ADI South Asia Workshop - Reimagining Pakistan – Københavns Universitet

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ADI South Asia Workshop - Reimagining Pakistan


In the popular imaginary, Pakistan seldom appears outside the framework of War on Terror - it has become the ‘theatre of war' where ideological and actual battles are played out in everyday life. The very name ‘Pakistan' is often no longer mentioned on its own, it is firmly hyphenated with Afghanistan: Af-Pak, an unbounded chaotic space defined by excessive violence and unending turmoil. It is, as if, no histories, geographies, cultural identities of this space existed prior to its global debut as a source of threat.

This workshop intends to examine this popular though ahistorical discourse that, at once, limits our understanding and forecloses any possibility of seeking alternative visions of this region. The aim is to bring together ideas that are not necessarily bound to the imperatives of terror/security, and in doing so address a vast social-political-cultural space that has remained unexplored so far. The intention is to gain a deeper understanding of Pakistan that goes beyond the rhetoric of ‘fundamentalism' and ‘terrorism' that currently defines it.

The workshop invites original research, both theoretical and empirical, on the themes related to contemporary Pakistan from as varied fields as development, anthropology, history, sociology and literature. Through their ongoing research, participants will be asked to address the question of popular imagination, discourses and narratives that provoke, inspire and even challenge their work in this region: and more importantly, if one might ‘re-imagine' Pakistan outside the current discourses?

A public lecture by Tariq Ali, historian, novelist and editor of New Left Review will follow the paper presentations.

Speakers include Dr. Markus Daechsel and Michael Jarlner among others.

The event is public. Participation is free. Registration is required.
For registration contact, Marie Yoshida

For further information on the workshop contact Dr. Ravinder Kaur

Centre of Global South Asian Studies, Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, Faculty of Humanities, University of Copenhagen