The School of Comparative Tribal Languages and Literatures (SCTLL), KISS-DU organized a two-day International Conference on ‘Ethnicity, Identity and Nationalism in Indigenous Literature’ on 3rd and 4th October 2023.
Addressing at the Inaugural Function, Professor Deepak Kumar Behera, Vice Chancellor, KISS-DU in his Welcome address appreciated the initiatives of the School of Comparative Tribal Languages and Literatures, KISS-DU and threw light on the significance of ethnicity and nationalism. Further, he spoke on the importance of documentation of oral literature of various tribes. Dr. Chittaranan Bhoi, Associate Professor and Head, English Programme, the convener of the Conference spoke about the purpose of conducting the Conference and the relevance of the theme. He introduced the distinguished speakers from five countries- Brazil, Australia, Poland, Sir Lanka and Bangladesh and the delegates from Haryana, Jharkhand, Punjab and Odisha.
Distinguished speaker, Professor Miriam Adelman, Federal University of Parana, Brazil, spoke on the action policies of various Higher Educational Institutions for the development of indigenous languages and literatures. She admired the humanitarian act of Professor Achyuta Samanta, Hon’ble Founder KISS & KIIT. Dr. Patrycja Austin, University of Rzeszow, Poland, appreciated the hospitality of KISS and was elated to learn about the contribution of KISS-DU towards the upliftment of indigenous students. Professor N. Nagaraju, Vice Chancellor, G M University stated that KISS is the appropriate venue for such programmes. He expressed his worries and concerns over the inadequacy of literature and materials on indigenous culture and community. Lukasz Barcinski, Assistant Professor, University of Rzeszow, Poland praised the initiatives of KISS-DU towards preservation of cultures and languages of 62 tribes and the way KISS deals with it. The Abstract Volume was unveiled by the Guests.
The inaugural session was followed by plenary session in which distinguished speakers delivered their talks on different topics pertaining to the theme of the conference. Professor Miriam Adelman, Federal University of Parana, Brazil shared her views on ‘Women and Horses in the North American Indigenous people’ and highlighted the women voices and autonomy of indigenous people.
Professor Jatindra Kumar Nayak, Professor Emeritus, KISS-DU spoke on the effect of globalisation on indigenous people. He also added that the ethnic identity is facing inhospitable and hostile response in the contemporary world. Professor N. Nagaraju, Vice Chancellor, G M University stressed on tribal community and their world view. He spoke on the tribal narratives and plural sovereignties. He also analysed Soura mural paintings from eco-critical perspectives. Dr. Patrycja Austin, Assistant Professor, University of Rzeszow, Poland deliberated on ‘Refugee Tales as a Career Bag of Cultural World’ and highlighted the migration problems in western Europe that hampers human dignity. She too emphasized on the displacement of Indigenous people and their impediments.
Dr. Prashanta Kumar Routray, Registrar KISS-DU proposed a formal vote of thanks in the at the Inaugural Session. He expressed his gratitude to all the foreign delegates for their interest and gracious presence in the conference.
The second half of day one comprised parallel technical sessions with more than thirty paper presentations. Day-One concluded with a cultural programme performed by the students of KISS-DU.
The second day of the conference began with Plenary Session which was graced by three distinguished speakers. At the very outset, Professor Sunil Govinnage, eminent poet and writer, from Australia spoke on the topic ‘Stories on the Journey’ in which he highlighted the historical aspect of the indigenous people. Lukasz Barcinski, Assistant Professor, University of Rzeszow, Poland delivered a talk on translation studies and linguistic diversity. He underscored that translation is considered as a psychological process through the discussion of hybridisation of language. He remarked that translation plays a vital role in protecting, promoting, and preserving indigenous literature.
Dr. Nandini C Sen, Associate Professor, University of Delhi spoke on ‘Silencing the Voices: Igbo Stories’ in which she discussed on African feminism vis-a-vis Indian feminism.
The technical sessions received an overwhelming response from over thirty paper presenters
The second day of the conference concluded with a Valedictory Ceremony. Professor Deepak Kumar Behera, Vice Chancellor KISS-DU presided over the meeting. He, in his Valedictory Address highlighted on three important things: recommendation; publication; and follow-up for the success of the conference. He also encouraged translation as a project for the promotion of oral tradition and indigenous literature. Professor Daya Dishanayake, writer and poet from Sri Lanka spoke on the significance of indigenous global literature. Dr. Nandini Sen, Associate Professor, University of Delhi, expressed her profound sense of gratitude to Professor Achyuta Samanta, Hon’ble Founder KISS & KIIT for his great vision and mission.
Dr. Chittaranjan Bhoi, the Convener of the conference proposed a vote of thanks to the distinguished guests, delegates and all the staff members for their active participation and unhesitant cooperation.