Dalit Literature In / And Translation

An international conference at the British Centre for Literary Translation
University of East Anglia

29 & 30 June 2015

Local organiser: Duncan Large

This conference was the fourth event hosted by the AHRC-funded Research Network ‘Writing, Analysing, Translating Dalit Literature’. After the first events of the series in Nottingham and Leicester (June 2014) and Montpellier (October 2014), the theme of this two-day conference at UEA was the analysis of the concepts of literary and cultural translation in relation to dalit literature. We invited papers that explored the specific challenges that were involved in the translation of dalit literature from one vernacular language to another, or from one vernacular language to a European language. What were the differences between translating dalit literature into an Indian vernacular language and a European language? We were also interested in exploring the ways in which different readerships were inscribed in dalit texts and how translation responded to, or reacted against, this inscription. To what extent were the translated texts re-encoded for a different audience, pan-Indian, non-dalit or global? The politics of which texts were selected for translation, or not selected, were also examined, as well as the publishing, marketing and reception of dalit literature translations. Participants were encouraged to analyse the ways dalit literature performed a translation of subaltern and often oral art forms, and to explore how this form of cultural translation translated, or not, into different languages. Ultimately, which features of dalit literature resisted translation? What was left out and irredeemably lost? These questions were asked in relation to literary texts and their translations but also in relation to films, videos and other documentaries. The many ways caste and dalitness travelled, or not, from one language to another, through subtitles and their translations, was also considered.

Click here to see the conference flyer.

See below the list of abstracts:

List of abstracts

Payal AGARWAL (Delhi University)

Translation as Action: Cast(e)ing the Long Shadow of Anger

Translation exists in the canonical, and Brahmanical, traditions variously as means of disseminating “knowledge”, sharing experiences, and forging solidarities in certain cases. In the context of Dalit Literature, the translation of a Dalit text is not simply “re-encod[ing] for a different audience, pan-Indian, non-Dalit or global”. The questions that trouble the translator of a Dalit text are somewhat different. When talking about Dalit literature one is confronted with the whole histories of oppression which guide the pen of the Dalit writers like Sharan Kumar Limbale, Omprakash Valmiki, and others. Valmiki, in the introduction to his autobiographical book, Joothan, says that writing the book was a very painful exercise as if he was reliving his arduous past.

Sujit Mukherjee, the pioneer of translation studies in India, has described translation as both a ‘discovery’ and ‘recovery’: the literature in the process of translation gets discovered for people who are unfamiliar with the source language and culture, and recovered from the dusty annals of anonymity. Do these and similar ‘theories’ fit into the arena of translating Dalit literature? How do we account for the ‘intention’ (to borrow from Walter Benjamin) of the translator in translating any text?

Limbale points out that in his writings he is guided by the anger at the oppressive caste systems which have taken on the characteristics of mob mentality in the living Dalit history, besides the centuries of injustice inflicted on people of lower castes. How does one translate experiences for which no words exist in a language such as English (e.g., “joothan” too is untranslatable in English). This paper will try to locate the translation of Dalit literature in the context of existing paradigms which work as guiding principles in translation studies and attempt to situate translating of Dalit texts within the struggles for Dalit emancipation. Indeed, it will examine if this translation could be seen as embodying acts of resistance and expressions of anger.

 

Laura BRUECK (Northwestern University)

A question of language? The politics of translating Dalit literature for a new Indian audience

This paper considers the circulation of two recently “translated” Dalit texts to engage with fundamental questions about the politics of the translation, circulation, and reception of Dalit texts within India that have engaged me since I began my work as a scholar and translator (especially as a non-Dalit, non-Indian one) of Dalit literature more than a decade ago.

In 2013, Navayana published my collection of translations of Ajay Navaria’s short stories, Unclaimed Terrain.  The book prompted Pankaj Mishra to proclaim in The Guardian, that the collection hinted “at the yet unrevealed depth and diversity of Indian literatures”.  Translation to English, Mishra suggested pithily, thus elevates Navaria’s stories from the vernacular confines of “Hindi” or “Dalit” in India to the vaunted heights of “Indian literature” in the rest of the world.  But this “revelation” – as is also evident from the translation’s enthusiastic critical reception in mainstream North Indian news media – is not merely one for English-speaking audiences, but for Hindi-speaking ones too, albeit ones who do not themselves deign to read in Hindi.

In 2014, Navayana published a newly annotated edition of Ambedkar’s 1936 speech, Annihilation of Caste, with an extensive introduction by Arundhati Roy.  The release of the book elicited strident critique from many Dalit writers and critics.  They cried appropriation – a text that they saw as their own had been annotated by a Brahmin and introduced by a (world-famous) non-Dalit.  Anand has spoken of this new paratextual framing of the 70-year old text as an act of translation in its original sense, a “carrying-over” of a text from one audience to another.  “Would all of you have turned up,” he asks of the well-heeled audience at Delhi’s Habitat Center at the book’s launch, “if this were a Dalit-run, Dalit-led enterprise?”  The implied answer is, of course, no.

What does translation (to English, or as a means of interpreting for a new audience) mean for Dalit literature? Do the hierarchies of literary languages and authorial celebrity in India collude to ironically disenfranchise “vernacular” texts, authors, and publishers, even as they seek to open up new modes of access to understanding and appreciating the originals?  Does a wider audience – one who demands that the Dalit literature they read be filtered through English or the interpretive lens of the literary elite – in fact endanger Dalit writing?

 

Mudnakudu CHINNASWAMY (writer)

Translation of Dalit literature

Translation is essentially to communicate the meaning of one language into another without disturbing the originally felt emotions. In India the language needs to be looked into from caste perspective also as the caste is the ‘in thing’ in the Indian milieu. The higher the caste the more sophistication and the lower it goes down in the vertical hierarchy, the more the language becomes rugged, colloquial, sometimes vituperative. With the dawn of dalit literature the low caste and untouchables who are necessarily working class people, have woken up and started writing their experiences stricken with melancholies. The puritans have started mocking both the texture and the content. In fact the world of majority India began to unravel with dalit (and other backward castes) writing. When a collection of kannada short stories ‘Dyavanuru’ which was in spoken dialect of low caste, was published the upper caste intelligentsia cried for its translation into (formal) kannada!?

