Conference on Maoism and the State of the Indian Left, UPenn, March 17

March 10, 2011

Organized by South Asia Center at the University of Pennsylvania

Issues surrounding the CPI (Maoist) have acquired an important place in the political debates on contemporary India. How do we understand these debates between the parliamentary Left and the Maoists in contemporary India? How are these debates related to the changing political economy of contemporary India? What do they reveal about the state of the Left in India today, as a whole? These are some of the questions that will be addressed in the course of this colloquium.

Venue – McNeil Center for Early American Studies, 3355 Woodland Walk, University of Pennsylvania

Reading material recommended by the organizers

Schedule for the conference

9-9.45: Breakfast
9.45: Welcome by Prof. Kathleen Hall (Director, South Asia Center)

10-11:30: (Moderator Prof. Daud Ali)

Maoist movement in India: continuity, diversity, and Future
Sumanta Bannerjee
Independent scholar and the author of In the Wake of Naxalbari: a History of Naxalite Movement India

Maoism in Contemporary India
Gautam Navlakha
Leading Human Rights Activist, India

The Fluidity of Indian Communism
Vijay Prashad
Faculty, Trinity College, Hartford, Connecticut

Indian Left: The Way Forward
Prasenjit Bose
Research Unit Convener of Communist Party of India (Marxist)

11.30-11.45: Coffee Break


Forest Notes on the Maoists
Alpa Shah
Faculty, Goldsmith College, University of London

Locating the Maoist Movement in Contemporary India
Deepankar Basu
Faculty, University of Massachusetts at Amherst

The Adivasi Question in India and the Maoists: A Doomed Strategy
Smita Gupta
Senior Fellow, Institute of Human Development, New Delhi, India

1-2 Lunch

2-3:30:  Moderator: Prof. Kathleen Hall

The Struggle against Modern Revisionism: An Intellectual History of the Naxalite Movement from 1967-1978
Dhruv Jain, Doctoral Student, York University

Colonial Origins of Maoist Insurgency in India
Shivaji Mukherjee, Doctoral Student, Yale University

Unsettled Settlers: Naxalites, Conflicts and Grievances in post-Independent India
Sergio Mukherjee, Doctoral Student, University of Pennsylvania

3:30-3.45: Coffee Break


Ideology, Mass Mobilization, and Political Violence in Rural India
Rumela Sen, Doctoral Student, Cornell University

Emmanuel Teitelbaum, Faculty, George Washington University
Lenin in Translation: The (Inter) National Question and sectarian communisms in India

Auritro Majumder, Doctoral Student, Syracuse University

4.45-6: Final round table
Moderator: Prof. Daud Ali

6.30 Reception and Dinner