Department of English, DAV PG College organized an online lecture entitled “Shakespeare in Our Times” on 5th July 2021. The invited speaker, Prof. L R Sharma, Department of English, University of Allahabad, Allahabad underlined the relevance of Shakespeare in our times. He deliberated on the various dimensions of Shakespeare’s writings which are illumining the hearts of readers in the current scenario. He pointed out the availability of the possible contexts in his texts such as phenomenology, New- Historicism, Cultural-Materialism etc. as the new avenues of research.
On 5th July 2021, a lecture was organized by the Department of English, DAV PG College, Varanasi entitled “Shakespearean Comedy”. Prof. Susheel Kumar Sharma, the chief speaker from the Department of English, University of Allahabad, highlighted the distinguishing quality of Shakespeare’s comedy that is purely meant for delight. He compared Shakespeare with Greek dramatists like Aristophanes and Terence.
On July 6th 2021, the Department of English, DAV PG College, Varanasi organized a lecture entitled “Shakespeare’s Hamlet: A Reappraisal”. Prof. R N Rai, Former Head, Department of English, Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi explained the underlying irony of human life and its exhibition in Hamlet and observed that Hamlet’s dilemma is of universal nature. He also threw light on critics of Shakespeare and distinguished between A. C. Bradley and G. Wilson Knight, T. S. Eliot and Dr Johnson. He also deliberated on these recent critical perspectives on Shakespeare like cultural materialism and existentialism.
The Department of English, DAV PG College organized an online Talk on “Transformation of Consciousness and its Importance for Humanity”, on 19th, September 2021.
The Programme was started with a meditation on the Mother’s Organ Music. Ms Swetapadma from Orissa, Bramhansuku Ashram chanted few lines from the mantric poetry Savitri. Ms Lipika sang the devotional song and Mantra. The welcome address was presented by Dr Bandana Bal Chandnani, Assistant Professor in English from DAV PG College and a member of Sri Aurobindo Society Varanasi Centre.
The Guest Speaker for the session was Harikrishna Pradhan from Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Orissa. He is a dedicated Sadhak of Integral yoga for the last 16 years. Presently, he is staying at Sri Aurobindo Ashram in Digisalfa, a village in Nabrangpur District of Odisha. He is also an instrument in spreading the message and vision of Sri Aurobindo and the Mother in Odisha and different parts of India.
In his talk he discussed some seminal books – Savitri, The Life Divine, Human Cycle, Letters on Yoga, Essays on the Gita and others and the importance of reading them in one’s lifetime.
Defining Transformation, he said the change by which all the elements and all the movements of the being become ready to manifest the supramental Truth. The transformation of consciousness is a radical change of our human nature into a Divine nature, a complete reversal of our ignorant life into the Divine life. Transformation is not just a change of consciousness, but the bringing down of the higher, divine consciousness and nature into the lower nature of mind, life and body, and the replacement of the lower by the higher.
The speaker stressed upon that the transformation of nature always takes time and cannot be done at one stroke, in a moment. Mind, vital, physical are properly instruments for the soul and spirit; when they work for themselves then they produce ignorant and imperfect things – if they can be made into conscious instruments of the psychic and the spirit, then they get their Divine fulfilment; that is the idea contained in what we call transformation in Integral Yoga.
The talk was received with admiration by the students. They asked many questions. The vote of thanks was given by a student of BA V Semester, Abhishek Singh Pradyot. As per the feedback received from the participants, it was a very good learning experience. The interaction helped them in their understanding of the basic points of Integral Yoga.
The talk was attended by about 100 participants. The name of some guests are following – Chairman of Sri Aurobindo Society Varanasi Centre, Prof. Akhilesh Kumar, Dept. of French Studies, BHU, the Secretary of Sri Aurobindo Society Varanasi Centre, Dr Brijbala Singh Singh, Head, Department of Hindi, Arya Mahila P.G.College, Varanasi, Dr Sangeeta Jain, HOD Department of English, DAV PG College, Dr Indrajeet, Dr Mahima, Dr Najmul, Dr Bindu Lahiry, Dr Manju Banik and others.
Department of English, DAVPG College, Varanasi, under the aegis of IQAC , organized another insightful lecture on September 22, 2021 where students were acquainted with Dalit literature and its theoretical perspective and social practices. Dr. Bandana Bal Chandani from the English department of DAVPG College cordially welcomed the participants and the esteemed dignitaries. After a brief introduction by Head, English department Dr. Sangeeta Jain and a brief deliberation by Dr. Shardul Chaubey, Assistant Registrar, Banaras Hindu University, the guest of honour, Dr. Sunita Chandra Joint Registrar, Finance Section, Banaras Hindu University expressed her views regarding Dalit Literature. After her brief deliberation, the keynote speaker of the event, Professor N.D.R Chandra shared his views on the aforementioned topic. Ex Vice Chancellor of Bastar University, Professor Chandra has numerous books and research papers to his credit, teaches in Nagaland Central University, Kohima Campus and has consistently been a recipient of several esteemed awards, the most recent being Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Award (2020).
In his deliberation Prof. Chandra discussed that the genesis of the word ‘Dalit’ was traced to the medieval Bhakti poetry, precisely from the Sanskrit word ‘Dal’ which meant ‘scattered, or cut off from the mainstream.’ Dalits were also called “dasa”, “asura”, “shudra”, “mahari”, “bhangi” depending on the region they lived in. Their oppression which began with the emergence of the caste system, later escalated in the post-independence period, creating a dichotomy between their Constitutional representation and the actual social scenario. In resistance to the unjustified oppression, Dr B. R. Ambedkar converted from Hinduism to Buddhism in his later life, saying “Though I was born a Hindu, I solemnly assure you that I will not die as a Hindu.” The solution to the discrimination, according to Prof Chandra, lies not just in reservation, but also in liberal education and an equitable distribution of resources and rights. Light was shed on the modern problems of reservations as well and it was concluded that it should become a way of giving it back to the society instead of securing an easy access to employment. A brief discussion was held about figures who had been allies to Dalits, stalwarts like Jyotiba Phule, Arundhati Roy, Mulk raj Anand, Namdeo Dhasal, Shankar Rao and other participants of the Dalit Panther Movement. ‘Joothan’ by Om Prakash Valmiki was also analysed in a similar light, where he brought forth the constant struggle the
subaltern/minority class has to go through.
The last part of his lecture was concerned with Dalit aesthetics, and the difference between ‘Lalit’ and Dalit Aesthetics , the former being Art for Art’s sake, the latter being Art for Life’s sake. The highlights of this section were the features of the Dalit aesthetics, the spontaneous metaphors, the need for new rasas like that of a ‘cry rasa’ which emerge from their writings about the self-experience, survival amidst discrimination and their purpose to raise the moral consciousness of the readers.
The deliberation was then concluded successfully with questions from the participants and a vote of thanks from Dr. Najmul Hassan, DAVPG College, Varanasi. Dr. Indrajeet Mishra, Dr. Mahima Singh , Dr. Richa Rani , Dr. Punam Singh, Dr. Swati Sucharita Nanda, Dr, Sameer Pathak, Dr. Rakesh Kumar Dwivedi, Dr. Rakesh Kumar Ram and other faculty members were present in this enlightening online lecture. Dr. S. D. Singh, Principal, DAV PG College, congratulated English department for the successful culmination of the online lecture.