Language is always interwoven with native culture. Therefore culture specific jargons which can speak beyond words cannot find substitutes easily in another language. Here comes a challenge for the translator. It may be nearly possible if the translation is to another vernacular of the same cultural background. If it is for a foreign language the difficulty is multiplied. The names like Saraswathi, Hanumantha, Nagaraja have to be translated as goddess of learning, monkey god, snake god and so on. These names could be used as they are in regional vernacular. Similarly there are ritual specific jargons which have no parallels, in which case an appendix has to be used to explain the details with meanings.

On the whole it can be said that the text demands the translator to be sincere to the original. And the reader demands more clarity in translation. The translator is obligated to both of them and therefore needs to compromise in between.

 

Kalyan DAS (Presidency University, Kolkata)

(Im)possibility of Translating Identities: Translator, Dalit litterateur  and the ‘Truth’ of Dalit Experience

In the Faber & Faber edition of the English translation of his novel The Joke, Milan Kundera felt compelled to write about some of his frustrating experiences as an author who felt literally helpless as his ‘authorial’ voice got heavily compromised (almost lost in translations)  in the earlier translations of the original text  into the English language. The Joke, Kundera informs, has five English translations. His frustration with the first four translations is primarily based on his inability to recognize the translated text as his own text. For authors like him ‘translation-adaptations’ are ‘unacceptable’. This problem of losing the indictment of the authorial voice in the translation, in my opinion, has several serious aesthetic and  political implications as the ‘authenticity of the authorial voice’ gets inextricably intertwined with the ‘translating self’ on one hand and a  persistent presence of the author’s Dalit/ ‘lower caste’ self  in the context of Dalit literature. A concern for such implications also provokes us to ponder over other related questions – if the claims of ‘authentic’ experience is central to the aesthetics of Dalit writings, then how do we trust a non-dalit translator? How far can she remain ‘true’ to the text if she is not a dalit (if we accept Wendy Doniger’s idea of translation as an act of interpretation/ reading? This view is also upheld by poets like Boris Pasternak)? Having addressed such relatively obvious questions, in my paper, I would like to contest the very notion of the ‘authorial self’ or ‘who serves the ‘author-function’ in the Dalit writings. If the text in question, like most dalit writings, is heavily auto-biographical, then how does the translator reconcile the voice of the ‘I’-as-a-narrator who simultaneously captures the suffering voices of ‘we’-as-a-dalit community? In my pursuit of addressing such questions, I look into the English translation of Adwaita Mallabarman’s posthumously published  Titas Ekti Nodir Naam (A River Called Titash) (1956)  by Canada based Bengalee translator-academic Kalpana Bardhan to turn the focus on the constant crisscrossing of  separate and similar identities of the ‘translating self’ and the ‘authorial self’. While the loss of the same ‘motherland’ (then  East Pakistan and now Bangladesh) during India’s partition, a nostalgic reminiscence of that fundamental loss, shared love for the ‘larger’  Bengali identity mark the similarities between the two, their other identities of caste, gender, class and the cultural chasm between the ‘source’( Bengali) and ‘target’ (English)  languages continue to haunt the ‘authenticity’ of an ‘authoritative’ translation of a text originally  produced in a localized Bengali tongue by an author who identified himself as a ‘ lower caste malo (his fishermen community)’ (instead of  but not necessarily opposed to a ‘dalit’ identity). For Bardhan, the task of translation is more complex because of  the semi-autobiographical nature of the text, the presence of written versions of popular folk songs sung by the community members and  the absence of the author as an interlocutor who could play the role of ‘guiding’ the translator as Kundera did.

 

 

Joyjit GHOSH (Vidyasagar University, West Bengal)

Problems and Prospects of Translating Bangla Dalit Poetry in English: A Personal Experience

Translation, according to Lawrence Venuti, is a site of multiple determinations —linguistic, cultural, ideological and even political. We experience this when we attempt to translate Bangla Dalit poetry in English. In this proposed paper we would like to look at the issue from two perspectives—those of problem and prospect. The problematic of translation is an unavoidable issue as it demands a culture-specific linguistic conversion. But the necessity of translation can never be exaggerated for it initiates a meaningful dialogue between two or more cultures that express themselves in different tongues.

As per our ‘personal’ experience of translation, the poetry of Kalyani Chanral Thakur, one of the major Dalit voices in West Bengal is the chief concern here. To her credit Kalyani has three anthologies of poems and many poems from these anthologies have been translated and published both in Hindi (by Jitendra Jitangsu) [ref. Ashwa Series] and in English (by Dr. Joyjit Ghosh) [ref. Muse India, Issue 46, 2012, ISSN: 0975-1815]. All these anthologies of the poet have been published in Bangla from the same publishing house, significantly named ‘Chaturtha Duniya’ (‘Fourth World’ publication), after being rejected by several renowned Bengali publishing houses simply after an excuse of limited readership (though in reality each of Kalyani’s anthologies have seen multiple editions within a short period of four years!). Her poems, for their fiery articulation of protest against caste-based oppression and aesthetic quality deserve a greater cultural visibility and even an international recognition. Due to the politics of representation manoeuvred by the upper order of Bengali society, she still remains a marginal voice.

Kalyani Thakur’s poems pose certain challenges to the translators in English. As cultural mediators, her translators often feel it difficult to translate the allusions to several literary/ cultural texts, proverbs and colloquial expressions which abound in her poetry. Moreover, the translators often find themselves at a loss when they do not find the lexical or syntactical substitute in English for her poetic expressions of a Dalit and distinctly feminine sensibility.

 

Mohan DHARAVATH (EFL-U, Hyderabad)

Translating the Lambada: Orality, Performance and Experience

The Lambadas, a nomadic tribal community in India, have a rich tradition of oral narratives, which includes songs, riddles, legends, aphorisms and so on. In the absence of a lexical script, these short stories, narrated in Goar-boli (an Indo-Aryan language influenced by several Indian languages) during every major social occasion, serve to pass on legends of local heroes and warriors. The stories not only entertain, but also help the Lambadas to pass on their history and criticize those in power.

But these oral narratives cannot be translated adequately because of certain cultural barriers. There is an ‘inadequacy’ of available words in Goar-boli. Linguistic expression is often concurrent with performance. The oral tradition of Lambadas can be comprehended in all its richness only if the translator has access to the cultural codices of the community. However, in the absence of well-documented audio-visual texts recording the performative aspect of Lambada life, the translator would struggle to come to terms with the dynamics of power and resistance embedded in these narratives.

