Globalization, Culture and Identity: Challenges and Prospects
Department of Social Sciences
Faculty of Liberal Education, FLAME University, Pune
25th and 26th February, 2017
We live in liminal times; in threshold times. The unprecedented pace of globalization, especially in the last two decades, has impacted every aspect of our public and private lives. Countless technological innovations authored by globalization have resulted in the automation of production processes, continuous modernization and upgrading of work techniques, creation of virtual communities, and massive transformations in the meaning of geography and borders. This ceaseless movement of products, processes, and people has irrevocably transformed human cultures across the world in dramatic ways.
We witness on the one hand the rapid unravelling of relationships, affinities, and political structures, and on the other hand confront the rise of spontaneous solidarities in real and virtual spaces. Even as diversity and pluralism are celebrated, cosmopolitan impulses struggle at the altar of crisis-induced xenophobia. Religion too struggles against nihilistic aporias, and nation-states struggle to retain the loyalty of their citizens. Universalism is challenged everywhere by resurgent particularisms. Technology both blinds and informs; deadens and resurrects. Knowledge creation and dissemination are increasingly decentralized and democratized, yet more and more people speak past each other, instead of to each other.
At this juncture, it is useful to pause and explore critical questions and concerns confronting our society. Do opportunities opened up by globalization help individuals and communities break out of the rigid structures of caste and religion? What are the multiple ways in which media helps individuals question new expressions of caste, class and patriarchy? In a globalized world, increasingly marked also by new fundamentalisms, how do individuals and groups articulate their ideas about poverty, equality, justice and development? In what ways does communication technology shape the everyday lives of young people transitioning to adulthood in urban and rural spaces, and what does it imply for the future of ideas, relationships, work, and social change? What are the changes and continuities in organizations and work cultures in these new circumstances? In what ways do new-media facilitate the expression of multiple and fluid identity formations, and unhinged paths of transnational capitalism? In the popular rhetoric of development, defined mostly as economic growth, what kind of future can be imagined for the poor, displaced and marginalized?
The list is anything, but complete. After nearly four decades of debating globalization in the public sphere, not only are we yet to exhaust our discussions and dialogues on its impacts, we are faced rather with a new range of urgent concerns. In this light, we invite well researched papers, both theoretical and empirical from various disciplines to this knowledge-building platform.
Migration and Diaspora
Migration, as part of the inevitable reality of globalisation, is among the most serious contemporary concerns with far-ranging social, cultural, political, economic, demographic and ecological implications. Migration of all sorts, legal/illegal/refugee movement etc., across the globe not only just impacts the economy and polity of the sending, transit and receiving countries but also compels nation-states to respond to issues like ‘super diversity’, ‘national identity and culture’, demographic changes, ‘home-grown terrorism’ and so on. This panel seeks to explore the profound implications of such movements on global, state, and non-state actors, on diasporic populations, and the larger socio-economic and cultural fabrics in a rapidly changing international, national and regional context.
Youth and Identity
Along with peers, family and school, digital media plays a central role in shaping the lives of children and young people today. Increasingly, young people use digital spaces to build relationships, express opinions and assert desires. Everyday experiences in real and online spaces also involve encountering new knowledge, risks and pleasures. In what ways does this virtual society lead to the creation of new and/or multiple identities, and what does it imply for social, economic, private and political futures? This panel intends to address the multiple and fascinating ways in which consumer culture and communication technology shapes the lives of young people in urban and rural India.
Caste and Religion
Contemporary globalization it was presumed, would unhinge, and edge away older pivots of organizing private and public lives. Yet today, we witness a fevered reassertion of caste and religious identities by both, those who were hitherto protected, as also those who remain disadvantaged by caste and religious ascriptions. Do calls for equality and abolition of caste and religion based reservation address or maintain disparity? Is it necessary to engage caste in order to transcend it? Can those who are not dispossessed speak for those who are? How does the individual engage with her religious practice in the face of militant assertions on religious, secular and atheist fronts? Is religion political, and should it be? Does religion lend itself to the expression of socio-economic, political and ethnic grievances, or is religion itself the bone of contention. This panel intends to explore the range of urgent challenges confronting caste and religion in contemporary times.
