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Thursday, 24 July 2014

Quiz as an Effecting Teaching, Learning and Assessment Tool

As necessary as ongoing assessment is for both teachers and students, many teachers complain that constant testing stifles their creativity and destroys student interest, at a time when motivation is mandatory for the current crop of media-saturated students. So, how can teachers assess student learning and evaluate the quality of their own teaching, without losing the interest of their students?[1] (Romo).

It is not a question without an answer. The answer is plain, simple and straightforward. Use Quiz!

It helps to ensure that students understand what you are teaching and -- when they don’t -- to understand where your teaching has missed the mark. (Romo).
Moreover, it helps students to check their progress and assess their need to pay attention in classroom discussions.

Here are some interesting outcome of our experiment of ‘Using Quiz for Teaching’:

·        Students identified and rated following benefits of using Quiz in teaching:
o   It helps to do follow-up reading, everyday, after face-2-face classroom discussion
o   It helps in increased concentration in classroom interaction
o   It improves reading habits as they read with specific purpose to find specific information.
o   It cultivates the habit of taking running notes while the face-2-face classroom interaction is going on.


As students voted for Unit-End-Quiz, we have put it in practice rather than daily or weekly quizzes


It is observed that ‘this approach encourages collaborative learning and creates a sense of community among the students. It also gets students coming to class prepared, and I think it makes the quizzes a more positive and useful learning experience’[2]. (Deterding)

Here are the links to visit the quiz pages:

Works Cited:

Deterding, Audrey. A New Kind of “Space” for Quizzes. 26 Jan 2012. 24 July 2014 <http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-and-learning/a-new-kind-of-space-for-quizzes/>.

Romo, Sandra. Using Quizzes to Measure Teaching Effectiveness: How Do You Measure Up? 8 Aug 2010. 24 July 2014 <http://www.educationworld.com/a_curr/profdev/profdev180.shtml>.
  

[1] See more at: http://www.educationworld.com/a_curr/profdev/profdev180.shtml#sthash.5QLlTkk4.dpuf[2] Reprinted from Deterding, A. (2010) A New Kind of “Space” for Quizzes. The Teaching Professor, 24 (9), 6. - See more at: http://www.facultyfocus.com/articles/teaching-and-learning/a-new-kind-of-space-for-quizzes/#sthash.2dahP19J.dpuf

Sunday, 29 June 2014

Communication Skills for Teachers - II

This was presented in the Faculty Development Programme for the Gujarat Government College Teachers, organized by Knowledge Consortium of Gujarat (KCG) at Ahmedabad. In this 90 minutes presentation:12 videos,17 images, #900 words – are used in 24 slides. The main ideas of the presentation are given below the embedded presentation.
The venue (KCG), the banner (FDP) and the participants



