Asian American Studies Program
University of Pennsylvania
Identity Politics and Diasporic Pragmatism: Debating South Asia in Online Communities
Date: Thursday, September 18, 2009
Time: 4:30 - 5:30 pm
Place: Grad Ed Bldg 203
The concept of a pan-South Asian identity has been of only limited success as a regional marker within the Indian subcontinent, but it has emerged as a widely-used, if still controversial term in the South Asian diaspora. Conceptual debates over the term have occurred in academia, as part of ongoing debates about interdisciplinarity and "Area Studies," as we see in arguments by Vijay Prashad, Nicholas Dirks, and others. Versions of these debates have also been circulating outside of academia, in online South Asia-oriented forums such as Sulekha.com, and on the weblog Sepiamutiny.com. This talk explores the ways in which debates in these online environments parallel academic debates, and in some cases challenge social theorists to reconsider their approach to terminology surrounding ethnic identity, geopolitical regionalism, and transnational political affiliation.
Upcoming Talk at U-Penn
I am mining some of my experiences at Sepia Mutiny in a talk for the Asian American Studies program at U-Penn this coming week. If any readers are in the area, it would be nice to see you.