South Asian Culture: Tradition, Transgression, and Dialogue.
This panel will explore the complex and evolving relationships between tradition, transgression, and dialogue in South Asian Culture. Because of the complexity of these issues, we are not insisting on a specific time-frame. While the accent will be on contemporary life, participants may want to focus on the past, near or distant.
The idea of a cultural practice becoming a taboo has played a fundamental role in the definition, historiography and evaluation of Asian cultural practices for at least five centuries. In the contemporary world, however, the boundaries between accepted norms, taboos and accepted taboos that are becoming norms have been blurred. The “problem” with south Asia has been simple; the colonial laws deeming the cultural practices of colonies as taboos and suppressing them in order to civilize the colonized have not allowed the colonies to evolve with time. It has rather made the previously colonized following colonial laws as part of their state constitutions more stringent in practicing their cultural practices with more robust gusto, which is becoming increasingly problematic for the people who are looking for a way out.
Thus the panel aims to discuss the importance of tradition and transgression in south Asian cultures while aiming at dialogic space to create a discourse on the subject.