  • Communication Skills for Teachers Dilip Barad Dept. of English M.K. Bhavnagar University 27 June 2014 Faculty Development Programme
  • Morgan, Algiro L. in his paper ‘Communication Skills for Teachers’ • “One of the most neglected aspects of teacher training is thorough preparation in the diverse communication skills that are needed by good teachers in today's schools.”
  • Six Important Points: CS 4 T • Positive Motivation: create interest, enthusiasm, remove fear and inhibition. • Effective Body Language: Gestures, body movement with verbal skills – never sit and teach - Moving in aisles. • Sense of Humor: do not confuse dirty jokes with humour. • Understanding the Students: prefer dialogue over monologue – listen students’ opinion- saint on the stage vs guide by the side • Team Formation: helps in mutual understanding students as well as teachers. • Technical skills: Up-to-date with latest techno-tools for teaching.
  • Be precise: Brevity is the Soul • A Brief History of Communication . . (Video) • The journey from pre-historic to techno-era in a few seconds. • Save time! Time is the most precious. • (To view this video visit: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c9KGt3OS4uM&index=2&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L -NDzEpHGNP7W)
  • Newer Generations – Fresh Ideas and Ideals • Digital Generation. (Video) • Do not replace but replenish. • Click here to view video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rg37kafMsWk&index=4&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L- NDzEpHGNP7W
  • Look for the possibilities beyond the horizons • Education for all! (Video) • Click here to view video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0bh3HP51rJs&index=5&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L- NDzEpHGNP7W
  • Learn to unlearn, teach ‘unlearning’: Adopt – adapt - adept • Two women at the bus stop. (Video) • Age is not the barrier for learning new things. (Video) • Video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DMXzuxDXVKA&index=7&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L- NDzEpHGNP7W • Video Link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=de087u7ylms&index=10&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L- NDzEpHGNP7W
  • Make students sensible towards issues • Save trees (Video) • Video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P-gWkHZ0e1E&index=6&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L- NDzEpHGNP7W
  • Demonstrate! Do not teach, let them learn! • Watch this video from movie 3 Idiots. • (The scene is that of Virus demonstrating nest of crow with eggs of Koyel)
  • Myth Vs Reality Communication Myths Communication Reality Communication is a conscious / deliberate process. (e.g. Osho’s visit to disciple, father-2 sons,) Communication is an unconscious process and it goes on at every moment of time! We communicate primarily through ‘words’ only. (zoo-zoos) We communicate through ‘verbal’ as well as ‘non-verbal signs. Words mean the same to everyone. (Pardon, women) Meaning of the words lies more in perception of reality. Communication is a one-sided process and it is controlled by communicator. Communication is a two-way process and it always happens, controlled by none. Message sent and message received are the same. (Video: Hu is . . . (video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OgFHYteJSPk&index=3&list=PLSmZ QVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L-NDzEpHGNP7W Transmission and reception of message can never be identical.
  • Penny Ur - 1997 • She identifies some essential qualities, which relate to teaching rather than other professions: – I sense where the learner is at, what their problem is: I feel what they know and what they don’t know. – I know how to transform what I know about the language into a form that is accessible to my learners – I know how to design and administer activities and exercises that will foster learning – I know when learning is and is not happening by the way the learners behave: I don’t need tests – I get my ‘buzz’ from when the students succeed, learn, progress To master this, one requires to practice reflection of teaching
  • Use of technology as follow-up actions & CS4T • Pedagogy is evolving with newer technological aids for better communication in classroom. • Various ICT components helps teacher in enhancing their skills in teaching. • It also has its deep rooted impact on the learning of the students. • Here, we discuss how can we sharpen our communication skills by using it for follow-up actions?
  • • SMS, email, scrap, tweet, chat, web spaces, SIG, etc can be used effectively for: – Replying questions of the students – Solving their doubts/queries etc – Giving some task for next class in advance – Having group discussion out of the class – Uploading lesson/presentation to web spaces – Running web sites with LMS to check students progress – Managing e-groups (SIGs) – file upload, poll, discussion, photos etc.
  • Social Constructivism • Social constructivism extends constructivism into social settings, wherein groups construct knowledge for one another, collaboratively creating a small culture of shared artifacts with shared meanings. • When one is immersed within a culture like this, one is learning all the time about how to be a part of that culture, on many levels. • Eg. Cup.
  • Pedagogical Pyramidical Structure based on Bloom’s Taxonomy LOTs HOTs
  • Observation is the master key! • To be the master of effective Communication Skills, OBSERVE, OBSERVE, OBSERVE; minutely, meticulously, marvelously.
  • Let’s view this advertisement. We are supposed to identify the product - Fire crackers - Courier service – anti-roach spray - Gas Cylinder – Save Fuel - Save Environment – match box –– old age woes Click or copy / paste to view video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=97650bEF434&index=9&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L-NDzEpHGNP7W 29/06/2014 17 An Advanced National Workshop in General Semantics: 28-30 Jan. 2013
  • How observant are we? Video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ubNF9QNEQLA&index=8&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L-NDzEpHGNP7W 29/06/2014 18 An Advanced National Workshop in General Semantics: 28-30 Jan. 2013
  • Structured education system . . . Unstructured Life!
  • Always in flux - Change with time If Monks can, why can’t Teachers?
  • Let us review highly effective skills of teachers • Be precise: Brevity is the Soul • Be contemporary: Newer Generations – Fresh Ideas and Ideals • Look for the possibilities beyond the horizons • Learn to unlearn, teach ‘unlearning’: Adopt – adapt – adept • Make students sensible towards issues • Demonstrate! Do not teach, let them learn! • Be observant! Avoid jundgmentalism • Always be in flux - Change with time • Practice Reflective Teaching
  • Lets conclude - teachers in action • Video 1: An imaginary picture of a teacher • Video 2: The reality! • Video1 link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TlEP5uAhr3Y&index=11&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L-NDzEpHGNP7W • Video2 link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=amBhZP1b4x4&index=12&list=PLSmZQVxjN9_j0Ln3e5i6L-NDzEpHGNP7W
  • What is the message? • To get to the core of message, do not ask ‘WHAT’. • Do not ask ‘What is said or shown?’ • Ask, ‘HOW’ – The ‘How’ of the presentation has the message for teachers to be effective and efficient in classroom performance as well as in professional development. • In this 90 minutes presentation: – 12 videos – 17 images – #900 words – are used in 24 slides.
  • Thank You… •Questions???? •Before you ask, ponder this: PM of I, school visit, questions by students, Nawaz Sharif, Dawood, Iraq !@? • www.dilipbarad.com • dilipbarad@gmail.com

