Punjab Research Group

Special Issue of South Asian Diaspora: Imagining Punjab and the Punjabi Diaspora

Posted in Academic Journals, Articles, Migration, Poetry and Literature by Pippa on July 30, 2014

South Asian Diaspora Volume 6, Issue 2, 2014

http://www.tandfonline.com/toc/rsad20/6/2#.U9jNzKgpOHl

 

Introduction

Imagining Punjab and the Punjabi diaspora: after more than a century of Punjabi migration

Anjali Gera Roy

Articles:

  • ‘The heart, stomach and backbone of Pakistan’: Lahore in novels by Bapsi Sidhwa and Mohsin Hamid Claire Chambers
  • Culture shock on Southall Broadway: re-thinking ‘second-generation’ return through ‘geographies of Punjabiness’ Kaveri Qureshi
  • Punjabiyat and the music of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan Virinder S. Kalra
  • Tracing Sufi influence in the works of contemporary Siraiki Poet, Riffat Abbas Nukhbah Taj Langah
  • Exiled in its own land: Diasporification of Punjabi in Punjab Abbas Zaidi
  • (Dis)honourable paradigms: a critical reading of Provoked, Shame and Daughters of Shame Shweta Kushal & Evangeline Manickam

ROAD TO MANDALAY – SIKHS IN BURMA by Swarn Singh Kahlon

Posted in Articles, Diaspora, Migration by Pippa on July 30, 2014

Based on Travels of Swarn Singh Kahlon, December, 2011

Article appeared in The Sikh Review, Kolkata, February, 2014 issue.

 

THE ROMANCE OF BURMA

There are two romantic poems about Burma;

ONE by Rudyard Kipling (1889-90),

where he tries to relive on return to London his travels in Burma:

By the old Moulmein Pagoda, lookin’ lazy at the sea,

There’s a Burma girl a-settin’, and I know she thinks o’ me;

For the wind is in the palm-trees, and the Temple-bells they say:

“Come you back, you British soldier; come you back to Mandalay!”

 

AND THE SECOND

By the exiled Mughal King, Bahadur Shah Zafar who immortalised his death in Burma (1862) through the epitaph he wrote on the wall with a burnt stick:

Kitna hai badnaseeb Zafar, dafan ke liye

do gaz zamin na mili ku e yaar mein”

 

This was also the period when Sikhs started to migrate to Burma; a country now renamed ‘Myanmar’. The Sikh migration to Burma was an important component of global Sikh migration and remained a popular destination for about six decades.

Many Sikhs have their relatives and friends who still talk about the Burma days even if they have returned permanently since long back. A visit was very tempting especially as my wife’s mother was born and grew up in that country. Whenever my mother-in-law and her sisters had some confidences to share they would shift to speaking Burmese even after their return three decades ago.

Read full article: Road to Mandalay

New Publication on Sikh Studies: Diaspora: A Journal for Transnational Studies

Posted in Academic Journals, Diaspora, Migration, New Publications, News/Information, sikhs by gsjandu on April 9, 2014
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Parminder, a Cosmopolitan

Posted in Diaspora, Film, Migration by Pippa on January 3, 2014

Notes to accompany the film on Parminder: A Cosmopolitan

The film has resonated with people across the world and went on to twitter and many face book pages. It has been viral via university and other sites across Australia, Denmark, Sweden, Italy, and other transnational sites across the diaspora. It will used on courses at University of California campuses at Berkeley, Riverside, and also Santa Barbara in Ethnic and Diversity Studies, and also on Global Diasporas. This film’s impact much beyond the Clark University media class for which it was made is as much a surprise to Parminder, as it is to the film maker, for whom many opportunities have emerged to make other films, though with much longer time formats than 9 minute length of this film.

Jonathan Dana, the talented young film maker is 20 years old. He was awarded a prestigious Clinton Media Fellowship last year and worked in New York at the Clinton Foundation. His work was greatly admired by Hilary Clinton and it is now on her official site. He is the son of an eminent cinematographer.

