Recent Programs and Events
Farmers Movement and Emerging Solidarities in Rural Punjab: Caste, Class and Sikhi
DATE: Friday, April 23rd, 2021
TIME: 9 AM PST/ 9:30 PM IST
To attend the online lecture please register at: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwrcuCrrzguGtZUAZid2ca62RzCbPzt-ncK
(After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the lecture)
Abstract: Rural Punjab has been a divided region. The most important axis of this division has been through caste, which also overlaps with class. Almost all the agricultural land is owned and cultivated by Jatts and a few other minor caste groups, such as Sainis, Kambojs, Rajputs and Labanas. Dalits, who make for more than 30% of the state population, are almost all landless. This presentation will look at how the current farmers' movement has provided an opportunity to rebuild solidarities across castes. Unlike other regions of India, Punjab has the idiom of Sikhi that could help in building newer solidarities across caste communities.
Join Dr. Surinder S. Jodhka, Professor of Sociology at Jawaharlal Nehru University to take part in the conversation. Moderated by SASI Director, Dr. Satwinder Kaur Bains. Q&A to follow.
CASTE, DIASPORA AND THE FUTURE
SASI Fourth Symposium
WHEN: Wednesday, December 2nd
TIME: 10AM - 12PM (PST)
The issue of caste has resurfaced as a determining marker of identity among the diasporic Indian community. It had always existed, albeit in obscure forms. However, in the recent decades it has taken a robust turn through cultural artefacts and rehashing of a caste pride in a mostly white majority culture. A counterculture under the vestige of Ambedkarite, Dalit-consciousness provided a direct critique to the caste equations in the diasporic society.
In this talk Dr. Yengde takes a look at the kinetic sources of caste and its porosity among the diasporic Indian society. The ambiguity of caste identity was so ingrained in the habits of ‘lower castes’ diaspora that it was left to forgetfulness. However, the cultures and lived realities of oppressed caste groups remained intact in their worship, eating habits and intermarriages among others.
One significant departure of the Dalit or Shudra diaspora was the obfuscation of lowest categories attributed to them. However, the question endures: how well did the categorical smokescreen help in penetrating a dominant caste oppression under the guise of minority person of color?
Dr. Yengde’s presentation will be followed by a Q&A moderated by SASI Director Dr. Satwinder Kaur Bains.
All are welcome to attend this free online lecture
The SASI invites you to a virtual book launch of "The Sikh Next Door: An Identity in Transition" by Dr. Manpreet J. Singh
The Sikhs have been a people in transition. Unwanted displacements, willing movements and a changing world have led them through demographic, occupational and experiential shifts. While this has led to the evolution of new facets within the community, it has also evoked mixed responses from outside. As new generations of Sikhs engage with the world through sensibilities defined by their contemporary contexts, they find themselves constructed in images dissonant with their lived realities. The Sikh Next Door: An Identity in Transition traces these changes while also making an incisive analysis of old stereotypes—some heroic, some menacing and some farcical. The work attempts to reframe the Sikhs, bending a few existing narratives and offering an impetus for a more nuanced understanding of the community.
Dr. Manpreet J. Singh did her M.Phil. in English from Guru Nanak Dev University and PhD in English from Mumbai University. She has taught in various institutions, most recently at Mata Sundri College, Delhi University. As South Asia Diaspora Fund Senior Research Fellow from ICSC Mumbai and CICS UFV, she worked on Sikh diaspora in British Columbia. Her extended research paved the way for The Sikh Next Door: An Identity in Transition, published by Bloomsbury Academic, India. She has two previous books to her credit - The Golden Arc, a collection of poems
and Male Image Female Gaze: Men in Shashi Deshpande’s Fiction.
Special Guest speaker will include Dr. Kanwal Singh Neel:
Dr. Kanwal Singh Neel is a career educator who has served as a teacher with the Richmond School District, and the Associate Director of Professional Programs in the Faculty of Education Dr. Kanwal Singh Neel is a career educator who has served as a teacher with the Richmond School District, and the Associate Director of Professional Programs in the Faculty of Education at Simon Fraser University (SFU), Vancouver, Canada. He is currently a coordinator with SFU’s Friends of Simon, an outreach program where university students tutor and mentor immigrant and refugee children after school. Kanwal has been a tireless volunteer for over 50 years in the South Asian community. He was coordinator for the 75th Anniversary of the Komagata Maru Incident. He has won many awards including the Prime Minister's National Award for Teaching Excellence in Science, Technology and Mathematicsat Simon Fraser University (SFU), Vancouver, Canada. He is currently a coordinator with SFU’s Friends of Simon, an outreach program where university students tutor and mentor immigrant and refugee children after school. Kanwal has been a tireless volunteer for over 50 years in the South Asian community. He was coordinator for the 75th Anniversary of the Komagata Maru Incident. He has won many awards including the Prime Minister's National Award for Teaching Excellence in Science, Technology and Mathematics.
WHEN: Wednesday, October 21st
TIME: 8PM PST
Zoom Link for the Event: Meeting ID - 940 7518 4162 | Passcode - 289870
Ehsaas Film Festival: Shakespeare and Indian Cinema
WHERE: B101 Theatre, UFV Abbotsford Campus, 33844 King Road Abbotsford
WHEN: Wednesday, March 4, 11, 18
TIME: 6PM - 9PM
Come join us for this free event (three films over three weeks) which brings together Indian Cinema and Shakespeare. After each film screening join UFV faculty who will be providing context and conversation.
ALL are welcome
Maqbool (adaptation of Macbeth) on March 4th, 2020
Haider (adaptation of Hamlet) on March 11th, 2020
Ram-Leela (adaptation of Romeo and Juliet) on March 18th, 2020
Email firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
'WE ARE HOCKEY' Exhibit Closing: Family Day
Join us as we celebrate the successful run and closing of the 'We Are Hockey' exhibit at the Sikh Heritage Museum, National Historic Site, Gur Sikh Temple.
This free Family Day event will include hockey tips by the first NHL South Asian Canadian player Robin Bawa and President of Apna Hockey Lali Toor, commentators of Hockey Night in Canada Punjabi Edition, screening of ‘Breakaway’ with Director Jenny Lee, the Canucks Community Caravan and a live-on-location by Sportsnet Radio's Randip Janda and Dan Riccio (Reach Deep/650).
All are welcome, bring your family, children and loved ones.
WHEN: (BC Family Day) Monday, February 17th
TIME: 1 – 4PM – free event, open to all
PLACE: Sikh Heritage Museum, National Historic Site Gur Sikh Temple, 33089 South Fraser Way, Abbotsford, BC
You are all invited to attend the opening reception for 'Haq and History' an exhibit designed by the Royal BC Museum in partnership with the South Asian Studies Institute. The exhibit's will be displayed at UFV's S’eliyemetaxwtexw Gallery from January 15th until February 13th, 2020.
WHEN: Opening reception - Wednesday, February 5th
TIME: 6pm - 7:30pm
PLACE: UFV S’eliyemetaxwtexw Gallery, UFV Abbotsford Campus, room B136