Current studies on translation, particularly those of Dalit and Adivasi literature, cannot evade the recent theory of experience. Translation, like representation, is mediated through intentionality, medium, inclusions and exclusions, structures of privilege and claims of experience. Such mediations risk the possibility of exoticizing representations of the Adivasi. Hence, the tones, gestures and memories evoked by each of these oral narratives can only be decoded and re-presented by those who share the lived experience of the community. My study will add to the existing research in the field of folk traditions in India and will help decipher oral traditions which are threatened by the pervasiveness of modernization.

 

Rowena HILL (independent scholar and translator)

Translating Mudnakudu Chinnaswamy, Dalit Poet in Kannada

The experience of translating the Kannada poetry of Mudnakudu Chinnaswamy into English and Spanish leads to a series of understandings. In dalit poetry, because of the urgency of its message, faithfulness to the text seems particularly important, and at the same time it is particularly difficult. The language used may be a dialect, and will certainly contain non-standard features. It may depend on rhythm to give it a sense of form, and the rhythms of Kannada, with its ‘back to front’ syntax and its repetitive verb endings, can only be hinted at in a European language. It may use terms which require explanation: should we use footnotes or distort the text? There is also the question of the (non)equivalence of terms for emotions. Simplicity, the straightforward rendering of the experience in the poem, is the most effective way to allow readers to identify with it. However, though for dalit writers poetry is an instrument of social activism, they choose poetry because of a formal impulse and the translator’s job is to represent both intentions. Examples will be given from the poems. Spanish may be a better language than English for the translation of Kannada.

 

Stephanie KREINER (Heinrich Heine University Dusseldorf, Germany)

The Mystery of the German Silver Kettle: Translating Harish Mangalam’s Short Stories into German

How do you translate Dalit short stories for a Central European audience that knows only little if anything about the history and struggle of Dalits in India and elsewhere? How do you create a bridge between those cultures? How does the purpose of raising awareness of Dalit issues influence the translation of Dalit literature?

Based on the experience gathered during the translation of Harish Mangalam’s short stories into German at Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf on behalf of the Austrian PEN-Club, this paper will explore translational challenges posed by cultural differences between the audience of Dalit literature and the readers of its translation into a Central European language. It will address the well-known Schleiermachian problem of bringing author and readers together. Furthermore, it will deal with aspects such as orality and imagery in Harish Mangalam’s short stories and the methods used for their translation into German.

The German translation of Harish Magalam’s short stories is based on the English translation and not on the Gujarati original due to a lack of Gujarati speakers amongst the German translators. This paper will show how vital the role of the author became in the course of the translation project. Harish Mangalam helped to differentiate between the voice of the author and that of the English translator. He helped to recover what had been lost in the English translation and explained idiosyncratic realia of rural Gujarat that cannot be researched without sufficient language skills in Hindi and Gujarati. The paper will provide an example for the translation of Dalit literature from one vernacular Indian language to a European language while at the same time demonstrating the essential role of English as a lingua franca regarding the global promotion of Dalit literature.

 

Sharankumar LIMBALE (Y.C.M. Open University, Solapur)

In Conversation with Alok Mukherjee and Arun P. Mukherjee

I never feel that I am an author. But I always feel that I am an activist. Writing is the field I work in. My writing is not merely writing, but it is an action against inequality. I am writing for those people, who did not have their own writers for thousands of years. They did not have their own history and culture. Everything that is Dalit (literature, culture, history and language) is destroyed by the caste society. Dalits were prohibited to receive education. Thus they could not create their own culture and literature. The culture and literature of Hindu Caste society was imposed on them. The caste system never gave space for Dalits. Being a Dalit Writer, it is my historical responsibility to talk and write on behalf of Dalits. Dalit Literature is not only literature, but it is the social truth, which caste people want to hide. They don’t want our talk, our struggle and our literature. But we have proved ourselves. Today, our tone and word are most visible and part of caste consciousness.

I write in Marathi, one of the major regional languages of India. I was a regional Dalit Writer. My books have been translated in many Indian regional languages as well as in English. I look at translation as a cultural weapon. I see the translators of my book as cultural brokers, circulating my message in different countries and transporting my communities in different languages.

Translation has given me a name and international recognition. My books are now included on university syllabi. Academics read and do research on my books. Translation has contributed to disseminating my thinking processes. I’m not a single-language author anymore. I had never anticipated I could one day be speaking at universities outside India. I am really delighted and proud of my readers, students, teachers, researchers and my great translators. This is the strength of translation.

Translation destroys the barrier of language and destroys the regionality of literature. When I was caged in my region and regional language, I was only thinking about my caste and my community. But translation has created a bond between other untouchable communities and myself. The English language will destroy regionality of languages and culture. Dr. Ambedkar said that, in India, there are two countries. One is touchable India and other is untouchable India. There is a huge cultural gap. Beyond this gap, it is the translation of Dalit literature that has united Dalits. It has enlightened and encouraged Dalits. It has strengthened the Dalit movement and the language of human rights. The translators of Dalit literature are not always professional translators but they are socially committed. They give back to society with their work of translation.

What is Dalit literature? What is its meaning? The Dalit writer is building a new cultural nation, which is his beautiful dream. Dalit literature is full of the dreams and aspirations of broken men. Dalit put himself in the centre of his creation. He used to be neglected and rejected. Now he is the one who rejects and rebels against all odds. Our action is twice as powerful thanks to translation.

 

Alok MUKHERJEE (independent scholar and translator)

Translating Ramnath Chavan’s Shakshipuram, a Thought Play and Dalit Aesthetics

Ramnath Chavan’s play, Shakshipuram, written originally in Marathi, is based on an event that took place twenty five years ago in Meenakshipuram, a village in the southern Indian state of Tamilnadu. Fed up with the persecution by and excesses of the high caste Hindus, the entire Dalit village converted to Islam. The event unleashed a national outcry, resulting in the passage of anti-conversion legislation in Tamilnadu and elsewhere. Chavan was a witness to the event and in 1991, made it the subject of his highly successful play. The title of the play literally means “witness city.” Its depiction of the impossibility of any liberatory potential within a social structure based on the caste system of Hinduism recalls Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar’s Annihilation of Caste. At the same time, rather than being simply a recreation of the events that took place in Meenakshipuram, the play problematizes the strategy of conversion as a solution. Shakshipuram is an example of Chavan’s notion of “thought play” based on an Ambedkarite Dalit aesthetics.  In this paper I examine the issues that arose for me in translating this “thought play” into English, using the comments of a leading Canadian First Nations playwright, Drew Hayden Taylor, with whom I shared a draft of the translation. Taylor responds as a playwright accustomed to the conventions and practices of Western theatre. From this perspective, he raises the issue of making the translated text familiar to an English-speaking reading public and, in particular, to the Western theatre producer/director unaccustomed to receiving from the playwright detailed and minute stage directions regarding, for example, the portrayal of emotions. My paper looks at the decisions I made as a translator in traversing this terrain between the “unfamiliar” and the “familiar.”

