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Making Britain conference programme

Bharat Britain: South Asians Making Britain 1870-1950

13-14 September 2010 ,British Library Conference Centre,
St Pancras, London


You can also download the programme in PDF format [328 KB].

13 September

09.15-10.00 Registration and refreshments

10.00-10.15 Welcome and introduction: Rick Rylance (Director of the AHRC), Susan Whitfield (Head of Asia, Africa and Pacific Collections, British Library) and Susheila Nasta (Open University)

10.15-11.15 Keynote: Nayantara Sahgal, ‘The Importance of Strangers

11.15-12.45  Plenary Panel: Imperial Relations: Class, Race and Gender

Chandani Lokugé (Monash University, Australia), ‘Dialogue with Empire: The Aestheticization of the Indian Woman in Cornelia Sorabji’s Fiction and Sarojini Naidu’s Poetry’

A. Martin Wainwright (University of Akron, US), ‘Royal Relationships as Avenues of Social Resistance: The Cases of Duleep Singh and Abdul Karim’

Siobhan Lambert-Hurley (Loughborough University), ‘Forging Global Networks in the Imperial Era: Atiya Fyzee in Edwardian London’

12.45-14.00 Lunch

14.00-15.30 Parallel Sessions

  • 1a Only Connect: Religious/Philosophical Conversations
    Avanthi Meduri (Roehampton University) 'World Enunciations and Intercultural Dialogue'
    Ron Geaves (Liverpool Hope University), ‘Creating a National Muslim Presence in Britain, 1883-1907’
    John Stevens (University College, London), ‘“Again had Eastern prophets set us free”: Keshab Chandra Sen and the Conflict between Matter and Spirit in mid-Victorian Britain’

  • 1b Stepping on the Threshold: Women Writers, Travel and Identity
    Anna Snaith (King’s College, London), ‘Sarojini Naidu in London’
    Mithu Banerji (Royal Holloway, University of London), ‘An Alternative Renaissance: Toru Dutt’s Subtexts of Defiance and the Reinvention of the Modern Self’
    Shane Malhotra (Open University), ‘Writing the Raj: The Search for Anglo-Indian Understanding in the Novels of Alice Sorabji Pennell’

  • 1c Making Tracks at the End of Empire
    Ruksana Majid (University of Sheffield), ‘“India Invites”: G. V. Desani, the Ministry of Information and Imperialist Propaganda during World War II
    Jackie Gold (Emory University, US), ‘“Civilizing Sabu of India”: Redefining the White Man’s Burden in Interwar Britain’
    Savithri Preetha Nair (Independent Scholar), ‘Doing Science Beyond the Nation: An Indian Woman Scientist in Britain in the War Years, 1939-1945’

  • 1d. Cultural Exchange
    Michael Collins (University College, London), ‘A Passage to England: Rabindranath Tagore in London, 1912-1913’
    Sonal Khullar (University of Washington, US), ‘The Art of Ajanta: From Colonial Discovery to Nationalist Rediscovery’

15.30-16.00 Tea

16.00-17.00 Keynote: Antoinette Burton (University of Illinois, US), ‘Brown, Black and British: Writing Postcolonial Histories’

17.00-17.30 Rozina Visram and Susheila Nasta in conversation with Mukti Jain Campion (Culture Wise, London), ‘Unpacking the Archives and Shifting the Furniture: The Background to “Making Britain”’

17.40-18.00 Launch of the Making Britain Databas

18.00-19.30 Drinks Reception and launch of the exhibition ‘South Asians Making Britain: 1858-1950’, with a welcome by Professor Brigid Heywood (Pro-Vice Chancellor, Open University) and Phil Spence (Director of Scholarship and Collections, British Library)

14 September

09.00-09.30 Registration and refreshments

09.30-10.30 Keynote: Humayun Ansari (Royal Holloway, University of London), ‘Mosque Making and Community Building in London’s East End, 1910-2010’

10.30-11.45 Plenary Panel: For King and Country? South Asian Soldiers in the First and Second World Wars

Santanu Das (Queen Mary, University of London), ‘The Singing Sepoy: India, Empire and Writing the Great War’

Dominiek Dendooven (‘In Flanders Fields’ Museum, Ieper/Ypres, Belgium), ‘Commemorating Non-European Involvement in the First World War in Belgium, 1998-2010’

Florian Stadtler (Open University), ‘Battle for Britain? South Asian Soldiers in Britain during the Second World War’

11.45-12.00 Tea/Coffee

12.00-13.00 Parallel Sessions

  • 2a Lascars in Britain
    Georgie Wemyss (Goldsmiths, University of London), ‘The 1939-40 “Lascar” Strikes: Indian Seafarers, Citizenship and Contested British Histories
    Ceri-Anne Fidler (Cardiff University), ‘Navigating Britishness: The Case of South Asian Seafarers, c.1900-1950’

  • 2b Nervous Conditions: Living Mixed Race
    Rehana Ahmed (Open University), ‘“The Lure of the Coloured Man”: Representations of Mixed-Race Marriages in Interwar Britain’
    Shompa Lahiri (Queen Mary, University of London), ‘“Going Native”: Olive Christian Malvery in Imperial London’

  • 2c The Next Generation
    Julian M. Simpson (University of Manchester), ‘Setting the Scene for NHS Postwar Expansion: South Asian Doctors in Britain before 1948’
    Ansar Ahmed Ullah (Swadhinata Trust, London), ‘Tales of Three Generations of Lascars’

13.00-14.00 Lunch

14.00-14.45 In Conversation: Meera Syal with Shyama Perera, ‘Weaving the Threads of South Asian Britain: Past Histories, Present Futures’

14.45-15.15 Tea

15.15-16.45 Plenary Panel, Re-Presenting South Asia in London

Elleke Boehmer and Alex Bubb (University of Oxford), ‘India Arrived: Finding the Familiar in London’s Foreign Fields’

Sarah Turner (University of York), ‘“Highly Charged Lines”: Representations of South Asia in Edwardian London’

Ann David (Roehampton University), ‘Orientalism Challenged: South Asian Dance Performance in London, 1930-1950’

16.45-17.30 Plenary Roundtable Discussion Chair: Elleke Boehmer. Participants: Meena Alexander (Graduate Centre, City University of New York), Humayun Ansari (Royal Holloway, University of London), Antoinette Burton (University of Illinois, US), Bashabi Fraser (Edinburgh Napier University), Vivian Ibrahim (University College Cork).

17.30 Thanks and Close

Abstracts and biographies:

The Open Univerisity
The University of Oxford
King's College London

Making Britain: South Asian Visions of Home and Abroad, 1870–1950 supported by

The Arts & Humanities Research Council

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