Follow Us

Send us your news and events!

Mail them to
(No attachments!)

Subscribe to our News & Events Blog

Follow us on Twitter

Secularity, Globalisation and Power

Pakistan Workshop 2012

The Lake District, 11th-13th May 2012

Secularity, Globalisation and Power

Both secularity and globalisation are understood to be phenomena that are intrinsically connected to rise of the post Enlightenment modern world. However, in order to understand the relationship between secularity, globalisation and power it is necessary for these themes to be contextualised in order to give them and the links between them, analytical meaning. In the case of Pakistan, a few of the “sub” concerns that emerge from this theme and need to be foregrounded to help frame contemporary Pakistan include:

1. The rise, spread – and perception – of international terrorism.

2. The increasingly interlinked and expansive information and communication systems. These are one of the hallmarks of the ostensibly globalised world and are an essential tool for the propagation of ideas.

What does the recent increase in the regulation of the internet tell us about the Pakistani state? Do mobile phone texts and messages on blogs have the capacity to contribute to meaningful social change?

3. The rapid spread of the media in Pakistan. This is linked to debates on religious extremism and power not only because of what the media focuses on but because of the increased “craving” for news that arose in Pakistan post September 11th (Naqvi, 2010). What kind of popular “cravings” does the media respond to? Is it a force for progressive change in Pakistan or simply an inflammatory medium?

4. Changing demographics including an increase of women in the workplace

5. The growth of an urban middle class and consumer society

6. An evolving industrial base and the significant expansion in recent years of the service economy

7. The impact of the 3 Ts – low cost travel, telephone calls and satellite TV – on engagement with the Pakistani (professional) diaspora especially in Europe and North America

8. The internationalisation of Pakistani companies and the overseas interest in Pakistan as an emerging market

The Pakistan Workshop 2012 invites research on Pakistan, the Pakistani diaspora and the Muslims of South Asia on the broad theme of “Secularity, Globalization and Power” in the context of Pakistan. We would particularly like to include fresh, critical perspectives on understudied areas within Pakistan; on ethno-nationalist movements, regionalism and business and management in Pakistan. While the theme of the Pakistan Workshop is meant to draw attention to the workshop, it normally accounts for a third of the papers presented. The theme and categories listed above are used as a guide and should not discourage those whose work does not directly coincide with them.

The Pakistan Workshop was originally intended to bring together anthropologists and sociologists working on Pakistan, Pakistani diaspora and Islam in South Asia. However, we now regularly receive work from a broad range of concepts and disciplines. We see an interdisciplinary approach as important and to be encouraged in the context of Pakistan studies. This workshop is a forum for younger as well as more experienced researchers, providing an opportunity for people working in common fields to get acquainted with each other.

It is therefore normally kept small and intimate with a group of 25 or less people. The venue, Rook How, is one of the oldest Quaker Meeting Houses in Britain and is an important location in the Quaker world. The Rook How offers dormitory style sleeping arrangements which are comfortable and affordable. For those who prefer B&B accommodation, there are several nice places around the area which can only be accessed if they have their own car. The total cost of the Workshop will be about £80 (including the registration, lunches and accommodation) for those staying at the Rook How.

The deadline for abstracts is 10th February 2012, after which the organisers will make a selection and inform the participants of their decision. The finished papers would be required two weeks before the workshop, so they can be pre circulated to all participants.

For further information, contact or become a fan of the facebook group “Pakistan Workshop”. Further information is also available on the Pakistan Workshop website:

Anushay Malik and Arif Zaman

Pakistan Workshop 2012 Organisers