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Health and Community in South Asia

2022 Spring Symposium of the Center for South Asian Studies at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa

To be held virtually, April 20-22, 2022

Abstract submission deadline: January 31, 2022

THEME 1

The Art of Communication

about health

Communicating messages about health to the public is both an art and a science. For this theme, we hope to attract both artists and communications specialists. Artists play a key role in communicating messages of well-being, critiquing sources of harm, and serving as visionaries for alternative futures. We invite submissions using any combination of graphics, literature,
performance, video, spoken word or song. In addition, we invite submissions from communications specialists from various social science fields of public health, social work,
communications, sociology and anthropology. The behind-the-scenes work of health messaging, as well as the roles of government actors on the public stage, are generative areas for analysis of health and community in South Asia.

Coronavirus doesn't discriminate--why should you? Meme fighting stigma against returned migrants during the first wave of COVID-19 in Nepal
Coronavirus doesn’t discriminate–why should you? Meme fighting stigma against returned migrants during the first wave of COVID-19 in Nepal.

THEME 2

The Politics of Care 

during COVID-19

COVID-19 has deepened existing fissures in equity in health and healthcare as well as opened new lines of inquiry. With this theme, we address global and local vaccine inequities, oxygen and ICU shortages, the embodied experiences of doctors, nurses, and emergency responders, and the symbolic meanings of masks. We welcome investigations into how state actors, market forces, civil society, and the media shape the landscape of health and/or influence the politics of care. We also invite narratives of care for family, community, and even strangers on social media, exploring the ways people mobilize carework during crisis.

Information for returnees at the Nepal-India border during the first wave of COVID-19.

THEME 3

The Power of Data 

in public health and politics

The COVID-19 pandemic has created public and professional demand for constant, up-to-date health data, as epidemiologists and lay people alike seek data dashboards and models of what to expect in the future. But data collection in the name of global health has a long history of being a sizeable industry in South Asia. What do the data tell us about health, and what do the gaps in data—or even the suppression of numbers—tell us about the politics of health? What are the latest innovations in metrics, models, technologies and governance that inspire, and the frustrations that data scientists encounter as they share with policy makers and publics? How might innovations toward data democratization alter the status quo of community/public health?

Information for returnees at the Nepal-India border during the first wave of COVID-19.

Images from #nyanoswagat / #welcomehomenepal campaign, Nepal-India 2020, courtesy of #nyanoswagat and #fillthebucket.

Keynote Speakers and Events TBA

UH Manoa Center for South Asian Studies

The Center for South Asian Studies at the University of Hawai`i at Mānoa serves as an intellectual hub for research and learning about this highly diverse region.

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Questions? Contact us at csas@hawaii.edu.

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