A virtual workshop on memory studies at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras acknowledged the need to engage in memory studies in the context of the current pandemic.
The workshop, hosted by the institute’s Centre for Memory Studies, precedes the official launch of the Indian Network for Memory Studies (INMS). IIT-M is also in the process of building a laboratory using virtual tools, such as augmented and virtual reality, to curate, comprehend and critique facets of literature, history and culture. As many as 108 participants registered for the first national workshop in the field to be held in Asia. The event was held from April 26 to 30. The INMS is expected to be launched mid-June in a virtual event.
The workshop provided a platform to train and mentor doctoral and post-doctoral researchers in memory studies, facilitate research methods and innovative, interactive and immersive tools with the help of digital technology, in addition to forming academic and industry-based research clusters.
Academics from across the country, besides those from the University of Warwick and Leeds Beckett University in the United Kingdom, attended the workshop.
The centre functions under the Institute of Eminence (IoE) scheme funded by the Union Education Ministry and its principal investigators are Merin Simi Raj and Avishek Parui, both assistant professors (English) in the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences.
Mr. Parui is on the advisory board of the Memory Studies Association. “Through international collaborations with memory studies centres and groups in the University of Warwick, the University of Andrews (U.K.), the Frankfurt Memory Studies Platform (Germany) and the Memory Studies Association (Amsterdam), we hope to be able to streamline and offer innovative courses in memory studies with partnerships from the industry, offering a pioneering platform in Indian academia for students and scholars in the times to come,” he said.