Wednesday, 14 May 2014

Survey: The Networked Teacher

Dear all,
I would request you to take this survey on 'The Networked Teacher'. It will help you to know if you are really a 21st century teacher or not. It has been increasingly demanded on the part of teacher to be 'networked' with various stakeholders. Teacher has to be interlinked with peers and leader for professional development; with learners / students for 'engaging' them with learning, 24X7; with parents for updating them; with educational institutes (both brick n mortal and online) for disseminating their learnings; with society for their accountability and responsibility. All these interlinking is possible if teacher is used to internet. If s/he is effective user of social media and other web tools, s/he can very easily and efficiently build bridges among all stakeholders.
The Typical Teacher Network and The Networked Teacher are two diagrams created by Alec Couros from the Faculty of Education at the University of Regina as part of his doctoral thesis to signify the different ways in which teachers network in the 21st century. Source: http://joedale.typepad.com/integrating_ict_into_the_/2008/01/typical-teacher.html


Well, this survey will also help you to learn what are the potentials and possibilities that as a teacher, you can explore, adopt, adapt and thus, be an adept teacher in using technology, both as teacher and as well as learner.
The questionnaire / survey is embedded from Google docs on this blog. At times, owing to slow internet connection, browser problem or cache related issues, it may take some time in displaying the questionnaire / survey on this blog. After waiting for a minute or so, if it does not display here, please visit this link to fill in the online questionnaire / survey.

Click here to get diverted to the questionnaire / survey

The raw outcome will be available on this blog after handful of survey responses are gathered. It will remain up to 'YOU' to interpret and analyse the data of this survey.




Tuesday, 13 May 2014

Comparative Literature Studies

Comparative Literature: World Literature
Let us not intent to indulge in the debate of nomenclature. Call it Comparative literary studies or comparative studies or comparative literature or all put together, comparative literature studies; the area is very fertile so far as research is concern. In the times when the interest is growing from single disciplinary study to multi and inter-disciplinarity, no field allows for freedom in research as Comparative Studies.

Engraving each other: Comparative Study
 Yes, i have deliberately dropped the word 'literature or literary'. As the potential to yield rich harvest lies with comparative studies, i think it is not advisable to chain it by the term 'literature'. The term literature, in its narrow canonical definition, will not give us freedom to expand our research arena in the fields of television, films, advertisements and popular culture, let alone music, art, painting, dance and sculpture. If the political phenomenon in the twenty first century looks strongly towards democracy and globalization, how can literary research remain free from it. Why shouldn't research in literature be democratic in spirit and be global in terms of breaking the boundaries and narrow borders of canons? Isn't it the sure way to make literature 'world literature' - the dream of great visionaries like Goethe, Tagore and Northrop Frye.

At the same time, it becomes necessary to see what the leading comparatist think about the definition of comparative studies. This presentation which was made in the Refresher Course on Comparative Literature at Academic Staff College, Gujarat University, Ahmedabad (Gujarat) deals with:
  • What is comparative studies?
  • Why compare?
  • What to compare?
  • How to compare?






