Tuesday, 2 September 2008

News from Atanu in Anand about our trip

This is a roughly edited extraxt from an email Atanu sent to Brian and I with some further ideas and information about our Indian trip in November:

News for the proposed Meet after discussion with the Core Advisory Committe (Piyush, Dr Jadeja, Surendra, Falguni, Asha and Me)
Here are my comments in response to your queries/comments.
We would like you to interact with our students and probably have a sort of workshop/talk about the issue of climate change and how that can be integrated within the larger scheme of teaching English in Gujarat. How can it be, for example used creatively (for creative writing purposes), what would be the issues when you try to deal with a politically and often ethnically sensitive issue like 'joining of rivers' or disapperances/ displacement of communities due to climate change and man-made interventions (like dams etc). We could also arrange meetings with faculty members in the departments of humanities and social sciences for small one-day workshops/seminars/talks. This could include departments of architecture, sociology, fine arts, and social work. You could of course add to this list. We are also planning to have two workshops (as you have suggested) on different aspects of two rivers (Mahi and Tapi) - folklore, myths, songs, poems, cultural sites, communities, paintings and oral forms where you could give your own inputs about the UK rivers. These could be sort of cultural exchange programmes where the rivers 'talk'.

We could forge a joint education work with various relevant departments (if they are willing) with H M Patel Institute acting as a sort of monitor for such projects. We could also have H M as the nodal agency for forging relevant tie-ups. This could be included in the project proposals for funding, and when the funding is made available, in consultation with the UK group, we could tie-up with various sectors - both academic and non-academic (for example, NGOs)
No problems provided that you let us know which departments you would like to work with. We could tie up with some departments as mentioned above as well as have a workshop with Falguni's or my students.

Two Indian run river workshops at which we will be present

Visit days (cultural)
This could include cultural and architectural sites around the rivers, Mahi and Tapi, as well as local places of interest ,e.g. Gandhi Ashram, Pavagadh (declared as a UNESCO World Heritage site and about 70 kms from V V Nagar), Baroda Museum etc
(One day? Two days? Will talk to my friend Kavita and I am sure that we can arrange something.
SEWA (Self Employed Women's Association)
No problems since this is just a one-day affair
Thamna Health and Eduacation Trust
No problems
However, I feel that so many things packed together could be fatiguing. However, we will take it as it goes.

1 comment:

Jane said...

This sounds very positive - some of the questions raised are also ones I have thought about and I look forward to working with everyone to explore some answers! I teach a session at Northern College on climate change - it looks at different ideas and approaches including the 'parable of the commons', the Kyoto protocol, the ideas of the 'sceptical environmentalist', Bjorn Lomborg, and an article by a Canadian professor arguing that the problem is about the power of the wealthy over the poor, rather than climate change. Something like this could maybe be adapted for students in India?