New Delhi. : The Department of English, Jamia Millia Islamia (JMI), organized the thirtieth lecture of the Distinguished Lecture Series, " Grappling with Care " by Prof. Ann Cvetkovich, Professor at Feminist Institute of Social Transformation, Carleton University, Supported by the Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration (SPARC), Ministry of Education, Government of India, the talk was organized as part of the ongoing academic collaboration with the Department of English and American Studies, University of Würzburg, Germany, and promises to be one in a line of successively pertinent lectures.
The talk was conducted by, Ms. Zahra Rizvi, Ms. Suman Bhagchandani, and Ms. Aparna Pathak Ph.D. scholars, Department of English, JMI, and was enthusiastically attended by a large crowd of scholars, students, and faculty from all over the world and across various time-zones.
Prof. Simi Malhotra, H.o.D., Department of English, JMI, Indian PI, delivered the welcome address, greeting the invited speaker, faculty, scholars, and students. She spoke about the discussion as a part of the ongoing collaborative project between the Department of English, JMI and the Department of English and American Studies, University of Würzburg, on “New Terrains of Consciousness: Globalization, Sensory Environments and Local Cultures of Knowledge”, supported by the Ministry of Education’s initiative SPARC, “Scheme for Promotion of Academic and Research Collaboration” which aims to facilitate academic and research collaboration between higher education institutes in India and abroad. She, then, introduced the esteemed speaker, Prof. Ann Cvetkovich, who was greeted by a round of applause.
In her lecture, Prof. Ann Cvetkovich engaged with notions of care and cure that has emerged in recent discourses on mental health and madness in the academic and activisms in the public spheres of America and Canada. While the lecture commented on the neo-liberal notions of self-care with its individualist implications, it also explored the larger links between mental health and existing systemic and structural socio-economic inequities, which were accentuated by the COVID-19 pandemic. In this context, concepts of radical care, collective care and mutual aid as employed in the rhetoric of social and political activists were discussed.
Through the lecture, the act of grappling was positioned as a methodological principle which led different and ethical ways of thinking about care and mental health.
This was followed by an engaging, in-depth Q/A session coordinated by Ms. Ann Susan Aleyas, Ph.D. Scholar, Department of English, JMI. The event was brought to an end with a Vote of Thanks by Ms. Aparna Pathak.
To ensure a wide range of viewership and participation, the event was also live streamed on YouTube, and was attended by over a hundred participants.
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