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The fifth chapter of the Peer Webinar was organized by the Department of English
The Department of English, The Bhawanipur Education Society College organized Peer Webinar: Chapter 5 on 9th March, 2022 at 7 pm. The speaker was Ms. Jashomati Ghose, Assistant Professor, The Department of English, The Bhawanipur Education Society College; her paper was entitled ‘Surrendered to the Air’: The Legacy of Flight in the Black Diaspora. The webinar was held on Google Meet and it was attended by the faculty members, and the PG Semester IV students of the Department of English.
Figure 1: ‘Surrendered to the Air’: The Legacy of Flight in the Black Diaspora
Ms. Jashomati Ghose delivered a deeply engaging talk on the nuanced nature of the theme of flight in the black diaspora, and she cited a wide assortment of visual and textual material in corroboration of her contentions. She began her talk with the well-known Daedalus-Icarus myth which has functioned since time immemorial as a cautionary tale against the consequences of flying ‘too close to the sun’. She went on to mention the flying carpet of Aladdin, the chariot of Elijah from the Old Testament of the Bible, and the Russian folklore of the flying witch Babayaga, thus bringing out a wide assortment of connotations latent in the theme of flight in oral traditions, religious texts and literature around the world.
Figure 2: Ms. Jashomati Ghose during the presentation
Situating the theme of flight in the context of the trans-Atlantic slave trade, Ms. Ghose focused on the ‘dialectics of desire’ associated with it. The ability to fly acts as a metaphor of a desire to transcend barriers, originating in the long history of exploitation of the African peoples, and forced labour in the colonial plantations. She quoted excerpts from Toni Morrisons’s novels Song of Solomon and The Bluest Eye, showing how flying operates as metaphors of identity and the creative urge in human beings in the latter. In The Bluest Eye, flight does not stand for transcendence, but a positive example of diasporic hybridity. Helen Oyeyemi’s The Icarus Girl upholds the subject’s inability to fit into the world. The Two Girls re-writes the Icarus myth in a global diasporic context.
The presentation was rounded off with a few well-chosen scenes from Mary Poppins…Ms. Ghose dwelt briefly on Diana Evans’s The Wonder inspired by the life-story of renowned Russian ballet-dancer Vaslav Nijinsky, focusing on his gravity-defying leaps which uphold a subliminal desire for liberation from social constraints. The presentation provided the possibility for extensive dialogue related to the representation of desire within the black diaspora.
Figure 3: The Wonder
The Peer Webinars are a monthly venture undertaken by the Department of English, The Bhawanipur Education Society College in order to introduce postgraduate students to possible areas of research and familiarize them with methods and analytical techniques. The 5th Chapter was particularly effective in inculcating awareness of Diaspora Studies—a fertile ground for research in current times, in the senior-most students of the department, encouraging them to engage in active contemplation on a multitude of scholarly themes outside of the academic curriculum and enrich themselves through participation in a fruitful exchange of ideas.
August 26th, 2019. Jubilee Hall. In India, on any average day, more than four hundred people die in road accidents. Suffice to know, that is a figure that is abnormally high when compared to the number of such fatalities in advanced countries. When the figure is extrapolated on the number of kilometers of road per …
Seven luxury buses left the college premises, with students singing the evergreen chart topper from the Vengaboys: “We’re going to Ibiza”.
Report on Students’ webinar held by PG department of commerce
A webinar on Recent Business Issues and Current Affairs had been organized by the Post Graduate department of Commerce on August 27, 2020. 41 students of second semester have participated in this webinar. Twelve faculty members of M.Com department have also graced the webinar and at the end they had given their valuable suggestions to …
Bang on Target
June 18th to 20th, 2019, Valia Hall. The latest on an never ending list of experiences offered to the students of the Bhawanipur Education Society College (BESC) was a workshop-cum-competition of target shooting. The workshop was conducted by Atnaam Aslam a National level shooter along with Rittwick Sonkar with rich hauls in the state level shooting …