Comparative Literature Studies
Presentation Transcript
  • 1. Goethe (1749-1832) : ‘Weltliteratur’ 1827 Tagore (1861-1941) : ‘Visva Sahitya’ 1907
  • 2. Comparative Literature / Studies What is it? Why Compare? How to Compare? What to Compare? 14 November 2013 Refresher Course ASC, Gujarat University, Ahmedabad Dilip Barad M.K. Bhavnagar University, Gujarat dilipbarad@gmail.com
  • 3. Let us discuss ‘definitions’ (?) Comparative Literature • Firstly, let us identify the ‘centre’: is it literature or comparison?
  • 4. Comparison ? Literature Translation Studies Cultural Studies / Religious Studies Film / Media Studies So Psy DH H AS PCl Gen
  • 5. Wikipedia • Comparative literature (sometimes abbreviated "Comp. lit.," or referred to as Global or World Literature) is an academic field dealing with the literature of two or more different linguistic, cultural or nation groups. • While most frequently practiced with works of different languages, comparative literature may also be performed on works of the same language if the works originate from different nations or cultures among which that language is spoken. • Also included in the range of inquiry are comparisons of different types of art; for example, a relationship of film to literature. • Additionally, the characteristically intercultural and transnational field of comparative literature concerns itself with the relation between literature, broadly defined, and other spheres of human activity, including history, politics, philosophy, and science. • Wikipedia contributors. "Comparative literature." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia, 1 Oct. 2013. Web. 13 Nov. 2013.
  • 6. Henry Remak (1916-2009) • “Comparative Literature is the study of literature beyond the confines of one particular country, and the study of the relationships between literature on one hand and other areas of knowledge and belief, such as the arts (e.g. painting, sculpture, architecture, music), philosophy, hi story, the social sciences, (e.g. politics, economics, sociology), the sciences, religion, etc., on the other. • In brief it is the comparison of one literature with another or others, and the comparison of literature with other spheres of human expression.” • Remak, Henry Comparative Literature: Method and Perspective (1961)
  • 7. Nelson Lowry (1924-1994) • "Comparative Literature is … the whole study of the whole of literature as far as one’s mind and life can stretch. By its very scope Comparative Literature … is a presumptuous study.” • Nelson, Lowry. Poetic Configurations (1988)
  • 8. Haun Saussy (1960 - ) • “The premises and protocols characteristic of [comparative literature] are now the daily currency of coursework, publishing, hiring, and coffee-shop discussion. … • The ‘transnational’ dimension of literature and culture is universally recognized even by the specialists who not long ago suspected comparatists of dilettantism. .. • Comparative teaching and reading take institutional form in an ever-lengthening list of places. … • Comparative literature … now … is the first violin that sets the tone for the rest of the orchestra. Our conclusions have become other people’s assumptions.” • Haun Saussy, Comparative Literature in an Age of Globalization (2006)
  • 9. Roland Greene (1957 - ) • "Comparative literature is the laboratory or workshop of literary studies, and through them, of the humanities. • Comparative literature compares literatures, not only as accumulations of primary works, but as the languages, cultures, histories, traditions, theo ries, and practices with which those works come." • Greene, Roland. "Their Generation," Comparative Literature in the Age of Multiculturalism (1995)
  • 10. Sandra Bermann • “A more transnational, interdisciplinary, and responsive humanities is, I believe, poised to emerge – • such a humanities may well contribute to a new sort of global consciousness, one that would bring a keener sensitivity to the languages, cultures, and peoples of our polyglot planet and begin to draw us all into a broader, more responsive conversation – • Comparative literature and translation studies – best suitable for it. (cont)
  • 11. Sandra Bermann • “Comparative literature regularly joins literary texts from different languages and cultures. It also regularly connects, say, a poem with dance, a film with the novel, photography with the essay. It even relates different disciplinary languages and modes of thinking.“ • Bermann, Sandra. “Working in the And Zone: Comparative Literature and Translation,”Comparative Literature 61, no. 4 (2009):432-446
  • 12. Descartes (1596-1650) • All knowledge which is not obtained through the simple and pure intuition of an isolated thing is obtained by the comparison of two or more things among themselves. And almost all the work of human reason consists without doubt in making this operation possible. Descartes, Regulae ad directionem ingenii (1684) Cited In Claudia Brodsky, “Grounds of Comparison” World Literature Today 69 (1995).
  • 13. April Alliston • "A rigorous definition of comparative literature should always include the study of texts across languages; this multilingual aspect can only become more crucial to distinguishing comparative literature as national literature departments also develop greater emphases on postcolonial and interdisciplinary studies. • In the new Millennium, I hope we will pursue the study of Weltiliteratur in the spirit of Goethe, albeit in ways he could never have imagined: challenging a world order that is already very different from the one his ideas subverted by helping to bring about a cosmopolitan community in which national, disciplinary, and linguistic demarcations may become less rigid." • Alliston, April . “Looking Backward, Looking Forward: MLA Members Speak.” PMLA. 115, no. 7 (December 2000): 1987
  • 14. Steven Tötösy de Zepetnek • “In principle, the discipline of Comparative Literature is in toto a method in the study of literature in at least two ways. First, Comparative Literatures means the knowledge of more than one national language and literature, and/or it means the knowledge and application of other disciplines in and for the study of literature and second, Comparative Literature has an ideology of inclusion of the Other, be that a marginal literature in its several meanings of marginality, a genre, various text types, etc. (Cont)
  • 15. Steven Tötösy de Zepetnek • Comparative Literature has intrinsically a content and form, which facilitate the cross-cultural and interdisciplinary study of literature . . . • Predicated on the borrowing of methods from other disciplines and on the application of the appropriated method to areas of study single- language literary study more often than tends to neglect, the discipline is difficult to define because thus it is fragmented and pluralistic.” Steven Tötösy de Zepetnek, Comparative Literature: Theory, Method, Application (1998)
  • 16. Gregory Reid • "Any two texts can be compared, but a comparison works when there is a sufficient basis for comparison; that is, a strong number of similarities, which allow us to isolate particular striking, revealing, informing, epiphanic and ultimately untranslatable differences. … • These untranslatable differences which are the product of language, culture, history and environment as well as the semi-autonomous evolution of art forms and the talents and experiences of individual artists invariably pronounce themselves in what is called style." • Gregory Reid, "A Prolegomenon to Comparative Drama in Canada : In Defense of Binary Studies" (2005)
