SIKHOLARS: First Sikh Graduate Student Conference

bgurdas.jpgSikh scholars have a long and proud history from Bhai Gurdas to Giani Ditt Singh and Sardar Kapoor Singh with too many to name in between. Although in more recent times some academics have been seen as controversial in the community, a confident community celebrates academic conferences that provide a valuable forum for those interested to exchange thoughts, discussions, and ideas. This past weekend, one such conference occurred in Berkeley, titled After 1984 and was an example of the critical importance of scholarly exchange, bringing together such luminaries as Gurharpal Singh, Pal Singh Ahluwalia, Arvindpal Singh Mandair, and many others.

Despite the intellectual brilliance, the meeting point between activism and the academy has always been somewhat uneasy. This weekend allowed such an exchange to occur, but was hardly the focus of the conference. The Jakara Movement is aiming to bridge this gap early next year with its first annual Sikholars: Sikh Graduate Student Conference.

To be held at Stanford University on February 20th, 2010, the organizers are soliciting the communitys help in broadcasting the news of this first conference and calling for proposals. The deadline for abstract submission is NOVEMBER 15, 2009.

The conference seeks to:

bring Sikhs and non-Sikhs working on Sikh-related issues to an annual conference that unites a breadth of graduate expertise. From academia, to health, law, and business entrepreneurship, the conference will bring together a wide array of disciplines and scholarly interests to create an institutionalized channel to present papers on research, and informal circuits or networks for continued discussion.

The purpose of the conference has been explained as:

Informal professional associations have already been founded within the Sikh community, but are mainly confined to networking. Academic conferences, related to Sikh Studies already occur, but the ideas put forth are generally confined to a narrow audience that engage in these issues, but are not necessarily linked or concerned with the Sikh communitys general welfare. The Sikholars: Sikh Graduate Student Conference does not aim to replicate these efforts, but rather to create a truly innovative and imaginative conference. By bringing together promising students in a truly multi-disciplinary fashion, we seek to incubate promising research by engaging various activists and scholars in the community together.

By bringing together activists and scholars; by bringing together theoreticians and practitioners; the Sikholars conference will be a unique experience. From health to medicine to law to human rights to anthropology to sociology to history to philosophy to business entrepreneurship to everything Sikh-related and in-between, all topics are welcome! Begin submitting your proposals today, forward this link to a friend in professional or graduate school, and plan on not missing this unique experience.


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21 Responses to “SIKHOLARS: First Sikh Graduate Student Conference”

  1. Harinder says:

    Brilliant.

    may Waheguru bless the venture

  2. Harinder says:

    Brilliant.
    may Waheguru bless the venture

  3. Sahnewal says:

    Congratulations to Jakara and its staff for putting such a necessary event together. It is important to make the bridge between activism and scholarship, the community and the academy. Good luck!

  4. Sahnewal says:

    Congratulations to Jakara and its staff for putting such a necessary event together. It is important to make the bridge between activism and scholarship, the community and the academy. Good luck!

  5. tarun singh says:

    why not work with those that held the conference this weekend? seems like a bit of one-upmanship

  6. tarun singh says:

    why not work with those that held the conference this weekend? seems like a bit of one-upmanship

  7. Mewa Singh says:

    No competition whatsoever. Something completely different and all are invited!

  8. Mewa Singh says:

    No competition whatsoever. Something completely different and all are invited!

  9. Sat Sri Akal ji

    Keep up the good work!

    If we can help in anyway please contact us.

    Gur Fateh.

    XL Radio
    http://www.xlradio.ca – broadcasting gurbani 24/7 from Vancouver, Canada

  10. Sat Sri Akal ji

    Keep up the good work!
    If we can help in anyway please contact us.

    Gur Fateh.

    XL Radio
    http://www.xlradio.ca – broadcasting gurbani 24/7 from Vancouver, Canada

  11. Harliv Singh says:

    I agree with Tarun Singh.

    The Jakara camp is not necessarily recognized for its highly scholastic attributes and tends to focus instead on low-level activism and awareness. I applaud Jakara's efforts but I think the scholarship should be left to the folks in Berkeley, who put on a very polished conference earlier this summer and also the seminar held a few weeks back.

    A collaboration would be nice…

  12. Harliv Singh says:

    I agree with Tarun Singh.

    The Jakara camp is not necessarily recognized for its highly scholastic attributes and tends to focus instead on low-level activism and awareness. I applaud Jakara's efforts but I think the scholarship should be left to the folks in Berkeley, who put on a very polished conference earlier this summer and also the seminar held a few weeks back.

    A collaboration would be nice…

  13. Sanehwal says:

    Harliv Singh, are you aware of all of the activities of Jakara? United Sikhs? The Coalition? Have you attended a conference of theirs? A service trip of United Sikh? Taken the Coalition Survey? Taken SALDEF's exit poll? It seems somewhat presumptuous to make such claims as you did, especially against a Sikh community-based organization. It is, in my eyes equivalent to the kind of gossiping that we ridicule some 'aunties' on our community for. Such a statement is analogous to making the claim that the Berkeley group is recognized for philosophical ruminations get the community nowhere. Unfair? Indeed. So let's hold off on that.

    The seminar last week showed a huge disconnect between the community and the academics. Indeed one academic said that the community was 'eavesdropping' in on the conversation. Such discourse drips with elitism and a complete disengagement with the sangat that arrived. Why invite them in the first place?

  14. Sanehwal says:

    Harliv Singh, are you aware of all of the activities of Jakara? United Sikhs? The Coalition? Have you attended a conference of theirs? A service trip of United Sikh? Taken the Coalition Survey? Taken SALDEF’s exit poll? It seems somewhat presumptuous to make such claims as you did, especially against a Sikh community-based organization. It is, in my eyes equivalent to the kind of gossiping that we ridicule some ‘aunties’ on our community for. Such a statement is analogous to making the claim that the Berkeley group is recognized for philosophical ruminations get the community nowhere. Unfair? Indeed. So let’s hold off on that.

    The seminar last week showed a huge disconnect between the community and the academics. Indeed one academic said that the community was ‘eavesdropping’ in on the conversation. Such discourse drips with elitism and a complete disengagement with the sangat that arrived. Why invite them in the first place?

  15. GulabSinghShakhrpara says:

    Can somebody bring me up to speed. My nyaaney went to Berkley conference a couple of week ago, and said there was uproar amongst the crowd with regard to concept of "Sikh Nationalism". What is happening folks? Why can't we all not get a long??? Why we try and bring each other down? What was the disagreement over?

  16. GulabSinghShakhrpara says:

    Can somebody bring me up to speed. My nyaaney went to Berkley conference a couple of week ago, and said there was uproar amongst the crowd with regard to concept of "Sikh Nationalism". What is happening folks? Why can't we all not get a long??? Why we try and bring each other down? What was the disagreement over?

  17. […] Months ago we announced the first Sikh graduate student conference – SIKHOLARS, being hosted by the Jakara Movement and Sikh Spirit Foundation. […]

  18. […] 2012 Abstracts Posted by Jakara in Sikholars Feb 7th, 2012 | no responses Since theinceptionof Sikholars: Graduate Sikh Conference, we have featured it here on The Langar Hall. Thepast […]

  19. GuruSingh says:

    ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕਾ ਖਾਲਸਾ
    ਵਾਹਿਗੁਰੂ ਜੀ ਕੀ ਫਤਿਹ,
    Keep up the good work!

    Gurbani Kirtan 24/7 Radio http://www.gurbanikirtan247.com – broadcasting gurbani 24/7 from Vancouver, Canada

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