[csaa-forum] IOSARN Seminar

Devleena Ghosh Devleena.Ghosh at uts.edu.au
Tue Mar 24 18:34:02 CST 2009

Apologies for cross posting

dear friends
Please come to the following seminar.



The Indian Ocean and South Asia Research Network invites you to its  
first seminar in 2009:

Dr. Stephanie Jones, University of Southampton, UK

DATE: Friday, April 3
TIME: 5.30 pm
VENUE: TfC Bagel, UTS, Building 3 (Bon Marche), Level 4, Room 4.02

Indian Ocean belongers, 1668-2008

The paper begins with an exploration of how Henry Neville’s fictional  
Isle of Pines (1668) plays through ideas of Arcadia, utopia, British  
colonial ambition, and ideas of belonging towards a critical  
commentary on government accountability under a constitutional rule of  
law. The paper then traces how, nearly three and a half centuries  
later, the real islands closest to Neville’s fictional isle—the Chagos  
Archipelago—are being defined by a similar interaction of narratives  
within a line of UK court judgements (Bancoult 2000, 2006, 2007, and  
the House of Lords decision of October 2008).  The inhabitants of the  
Chagos islands were expelled by the British government in the 1960s in  
order to satisfy a lease agreement with the United States government,  
which required the ‘uninhabited’ islands for the establishment of a  
military base. In their battle to have their expulsion declared  
illegal, exiled Chagossians challenged the scope of the government’s  
prerogative powers when dealing with colonial lands and subjects. This  
paper argues that the judgments on the Chagos crucially rely on a  
subdued but at times lyrical, legally-open and provocative evocation  
of what it means to be a ‘belonger’ of a place. Through a  
consideration of the legislative histories of this word; through  
scrutiny of its indeterminate relationship to notions of citizenship,  
indigeneity, nationality and the language of rights; and through an  
engagement with broader cultural narratives of belonging, the paper  
moves towards an understanding of the potential of public law to lend  
both ethically nuanced and practical meaning to terms of belonging.

Biographic Note
Dr Stephanie Jones (BA/LLB, Australian National University; PhD,  
Cambridge) is lecturer in 20th Century Literature in English at the  
University of Southampton, UK. Stephanie is the director of an AHRC  
funded project on "The Indian Ocean: narratives in literature and law".
She also researches and teaches more broadly in the field of maritime  
literatures, and the inter-discipline of law and literature. She has  
worked on East African literatures, literatures of the South Asian  
diaspora, and postcolonial theory.

RSVP: cornelia.betzler at uts.edu.au

Upcoming IOSARN Seminars:

- Friday, April 24, 5.30 pm
Dr. Ranabir Samaddar, Mahanirban Calcutta Research Group, India
The Inpossible Exit

- Friday, May 8, 5.30 pm
Dr. Sheleyah Courtney, Anthropology, University of Sydney
 From Plundering the Golden Temple to Remittances For Rama: Princes,  
Paupers, Politics, and Temple and Nation Building in Varanasi

(Dr) Devleena Ghosh
Acting Director, Trans/forming Cultures
(University Research Centre)
Director, IOSARN (Indian Ocean and South Asia Research Network)
Associate Professor, Social Inquiry Program
Bon Marche (Bldg 3), room 550 (enter via Harris St)

Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences
University of Technology, Sydney

Postal address: PO Box 123, Broadway, NSW 2007, Australia
Phone and Voice Mail: +61-2-95141963
Fax: +61-2-95142332

"A few hours’ mountain climbing turns a rogue and a saint into two  
roughly equal creatures. Weariness is the shortest path to equality  
and fraternity — and liberty is finally added by sleep." (Nietzsche)

UTS CRICOS Provider Code:  00099F
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