Organisations and Identity
In the age of transnational corporations with globally spread apart chains of production, distribution and consumption, what is the role of identity politics of nations and nationals? What do we make of the claims of fluid identity formations and unhinged paths of transnational capitalism? Globalization is marked by workforce diversity, team work and collaborations across cultures. Multinationals may seek to impose their policies on the workforce. These may be embraced as well as resisted by employees. The interplay of multiple identities in the modern day arena of work and organisations has led to unprecedented challenges for individuals and collectives, often at the crossroads of political and socio-economic changes, and in the process continues to unravel novel dilemmas. This panel intends to highlight the ways in which organizations and related identity struggles impact each other.
Media and Identity
Global society has witnessed the phenomenon of media and its effect on individual, national and transnational identities over the past several decades and there is a paradigmatic shift in the understanding of identity today. Media plays a significant role in the construction of cultural identities and it is axiomatic that global interconnections enabled by digital media are playing a central role in the transformations of these identities. There remains an urgent need to advance our understanding of how media proliferates spaces- local, regional, and global. This panel accordingly, seeks to augment discussions and conversations on media, culture, and identity.
Development and Displacement
The scale and scope of developmental changes brought about by globalization in various arenas is truly staggering- from handling double-dip recessions to trading raw materials for making nuclear weapons, from switching to e-governance to developing public private partnerships, from storing information in clouds to enrolling for a one-way mission to the Mars, from predicting Tsunamis to fixing oil-spills in great seas. However, development is not without strings; oftentimes, with modernization come displacement and disorientation. This begs the question of development for whom, and at what cost? This panel seeks to gauge the alienation of products and processes, the displacement of populations, and the destruction of environments that are a part and parcel of the globalization process.
We hope to continue our discourses and debates on the prospects and challenges that lay ahead for individuals and societies to sustain in the globalized world, on all of the above themes and even those that are not captured within this range of concerns. The Conference aims not just to gather a critical mass of ideas but also emerge as a launching pad for future research collaborations.
G. N. Devy is a well-known linguist and writer. He studied English Literature at Willingodon College, Sangli; Shivaji University, Kolhapur; and Leeds University, U. K. His doctoral work was on Sri Aurobindo's Poetry (1978). He has taught at Shivaji University, South Gujarat University, M. S. University of Baroda, Leeds University, Yale University and Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information Technology.
He has held honorary positions as Director, IAS Training Centre, M. S. University; Chairperson, Bhasha Research Centre; Director, Adivasi Academy, Tejgadh; Member, Indian Council for Social Science Research; Chairman, Technical Advisory Group on Denotified and Nomadic Tribes, Government of India; Chairman, People’s Linguistic Survey of India and Member, UNESCO Inter-governmental Committee on Intangible Heritage.
He has received various awards and fellowships including the Rotary Foundation Fellowship; The Commonwealth Academic Exchange Fellowship; The THB Symons Fellowship; Fulbright Exchange Fellowship; Katha Translation Award, for translation of fiction from Gujarati to English; Sahitya Academy Award, for the English book After Amnesia; Jawaharlal Nehru Fellowship; Gunther Sontheimer Award, for work on Oral Traditions; SAARC Writers’ Foundation Award; Prince Claus Award, Netherlands; Bhasha Bharati Samman; Sahakar Maharshi Purskar for Literature; Durga Bhagwat Memorial Award; Marathi Vangmaya Parishad Award; Maharashtra Foundation Award; and Linguapax Award. He was awarded Padma Shree in 2014.
He has founded many institutes such as Bhasha Research and Publication Centre and Adivasi Academy. He writes in three languages, Marathi, Gujarati and English. Currently, he is working on the 50 volume series of the People's Linguistic Survey of India.
|Submission of abstract||30th October, 2016|
|Notification of acceptance of abstract||15th November, 2016|
|Last date for submission of selected papers||15th December, 2016|
|Last date for registration||20th January, 2017|
|Font||Times New Roman, 12 point|
|Referencing format||APA or MLA|
|Title page||Title of the paper, author/s, affiliation/s, and contact details|
Criteria for selection of papers: Relevance to the conference theme, methodology, originality, sound conclusion/s, relevant references
Participants will be intimated upon acceptance of abstract and thereafter they are required to submit the registration form along with full paper. Submitted papers must NOT have been previously presented, scheduled for presentation, published, accepted for publication and if under review must not appear in print before the conference. Detailed guidelines for submission of full papers will be intimated to the selected participants.
Accepted papers will be published in conference proceedings.
Conference Registration fees are inclusive of meals and conference kit
- Academics and practitioners (from India): Rs 3000
- Doctoral students (from India): Rs 2000
- Participants (desirous of participating but not presenting): Rs 500 (without meals)
Mode of payment: NEFT