An event that examines South Asian Women’s writings in the 20th and 21st centuries will be presented by York University’s Centre for Feminist Research (CFR) and the Department of Social Justice Education at the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE), University of Toronto, on June 27 from 4:30 to 6 p.m.
“Speculation, Education, and Literature: Aspects of South Asian Women’s Writing in the 20th and 21st Centuries” will feature speaker Barnita Bagchi, CFR’s visiting scholar, who investigates utopian and dystopian writing by South Asian feminist and activist women.
Utopian and dystopian fiction are classifiable under the umbrella term speculative fiction, fiction with an apocalyptic or futuristic feel, which speculates with or takes risks with the reality it creates in the fiction. Much of Bagchi’s published research has analysed literary sources, especially speculative fiction, as integral parts of histories of women’s education, with education seen as both formal and informal, and as lifelong learning and self-development.
While the history of women’s education is not an established field in South Asian studies, women’s history is, and Bagchi’s presentation situates itself within this tradition. With utopia articulating dreams of a better life and anticipations of the future, combining social and imaginative experimentation, her presentation seeks to synthesize non-Eurocentric feminist utopian studies, histories of women’s education, and comparative literary approaches.
Bagchi teaches and researches comparative literature at Utrecht University in the Netherlands. Educated at Jadavpur University, India, and the universities of Oxford and Cambridge, she has published widely on utopia, histories of transnational and women’s education, and women’s writing in western Europe and south Asia.
She also directs the Utrecht Utopia Network, which recently hosted an international workshop in Utrecht on ‘Urban Utopias: Memory, Rights, and Speculation.’
She has been awarded a British Academy Visiting Fellowship to conduct research on Transcultural Utopian Imagination and the Future: Tagore, Gandhi, and Indo-British Entanglements in the 1930s, at Lancaster University in late summer and early autumn 2018.
This is a free event. It takes place at the OISE Nexus Lounge, 12th flor, 252 Bloor St. W.
To RSVP, email email@example.com.