NEW DELHI — History is an ever-evolving field of study, which undergoes various dynamic experiments and explorations time and again. Many didactic efforts have been made to comprehend the historical studies of vast geopolitical areas throughout the ages. But the ever-changing nature of territorial borders and demarcations affect the historiography of each area while restructuring it with the interests of the people in power.
Fixing of boundaries is a complex task in itself, as man-made boundaries change frequently and rapidly with political change. The only stable boundaries are geographical and even these are liable to be substantially modified by ecological changes. In such a situation, the most viable method to study the history of a particular people would be taking up the region as a category of reference. The definition of a region requires the correlation of many facets in the study of historical evolution.
Regional historiography is acquiring much relevance in academia as well as a socio-political scenario in contemporary India. The diverse nature of geographical territory called India needs much focused academic effort to uncover the forgotten and marginalised histories of regions, peoples and communities.
The phrase, “South India‟, is highly contested and controversial in terms of region as well as regional labelling. This term often tries to invisibilise the historical legacy and diverse narratives of the people and lands, to reduce its meaning into a territory situated in the southern part of the Indian subcontinent. Even though the existing historiography of India always relies on the whole Indian History as a unit of reference, recognition of the region as a referential point makes a rupture in its academic as well as political sense.
As historiography is perceived as the reading/writing of the past from the present scenario, it often falls into the trap of justification and legitimisation of the contemporary events and issues. At the same time, it would be imperative for the invisibilised regions and marginalised communities to keep alive their stories of hope and pain throughout the ages.
We generally classify the region of South India (with all the caveats about the inadequacy of that term) into federal states of Tamil Nadu, Kerala, Karnataka, Goa, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, and Maharashtra. These state-level categories are often used for academic/policy-level relaxation to comprehend the complex nature of the subject in a broader arena of references. In contrast to this attempt, we would like to encourage researchers to explore beyond these conventional binaries/categories of policy procedures and discover more nuanced histories of people, communities, and lands.
We welcome such academic endeavours of diversification and decentralization of historiography to make it more inclusive and wide open to be accessible for the unhistoricised people.
Call for Papers:
To facilitate a platform for rigorous academic endeavours on regional historiography in India, Centre for Educational Research and Training [CERT] in collaboration with SIO has decided to organise various Regional History Summits with a tagline, Remembering Histories and Asserting Identities. As part of this series on Histories, the South India History Conclave will be held on October 13-14, 2019 at Hyderabad, Telangana State. We are delighted to invite academic papers related to the following broader themes:
- Critical Analysis of Historiography of India: In Search of an Alternative Research Methodology
- Centrist Approaches in Historiography: Invisibilisation and Otherisation of Communities
- De-constructing the Division: “Indic versus Non-Indic‟ in Historical Discourses
- Narrating the Local: Histories of People and Lands
- Hegemony and Appropriation: Redefining the Past
- Annihilation of Caste: Trajectories of Anti-Caste Movements
- Histories of Dissent: State, Development and Adivasi Assertions
- Domination, Displacement, and Disappearance: Surveying Subjugation and Marginalization
- Colonialism, Communities and Nation-state: Engagements and Resistance
- Formation of Indian Union and Annexations
- Federal State Formations and Linguistic Nationalism
Submission of Abstracts: 15 September 2019
Notification of Acceptance: 18 September 2019
Submission of Full Papers: 10 October 2019
For more details: WWW.UStories.in
Department of Media, SIO of India
email: [email protected]