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December 23, 2009

IGNOU holds Lecture on Narrative of Marginalization

Indira Gandhi National Open University’s (IGNOU) held the Silver Jubilee Lecture on ‘Aphasia, Amnesia and Inequalities: Narrative of Marginalization” by Dr. G.N. Devy, a prominent cultural activist and Human Rights campaigner, today.

Dr Devy’s Community Development work in western India is spread over 1,200 villages. He is a founder of several institutions like Bhasha Research and Publication Centre for Conservation of Adivasi languages, the Adivasi Academy devoted to education and Development, the Denotified and Nomadic Rights Action Group, a Human Rights Action Group , Human Rights campaign and Himlok, an institute for the study of Himalayan Communities and Culture.

The lecture offered a comment on the construction of ‘Knowledge’ during the colonial period leading to a loss of correspondence between ‘production of Knowledge’ and the cultural context within which the knowledge thus produced came to be situated. Dr. Devy narrated how several inappropriate descriptive categories came to be employed for social narratives adding to an already fractured society’s new processes of fragmentation in terms of ‘tribal’ and ‘notified’ communities.

The lecture also analyzed the complex spectrum of linguistic diversity in India. Dr Devy commented on how the lack of access to higher education results out of these three legacies. By implication, he suggested ways of overcoming the challenges before higher education in India at the present juncture of a profound epistemic shift.

The Silver Jubilee Lecture was presided by the IGNOU Vice Chancellor, Prof. VN Rajasekharan Pillai, and was attended by academics and students of the University, besides invited audience.

The IGNOU Silver Jubilee Lecture Series is coordinated by Pro Vice Chancellor Dr. Latha Pillai and Dr. Babu P. Remesh from the School of Interdisciplinary and Trans- Disciplinary Studies, IGNOU , is the Convenor. It is a monthly event which is being organized as a part of the celebrations during IGNOU’s Silver Jubilee Year. Renowned experts and practitioners from different fields and academic disciplines will be invited to deliver talks.

It is also planned that towards the end of this lecture series, a book containing the text of the various talks will be published.

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