 

Arun Prabha MUKHERJEE (York University, Toronto)

Traduttore Traditore:  Translating Dalit Writing Responsibly

The first time I learned that the translator can also be the betrayer, was while reading the Basanta Koomar Roy translation of classic Bengali text Anandmath by Bankim Chandra Chatterji.  An anti Muslim text had been cleaned up and made into a story of India’s struggle against British colonialism.  The experience left a lasting impression on me about both the powers and responsibilities of a translator.  Translation can easily become an act of violence and betrayal against the text.  Ironically, the betrayal may be approved by the author because s/he is keen to reach the readers in the dominant languages, namely Hindi and/or English.

In my paper, I will examine two Dalit translated texts, namely Joothan, by Omprakash Valmiki, and Akkarmashi, by Sharankumar Limbale.  I will compare the English translations with the original Hindi and Marathi versions to speak about the ‘betrayals’ that creep in and transform the original for the worse.

 

Sipra MUKHERJEE (West Bengal State University)

The Translator as the Betrayer: the Political Dynamics of the Process of Translation

Translation into an Indian vernacular and translation into a European language has one cardinal difference: its audience. The reach of the first is implicitly assumed to be within the nation and that of the second, international. This assumed difference of audience introduces seemingly irrelevant emotions into the process of translation, that of honour, dignity, loyalty and shame. In the context of the translation of Dalit texts from an Indian vernacular to a European/world language, the translator runs the risk of being viewed/ viewing herself as facilitator to a situation where the ‘shame’ of a country is revealed to the world. Translation into a world language greatly increases the visibility of a Dalit text since many Dalit books are published through small vernacular presses with limited reach.

This is not unique to Dalit literature. It is history from James Joyce to V. S. Naipaul to Taslima Nasreen to Orhan Pamuk, whenever the author/translator have used a language that carries a text beyond borders. But it is especially true of Dalit literature where we are dealing with injustice and inhumanity of one native community over another. Ideological, ethnic, religious, or moral reasons such as lack of patriotism are being cited to discourage or ban translations.  In the increasingly intolerant milieu that we appear to be moving into, Dalit narratives, seen to be severely challenging the meta-narrative of the nation’s mainstream and threatening to rewrite history, are becoming problematic to translate.

The central problem of translation in general and interpreting in particular is that of control. The perception of the interpreter as an informer, a potential betrayer of secrets, is a powerful concept that may, and indeed has, manipulated the hand of the translator. My paper will deal with both the external forces of suppression as well as the self-censorship that threatens the fidelity of the translation process, with tentative (very) suggestions of processes that may help to take our work beyond the politics of the powerful.

 

Maya PANDIT (EFL-U, Hyderabad)

Translating Dalit Literature: Redrawing the Map of Cultural Politics

The presentation looks at translation as a culturally and politically motivated form of action that seeks to redefine existing traditions and creating new ones in the realm of imaginative articulations. It also represents an intervention in the hegemonic practices within and outside of the culture where it is located. There are multiple levels of the resistance that it represents. Firstly, it attempts to resist the process of cultural and linguistic colonization from outside. Modern Marathi language and literature is often described as the reincarnation of English. Translation of literature from Marathi into English seeks to change the balance of power within “Eng. Lit. in translation.”  Secondly, by choosing to work with the texts of a marginalized and oppressed community, it challenges the processes of internal colonization represented by the hegemonic aesthetic, metaphysical and universalist norms within Marathi literature,  as it brings to the fore a literature and a tradition that  have resisted these norms for centuries in diverse forms.

Another impetus behind translation of dalit literature is also to challenge the empiricist notions of experience and knowledge that are established in academic and literary critical discourses. Dalit literature helps us rethink knowledge and the subject who produces that knowledge in a far more complex way.   This literature disrupts the limits of the so-called “legitimate” knowledge to open up complex and multidimensional sites of contestation and resistance to the ideologies and practices of exclusionary cultural politics. A comparison of Baby Kamble’s The Prisons we Broke and Atre’s Gavgada, an established sociological account of the caste system, makes this clear.

In the final part of the presentation, the linguistic, cultural and political challenges posed by dalit literature to translation with respect to various forms, such as autobiography, theatre and discursive writing, have been discussed. The texts include Baby Kamble’s Prisons We Broke, Urmila Pawar’s Weave of my Life, Sanjay Pawar’s Pass the Buck on Brother, and Mahatma Phule’s Slavery, among others.   This  includes a brief discussion of issues such as the ideological, linguistic and cultural-political  strategies of translation related to the ‘the speaking voice’ and the translator’s voice;  gendered articulations, translation and patriarchy; processes of modernity and the construction of the Subject through translation; changing notions of the form,  functions and traditions within dalit writing and the translation culture in Marathi.

 

Urmila PAWAR (writer)

A Walk to Remember

Aaydan, my autobiography, will form the basis of my talk. Dr. Maya Pandit has done a marvelous job in translating it into English while retaining the true essence of Marathi native language and mindset. Aaydan means “Things made of Bamboos”. In those times, only untouchable caste used to do this kind of job, particularly in the Konkan region of India. My father passed away when I was in 3rd standard but he made sure that my mother’s prime job was to look after their kids’ (we were four ) education; my mother was herself an illiterate  but by making baskets from bamboos she took care of our education.  Education really made a difference in my life and taught me that I have to look up though I was being humiliated constantly because of my caste. It made me stronger. The second most important change came in to my life after converting to Buddhism. The fear of God, fate and ghost went away after converting. You have to stand on your own feet and see not only through your eyes, but also use your heart to see things. I learned this teaching from D. B. R. Ambedkar’s books and his thinking. While doing a job, bringing up three kids, and studying simultaneously, writing and participating in movements was really difficult for me, but it gave me the strength to go through all this. And I was able to get over my problems I was facing at home or elsewhere. Like the movement of black literature in America, in 1960 Dalit literature came in to the limelight in India by opposing casteism.  Marathi literature was jolted after the cruel reality shock appearing through dalit sahitya. But after a certain time this dalit sahitya turned in to a pattern. Maybe Aaydan was a little different. It captured not only the ugliness of the caste system but the beauties of one’s heart.

