Possibilities of Change: Surviving the Times of Conflict

Session Information:

Monday, May 27, 2024 9:00
Session: Plenary Session
Room: Room A (Live Stream)
Presentation Type:Keynote Presentation

All presentation times are UTC + 9 (Asia/Tokyo)

In the last five years, the world has bore witness to various forms of conflict based on religious discrimination and/or patriarchal oppression; riots spurned by ethnic conflict and global political upheavals, the recent bio-war (COVID-19), and of course, the physical wars between Ukraine and Russia, the seizing of Afghanistan, and now the Gaza-Israel war; several grassroots farmers’ movements, and natural famines, floods, earthquakes, massive bushfires, and landslides have erupted across the globe as a result of ongoing global warming. Is it even possible to reason why conflict has escalated to such a massive scale in such a short amount of time? Or, has this been a pattern across many years–that every eighty to hundred years, the order of the world undergoes a change where conflict erupts as a natural occurrence within the cycle of humanity?

We don’t have answers, we only have questions.

But in the bid to confront these questions head-on, we all look forward to a more peaceful future, hoping more peaceful years replace the years of turmoil. Twenty years ago, scholars had predicted that in 2050–only twenty five years from now–the world would be a more peaceful place (Håvard Hegre, 2012). In 2015, Time magazine sought out answers to questions such as ‘Is World Peace Possible?’. This presentation will delve into the many aforementioned conflicts waging across the globe at present and discuss the possibilities of change from both intercultural and literary perspectives. The presentation will offer an analytical study of the modes of representation used in selected protests or even writings by those living in the conflict zones. The presentation will also engage with the fact that digital spaces offer liminal spaces for dialogue on a global level, as it effectively leads to a blurring of divisive boundaries. Ultimately, the aim of this presentation is to offer reassuring prospects that enable humankind to be more prepared to tackle conflict in an unpredictable future.

Speaker Biography

Ishmeet Kaur
Central University of Gujarat, India

Ishmeet Kaur, Central University of Gujarat, India
Dr Ishmeet Kaur Chaudhry is an educationist, author, and poet who teaches in the Centre for English Studies at Central University of Gujarat, Gandhinagar, India. She was recognised as an Inspired Teacher for the President of India’s In-residence Program at Rashtrapati Bhawan, New Delhi in June 2015. Throughout her career, she has largely been interested in the areas of marginal literature, studies of violence, trauma, and women's studies. She has also been actively engaged in Comparative Studies and translations from Punjabi into English and was a member of the Global Guru Granth Sahib Translation project at Sikh Research Institute, United States from 2018 to 2023. Her most recent work has been focused on violence studies, specifically engaging with discourses on the 1984 anti-Sikh carnage in Delhi.

She is an editor of Black November: Writings on Anti-Sikh Massacres of 1984 and the Aftermath (2019); Patrick White: Critical Issues (2014); co-editor of Violence, Subversion and Recovery: Women Writers from the Sub-continent and Around (2019, with Rachel Bari); co-editor of Seeking Nanak: Commemorating the 551st Birth Anniversary of Guru Nanak Devji (2021, with Paramjeet Singh and Charanjeet Kaur), and the author of Life Sketch and Teachings of Guru Teghbahadar Sahib (2023, with Jaswant Singh) and Texting the Scripture: Sri Guru Granth Sahib and the Visionary Poetics of Patrick White (2016). She has also released a collection of poems, Forbidden Button and Other Poems (Signorina Publications, 2020).

Dr Ishmeet Kaur Chaudhry also conducts talks on women's concerns, well-being, and mindfulness. Her work engages strongly with her firm belief that in a world full of pressures, there is an innate energy within human beings that can be positively channelised into making this world a better place. Through this principle, she engages in discourses on various aspects of spirituality, learnings from Guru Granth Sahib, and real-life memoirs.

She has delivered lectures around the globe, in various institutions and different countries like Taiwan, Singapore, Australia, America, Pakistan, United Kingdom, and Spain. Most recently, she was invited as a guest faculty at University of Barcelona, Spain, where she delivered the 2023 Doireann MacDermott Lecture in April 2023.

About the Presenter(s)
-Dr Ishmeet Kaur Chaudhry is an educationist, author, and poet who teaches in the Centre for English Studies at Central University of Gujarat, Gandhinagar, India.

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Posted by Kid Millie