  • 17. Why Compare? ~ David Ferris • Problem with name of comparative literature > world literature - Goethe • Crisis: Rene Wellek • World and comparative = wider connotations in ‘comparison’ • Aristotle: imitation = comparison; comparison is a form of knowledge rooted in likeness. Two types of comparison > historical ‘as it is’; possibility ‘ought to’; second is blinded by the limits of first > thus, freedom in CL has its own limitation, lack of definition is limit not unbound horizon. • Plato > allegory of Cave (8:00) > new, real outside world, habituation, real world in comparison to the unreal past experience within cave creates knowledge > ridicule > cave and world > • “What then is really at stake in this allegory which twice enacts comparison by curtailing its temporality into is what Plato calls habituation? • And, why is it that the world, in Aristotle as well, is consistently called upon to embody a comparison that the world is powerless to affirm?” (cont)
  • 18. Why Compare? ~ David Ferris • A reflection on comparison that is capable of interrupting its own unfolding in a mode other than the coercion of crisis would be a start so that our present can make a claim on why and avoid the endless repetitions of what and how. • The natural sciences may ask about what is in our world, the social sciences may measure how we are in that world, we, at least, can ask why - and that is why we compare.
  • 19. Rene Wellek: Crisis of Comparative Literature • Published in 1959, this article by René Wellek, written in strong, forceful words,criticizes the French school of comparative literature for its confined system and obsolete methodology. • Wellek's allusion to a crisis was not meant to refer to the discipline as practiced in the United Statesbut he was in fact pointing an accusing finger at the “rotten” French part of the metaphorical apple. • Wellek spent many paragraphs criticizing Paul van Tieghem • reminded us of the origins of comparative literature; that it arose as a reaction to narrow-minded nationalism prevalent in 19th Century France. How ironical it is that only half a century later (at the time of Wellek's writing), French comparative literature was being criticized for putting lopsided emphasis on influence studies and what Wellek labeled as “cultural book-keeping” as the French had a way of drawing attention to high levels of achievements in their literature of the preceding centuries. • defense of the open, multidisciplinary approach of the American school and its emphasis on criticism sounds so prognostic, that is, as we now look back at how comparative literature inAmerica has developed in later decades • a crisis is an opportunity to reflect, and for reform and repositioning of one's priorities
  • 20. How to Compare? • Mechele Foucoult • There exist two forms of comparison, and only two: the comparison of measurement and that of order. • One can measure sizes or multiplicities, in other words continuous sizes or discontinuous sizes; but in both cases the use of measurement presupposes that, unlike calculation, which proceeds from elements towards a totality, one considers the whole first and then divides it up into parts. • one cannot know the order of things ‘in their isolated nature’, but by discovering that which is the simplest, then that which is the next simplest, one can progress inevitably to the most complex things of all. • University Handout for students • Descarte and Goethe
  • 21. What & How of Comparative Literature Koelb and Noakes saw shift in CL studies From To . . .the center of theoretical concern, such as the history of criticism, period/movement designators as romanticism or symbolism (matters that have been cloistered essential to the understanding of the history of literature as a great and unified cultural enterprise – movements, themes, periods, the history of ideas . . . . . . theoretical implications of diverse literary phenomena (issues that range around the frontier – ‘emergent’ literatures, relations to other disciplines, women’s studies, marginalized forms of reading: “pre-reading”, “female-reading” - There is, by and large, a kind of decentering in progress, both in terms of notions of reading and of canons prescribing what is to be read.
  • 22. • ‘National Literature’ cannot constitute an intelligible field of study because of its arbitrarily limited perspective: international contextualism in literary history and criticism has become a law. • Comparative literature represents more than an academic discipline. It is an overall view of literature, of the world of letters, a humanistic ecology, a literary weltanschauung(world view), a vision of the cultural universe, inclusive and comprehensive … Comparative literature is the ineluctable result of general historical developments. • The Comparative Perspective on Literature: Approaches to Theory and Practice by Claton Koelb and Susan Noakes. 1988. Cornell University Press What & How of Comparative Literature?
  • 23. A Case Study: What to compare? Always keep in mind ~‘why’ ~ inter-disciplinary approach • Let us view these ads, poems, folk lit, image and try to do Comparative Studies: – View this lesson form the school book – study language – car ad – Poem by Kamala Das: An Introduction – Poem recited by poet Meena Kandasamy (2:00) – Hindi Poem: Raavan – Hindi poem: Prasoon Joshi : mohe lohar ke ghar dijiyo, meri zanjeere pighlaye – Women Bond – Lok Sahitya : Beti – bahu (4:00) – Tu hi tu – Star Ad (3:44) – Fair and Lovely – Airhostess (1:00) – Fair and Handsome (.37) – Sunsilk – Malaysia (1:00) – Tanishq – Marriage (1:37)
  • 24. Bibliography • Wellek, René. “The Crisis of Comparative Literature.” Comparative Literature: Proceedings of the Second Congress of the ICLA. Ed. W. P. Friederich. 2 vols. Chapel Hill: U of Carolina P, 2:149-59. • Saussy, Haun, ed. (2006). Comparative literature in an Age of Globalization . Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press. • Randel, Don (2010). What about the humanities? Society for the Humanities, Invitational Lecture, Cornell University. 30 March 2010. • Ferris, David. (2006). Indiscipline. In Haun Saussy, ed., Comparative literature in an Age of Globalization. pp. 78-99. Baltimore: Johns CHopkins University Press. • Stallknecht, Newton P, Horst Frenz. OMPARATIVE LITERATURE: Method and Perspective Ed.Southern Illinois University Press CARBONDALE Questia Media America, Inc. www.questia.com • Dev, Amiya. Rethinking Comparative Literature • Das, Sisir Kumar. Comparative Literature in India: A Historical Perspective • Majumdar, Swapan. Comparative Literature: Indian Dimensions • Bose, Buddhadeva. “Comparative Literature in India”, Yearbook of Comparative and • General Literature, 8, 1959 also included in Contribution to Comparative Literature • Germany and India, ed. Naresh Guha (Jadavpur 1979). • Dev, Amiya Dev, "Comparative Literature in India" page 5 of 8 CLCWeb: Comparative Literature and Culture 2.4 (2000): http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/clcweb/vol2/iss4/10 • Koelb, Claton and Susan Noakes. The Comparative Perspective on Literature: Approaches to Theory and Practice. 1988. Cornell University Press.
  • 25. Thank you • This presentation will be available on www.slideshare.net/dilipbarad • It will be followed by quiz based on this presentation. • www.dilipbarad.com • dilipbarad@gmail.com

