Punjab Research Group

Sangat: Dialog Punjab

Posted in Events, News/Information, Poetry and Literature by Pippa on March 27, 2015

Sangat: Dialog Punjab

Poetry is engrained in every aspect of the lives, stories, music, politics, philosophy, faith and culture of Punjabis. A number of us are gathering together to explore Punjabi poetry through time (and through this, a history of Punjab), meeting once a month at SOAS.

Starting with Baba Farid (12th century) through to Najm Hosain Syed and Amarjit Chandan writing today, we will focus in each session, on one or two poets; reading their poetry, listening to it being sung, and discussing it along with the historical/political/ philosophical context. We hope to have leading Punjabi poet Amarjit Chandan joining us for most of the sessions, sharing his knowledge, along with other guest writers/scholars/singers.

We welcome those of all ages and levels, those with knowledge, passion and interest that can be shared and developed, but also those who are new to Punjabi poetry/literature, who may not read Gurmukhi/Shahmukhi or be proficient in Punjabi, but want to listen and explore – we especially encourage you to join us.

For further information please contact ssai@soas.ac.uk.

Forthcoming Events

Session 2: Baba Nanak

7 April 2015, Russell Square: College Buildings, 4429, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Session 3: Ravidas and Kabir

5 May 2015, Russell Square: College Buildings, 4429, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Session 4: Guru Gobind Singh

9 June 2015, Brunei Gallery, B104, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Session 5: Sultan Bahu and Bulleh Shah

7 July 2015, Brunei Gallery, B102, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Session 6: Waris Shah & Damoodar (Heer)

4 August 2015, Russell Square: College Buildings, 4429, 6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

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Sangat: Dialog Punjab

Posted in Events, News/Information, Poetry and Literature by Pippa on February 19, 2015

Sangat: Dialog Punjab

Poetry is engrained in every aspect of the lives, stories, music, politics, philosophy, faith and culture of Punjabis. A number of us are gathering together to explore Punjabi poetry through time (and through this, a history of Punjab), meeting once a month at SOAS.

Starting with Baba Farid (12th century) through to Najm Hosain Syed and Amarjit Chandan writing today, we will focus in each session, on one or two poets; reading their poetry, listening to it being sung, and discussing it along with the historical/political/ philosophical context. We hope to have leading Punjabi poet Amarjit Chandan joining us for most of the sessions, sharing his knowledge, along with other guest writers/scholars/singers.

We welcome those of all ages and levels, those with knowledge, passion and interest that can be shared and developed, but also those who are new to Punjabi poetry/literature, who may not read Gurmukhi/Shahmukhi or be proficient in Punjabi, but want to listen and explore – we especially encourage you to join us.

The first session is on Monday 9th March 2015, 6-8 pm at SOAS Russell Square (Room T102) and after that, on the first Monday of every month.

Session 1 (Monday March 9th):                  Baba Farid and Shah Hussain

Session 2 (Monday April 6th):                   Guru Nanak

Session 3 (Monday May 4th):                     Sant Ravidas and Kabir

Session 4 (Monday June 1st):                   Guru Gobind Singh

Session 5 (Monday July 6th):                   Sultan Bahu and Bulleh Shah

Session 6 (Monday August 3rd):         Waris Shah and Damoodar (Heer)

Future sessions (open to suggestions): Women’s folk songs, Peero, Amrita Pritam, Shiv Kumar Batalvi, Paash and Lal Singh Dil, Sant Ram Udasi, Gurdas Ram Alam, Najm Hosain Syed, Amarjit Chandan

For more information, email sangat.punjab@gmail.com

Sangat-Dialog.Punjab 2015

Harish K. Puri, ‘The Scheduled Castes in the Sikh Community – A Historical Perspective’

Posted in Articles by Pippa on June 2, 2009

East Punjab is a Sikh majority state. After its re-organisation in 1966, (when the Hindi speaking areas were separated to constitute the new state of Haryana and some of the hill areas were transferred to Himachal Pradesh), the religious composition of the state was radically altered. The Sikhs constituted 63 per cent of the state’s population at present. Their share in the rural population is higher; about 72 per cent. The Dalits or the Scheduled Castes have a high proportion of population in the state, 28.3 percent in 1991 which is projected to have increased to over 30 percent in 2001, the highest among the states in India. Over 80 per cent of them lived in the rural areas.  Punjab’s villages are, therefore, predominantly Sikh and Dalit. An understanding of the status of the Scheduled Castes in the Sikh community in particular, and the impact of Sikhism on dalits in Punjab in general, should help us in appreciation of  the regional specificity of the status and conditions of life of the Scheduled Castes in the state as also the limitations of the book view of caste.

Read full article: Puri scheduled castes in sikh community

Journeys with Kabir Yamini Vijayan retraces Kabirs footsteps with Shabnam Virmani

Posted in Articles by Pippa on March 13, 2009

It still rings in my ears, that monotonous forced chanting that echoed through our classrooms, as we all recited Kabir’s dohas. We would mumble through our yawns, pinch each other while repeating them, almost meaninglessly. It would have never occurred to me then how far ahead of his times Kabir was. Was it because we were too young to understand then or were we not exposed to his powerful ideologies in the right manner?

 

But why would we turn to a 15th century weaver, a mystic poet, so many centuries later, do we not have enough heroes of our time? Maybe because right now sentiments are brittle, divisive politics are being played out right in front of our eyes and it has become difficult to cling onto hope without turning away from injustice. Today, when communal tensions have managed to make daily headlines, it seems like an appropriate time to go back to Kabir’s beliefs. A champion of Hindu-Muslim unity, Kabir’s bold opposition to superstitious beliefs, empty ritualism and caste distinctions in religion has always made him stand out as a symbol of non-conformity. But today, when religion is being used manipulatively, for all the wrong reasons, Kabir’s remarkably secular voice returns, as a breath of fresh air.

Read further: http://www.deccanherald.com/Content/Mar12009/finearts20090228121288.asp

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