This special India Update Event participation is by prior registration only, both for in-person and online-attendance.

We would love for you to join us in person, in the Hedley Bull Lecture Theatre 1 on the ANU Campus, on Friday 1 December. 

The India Update will adopt a hybrid platform for online attendance. Details available upon registration. 

‘Translating South Asia’ with Booker Prize Winner Daisy Rockwell

South Asia remains a region of the world spruiked and bolstered on a global stage for its importance to trade, politics, and general geo-politics of the Indo-Pacific region. At the same time, there remains an asymmetry in the scale of efforts and resources developed in Australia and other Anglosphere nations in attempting to understand the region on its own terms. Language is one such sphere of asymmetry in which the region and its people are largely addressed through and mediated by the English language and Western ways of knowing. In this special India Update event, ‘translation’ is discussed as a useful, yet under-engaged, method and framework to approach South Asia on its own terms as much as is practical.

‘Translating South Asia’ pairs a keynote speech by award-winning Hindi-Urdu translator, Daisy Rockwell followed by a roundtable discussion response by Australia-based experts in the languages, literatures, and cultures of India and its regional neighbours. Daisy Rockwell will share a reflection of her experiences translating South Asian languages, cultures, and thought-worlds for an international English-reading audience. Our roundtable discussion will expand Daisy’s reflection into a general discussion of the challenges and opportunities in engaging with South Asia through its languages and ways of thinking and the need to support language and cultural translation in a broader Australian context at home and in the Indo-Pacific region.

Introduction and Welcome

  • Dr Meera Ashar, Director, ANU South Asia Research Institute 
  • Professor Helen Sullivan, Dean, ANU College of Asia and the Pacific

Keynote Speaker (online)

Daisy Rockwell is a painter and award-winning translator of Hindi and Urdu literature, living in Vermont. She has published numerous translations from Hindi and Urdu, including Ashk’s Falling Walls (2015), Bhisham Sahni’s Tamas (2016), and Khadija Mastur’s The Women’s Courtyard. Her translation of Krishna Sobti’s final novel, A Gujarat here, a Gujarat there (Penguin, 2019) was awarded the Aldo and Jeanne Scaglione Prize for a Translation of a Literary Work in 2019. Her translation of Geetanjali Shree’s Tomb of Sand (Tilted Axis Press, 2021; HarperVia, 2022) won the 2022 International Booker Prize and the 2022 Warwick Prize for Women in Translation.

Roundtable Discussants:

Lunch at the Atrium from 12pm-1pm

This Special India Update Event is presented by the ANU South Asia Research Institute. 



Event details

Event date

Fri, 1 Dec 2023, 10am - 12pm



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