Parminder was a fellow graduate student with me at the School of Oriental and African Studies in the late 70s. She received her Ph.D. in 1981 and has since authored four books, the latest of which is Dangerous Designs. Her current work is on diasporic creativity and innovation, a theme on which she is currently writing a book.

I hope that some of you will watch the film. A number of us already know Parminder well, both from her time in the British academy, and since her migration to the USA in 1990, firstly to UCLA, and then to Clark University in Massachusetts. She held a prestigious Henry R. Luce Professorship in Cultural Identities and Global Processes for 9 years at Clark, before moving into the Sociology Department there in 2000, which has been her departmental home for the past 13 years.

It is a pleasure for me to see a member of the Punjab Research Group being celebrated across the world, especially as she is of the pioneering generation of British Asian, and indeed now Asian American intellectuals of the diaspora, whose academic work focuses on the Punjabi migrants and their multiple diasporas. She has been in the USA now for 24 years, which is longer than any other site in which she has been lived in the past.

I have included below a link to the film. As stated above, you can also watch it on You Tube on Jonathan Dana’s site, entitled Parminder: A Cosmopolitan.

Dr. Shinder S. Thandi, Coventry University, Founding Member of the Journal of Punjab Studies

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The Unsung Indian Hero of Kenya

Posted in Articles, Diaspora, Migration by Pippa on January 2, 2014

Makhan SinghPublished in The Tribune 25 December 2013

Following link for full article http://epaper.tribuneindia.com/203331/The-Tribune/TT_25_December_2013#page/19/2

Makhan Singh not only organised the labour movement in Kenya, but also raised the slogan of total independence of the country. He remained in prison for 16 years. But the contribution of this valiant son of Punjab remains unknown in Kenya as well as in India.

WHEN I visited Kenya for the first time in 2005 as an educationist, it was inconceivable then that I would soon be writing a play on an unsung Indian hero Makhan Singh, who had migrated from Punjab in 1927, organised the labour movement of the country, became the first person to call for total freedom from the colonial rule, remained under detention for 16 years and was the first leader to be arrested and the last to be released after independence. If about 20 readings of the play Mungu Comrade in India, England and Canada attracted hundreds of people, who were riveted to the spoken action, it was not the magic of writing; they were actually enchanted by the mesmerizing protagonist who has rightly been termed as a “totally unadulterated idealist”. Dr. Fitz De Souza, Deputy Speaker of Kenya’s first National Assembly said about him, “he wouldn’t compromise his principles on anything.”

He was born on December 27, 1913 in Gharjakh, a town near Gujranwala (Pakistan) in the family of Sudh Singh who went to Kenya in 1920, about two decades after the British took Indian labour to Kenya to lay the railway track from Mombasa to Kisumu to feed their commercial needs. In the 16th century the Portuguese had also imported workers from the then colony of theirs, Goa, to help build the coastal Fort Jesus. But it was in the last years of the 19th century when 37,000 workers and petty tradesmen were introduced from Punjab and Gujarat for the line that is termed by the African tribes and subsequently by Robert Hardy as The Iron Snake. The slithering of this ‘snake’, passing through the dense forests took life of about 2,500 workmen; roughly four persons per mile of the track. Another 6,500 were injured seriously. We have seen this terrain in the film made on the first-hand accounts written by John Henry Patterson in Man Eaters of Tsavo.

