09 November 2017 - 11 November 2017
National seminar on “Politics of Difference and (Re)locating Marginality : Reflections in Indian Literature”
Marginality, a major concern in socio-cultural, economic and political spheres, is the focus of this seminar. In a gross sense, the person, who is cornered to the edge of the society and finds himself deprived, depressed and subordinated in his individual as well social life is determined as marginalized. Behind this inequality the politics of difference plays the lead role, which has a multi-faced approach. From the skin colour to gender – a lot of factors stand behind the subaltern capping, which forces some particular groups of people to be devoid of the fundamental rights that they actually deserve. Though there are some common reasons for such discrimination, yet the characters of the politics of difference are divergent according to places and space. In India, the primary roots of marginality lie in religion, caste, and class hierarchies, while lingual hierarchies are determined by the social location of different speech communities. And again, gender bias or the subaltern position of woman in every class of society is a very common face of social discrimination.
Contrary to the politics of difference, the endeavour to relocate the marginalized people in the main flow of the society is the consequence of the voices raised for equality. Indian Literature witnesses the conflicts between equality and inequality. The Dalit literature certainly has the agency to speak of their own sufferings and identity, but the main stream literature, may be in some different way, also illustrates the scenario. Literature, written in different regional as well vernacular languages of modern era are the main sources of this discourse, as the issue of marginality has come more in the focus since 19th century. Simultaneously, the literature of ancient and medieval India is the other obvious source. While the Brahmanical literature evidences the roots of differences, the Buddhist argued for the equality of all human beings. The
social, philosophical and/or religious reforms or movements like Ambedkar’s Dalit Movement or Caitanya’s Bhakti movement became the milestone in the journey of relocating the marginalized people, and the then literature reflects, rather documents these social changes. The social realities along with all other norms of dalit lives and their crisis of identity are the focus of marginal literature. The struggle to get back their own justifiable position is another important issue of such literatures, where the conscious attempt has been made to differentiate it from other literature. Dalit aesthetics challenges the customary norms of literary criticism and tries to project its separate identity by voicing otherness. As this also involves concerns of equity and justices, the issue of legality is also occupies a significant position in Dalit Studies. Film, drama or other media can be included here as literary texts, which time and again involve themselves by questioning and reconfiguring marginality.
Dr. Gargi Bhattacharya,
contact no: 9007856721,
Ranvir Sumedh Bhagwan,
contact no: 7585950365,