Image: Courtesy of Dev N. Pathak, Sociology, SAU.
About The Department - Vision and Beyond

Over the last half century or so, a vast body of knowledge(s) on the region has evolved within South Asia that mostly remain within the countries of their origin due to a number of reasons. In this specific context, there is a crucial need to share some of this knowledge in contemporary times when, despite assertions of localisations and mini-narratives, the universal does retain its emphasis through a constant dialectics of the two. The debate between the local and universal or mini-narratives and meta-narratives continue to rage, and is more clearly visible in the context of South Asian context. Even so, we are acutely aware of the non-existence of regular and serious forums for South Asian scholarship in social sciences to showcase our own research and thinking. We are also quite conscious of the fact that the process of establishing sociology in the region has created its own peculiarities which has established close inter-relationships between sociology and social anthropology, history, cultural studies, archeology and other related disciplines. We consider the porousness of South Asian sociology one of its most enduring strengths. On the other hand, we are not unaware of the unfortunate regressions sociology has experienced in different South Asian contexts over the last 30 years or so marked by numerous institutional failures.

It is within the context(s) outlined above that the Department of Sociology at South Asian university, initiated in 2011 witihn the Faculty of Social Sciences contributes to teaching, training and knowledge production. It is not intended to be a mere forum for the production of cutting-edge intellectual knowledge and exchange of that knowledge traversing across national borders in South Asia and beyond. Our expectation is that this knowledge would dislocate the persistence of an imposed framework emanating from the colonisation process and postcolonial politics of knowledge. Despite the passage of over fifty years since the process of official decolonization began in the region, much of the analyses of our problems, situations, histories and dynamics emanate from Euro American academia; this is certainly the case when it comes to conceptual formulations and theoretical approaches that are being employed in exploring the region’s social and cultural complexities often without much self-reflection.

The Department of Sociology strongly believes in the need to reformulate this situation by effectively centering South Asia without naively shunning thought from these established centers of knowledge be they in Europe or North America. We believe in an active and robust engagement with these issues within South Asia. In this context, through the work of its faculty and the research of graduate students, the Department would bring forward the newer forms of knowledge that comprehends and represents the South Asian context with a more authoritative and nuanced voice. We strongly believe in the need to actively intervene in the process of knowledge formation through a constant sharing of knowledge that the region produces as well as through interaction with the world beyond the region.

The courses taught in the Department as well as the research carried out by its faculty members reflect this overall vision and our collective commitment towards innovation, move beyond untenable stereotypes, and explore a new world of knowledge within the discipline of Sociology.

Class of 2011, Department of Sociology, South Asian University; Image: Courtesy of Dev N. Pathak, Sociology, SAU.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Invitation to Book Reviewers

Greetings from the Department of Sociology, South Asian University, New Delhi! We are writing to invite academics from South Asia and beyond to become part of the pool of reviewers for our journal, Society and Culture in South Asia co-published by the Department of Sociology, SAU and Sage India.


It would be useful to consider the following basic instructions and guidelines when writing a review:

• Kindly send an email to the Reviews Editor to join the pool of reviewers. In that email please outline the nature of your academic training, areas of expertise and interest, contact details and institutional afflictions. 

• The journal solicits reviews of recently published books (post 2012) that you may have read recently. The journal provides a reviewer with a book, matching the research interests of the reviewers. The author is entitled to keep the book after submitting the review, unless a return of the book is required by the journal in exceptional circumstances. 

• The review should be 1000 words or less in length. Any significant variation from the limit will be subject to editing based on the discretion of the Reviews Editor. 

• If you were to write a longer review essay, putting together two or more books, the length would be 5000 words. This would however be based on editorial discretion taking into account the thematic veracity of the review essay and the specific them of any given issue of the journal. 

• In general, the review could be critical and searching, based on a clear idea of the book’s contents. In doing so, reviewers need to respond to the book itself by engaging with its ideas and issues. 

• More specifically, the review ought to discuss the merits or otherwise of the book’s ideas and arguments, its organisation and clarity, while commenting on the standard of writing and possible readership for the book. 

• Critical comments should analyse the book’s success or otherwise in meeting its objectives, before extending the discussion into areas which may have been missed or misunderstood. 

• While it is essential to be assertive, it is also essential to be just and sensitive. Reviews in Society and Culture in South Asia should not be a forum to publicise one’s own scholarship. 

• Reviews should reach the Reviews Editor within eight weeks from the date of the receipt of the book. 

• Reviews should be submitted to the Reviews Editor electronically, as a Microsoft Word email attachment using the font Calibri point 11; it should be double-spaced. 

• Footnotes should be avoided in reviews and personal identification (name, affiliation, postal address and email id) of the reviewer ought to be displayed at the end of the review. 

