Intensive debate and discussions from 12 March
*Five-day Seminar on 'Caste Question and Marxism'
*Scholars and Activists from India and Abroad will Participate in the seminar
Chandigarh, 10 March. Scholars, writers and activists from all over India and some from abroad will participate in intensive debate and discussions on a most important aspect of social change in India during the five-day seminar on 'Caste Question and Marxism' starting from 12 March in Chandigarh.
The seminar is being organised in Baba Sohan Singh Bhakna Bhavan (Sector 29-D, Chandigarh) by Arvind Memorial Trust, established in memory of Com. Arvind, a brilliant Marxist intellectual and activist. Managing trustee of the Trust, Ms. Meenakshi said this is probably for the first time that such an intensive and expansive discussion is being organised on all the aspects of the complex caste question. Particularly, this is for the first time that such wide-ranging polemics is being organised on the caste question in relation to the left movement and Marxist thought.
Overall, 14 papers and write-ups will be presented in the seminar on different aspects of the subject. The base paper of the seminar 'Caste Question and its solution: A Marxist Viewpoint' is prepared by the research team of Arvind Institute of Marxist Studies.
Other papers include 'Ambedkarism and Dalit Liberation' by Sukhwinder, editor of Punjabi journal Pratibaddh; 'Historiography of Caste' by Abhinav, editor, Aahvan; 'Class, Caste and Identity Politics' by Shivani, Delhi University; 'Caste and Politics in West Bengal' by Praskanva Sinharay, CSSS, Kolkata; 'Caste and Sex in Marxist Traditions' by Dr. Rajarshi Dasgupta, JNU; Marxism and the caste question' by Asit Das,Researcher and Activist, New Delhi; 'On Identity Politics' by Prashant Gupta, B.R. Ambedkar College, Delhi University; On Conjoint Relevance of Marxism and Ambedkarism by Sukhdev Singh Janagal, Punjab and on the limitations of caste and identity politics by Jai Prakash of the 'Jati Virodhi Andolan'.
Eminent historian Prof. Irfan Habib will send a background note on caste in India, Ninu Chapagain, Politburo Member and in charge of the Cultural Division of UCPN (M) will present a write-up on 'The Dalit Question and Aesthetics' and a paper 'Towards A Programme for Abolition of Material Basis of Casteist Hierarchy' by Dr. Anant Phadke, Shramik Mukti Dal (Democratic), Pune will be presented. Prof. William Paul Cockshott,
University of Glasgow will make a presentation through internet linkup and his paper 'Dr. Ambedkar or Dr. Marx' will be circulated as a background note.Well-known writer and activist on caste issues, Dr. Anand Teltumbde, prominent Hindi writer Prof. Tulsiram of JNU, eminent sociologist Prof. Satish Deshpande, famous writer Prof. (Mrs.) Vimal Thorat, Prof. PK Vijayan and Dr. Saroj Giri of Delhi University, renowned Hindi poetess and activist Katyayani, Arjun Prasad Singh of PDFI, senior leader of CPN (M) Tilak Parihar, Namdev Laghave of Nagpur, Dr. Shyam Bihari Rai and Aditya Narayan Singh from Delhi, Nepali poet and activist Sangeet Srota, Anant Acharya from Kolkata, Uttamrao Jagirdar and Sharad Gaikwad of Republican Panthers, Mumbai, Hargopal Singh from Himachal Pradesh, Prof. Chamanlal of JNU, Prof. Manjit Singh of Chandigarh University, Punjabi writer Santokh Singh Virdi, journalist from Mumbai VP Singh, writer Arvind Shesh and German artist and left social activist
Johannes Paul Raether are among those who will participate in the discussions in various sessions of the seminar.
Apart from this, representatives from several groups and mass organisations, writers, journalists and social activists from Punjab, UP, Bihar, Delhi, Uttarakhand, Haryana and Maharashtra will participate in the seminar.
Ms. Meenakshy said the caste question, particularly the Dalit question, is still one such burning question of Indian society, without the process of whose resolution, the unity of the toiling masses and the success of their emancipatory-project can not be envisaged. There have been seminars-symposiums on this question for a long time but there has been an absence of serious research and unbiased lengthy debate. This seminar is an attempt in this direction.
In memory of Com. Arvind, the Arvind Memorial Trust organises a national seminar each year on an important aspect of the movement for social change in India. The first two seminars in Delhi and Gorakhpur were focused on different aspects of the labour movement while the third seminar was held in Lucknow on the democratic rights movement in India.
The holding of the fourth seminar in this row in Punjab has a special significance due to the specific history of Marxist movement and the caste question in Punjab. Ms. Meenakshy expressed confidence that the social-political activists as well as writers-scholars of Punjab will participate with an open mind in the seminar and this seminar will take forward the tradition of open exchange of ideas and thought provoking debates of the first three seminars. It will contribute to the continuing discourse on a most important aspect of the project of social change in India.
Meenakshy (Managing Trustee), Anand Singh (Secretary)
Arvind Memorial Trust
For more information, please contact:
Katyayani–09936650658, Satyam–9910462009, Namita (Chandigarh)–9780724125
Please also click Punjab Screen