Friday, February 1, 2013

Conference and Festival

8-10 FEB 2013

CHANDIGARH SAHITYA AKADEMI has, over the last five years, tried to make an impact in the city. Regular Literary Programs have been held – poetry symposia, meet-the-writer sessions, book launches, readings, seminars and invited lectures. Publication work has been going on out like never before. Awards have been instituted for senior writers of the city. Competitions are held for youngsters. There is no doubt that CSA is now a has an unignorable presence in Chandigarh. It is on Facebook and blog, thus keeping its members informed of its activities.

This Festival of Letters began four years ago in the city as an annual three-day event in which we invite selected writers from other parts of the country to interact with our audience. Whereas this event takes place early in the year, we continue with such activity the rest of the year, too, with at least two major events taking place every month. In the past few years we have had distinguished poets, playwrights and novelists participating in our events. We cater to the interests of all age groups, the senior citizens, the middle rung, as well as young students, involving them in diverse activities.

In the present Festival of Letters there are sessions with invited speakers who will present their works and interact with the audience. There are two sessions devoted to the annual awards for 2012: in the inaugural session we present awards of recognition to senior writers and in the concluding session there are prizes for students who have been participating in competitions organized by the Akademi.

MELOW, or the Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literatures of the World began in 1998 as MELUS-India, the India Chapter of MELUS, a US body devoted to the study of Multi-Ethnic Literature of the US. MELUS-India comprised a group of scholars interested in American Literature. Within a few years the organization broadened its scope and extended its concerns into World Literatures. At present it has a membership of approximately 300 from universities across the country. This is an association governed by representatives from all over India. It also has an International advisory body. The aim is to establish a global network of scholars engaged in common pursuits.  MELOW believes in academic grooming, initiating younger scholars into serious research work, writing proposals and papers, competing for awards of excellence. It has a blog and a google group so the members stay connected.

The  Society is serious about its work; it works according to deadlines. Over the years it has established a certain credibility in the country and abroad. So far it has held eleven international conferences. Whenever its conference is held in Chandigarh the Panjab University has very generously extended its support. This is the twelfth international conference. On this occasion we have about 150 delegates including about 15 from outside India. There will be more than 100 paper-presenters in parallel sessions, over a span of three days.
Prof Cheryl Johnson from the University of Ohio at Miami will deliver the keynote address and Prof Sushila Singh, President of the Society, will deliver the special Isaac Sequeira Memorial lecture in a session that awards the a prize for the best paper presented by a young scholar (below 40).

The three-day event is being jointly organized by the Chandigarh Sahitya Akademi and the Society for the Study of the Multi-Ethnic Literatures of the World in collaboration with the Panjab University. An Organizing Committee of 12 members from various departments is overseeing the arrangements in the Panjab University.

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