The Sikh Turban: Exploring An Icon Of A Migratory Peoples’ Identity

Posted in Events, Migration, Research, sikhs by gsjandu on May 15, 2013

Research Consultation: Anthropological Collection on Sikh Turbans

The Horniman Museum, London

Kind assistance is requested with researching a collection displaying the dastar as part of Sikhs’ global migration. The collection has three aspirations; to firstly display the pagh’s physical variation as geographically dichotomous and freighting a regionally intrinsic identity trope for instance Makhan Singh as a kalasingha wearing a Kenyan kilemba. Secondly to consider the pagh and its contentious role in Sikh identity within the milieu of other head-coverings e.g. Mitres in Europe during The Middle Ages. Thirdly to reflect on the pagh in Sikh-Britain relationships e.g. Winterhalter’s 1854 portrait of Duleep Singh  or turbaned Sikhs as stock British Armed Forces’ media images. Thoughts on the collection mode and process are especially welcomed. The Horniman Museum Collections can be explored at www.horniman.ac.uk, whilst the researchers can be reached on gorby.jandu@gmail.com and JZetterstrom-Sharp@horniman.ac.uk. The collection is due to gain exhibition in 2014 with displays finalised by end 2013.

Unthreatening the Sikh Turban – Reflections of Wisconsin Shootings

Posted in Articles, Diaspora, Film, Migration, News/Information, sikhs by harjant on September 2, 2012

Unthreatening the Sikh Turban – Reflections on Wisconsin Shootings by Harjant S. Gill

[W]e must discourage the use of mistaken identity narrative because to an extremist like…the gunman who carried out the Wisconsin shooting, it matters little if his victims are Sikhs or Muslims. We must denounce all acts of violence against any religious groups. More importantly, we must also hold our politicians,policy makers, political pundits and ourselves responsible for creating a climate of hostility and hate… read more: Anthropology-News.org

CFP: Memories of Migrations and historical time

Posted in Conferences, Migration by Pippa on February 10, 2012

Memories of migrations and historical time, Conference to be held 22nd – 24th November 2012, Cité nationale de l’histoire de l’immigration, Paris

For the past thirty years, memories have become ubiquitous in the public sphere and a recognised field of enquiry in historical studies and the social sciences. Within this framework, migrants have a particular place: in France, they have been actors of these memorial mobilisations but have not always done so on behalf of their origins. Research-wise, studies on memories of migrations have already shed light on a group or a particular event but defining and exploring the historicisation of such memories remains to be done.

This conference aims to stimulate reflection on this historicisation by focussing on five main, albeit overlapping, areas :

• Event, temporalities and transmission

• Geographical territories, social spaces, mobilities and levels of analysis

• Identities and multiple belonging

• Symbolic policies and heritage

Several types of proposals will be particularly welcome: those favouring a long-term historical analysis across the centuries; those considering mobility between social or geographical spaces; and finally, those developing a comparative perspective between country of origin and receiving country. More widely, this interdisciplinary conference embraces all proposals incorporating an epistemological reflection.

Deadline for submissions: 25 Mars 2012

Conference Committee makes final selection of papers: May 2012

 

Marianne Amar

Cité nationale de l’histoire de l’immigration

293 avenue Daumesnil

75012 Paris

Email: colloquememoires@histoire-immigraiton.fr

Visit the website at http://www.histoire-immigration.fr/education-et-recherche/la-recherche

Partition and Locality. Violence, Migration, and Development in Gujranwala and Sialkot, 1947–1961 by Ilyas Chattha

Posted in Migration, New Publications, Partition by Pippa on November 27, 2011

This book provides original and challenging insights into the processes of violence, demographic transformation, and physical reconstruction arising from partition of the subcontinent in 1947. The study focuses on the cities of Gujranwala and Sialkot that experienced violence, demographic shift, and economic transformation in different ways. The work is not only a significant contribution to the understanding of the Partition process of British India and its aftermath in Punjab that became Pakistani territory, but it also provides an authoritative and thought-provoking approach to the themes of broader twentieth-century processes of collective violence, mass displacements, and economic recovery.

About the Author: Educated at the Universities of Warwick and Southampton, Dr Ilyas Chattha obtained a PhD in 2009. He is presently based at the Centre for Imperial and Post-Colonial Studies, University of Southampton, and is carrying out research on the impact of Partition on the Punjabi Christians in Pakistan.