Sunday, 11 May 2014

Teaching Literature through Technology: Play / Drama

As the use of technology in classroom is increasing day by day, it becomes important to make some serious observations on its usage and impact on the learners. I wish to write a trilogy of blog posts on poetry and fiction, as well. This is the first one one Play / Drama. 


Gujarat University, Ahmedabad

 I make extensive use of technology in my literature classes. The statement is not made in self-eulogy or from a sense of pride. I know, all teachers these days are using technology in their classrooms. So, it is new or unique. Mine is just a humble attempt to see how far it works in the literature classrooms. And if I get some success with it, I am happy to share it with other teachers. This presentation was made for/in the Refresher Course in English Literature, organised by Academic Staff College, Gujarat University.
These were the points discussed with the help of various videos and select scenes from the stage performance of the plays:

Happy-Sad: Twin Masks
  • Literature is made up of words. Colours, visuals, musical notes etc have no space in the aesthetic delight which literature gives through words to the readers.
  • The use of visual mars the free play of imagination which words are capable of.
  • There should be no medium between the words and the reader - if the literature is to be relished.
  • But when it comes to plays, it becomes necessary to understand that plays are not meant to be read as poems or fictions are.
  • Plays are to be performed and visuals of the performance is to be relished. Words on the page are not enough to give the beauty of play - the aesthetic delight lies in viewing the performance, rather than in reading it. Though, reading a play is also equally satisfying.
  • To prove this point an interesting example is given in the presentation: refer to the slide on which Tom Stoppard and performance of 'The Tempest' is discussed.
  • Well, some interesting scenes from 'Doctor Faustus' by Christopher Marlowe, 'Hamlet' by Shakespeare, 'Waiting for Godot' by Samuel Beckett, "The Birthday Party' by Harold Pinter were presented with important points. 
    All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players
  • It was proved that the nuances of plays lies in the acting, dialogue delivery, pauses, silences, stage spectacle and several other stage devices. Reading a play, never gives the satisfaction which viewing a performance gives.
  • However, in the classroom, while teaching the plays as texts, we cannot take students to the theatre to view the plays. Henceforth, we have bring in the video recordings of the play performances.
  • Hey, there is a rub! There is a problem. The problem is inherent in video recordings of the performance which happens through 'camera'.
  • This limitation is discussed in the slide on 'Camera as Technopoly'.
  • Your queries, observations, suggestion are welcome in the comments below this blogpost.









Dilip Barad: In deliberation with participants of RC, ASC, Guj. Uni

Questions on session by Dilip Barad on ‘Teaching Drama through Technology’.

1.      The word ‘theatre’ has Greek theatron < theasthai at the root of its meaning. What does it mean?
a.       To read
b.      To watch
c.       To peform
d.      To act
2.      Which of the following gives appropriate difference between ‘Play’ and ‘Drama’?
a.       Play is a literary composition consisting of dialogues between various characters, epilogue, monologue, prologue and an end. Drama is the set up of the play, which includes the theater, the hall, the accessories, the green room, costumes, music and the like.
b.      They are synonymous without any difference as such.
c.       Play is ‘performance text’ and Drama is ‘play text’
d.      Drama is a literary composition consisting of dialogues between various characters, epilogue, monologue, prologue and an end. Play is the set up of the play, which includes the theater, the hall, the accessories, the green room, costumes, music and the like.
3.      With reference to which play, Tom Stoppard explained the difference between the performance text and play text to prove the point that visual/spectacle of the play is more important than textual reading?
a.       The Tempest
b.      Othello
c.       Hamlet
d.      Ariel
4.      In movie adaptation of which of the following play director has replaced curtains with mirror?
a.       The Birthday Party
b.      Waiting for Godot
c.       Doctor Faustus
d.      Hamlet
5.      In which of the following play, the menacing effect of silence and pause is generated with the help of tearing sound of newspaper and no dialogue or background score?
a.       Hamlet
b.      The Tempest
c.       The Birthday Party
d.      Doctor Faustus
6.      In which of the following play’s stage performance the fight between Good Angel and Bad Angel is presented quite dramatically?
a.       Doctor Faustus
b.      Waiting for Godot
c.       The Birthday Party
d.    Hamlet

