Conference on Mediating Marginalities 13th – 14th March 2012
Centre for Women's Studies and Development
Faculty of Social Sciences
Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi
13th – 14th March 2012
We are pleased to announce a two- day conference on the concept of marginality broadly defined and its impact on humanities and social sciences. The event is sponsored by the Centre for Women's Studies and Development.
Marginality is a condition arising out of the construction of marginalization: the process of the establishment, sustenance and propagation of power relations which privileges the "self" over the "other". This is, almost always, a political construct, and results in exclusion from meaningful participation at multiple levels, isolation, denial and consequent erasure in terms of identity, agency and ultimately history.
Marginalization is a perpetual condition in human existence and can be seen to exist in one form or the other right from the beginning of human history. Anthropocentricism, gender, race, class, geographical location, sexuality, ability, age – the list is continually being populated by patterns of domination and subordination that are being debated as mankind becomes progressively aware of the intricacies of social operation. Whether it is society or lived culture, practical experiences or theoretical formulations, mundane realities or state policies, religion, philosophy or any other area of human experiences, issues of marginality abound.
The construction of human beings as central to the design of the universe, the privileging of man as superior to women, the adversarial positioning of white races as more evolved than black and/or brown, the hierarchical positioning of heterosexual normativity in opposition to alternative categories of sexuality like lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders, economic categorization, the relegating of the disabled body to a waiting-room existence vis-à-vis the able bodied, issues of location, and further, current bodily concerns like age, fitness, beauty etc. are some of the significant areas in which we can observe the process and result of the differential logic that governs human life.
These imposed nomenclatures and otherising constructions generate potential sites of encounter and confrontation. The mainstream-margin dichotomy is fraught with multidimensional complications: insecurity, stereotyping, ignorance, misconception, lack of empathy, deprivation and difference. The margins are never easily identifiable, as marginalities intersect, coincide and occasionally exist in confrontation.
The present conference is an attempt to focus on the theoretical framework, conceptual apparatus, methodologies and the various aspects of the marginality/marginalization debate.
Rs.300/ for all Participants (fee includes symposium kit, working lunch and tea)
Mode of Payment
Local delegates must pay their registration fee at the 'Centre for Women's Studies' between 11AM and 3PM by 12th March 2012, Outstation participants will register between 9am and 10am on the 13th March 2012.
Outstation participants will have to make their own arrangements, details of hotels will be made available to them.
About the Centre
Established in 1988 the CWSD is now an integral part of Banaras Hindu University. It has consistently worked to achieve the aims and objectives defined by the University Grants Commission. Due to the Centre's performance and achievements, the UGC Standing Committee on Women's Studies assigned it the status of a Resource or Nodal Centre in 1997, i.e. under Phase III with special mandate for promotion of Women's Studies with strong academic and action-oriented thrust in the region. The Centre takes lead in devising projects and identifying key areas in Women's Studies teaching, research, curriculum development and extension programmes. To further these objectives, the Centre actively networks with the organizations, governmental and non-governmental working in the area of women's development.
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