India and Pakistan: The Formative Phase, 1947-c.1960 – deadline 10 April 2019

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Date / time
Date(s) - 21 May - 22 May
All day


In the study of India and Pakistan the first decade after independence—to use the phrase of political scientist Khalid Bin Sayeed, its ‘Formative Phase’—has arguable still not received adequate academic attention. The manner in which both states grappled with their new situation both internally and externally, especially in the context of the Cold War, the task of formulating a republican constitution, the holding of elections at the state/provincial and national level, and the initiation of the long and arduous task of transforming millions from ‘subjects’ to ‘citizens’ are issues which still merit closer examination.

This conference, by focusing on developments taking place during the first decade following independence, brings together scholars from history, politics, international relations, law, sociology, gender, cultural studies, and other related disciples, with the objective of encouraging a better grasp of the gains to be made by exploring the region’s recent history through a comparative, interdisciplinary, lens. In doing so it seeks to interrogate and complicate long-held notions about the differences between India and Pakistan, their relations and evolution, and so to forge new paradigms for the examination of these countries more generally and this period in particular.

The conference therefore encourages interdisciplinary papers and conversations and especially welcomes submission from early career scholars and advanced PhD students. In addition to the topics outlined above, submissions covering any aspect of the development of India and Pakistan during the period 1947-c.1960 are welcome.

To apply to present a paper, please send a 200-word abstract together with a short cv/bio to: with the title of the conference in the subject line, by 10 April 2019. The conference committee will assess the abstracts and reply within a week. Registration for the conference is free but essential and can be done at: