AI Discouse Graduates

ACADEMIC AND INTELLECTUAL DISCOURSE ON DALIT



What is AI Discourse?


Academic and Intellectual Discourse on Dalit is a special course designed for next generation of leaders & scholars. Launched in 2011, AI Discourse is a complete course devoted to exploring the issues of Dalit movement from different perspectives. This course is further designed to assess the current state of Dalit movement, its successes and failures. The course will also examine the roles of state and international community with regard to the upliftment of Dalit community. The program brings together a group of 15-20 emerging political and social leaders, government service personnel, non-governmental representatives, post-graduate students and emerging researchers.   
 

Why AI Discourse?

The Dalit movement in Nepal has a long legacy and originated before the democratic movements started in Nepal. However, in comparison with other social-political movements, the Dalit movement has struggled to gain momentum and vibrancy despite its' long history and the necessity of mainstreaming Dalit issues and voices within the core of national discourses. There is a huge gap between activism and academics along with discrepancies among the stakeholders on Dalit issues. Intellectual and academic discourse can play a pertinent role to situating Dalit issues within the mainstream and strengthening the Dalit movement. AI Discourse encourages young leaders and scholars to engage on Dalit issues by creating space for an extensive and interdisciplinary field of study of the Dalit community.  
 

Special Features

  • Critical discourse among young scholars and leaders
  • Selected and small number of participants
  • Research-based academic classes
  • Guest-lectures from renowned scholars
  • Films and documentaries screening
  • Seminars, talks, interactions and visits
  • Five research grants
  • Research and publications


Methodology

This course is designed on the basis of critical issues of Dalit discourse targeted to future leaders and scholars. The class is particularly based on lectures and guest-lectures with supporting activities. Participants are encouraged to be more research-oriented, creative and critical. Term paper writing is one of the most essential exercises during the course of the academic session. The classes will be supplemented with the extra-curricular activities like site visits, interactions, seminars and screenings of the films or documentaries related to the course. Each lecture consists of two hours in the morning.          
 

Who Should Apply?

Both Dalit and non-Dalit graduates of all disciplines can apply for this course. Participants are required to attend the entire course to receive the certificate of participation. This program is designed for post-graduate students, mid-career professionals working in both government and non-government sectors. Each year we enroll a diverse group of 15-20 participants to enhance their potential to promote Dalit’s rights. Selected individuals are required to participate and contribute to the two hours class each day for  5 weeks and demonstrate willingness to advance readings. We require at least bachelor’s degree at the time of their participation in the program. It is expected that each individuals should have good command of written and spoken English.
 

Course Contents (Curriculum)

The Academic and Intellectual Discourse on Dalit consist of the following course package:

  • Cultural and Political History of Dalits
  • Dalit Issues with Reference to Gender, Education and Economy
  • Development and Inclusion
  • Social Movement in Nepal with Reference to Dalit Movement
  • Dalit in Media & Social Media and Blog Writing Workshop
  • Dalit, Law and Human Rights


Location

Unless otherwise stated, the Academic and Intellectual Discourse on Dalit will be held in the meeting hall of Professional Development and Research Center (PDRC), Kalanki-14, Kathmandu, Nepal


How to apply

In order to apply for this course, download the application from the link given below. The filled up forms should be emailed to pdrc@wlink.com.np


Former Participants’ Views


AI Discourse really helped me to enhance my knowledge on Dalit issues. My knowledge has been sharpened deeply now and it helped me a lot for conducting research work more effectively. The course content and the resource persons as well are really influential. If practical activities are increased with further interactions and updating the contents, the theoretical classes will be even more effectively linked to our day-to-day life. I have developed my confident significantly. --Bhagawati Ghale Pariyar


After I participated in AI Discourse run by PDRC, my critical and creative aspects have been developed remarkably. I am more influenced by the resource persons and their insightful presentations namely of Ahuti, Dr. Bidhyanath Koirala and Dr. Krishna Bhattachan. Likewise, I have developed my research skills. I urge to newcomers to be more dedicated on the Dalit discourses in terms of their time contribution and commitment as it is really a potential and realistic area of interdisciplinary academic study. --Pooja Thapa   


Experts’ Observations


AI Discourse is an innovative space in which participants are more enthusiastic and they get interdisciplinary opportunity on Dalit issues but PDRC has to be clear on whether the intellectual manpower they are trying to produce and the course they offer have aptly bridged or not. The people involved in this study should be clear whether they are more oriented to activism or academics. Rather than focusing on what Dalits do not have, it would be better to concentrate our discourse on what skills Dalits do have and how they could be properly marketized from the way of reconciliation. --Dr. Bidhyanath Koirala


AI Discourse run by PDRC is the pioneer in Nepal and it could be far better if the governmental academic institutions include this sort of subject matters in their curriculum. AI Discourse has brought a hope among the young scholars in the research and intellectual field and further innovative methodology could be more effective for promoting career oriented academic activities in this area. --Hira Bishwakarma