Thus far, we have suggested a number of panels with the following themes and point of contact for more information about each panel:

Visual Culture and Public Aesthetics                     

Sangeeta Mediratta


Urban Life and Urban Process                        

Maura Finkelstein


Technology and Democracy                     

Vivek Srinivasan

Rachel Brule 

Minorities and the Quest for Political Recognition.

Sharika Thiranagama

Dolly Kikon


Social Marginality and New Forms of Capitalism

Samil Can

Bernadette White


Origins and Legacies: History and the Present        

Peter Samuels


Religious Life and Ritual Forms                

Thomas Blom Hansen


Other panel submissions on related themes and individual paper submissions are also welcome.

South Asia by the Bay will cover the costs, up to $500 for conference presenters travelling to the conference from outside of California and $250 for those travelling within the Greater West Coast region of California, Oregon, and Washington State. For local Bay Area participants, we will be able to cover gas mileage.

Students who are interested in participating in the conference should submit a an abstract (approximately 200 words) and a one page CV to Bernadette White ( with the subject line “South Asia by the Bay.”



For panels: March 15, 2012

Individual abstracts: April 1, 2012


For updates and further information, please see:



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