Cecilia Bisogni: MUSA FORUM MUSA's 2nd Graduate Conference, in collaboration with the Royal Asiatic Society, will be held in London on 8, 9, & 10 October 2015. The keynote address will be delivered by Professor Michel Boivin of CEIS Paris. Please do join us.
Thematic Keywords
Urdu Literature, Poetry, Multilingualism, Minorities, Integration,
Geographic Keywords
South Asia, Pakistan, Bangladesh.
Full Name
Cecilia Bisogni
Email Address
Current Position
PhD student
as of [04-09-2016 05:24:13]
Current Department
Asia, Africa e Mediterraneo (Asian, African and Mediterranean Studies)
Expected Year of Graduation
Academic Advisor
Giacomella Orofino
Current Institution
University of Naples "L'Orientale"
Country of Institution
Most recently completed Degree and Institution
M.A. University of Naples "L'Orientale"
Discipline of most recently completed degree
Urdu language and literature.
Year of graduation from most recently completed degree
Current Research Title
Literature on the margin: the Urdu-speaking minority in Bangladesh between identity and integration
Current Research Abstract
This project aims at investigating the way in which language and literature constitute fundamental factors in the identity discourse in the context of the national State, and how these can be regarded as effective tools in the analysis of the strategies adopted, in specific cultural contexts, for the process of identity building. The case study of the Urdu-speaking minority in Bangladesh is of particular interest for the role played by this language in national history. The Urdu language has strong implications for the historical and political processes that led to the rise of the nationalist movement and to the breaking up of the newly constituted State of Pakistan. This has been a crucial factor in shaping the history of the Urdu-speaking minority, both socially and culturally.
Despite social marginalization and the reluctance shown by the Pakistani critic in acknowledging the cultural and literary contributions of Bangladeshi Urdu writers and intellectuals, there is strong evidence of a movement that aims at preserving the cultural heritage of the community. This is especially evident in the literary field, through the publishing of texts and reviews in Urdu and through cultural activities. Taking into account the socio-economic discrimination suffered by the Urdu-speaking minority, these attempts at preserving their own literary tradition can be seen as bold acts of resistance to an integration conceived only in terms of total assimilation to the dominant culture. Hence, this paper will focus on the analyses, through the lens of poetry, of the strategies adopted by this minority in order to construct and preserve their own specific cultural identity within the national discourse and the ways in which the desire to preserve this specificity interacts with the need for full social integration.