When Maya told me of her idea of translating it into English, I really felt happy because it means reaching out to a wider audience. It is every writer’s dream that at least one of their book gets published in English. Aaydan was translated into English, Hindi and Kannada language. Guajarati and Malayalam translation are in process. In 1978, Daya Pawar’s Autobiography BALUT was the first autobiography in Dalit sahitya . It was translated into French. Daya Pawar wanted it to be translated into English as well but that didn’t happen. He’s no more today and the pain of that still remains with his family. Being from the Konkan region herself, Maya was well-versed in their culture and native language.

Many autobiographies were published in Dalit sahitya and their Nayak (Hero) has traveled to city from village but they stopped at that point. How was their progress in the city, how did people from other castes behave towards them and how did they use their experience to further the Dalit cause? In my autobiography I have touched upon this so that readers find it more relevant and able to have a closer look into Dalit people’s lives. Even some Dalits think that I have written this autobiography for that audience (Other castes) only with whom I have shared many experiences.

As far as my experience is concerned, being translated in English made my autobiography available to the farthest parts of the world and I can reach out to potential readers, which otherwise would almost have been impossible for me. It really makes me happy.

 

Julia PERCZEL (School of Oriental and African Studies)

The Role of Translation in Mainstreaming Dalit Literature

Hindi dalit literature had so far been addressed and analysed in terms of Frazer’s concept of public and counter-public and, in the more recent publication of Beth (2014), Bourdieu’s field theory. While these frameworks added greatly to our understanding of Hindi dalit writing as well as of its meaning and position in contemporary South Asian literary politics, in this paper I propose that neither pointed to an important element in the Hindi dalit literary formation—namely, change. While dalit literature had become one of the branches of literature on which Hindi litterateurs and foreign academics are talking and doing research, and while no Hindi publisher could afford to leave dalit literature out of its list, while the number of English language translations is steadily increasing, it is still largely being evaluated in English language academia in terms of the vocabulary of radicalism developed to justify its very existence. While I do not mean to imply that dalit literature has arrived in its fullest sense, a processual approach based on Raymond Williams’ theory of literature as the result of indissoluble processes may prove useful understanding how the meaning of dalit literature changes with translation—in both its narrow and wider meanings. Translation is the process through which shifts in the dalit literary formation can be captured. This paper views translation a force that is both set into and sets into motion the mainstreaming of dalit literature enabling its penetration to fields where it was not only not available but also not legible before. In this paper I focus on the step of publishing dalit literature in English translation with reference to the publishing process of Ajay Navaria’s short story collection, Unclaimed Terrain, by Navayana. Since publishing this book involved a positioning against general trends in publishing dalit literature, especially the publishing of autobiographies, it highlights the ways in which dalit literature changes meaning in translation.

 

Mamta G. SAGAR (Bangalore University)

Poetics and Politics of Representations

This paper looks into the selection, translation and representation of Vachanas from the 12th century Kannada literary tradition. Various marginalised groups including women and dalits later in the contemporary times reclaim Vachanas, the form of writing developed during the 12th century socio-political movement, to put forward the poetics and politics of their representations. The exclusive politics of translation that neglects the inclusiveness of Vachana tradition leads to the marginalisation of the claimed diverse representations proposed by women and dalits made through the reclaiming of Vachanas. The paper looks at the understanding, canonisation and representations of the Dalit discourse along the lines of what gets translated into culture at various junctures of time and what gets communicated through the represented ‘Dalitness’ proposed through translations. The paper finally looks into caste and the dalitness that travel into gender representations in the contemporary Kannada literature. Vachanas, poetry and excerpts from selected prose are used to demonstrate the proposed argument.

 

Jaydeep SARANGI (Jogesh Chandra Chaudhuri College, Calcutta University)

Translation as Commitment with a Purpose:  A close Study of Translation Project Involving Bengali Dalit Autobiography into English

Dalit Literature in India has emerged from historical, sociological, cultural, economic as well as political inequity, which largely subverts the age-old stereotypes and contributes to its counter-canonical implications. The fascinating nature of Dalit Literature, mostly available in translation, lies in the fact that it possesses an ironical strength of subverting the essentializing approach of the privileged social positions. Dalit Literature is a corpus marked by opposition, revolt, ethnic re-discovery as well as a process of aesthetic re-creation. Translation is necessarily an interdisciplinary act embracing deeply rooted in the cultures of the translator and what is being translated. Translation, especially a dalit text from a regional language into English survives with fuzzy possibilities and it leaves room for different versions when time ticks to a new frame of reference.  I along with Angana Dutta completed the English translation of Manohar Mouli Biswas’ Bengali autobiography Amar Bhubane Ami Beche Thaki (2013) and submitted the MS to Stree Samya, Kolkata. The present translation project consists of the autobiography and a detailed interview of the author. One of the biggest challenges faced by the translators is to recreate before the English reading audience, the unfamiliar artefacts, sceneries, soundscapes, fragrances, dialects and emotions of life experienced in decades ago in remote Bengal. A lengthy glossary aids the readers delve into as authentic an experience as possible, with the least conscious intervention from the translators. We are sure A Note on the Bengali Calendar and Kinship Terms are going to help the readers from different cultural backgrounds.

 

Shoma SEN (RTM Nagpur University, Nagpur)

The Choice of Writing in English: Short Stories of B. Rangrao and Narendra Jadhav’s Outcaste

In this paper I would like to examine what happens when the mediation of English, the language and certain cultural and pedagogical implications that come along with it, takes place in writing/rewriting dalit creative literature. When the early dalit writers embarked upon their journey, mainstream literature scoffed at their choice of subject matter and their avoidance of “standard” language. The next generation of Dalit writers, educated and well versed in literary traditions had the choice to write or reject this standard language. Today, a few dalit writers have chosen to write in English itself. B. Rangrao is a retired Professor of English from a university department in a metropolitan city who has written not only critical works on English literature but poetry, not necessarily on social or caste issues, in English itself. His collection of ten dalit short stories called Desperate Men and Women (2013) have been written in English and he can be called one of the few Indian writers in English who is dalit or one of the few dalit creative writers from India who writes in English. Narendra Jadhav, an erudite dalit intellectual, a noted bureaucrat, economist and social scientist, has translated his own autobiography Aaamcha Baap aan Amhi from Marathi into English himself as Outcaste (2007). In the process he has rewritten the lengthy book into a well constructed, shorter version. While the urge to write in English and reach out to a larger, international audience and by doing so to enter the realm of world literature written in English with dalit issues in focus, is indeed remarkable, does the mediation of English dilute the dalit flavor?  Though the cultural and language nuances are richer in some of the dalit writings in Marathi, yet, I would probably conclude that these writings are far more genuine in their depiction of dalit life, in portraying the poignancy of dalithood than any other creative writing written in English by Indians.

