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15–16 September 2011: L’Inde des Anglais, l’Inde des Français, regards croisés, an international conference
full name / name of organization:
Dr Ian H. Magedera, University of Liverpool, UK
L’Inde des Anglais, l’Inde des Français, regards croisés
15–16 September 2011, Centre Culturel de l’Entente Cordiale, Château d’Hardelot, France [Near Eurostar Calais-Fréthun]
The Arts and Humanities Research Council-funded project on ‘Peripheral Voices and European Colonialism: Representations of India in French Literature and Culture 1750–1962’ which started in Liverpool in 2006 has contributed towards francophone postcolonial studies, which, with areas such as gender studies, has been the most important transformative influence in whole discipline of French Studies in the UK and in the English-speaking world in the last thirty years. The Liverpool project was the first to analyse, from both a comparative and a postcolonial perspective, the representation of the five French trading posts on the subcontinent (Pondicherry, Chandernagore, Mahe, Yanam and Karikal), and the way that India is written about in French more generally.
Given that advances in postcolonial theory are frequently struggles between models — posited, nuanced, retrospectively revised, and then selectively discarded over time — the end-of-project conference in 2011 offers a chance to evaluate critically the usefulness of the writing about the French presence in India from 1754 to 1962. For example, how can using French minor colonizers in India to move away from the colonizer/colonized binary, help us to study agency and ‘sub-imperial’ power (W. Baumgart)? What can the atypical context of the transposed, subordinated and partially forgotten orientalisms of the French in India contribute to current debates about travelling cultures, transnationalism and ‘mobility studies’ (S. Greenblatt)?
Conscious that the venue is the Centre Culturel de l’Entente cordiale http://www.chateau-hardelot.fr/, located in France, but facing Britain, historically, symbolically and literally, the conference will remain faithful to the aims of the AHRC project and continue to foster dialogue between all those who study India, be they French or English speakers. Our aim is to integrate comparatist perspectives without over diluting the historical and geographical specificity of the study of India. To that end, the organizers welcome 250-word proposals in French or English corresponding to the following four domains:
Bilateral contact between France and India in the context of British colonialism and World English
Postcolonialism and comparatism
Case studies of French representations of India in both textual and non-textual media
Bibliography and the digital humanities
Please send proposals to Ian Magedera firstname.lastname@example.org by 14 July 2011. Twenty-minute papers can be given in English or in French.