• Please set out the bibliographical details of the book under review at the top of the document in the following format: Cathrine Brun and Tariq Jazeel (Eds.,), Spatialising Politics: Culture and Geography in Postcolonial Sri Lanka. Sage, New Delhi, 2009, pp. 238, ISBN: 078-81-7829-929-7. INR. 695.00. 

• Your name should be placed above your institutional affiliation at the end of the review. If you are not 
affiliated with an institution, please include your town or city of residence. 

• Please return the book in case you are unable to review. 

For more information, Please contact the Reviews Editor, Dr Dev N Pathak @ Department of Sociology, Faculty of Social Sciences, South Asian University, New Delhi 110021.


Currently Available Books for Review 

Ravi Kumar & Savyasaachi, (ed.), Social Movements: Transformative Shifts & Turning Points. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 380, ISBN: 978-0-415-71736-6. INR. 850.00.

Krishna Kumar, Politics of Education in Colonial India. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 248, ISBN: 978-0-415-72879-9. INR. 695.00.

Assa Doron & Alex Broom, (ed.), Gender and Masculinities. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, ISBN: 978-81-89643-36-2, INR. 695.00.

Tanvi Bajaj & Swasti S. Vohra, Performing Arts and Therapeutic Implications. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 196, ISBN: 978-0-415-71011-4, INR. 695.00.

Eva Pfost, (ed.), Between Ethics and Politics: Gandhi Today. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, ISBN: 978-0-415-71064-0, INR. 595.00.

Mukulika Banerjee, Why India Votes?. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 286, ISBN: 978-1-138-01971-3, INR. 495.00.

Himanshu P. Ray, The Return of the Buddha: Ancient Symbols for a New Nation. Routledge, Delhi, 2014, pp. 300, ISBN: 978-0-415-71115-9, INR. 795.00.

Ranbir Samadar & S. K. Sen. (ed.), New Subjects and New Governance in India. Routledge, Delhi, 2012, pp. 405, ISBN: 978-0-415-52290-8, INR. 895.00.

Govind Kelkar & Maithreyi Krishnaraj, (ed.), Women, Land and Power in Asia, Routledge, Delhi, 2013,  pp. 388, ISBN: 978-0-415-66214-7, INR. 995.00.

Sujata Patel & Tina Uys, (ed.), Contemporary India and South Africa: Legacies, Identities and Dilemmas. Routledge, Delhi, 2012, pp. 330, ISBN: 978-0-415-52299-1.

Sarah Beth Hunt, Hindi Dalit Literature and the Politics of Representation, Routledge, Delhi, 2014, pp. 264, ISBN: 978-0-415-73629-9, INR. 695.00.

Beatrix Hauser, Promising Rituals: Gender and Performativity in Eastern India. Routledge, Delhi, 2012, pp. 277, ISBN: 978-0-415-71115-9, INR. 795.00.

Radha Chakravarty. Novelist Tagore: Gender and Modernity in Selected Texts. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 160, ISBN: 978-0-415-84043-9, INR. 595.

Vibha Arora & N. Jayaram, (ed.), Routeing Democracy in the Himalayas: Experiments and Experiences. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 303, ISBN: 978-0-415-81199-6, INR. 795.00.

Arindam Chakrabarti & Sibaji Bandyopadhyay, (ed.). Mahabharata Now: Narration, Aesthetics and Ethics. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 292, ISBN: 978-0-415-71055-8, INR. 895.00.

A. Raghuramraju, (ed.). Ramachandra Gandhi: The Man and his Philosophy. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 355, ISBN: 978-0-415-82435-4, INR. 895.00

Ranbir Samaddar and Suhit K. Sen, (ed.), Political Transition and Development Imperatives in India. Routledge, Delhi, 2012, pp. 296, ISBN: 978-0-415-52289-2, INR. 795.

Neera Chandhoke and Sanjay K Agrawal, (ed.), Social Protection Policies in South Asia. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 268, ISBN: 978-0-415-81214-6, INR. 750.00.

Renu Addlakha, (ed.), Disability studies in India: Global Discourses and Local Realities. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 441, ISBN: 978-0-415-81212-2, INR. 895.00.

Ghanshaym Shah, (ed.), Re-reading Hind Swaraj: Modernity and Subalterns. Routledge, Delhi, 2013, pp. 248, ISBN: 978-0-415-66210-9, INR. 795.00.

Tanveer Fazal, (ed.), Minority Nationalisms in South Asia. Routledge, Delhi, 2012, pp. 257, ISBN: 978-81-89643-33-1, INR. 650.00.

Sarmistha Dutta Gupta, Identities & Histories: Women’s Writing and Politics in Bengal. Stree, Calcutta, 2010, pp. 294, ISBN: 978-81-906760-3-8, INR. 700.00.

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