Course meets during the first seven weeks only, First Class: January 29; Last Class: March 11.
South Asian region has been home to numerous literary and political movements that challenge the state and orthodox forces such as organized religion and rigid social hierarchies. Furthermore, freedom of expression in the region has been variously understood as a “Western” value and a fundamental human right. How do writers, activists, journalists and artists struggle with freedom of expression within their own societies while navigating such global discourses? This course examines the art and practice of writing dissenting views – fiction, non-fiction and digital media - and journalistic reporting on areas that are considered as taboo subjects. The issue of dissent has also been compounded by the overwhelming nature of mass media that amplifies as well distorts the nature of dissenting voices. Through the close study of written texts, audio-visual material, and new media products, students would be introduced to the processes, perils and impact of ‘dissent’. Debates on freedom of expression and its manifestation within different national traditions in the South Asian region will also be discussed in the class. undermine) a freedom of expression culture, expose abuses of freedom of speech, become victims in struggles for freedom of expression, or facilitate those very violations.