India Conference

Nationhood and Nation-building in South Asia

April 28-30, 2010

SIEPR Conference Room, Landau Economics Building GET MAP
579 Serra Mall at Galvez, Stanford, CA 94305-6015

All sessions are free and open to the public.
Meals and social events are for conference speakers and special guests only.

The Event
Nation-building and nationalism are dynamic forces in South Asia, even after six decades of independence and still influenced by the colonial legacy of political, economic and cultural strategies of the British Raj. The different countries of South Asia have had some similar experiences (such as the rural-urban divide) and some different ones (politics, new media). The two-day conference will discuss nationhood in the countries of South Asia from different perspectives – historical, political, economic, religious, literary, film, drama, cross-border, etc.

Sponsors & Co-sponsors
Center for South Asia, Stanford University
European Union Center for Excellence, University of California Berkeley

Please note that this program is tentative and will be updated.


7:00 pm – 9:00 pm – Student Dance Performance
Lead: Subhasree Chakravarty


8:00 am – 8:30 am – Registration and Breakfast

8:30 am – 9:15 am – Opening & Keynote
Leads: Rafiq Dossani & Linda Hess, Stanford University

  • Krishna Kumar, Director, National Council of Educational Research and Training, India

9:15 am – 11:00 am – Religion
Lead: Linda Hess, Stanford University

  • Nosheen Ali, Stanford University
  • Krishna Kumar, Director, National Council of Educational Research and Training, India
  • Kalyani Menon, DePaul University

11:00 am – 11:15 am – Break

11:15 am – 1:15 pm – Literature
Lead: Saikat Majumdar, Stanford University

1:15 pm – 2:30 pm – Lunch

2:30 pm – 4:30 pm – Cities
Lead: Nikhil Anand, Stanford University

4:30 pm – 4:45 pm – Break

4:45 pm – 5:45 pm – Student Panel
Lead: Rushi Talati, Stanford University

7:30 pm – 9:00 pm – Dard Neuman
Venue: Piggott Hall, Building 260, Room 113
Lead: Subhasree Chakravarty

Co-sponsored by the Berkeley EU Center for Excellence

7:30 am – 8:00 am – Breakfast

8:00 am – 9:15 am – Regional and Global Politics and Security
Leads: Vinod Aggarwal, University of California Berkeley & Rafiq Dossani, Stanford University

  • Salma Bava, JNU/India & EU
  • Rafiq Dossani, Politics & Regional Integration

9:15 am – 10:00 am – Keynote – India & Her Neighbors
Lead: Rafiq Dossani, Stanford University

10:00 am – 11:15 am – Pakistan’s Security – Looking Out
Lead: Stephen Stedman, Stanford University

  • Aqil Shah, Stanford University
  • Dann Naseemullah, Ph.D Candidate, Political Science Department, University of California, Berkeley
    “Foundations of the Frontier: Norms, Resources and Sovereignty in Pakistan’s Tribal Areas”
  • Talat Hussain, Aaj Television, Pakistan, “Pakistan’s real world: a workable paradigm of long-term stability”

11:15 am – 11:30 am – Break

11:30 am – 12:45 pm – Pakistan’s Security – Looking In
Lead: Tom Fingar, Stanford University

12:45 pm – 1:45 pm – Lunch

1:45 pm – 3:00 pm – Development Issues
Leads: Vinod Aggarwal & Rafiq Dossani, Stanford University

  • Anders Ahnlid, Director General for Trade, Sweden
  • Rikhil Bhavnani, Stanford University
    “Corruption among India’s Politicians”
  • Aseema Sinha, University of Wisconsin Madison
    “India WTO issues”

3:00 pm – 3:15 pm – Break

3:15 pm – 5:15 pm – Media – Recasting Pasts in the South Asian Mediascape
Lead: Bulbul Tiwari, Stanford University

  • Rohit Chopra, Assistant Professor, Department of Communication, Santa Clara University
    “Forgetting India Online: Practices of Internet Use and the Production of Historical Amnesia”
  • Manan Ahmed, Assistant Professor, Islamwissenschaft Freie Universtät, Berlin
    “Spend an Evening with Zaid Hamid: The Populism of Conspiracy Theories in Pakistan”
  • Bulbul Tiwari, Post-doctoral fellow, Stanford University
    “Swaying back and forth: ‘Devdas’ and the myth of modern India in 21st century Hindi film”

5:15 pm – Wrap up

Link to Stanford University event homepage