Sunday, 27 April 2014

The Rights & Responsibilities of Women: The Dichotomy of the Election Commission of India

Since 1997, I have performed duties in various elections such as municipal corporation, gram panchayat, University senate, legislative assembly and Lok Sabha. Initially, the gender sense was not matured enough to perceive patriarchal privileges and prerogatives in social-cultural structures. After literary study of feminist theories and its application in literature and life, i have started believing and without a whiff of doubt that 'patriarchy is a reality' - it does plays vital role in constructing male-female identities.

Every now and then, popular manifestation of such dichotomy is perceived in advertisements, films, tele-serials, social debates and academic discourses. The economical disparity also remain a kind of reality, even in the developed Western world. Whether she is a farm laborer or MD/CEO of MNCs or film star or sports personality, the salaries/remunerations/perks/contract-money is never 'equal' to the male counterpart. There is exception to this in Government sector. Especially, in India, take any Government job, you will not find discrepancy in salaries given to male or female of similar rank and position. In addition, women are given tax relaxation (even if her husband or other family member is tax payer). I have no problem with tax relaxation offered to women in India. It is helps in economic emancipation. But what i cannot understand is why women do not ask for equal work opportunity during elections in India? I have never come across any organization fighting for the rights of women, demanding equal distribution of duties also for women of equal rank and position. Please draw my attention if there are any such demands made by women.
Earlies, when my patriarchal sense was not developed, i thought women are fair sex, they cannot do hard work, they should not be thrust into hardship, she is a damsel in distress - and man is supposed to do all macho-work, all hardships, field work etc. Now, i read all these as social construction of identities. So, we should abstain from such socio-cultural construction of identities. A fair and square opportunities should be given to one and all, irrespective of their gender when any Government organization is given responsibilities or duties to the workforce.

During all the elections, I have experienced that the so - called tough jobs of Zonal officer or Presiding officer are 'all-male' tasks. Rarely, any woman is offered these 'tough' duties. I do not think that these are really 'tough' tasks that women cannot do it. These 'revolver ranis' can do it. There is no need to wait for women NGOs cry foul.
Then, why is Election Commission of India (ECI) not fair enough in distribution of duties? Why does ECI believe in Victorian dichotomy?
See these photographs of a few trainings for the staff members for Lok Sabha 2014. You will rarely notice a single woman in these images. 
* Why should we deny women their rights and responsibility to perform pious duty in this festival of Democracy? 
The largest democracy of the world is celebrating the festival. The women of India should not be denied their rights and responsibility to perform duties in Election. 
* How long should we consider it as the privilege and prerogative of Man? 
Let women be the part of democracy! 
Give them equal rights and responsibilities
Election 2014 Training - 1 at Samaldas Arts College, Bhavnagar. 28 Feb 2014

Election 2014 Training - 2 at Samaldas Arts College, Bhavnagar. 22 April 2014

Election 2014 Training - 3 at Medical College, Bhavnagar. 26 April 2014

Election 2014 Training - 3 at Medical College, Bhavnagar. 26 April 2014
Election 2014 Training - 3 at Medical College, Bhavnagar. 26 April 2014


Election 2014 Training - 3 at Medical College, Bhavnagar. 26 April 2014
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       These are the comments posted on FaceBook. Resharing to keep it for readers,as on FB, things get drowned in the wave of time.
  • Chandresh Parmar I agree with you Sir. Why not reservation in duties??? 
    1 hr · Unlike · 1
  • Jaydev Bhola Dilip Barad...women professors have been assigned poll duty in ahmedabad
    1 hr · Unlike · 2
  • Dilip Barad Normally it is softer ones. Is this time the so - called tougher ones like Presiding Officers or Zonal officers or . . . Jaydev Bhola, Pls throw some light.
    1 hr · Like
  • Jaydev Bhola Dilip Barad....rather softer ones like PO..1 and POs......the argument advanced was that Pre.Off. duty involves night shift plus prolonged hours,hence women were exempted 