 

Shobha Padmakar SHINDE (North Maharashtra University, Jalgaon)

Marathi Dalit Autobiography in English: A Perilous Journey of Cultural Transfer and Meaning

Dalit literature serves the purpose of social intervention and carries strong militant connotations. It is essential for a right understanding of Dalit autobiographies to keep in mind the historical, social and cultural setting. The context, perspectives and characteristics of the historical trend differently qualify the concept of autobiographies vis – a – vis the Western definition of the genre. Here, the subject is an individual among many who shares the same type of cultural ostracism, physical repression and social stigma, the result being that he/she is kept out of the legitimate boundaries of human society. Dalit autobiography is about self-assertion and protest, the course of a quest, and the construction of an identity of one’s own by those who have been denied full human dignity. This preferred genre shows the effort of Dalit writers to represent ‘themselves to themselves and to others’ in their own terms. These personal, emotional and direct testimonies are relevant documents of “social history”.

In this article I have tried to analyse, study and interpret Urmila Pawar’s “Ayaadan” translated as “The Weave of My Life”; Baby Kamble’s “Jeene Amche” translated as “The Prisons We Broke” and Sharankumar Limbale’s “Akkarmashi” translated as “The Outcaste” in English. These are autobiographies written in Marathi; as well as various dialects, which when translated in English involve a certain loss in authenticity and also lead to cultural distancing. Sometimes the sentences in English translation, sound awkward as they do not carry the subtle nuances of the local dialects. But the translator’s efforts are to be commended as they have made a tremendous contribution to Dalit literature- in-translation by reaching out to a world audience, by bringing out the honesty, authenticity and the ironic and sardonic tones of bitterness, and rages of the dalit persona caught in the grim social realities of Indian society and the contradiction inherent in them.

 

List of bios

Payal Agarwal is Assistant Professor in English Studies in Delhi University, India. Her primary areas of research interests include translation studies, film studies, theatre studies, Dalit literature, and Renaissance literature. She has translated and published a number of short stories and poems from Hindi to English. Payal completed her graduate and post-graduate studies from the University of Delhi and her MPhil dissertation in film studies from Jamia Millia Islamia University, New Delhi. She is currently in the process of translating a Dalit text from Hindi to English. In the past, Payal was associated with an activist theatre group in New Delhi, India where she acted on proscenium stage and also conducted theatre workshops with women and children in the slums and schools in different parts of the country. agarwalpayall@gmail.com

Laura Brueck is Associate Professor of Hindi Literature at Northwestern University, USA. Her most recent book, Writing Resistance: The Rhetorical Imagination of Contemporary Dalit Literature (Columbia University Press, 2014), focuses on the literary politics of the contemporary Hindi Dalit literary sphere and the aesthetics of the Hindi Dalit short story. She has also published a collection of English translations of Ajay Navaria’s Hindi short stories titled Unclaimed Terrain: Stories by Ajay Navaria (Navayana, 2012). Forthcoming projects include a translated anthology, collaboratively produced with Christi Merrill (University of Michigan), of Hindi Dalit literary texts from a variety of modern and contemporary writers. Brueck also harbors an interest in Indian “pulp” fiction, particularly the genre of detective fiction and crime narratives. laura.brueck@northwestern.edu

Jayan K. Cherian Born in Kerala, India, graduated with honors from Hunter College, BA in Film and Creative Writing and an MFA from The City College of New York in filmmaking. Papilio Buddha (2013) is his debut feature film and he made several experimental documentaries and narrative shorts such as: Shape of the Shapeless (2010), Love in the Time of Foreclosure (2009), Hidden Things (2009), Soul of Solomon (2008), Capturing the Signs of God (2008), Holy Mass (2007), Tree of Life (2007), Simulacra the Reality of the Unreal (2007), The Inner Silence of the Tumult (2007), Hid-entity (2007), and Tandava the Dance of Dissolution (2006). His films were screened at Berlin International Film Festival, BFI London Lesbian Gay Film Festival, Montreal World Film festival and other major festivals around the globe. Won several awards such as: Kerala State Film Special Jury Award for best direction, Kerala Film critics Association Award for Best debut Director. Silver Conch award at Mumbai International Documentary Film (MIFF), Silver Jury prize in San Francisco Shorts, Directors’ Choice Award in Black Maria Film Festival and Honorable Mentions at Athens International Film and Video Festival. He has also published four award-winning volumes of poetry. jayankc@aol.com

Mudnakudu Chinnaswamy, a well-known Kannada poet hails from Mudnakudu village in Chamarajanagar District of Karnataka S. India.  He has two post graduate degrees viz., M.Com. and M.A., with a D.Lit. in Social Sciences. He was a Finance Executive by profession and recently retired as Director (Finance) from Bangalore Metropolitan Transport Corporation.  Poetry is his passion but he worked in other genres of literature as well, besides having a wide range of interests in culture, theatre, cinema and social work.  He has brought out 25 books so far which include 6 collections of poetry, 4 of essays, 3 plays and a collection of short stories. A prominent dalit voice, he has established a niche for himself through his empirical imaging in mellowed tone.  His works have been translated into other Indian vernaculars and widely published. Translations of the selected poems in English have been published in the literary journals like Indian Literature, The New Quest, Little Magazine and e-magazine Muse India (India). Translations have also been published in literary Magazines abroad (in Spanish Arquitrave (Columbia) and Hebrew in Helicon (Israel) in German Driesch Verlag (Austria) and so on. He has attended many International Poetry Conferences and extensively travelled. His poetry in Spanish translated by Rowena Hill ‘Poemas: Mudnakudu Chinnaswamy’ has been published by the Cultural Department of Venezuelan Govt. (CONAC) in 2004 under ‘World Poetry Series’. He is acclaimed to be the first poet from kannada lore to get published with an anthology in Spanish. He has directed two plays for theater groups one being ‘Bahurupi’ for the National Repertoire, Rangayana, Mysore. He has been associated in production of 2 feature films, one of which won gold medal from GOK. Besides he has acted in a documentary ‘maayaa loka’. He has been felicitated in and outside the country and graced with many awards including Karnataka Sahitya Academy Award in 2009 and Karnataka State Award in2014 for life time achievement. mudnakudu@gmail.com

