Literati explores how new research trends in language, literature impacts society
The youth, being agent of change, are among the key stakeholders in the process of developing diverse cultural identities through language and literature.
This was the crux of the deliberations at first national two-day conference titled, 'Mapping Cultural Identities through Languages and Literature,’ organized by the Department of English, University of Sargodha on April 9-10.
Speakers of the conference motivated the research scholars to highlight the cultural diversity found in Pakistani literature. They emphasized upon the inculcation of critical thinking and analytical skills in the students for production of quality research work as they are more energetic, motivated and innovative.
The conference was aimed at exploring new and innovative trends and challenges of research in language and literature and its impact on society.
The conference was organized around different themes including globalization and issues of cultural identities, creating and sustaining ideologies through language and literature, language as means of integrating communities and cultures and exploring intercultural communication through literature to explore interdisciplinary perspectives, challenges and innovations in language and literature in cultural contexts.
About 10 renowned research delegates of English literature and more than 80 scholars from different universities of Pakistan shared their research experiences and findings through their oral presentations.
The moot featured keynote speeches, presentations and dialogues between a galaxy of literary figures from across the Pakistan including Dr Shahid Siddiqui, Head of the Centre for Humanities and Social Sciences at NUML, Islamabad, Dr Nukhbaah Taj Langah, Dean Faculty of Humanities at FC College Lahore, Dr Asim Mahmood, Dean Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at GCU Faisalabad, Dr Habibullah Pathan, Director, English Language Development Center, Mehrn UET, Jamshoro, Dr Fauzia Janjua, Chairperson, Department of English, IIUI, Islamabad, Dr Aleem Shakir from Government College University Faisalabad, Dr Mubina Talaat from Women University Multan, Dr Saiqa Imtiaz Aasif from BZU Multan, Dr Muhammad Sheeraz Dasti, IIUI, Islamabad, Ijaz Asghar Bhatti, Chairman English Department, Sargodha University, faculty members and number of students.
Addressing the conference, Dr Shahid Siddiqui discussed the control of power and the process of construction of identity through language and literature with immense simplicity.
Emphasizing on how the language and literature construct social realities, he said that language is highly political phenomenon which is involved in the construction of realities and the political societies used force and guns to control the bodies whereas the literature controls the minds in a subtle way.
Dr Shahid also emphasized upon the inculcation of critical thinking and analytical skills in the students for production of quality research work.
Dr Nukhbah Taj presented her research, titled ‘Contemporary Pakistani Literature: English vs Translations’. She discussed how our dependency on English language marginalizes the peripheral literature translated into English, that broadly limiting the cultural richness of Pakistani literature.
Dr Asim Mahmood shared his thoughts on ‘Verb Particle Construction in Pakistani English’. He addressed the issue of the use of verb particle constructions in Pakistani English. He said that unlike the British and American, verb particle constructions are not preferred in Pakistani English and frequency of verb particles in Pakistani English is significantly lower than the native varieties. The particles which are redundant and generally do not add any significant semantic information in the text are missed and the meaning is tried to be conveyed by the verb alone, he added.
The event explored diverse perspectives, challenges and innovations relevant to the key areas of language and literature in cultural contexts. The conference purposefully covered a wide range of subjects in literary, cultural, and language studies.
Mr Ijaz Asghar Bhatti showed his gratitude towards the plenary speakers, participants and presenters. He expressed that promoting research cultural in the University was the main focus to organize this conference and the Department is going to organize an international conference in November, 2019. He said these types of activities help students build their critical approach for analyzing the texts and also broadens their horizons.
Each fascinating presentation generated interesting debate in the Q&A session, with critical questions by the students and convincing responses by the speakers.
At the end, souvenirs, shields and certificates were distributed among the guest speakers.