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Publishing at a Crossroads: Notes on the 'D' word

Alan Flurry

The University of Georgia Creative Writing program welcomes postcolonial literature scholar Bhakti Shringarpure to campus on Thursday Nov. 2, 2023. Shringarpure, associate professor jointly appointed in the department of English and the Institute of Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies at the University of Connecticut, will give a lecture at 4:30 p.m. in room 265 of Park Hall on the UGA campus.

Shringarpure’s work engages questions of decolonization, race, gender, and violence through a focus on literary and cultural production from the Global South and their circuits of dissemination. She co-founded the online magazine, Warscapes, in 2002 to create an alternative space for writing, reportage, reviews and art that is often kept out of mainstream media circulation.

Shringarpure's lecture will describe the ways in which corporatization and profit imperatives squash progressive, independent presses, while gatekeeping practices remain rampant and the problem of diversity looms larger than ever.

"By and large, we don't really have a deep appreciation of just how fundamentally the tentacles of colonial history and structures are embedded and need to be rooted out. When the Kenyan writer Ngũgĩ wa Thiong'o, for example, talks about language and translation in his book 'Decolonising the Mind,' he describes how the civilizing mission that started with the 'night of the sword and the bullet' ended but then the kind of colonial mission began with the chalk and the blackboard," Shringarpure said.

"Education, publishing structures, what languages we speak, all of those kinds of things we take for granted but we owe them further consideration," she said. "At a time when it's easy to talk about diversity, we should realize diversity is not just skin color or having a person from a certain community or certain race or gender, it's really worthy of a deeper conversation."

Shringarpure's lecture and visit is supported by the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences Center for Asian Studies and the Willson Center for Humanities and Arts.

Image: Bhakti Shringarpure

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