Kalyan Das teaches English literature and cultural studies at Presidency University, Kolkata, India. At Presidency he has been academically engaged with Subaltern related issues. His primary research area revolves around Dalit literature and Dalit historiography in contemporary West Bengal. His research also focuses on how the Subaltern Studies discourse has dealt with literature in their pursuit to create an alternative historiography. While considering both its contributions and limitations in terms of history and historiography, he has tried to look into various dalit narratives and dalit literature as an interdisciplinary area of research. His other research interests include postcolonial studies, New Literatures and theories of Nationalism, race, caste and sexuality. Kkdas87@gmail.com

Mohan Dharavath graduated in Life Sciences from Nizam College (Osmania University). He did his post-graduation in English from EFL University, Hyderabad, where he is currently close to submitting his doctoral thesis. His research focuses on the Images of Adivasi in Indian Writing and looks at representations of tribals in Indian literature. His areas of interest are Adivasi and Dalit Studies, Folk Literature, Post-colonial Studies and Translation Studies. In 2011, he was in University of Dresden, Germany for six months on a DAAD fellowship to study different levels of researches of the Indo-European Tribes. Apart from several international conferences in various universities in India, he has also presented papers at Cambridge University, England and Universidad de Granada, Spain. In Cambridge, he participated in an oral narratives project organized by the World Oral Literature Project. His writings have been published in multiple anthologies and journals, including Routledge, The Commonwealth Review, etc. mohandharavath@gmail.com

Joyjit Ghosh is Assistant Professor of English Literature in the Department of English, Vidyasagar University, Midnapore, West Bengal, India. Both his M.Phil and PhD dissertations were on the works of D.H.Lawrence. His book on the Letters of D.H. Lawrence, published by Authors Press is widely acclaimed. Presently he is working on a UGC research project on the works of Rabindranath Tagore. He is also a well known translator of Bengali (Bangla) Dalit poetry, whose translations have been published by Muse India. He has presented a paper on Lawrence’s letters in an international conference in Paris last April. Many of his research papers and translated poems (originally written by Bengali Dalit poets) have been published by Orient Blackswan and Atlantic publishers. pathu_ghosh@yahoo.co.in

Rowena Hill was born in England in 1938, and went to school in New Zealand. She attended universities in New Zealand, Italy and India (University of Mysore). She taught English Literature at the Universidad de Los Andes in Mérida, Venezuela, where she has lived for forty years. She has published six books of poems in Spanish, as well as poems, essays and translations in periodicals in Venezuela, Colombia, India and USA, and lately on the internet. She has recently translated into English some of Venezuela’s best known poets. Her translations from Kannada include Naming the Nameless, metaphysical poems from ancient Kannada, Mysore, 1983, and the Spanish version, Nombres de lo Innombrable, Caracas, 1993; Poemas de Mudnakudu Chinnaswamy (selected poems of the dalit poet Mudnakudu Chinnaswamy, in Spanish), CONAC, Venezuelan Ministry of Culture, 2005; Flores de tierra dura, women poets of South India, Mérida, Venezuela, 2014. rowenahil@gmail.com

Stephanie Kreiner is a research assistant at the Department for Anglophone Literatures and Literary Translation at Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf. She holds a B.A. in English and Communication and Media Studies as well as a M.A. in Literary Translation for the languages English, Spanish and German. Both degrees have been awarded by the Heinrich-Heine-Universität Düsseldorf. During her studies she spent a semester at Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge. In cooperation with the Austrian PEN-Club she has edited Aus dem Zwielicht – Vierzehn Einblicke in das Leben von Unberührbaren (2015), the German translation of an anthology of short stories by Dalit author Harish Mangalam. She has translated Harish Mangalam’s preface and written an afterword to this anthology about the concept of untouchability. Stephanie Kreiner freelances as an editor, proofreader and manuscript reviewer for several publishers. Her current research interests are intertextuality, textuality, translation theories and Dalit literature. kreiner@phil.hhu.de

Sharankumar Limbale is a Professor and Director in School of Humanities and Social Science of Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University, Nashik. He is the Author of Movement. He is known as an activist writer. To his credit are 50 books and 14 awards for his literary contribution as well as social work. His autobiography Akkarmashi (The Outcaste) is published by Oxford University Press in English. His book on criticism Towards on Esthetics of Dalit Literature is published by Orient BlackSwan, which is included in many university syllabi. There are 8 Ph.D. and 23 M.Phil Degrees awarded on Sharankumar Limbale’s writing.  Sharankumar Limbale’s many books are translated in Indian regional languages and in English. He has delivered speeches in 11 International Seminars and 42 National Seminars as an invitee.  His novel Hindu is available in English by Samya Publication, Kolkata. His short stories collection is forthcoming in English by Orient Blackswan. sharankumarlimbale@gmail.com

Alok Mukherjee is the translator from the Marathi of Sharankumar Limbale’s Towards an Aesthetic of Dalit Literature (2004) and the author of This Gift of English: English Education and the Formation of Alternative Hegemonies in India (2009). He is currently completing work on a translation of Ramnath Chavan’s play, Shakshipuram, while gathering materials for an anthology of Dalit stories published in the past 25 years. Mukherjee has taught South Asian cultures and languages at York University, Toronto, Canada. He is a human rights activist, trainer and educator. a__mukherjee@sympatico.ca

Arun Mukherjee did her graduate work in English at the University of Saugar, India and came to Canada as a Commonwealth Scholar in 1971 to do a Ph.D. at the University of Toronto. Her current teaching interests are South Asian and Minority Canadian literatures. She is the author of The Gospel of Wealth in the American Novel: The Rhetoric of Dreiser and His Contemporaries (Rutledge Revivals, 2014; first published by Croom Helm 1987), Towards an Aesthetic of Opposition: Essays on Literature, Criticism and Cultural Imperialism (Williams-Wallace: 1988), Oppositional Aesthetics: Readings from a Hyphenated Space (TSAR: 1995), and Postcolonialism: My Living (TSAR: 1998). She has edited and written the Introduction of Sharing Our Experience (Canadian Advisory Council on the Status of Women: 1993), an anthology of autobiographical writings by aboriginal women and women of colour. She is a member of York Stories Editorial Collective which edited York Stories: Women in Higher Education (TSAR: 2000). Her translation of Dalit writer Omprakash Valmiki’s autobiography Joothan: A Dalit’s Life (Samya: Kolkata & Columbia U Press: 2003) won the New India Foundation Prize for “the finest book published in India during 2002-2003.” Her translation of Dalit writer Sharankumar Limbale’s novel Hindu was published in 2010 (Samya Publications: Kolkata).   As someone who became a refugee as a one year old when India was partitioned in 1947, she has a deep investment in working for human rights and justice. amukherj@yorku.ca