    On a lighter note Dilipbhai ...I have both the duties in my home...!
    59 mins · Unlike · 2
  • Dilip Barad Jaydev Bhola: that's the concern . . . tough ones goes to the man. . . The task without responsibilities goes to woman - PO1/PO2/Ink the finer tip etc.
  • Dilip Barad Why is EC of India so sympathetic towards women - this is just an example of how socio - cultural phenomenon conditions n constructs n controls identities. 
  • Jaydev Bhola That too when you have Anita Karwal as the Chief Election Commissioner of Gujarat
    49 mins · Unlike · 1
  • Dilip Barad Jaydev Bhola: how can Anita Karwal escape her socio - cultural conditioning? We all are robots (puppet is medieval metaphor) - we think/act with respect to our programming...
    • 4 hrs · Edited · Like
    • Vishwas Joshi We have internalised this conditioning. Therefore I have never come across frmale collegues complaining about it. On the contrary, they are happy to be third PO.
      4 hrs · Unlike · 2
    • Hirva Vora I am of the opinion that women have been responsible for this because at some extent they themselves have been running away from these duties. In this case the ancient and the very notion of gender discrimination plays a vital role and conditioning of state of mind as well. If they have been deprived of their rights is truth then they have made themselves excluded is another reality. I have seen women who are teachers denying responsibilities of teaching in 12th and prefer to teach in 11th just because they do not have to go to check papers. They have accepted that, "who would prefer to go. Facilities aren't provided properly . It would be difficult for women to SURVIVE in that type of condition. " Some duties have been divided from the ORIGIN. It is like rooster coop. It needs to be broken down to peep out from it.
      4 hrs · Edited · Unlike · 2
    • Geeta Sahu the scene in mumbai was quite different. there were equal or more no of women who were doing election duty. infact, they were made to stay back till midnight till the machines were submitted, no1 seemed to be bothered about their security while travelling back home at that hour.
      3 hrs · Unlike · 3
    • Vimal Shah · Friends with Jagdish Joshi and 15 others
      U will sound it funny but many of the women professors of aau, at the time of gujarat elections, requested tht they shouldnt be giving election duties as they are already loaded with lots of work. The concept of democracy and election as featival may be colourful for debates and discussions but on the ground it sucks! 
      Why teachers and professors are given this sort of tasks? Isnt it enough that we are controllig and molding their naughty and abusive children? 

      I just dont like the whole idea of involving respected teachers in this thing!
      3 hrs · Unlike · 4
    • Geeta Sahu prof barad ...the task of PO1 and PO3 are of great responsibility ! the polling agents in the booth keep a track of number of voters who have voted ( male/female). hence, one has to be alert and cant leave ones place through out the day. if the PRO is an idot, then others team members have to run the show !
      2 hrs · Unlike · 2
    • Shobhana Nair Dilipbhai, probably men are egoistic n might have problems taking orders from female presiding officers:) Anita Karwal might be facing a similar situation everyday. On a more serious note, I personally believe in equality but the state should provide basic amenities n security for women??? Don't you think so...
      2 hrs · Unlike · 3
    • Prashant Chauhan Women of India do perform the election duty with all their comforts being taken care of. They usually perform as PO-3.
      35 mins · Edited · Unlike · 1
    • Dilip Barad Geeta SahuPrashant ChauhanShobhana Nair: I have faith in the potential of woman. If they can lead MNCs as managers, being Presiding Officer or Zonal officer is just a child's play. Woman can do but Man don't want to give then chance to prove their stuff. so, woman should ask for more challenging tasks. Comparatively, there is more responsibility with Presiding Officer than the followers in a polling booth. I think this duty should be equally distributed without gender bias. . . and once women will start performing such tasks, facilities will improve - security also will be taken care of. Cinema theatres, call centres are well protected - Presiding officers are given better security.
  • Geeta Sahu Till last year women were given PROs job. But the PRo is expected to stay overnight on the previous day. Women refused to do so.Hence this year men have been given PRO and women all other posts.
    18 hours ago · Unlike · 2
  • Shobhana Nair Dilipbhai, I strongly feel that women should be given equal opportunity to serve the nation and men to serve their respective families. But it doesn't happen. Today, when women have made a space for themselves, its been tough. Woman's modesty has been outraged in their homes, workplaces, buses, lifts etc by friends, relatives, bosses... How can a polling booth with strangers be a safer place during night??? Our govt. machinery has failed to provide security to women. This is every woman's right. Let the govt own up their responsibility first. Women should continue to receive such privileges till then. Right???
    11 hrs · Unlike · 3
  • Sunil Sharma This issue will be taken by some male out of jealousy and some of male by sharing authority and responsibilities. When Indra Gandhi, Sonia , Mamta, Susma, etc. can run parties and manage their party workers in efficient way, then this election duty is a very paltry issue for them. As there are many men who are running off from the election duties - election duties are taken as mandatory and in negligence of duties, affect the govt. services ,all Scot off the duties. It shows that we are not performing our routine duties with all responsibility.Otherwise this escapism would have not developed. Ladies are more prove to such threat, hence they also not demand by force such duties to perform. Secondly , do our political parties faith in Women ? I think they do not. Otherwise candidate lists would have been contained more ladies. The issue is not of sex but of mentality. Govt. employees women will also run away from such duties , when allot such duties under the veil of sick certificate....
  • Chirag Dhandhukiya did any woman raise her voice for this? no. Y. when it comes to perks, v r equal,but in responsibility- v r women! ( i m not against them. i do love them)
  • Geeta Sahu Neither did any man raise his voice against women being expected to stay with men (PRO) past midnight for the submission of those damn machines !!