To Purchase: http://www.oup.com.pk/shopexd.asp?id=2104

EXCERPT: Stories of an unacknowledged massacre: http://www.dawn.com/2011/10/23/excerpt-stories-of-an-unacknowledged-massacre.html

Book review in Pakistan Today: http://www.pakistantoday.com.pk/2011/10/the-review-30th-october-2011/

Call for Papers: Immigration and Visual Culture

Posted in Film, Migration, New Publications by harjant on February 21, 2010

agency, an online, peer-reviewed and interdisciplinary journal, invites submissions for a special issue on Immigration and Visual Culture. Technologies such as photography and film have played a crucial role in representing, constructing, and reifying the immigrant subject and immigrant experiences. Recent technological innovations, from YouTube and social networking sites to DVD and video downloading to surveillance technologies, have changed the ways in which immigrant subjectivities and experiences are constructed and disseminated.

agency invites submissions of essays examining the relationship between immigration and visual culture. How have immigrant subjectivities and experiences been represented and constructed by visual culture? How have immigrant subjectivities and experiences been transformed by technological innovations? In what ways does visual culture participate in the surveillance and regulation of immigrants and immigrations? What opportunities does visual culture provide for the articulation of immigrant identities or the resistance of dominant discourses of immigration?

agency is an interdisciplinary journal of the humanities and social sciences, and we will consider submissions working within or across any disciplines associated with the humanities and social sciences (and beyond). The ideal agency essay is scholarly and rigorous but also accessible and engagingly written.

Submissions should be 4000-5000 words and should be formatted in accordance with the seventh edition of the MLA Handbook.

The deadline for submissions is 1 May 2010. Please submit submissions via email to the editor, Dr. Douglas Ivison, at douglas.ivison@lakeheadu.ca.
agency is published by Lakehead University’s Advanced Institute for Globalization and Culture (http://theagency.lakeheadu.ca).

MIGRATION AND AGRICULTURAL DEVLOPMENT IN PUNJAB

Posted in Articles, Migration by Pippa on April 3, 2009

Please find attached an article by Dr Gursharan Singh Kainth, Director, GAD Institute of Development Studies, Amritsar. Any comments can be posted here or sent directly to kainthgs@yahoo.com

 

Rural economy of Punjab has undergone structural transformation. But the dependence of rural population in general and rural labour in particular for earning livelihood from the rural economy continues. This process of rural transformation has perpetuated distress among the rural workforce. It is a strange phenomenon that migrant labour continues to pour into the rural areas. The rural economy of Punjab, due to wage gap, continues to attract huge amount of inflow of people from other poorer states of India. Rural-rural migration is largely seasonal and stays of workers in most cases, is less than six months. The high rate of growth of productivity and value addition during green revolution period in the agriculture sector has given big push to raise the level of living in the rural economy of Punjab.

Full article: migration-and-agricultural-devlopment-in-punjab

Call for papers (ESSCH-session): formal and informal networks of migrants

Posted in Conferences, Migration by Pippa on April 1, 2009

For the European Social Science History Conference (2010) we are organising a panel on the integration of migrants in formal and informal networks. We invite papers which contribute to the understanding of integration canals of newcomers in past societies (1500-1945). Possible topics are: the access of new inhabitants to associations such as guilds, brotherhoods, clubs; friendship and kinship relations of migrants; informal contacts in pubs, neighbourhoods, etc. If you are interested in submitting a paper, please send a proposal to the session organiser(s) by April 10th.

Saartje Vanden Borre (Saartje.VandenBorre@kuleuven-kortrijk.be)
Nele Provoost (Nele.Provoost@arts.kuleuven.be)

Saartje Vanden Borre
K.U.Leuven Campus Kortrijk
Centre for the History of Intercultural Relations (CHIR)
E.Sabbelaan 53
8500 Kortrijk
0032 (0)56 24 60 84
Saartje.VandenBorre@kuleuven-kortrijk.be

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