Sipra Mukherjee is Associate Professor of English, West Bengal State University and currently Visiting Fellow (DSA) at the Department of English, University of Hyderabad.  Her research areas are religion, caste and identity in South Asia, small religious sects, folklore, and twentieth century Indian and European literature. Sipra’s publications include Calcutta Mosaic: The Minority Communities of Calcutta, a Special Issue on ‘Religion and Language’ of International Journal of Sociology of Language, and articles on religious conversion, Ramakrishna Mission, Bengali Muslims, the Matua and Sahebdhani faiths and others. Her present research is on the demographic roots of folklore. mukherjeesipra@gmail.com

Maya Pandit Narkar is a professor at the English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad and combines three disciplines in her academic and cultural work spread over 35 years. A Translation Studies scholar, she worked on the nineteenth century Marathi translations for her doctoral thesis and has produced more than 16 major works of translation from Marathi in to English and some from English into Marathi.  As a Feminist Studies scholar, she has published extensively on women’s writing and produced a documentary film Voices from the Margins on Marathi dalit women writers.  She was a Charles Wallace scholar at University of East Anglia. As an activist in women’s movement and experimental and street theatre, she worked extensively on issues of women, caste and class oppression. As an ELT scholar she has published many books on communicative English and teacher development programmes. Her publications include Gopal Ganesh Agarkar and Adventures with Grammar apart from many research papers in books and journals. She has participated in many international conferences and workshops in several countries. mayapandit@gmail.com

Urmila Pawar was born in the small village in Ratnagiri as the youngest child of a Dalit family. She learned early in life the meaning of her subordination as a woman and as a Dalit. A prolific writer, her ten books published include three Short Story Collections; selected stories were translated into English as Mother Wit by Prof. Veena Deo of Hamline University USA. She has won many prestigious prizes for her sensitive exploration of the lives of Dalit women in India. Her Autobiography Aydaan is a part of Syllabus of the University of Columbia (USA) from 2009 and was translated into English, Hindi and Kannada. Recently Aydaan has been adapted for a Marathi play by legendry Marathi play director Sushma Deshpande and is also in the process of being adapted in Hindi and English as well. Aydaan still continues to touch the heart of all lovers of Marathi literature. Pawar.urmila@yahoo.com

Julia Perczel had worked at Navayana, the New Delhi based publishing house that brought out Ajay Navaria’s Unclaimed Terrain among other volumes of dalit literature and on caste from an anti caste perspective. She holds a BA from SOAS in Hindi and Development studies and an MA in Sociology and Anthropology from Central European University, Budapest. Having written her MA thesis on Navaria’s writing that emerges from the urban context of the New Delhi metropolis, she is eager to get more closely and ethnographically acquainted with the urban dalit living. The focus of this research will be the relationship between inter-jati difference making between different dalit castes and their voting practices—a particularly acute question in light of the result of the recent general elections. Currently she is enrolled in her second MA—Intensive South Asian Studies two-year—at SOAS, which provides the space, time and institutional support to complete this research. pupillala@gmail.com

Mamta Sagar is a Kannada poet, playwright, translator and academic. She has five collections of poems, four plays, an anthology of column writing, a collection of critical essays on gender, language, literature and culture and a book on Slovenian-Kannada Literature Interactions to her credit. Her creative works and critical writings are published in anthologies and journals in India and abroad. Her poetry and plays are included within the educational textbooks of Jain University and Mahatma Gandhi University, India and the Cambridge University Press, UK. She has conducted theatre and poetry workshops culminating with readings and productions for women, children and people from marginalised communities. Her poems are composed with music by known musicians and used in Kannada cinemas. AUROPILIS invited her as Poet in Residence to Belgrade, Serbia in 2012. She is now visiting the UK on CWIT Translation Fellowship at UEA, Norwich. Mamta teaches at the Centre for Kannada Studies, Bangalore University, India. mamtasagar@gmail.com

Jaydeep Sarangi is a leading scholar, poet and critic on marginal literatures and Indian Writing in English with twenty-nine books and hundred research articles. Widely anthologised and reviewed as a poet, and translator Dr Sarangi has delivered talks on translation studies in several countries and conducted workshops. He has translated Bengali dalit poems/stories into English as well as edited a number of anthologies of translations of Bengali Dalit writings. He has been collaborating with Stree Samya for translation of Bengali dalit autobiographies. Dr. Jaydeep Sarangi is Associate Professor in English, Dept. of English at Jogesh Chandra Chaudhuri College (Calcutta University). jaydeepsarangi@gmail.com

Shoma Sen is currently teaching at the Department of English, Rashtrasant Tukdoji Maharaj University, Nagpur, India as an Associate Professor. Her areas of interest are Feminism, Gender Studies and Human Rights. She has published research papers and spoken at various platforms on related issues. She was invited as the Keynote speaker by Asia Pacific Research Network for an International Seminar, “Women Resisting Crisis and War” in the Philippines in 2010. She read a paper on “Women, Development and Displacement at a National Seminar organized by the Forum for Inclusive Growth, New Delhi, October 10, 2010, on “Subaltern Women’s Writing” at International Conference in Mumbai in October 2012 and on “Neo-Imperialism in Selected essays of Arundhati Roy” at an International conference at EFL-U, Hyderabad in Jan 2013. Shoma has also participated in civil society investigations on violations of human rights and in people’s tribunals. She has edited a magazine in English and Hindi related to the women’s movement in India. shomasen@hotmail.com

Shobha Padmakar Shinde is currently the Director, School of Language Studies and Research Centre, North Maharashtra University, Jalgaon. With a rich experience of teaching and research extending over a period of thirty years, she has won a national award for teaching excellence in English. She has published more than thirty research articles in national and international conferences in India and abroad. She has recently completed a major research project of the UGC on Indian Feminism and was actively involved in three Ford Foundation Project. Her interests range from Gender Studies, Critical Theories, Dalit Literature. She holds additional charge as the Head, Women’s Studies Centre at North Maharashtra University, Jalgaon.  She has published four books related to theories and literary studies. shobha8@gmail.com