We organised a talk by Nandini Oza, renowned oral historian and digital archivist, and former president of the Oral History Association of India entitled “River of Life: Oral Histories of the Narmada Valley.”
Date: 15 February 2023 (Wednesday)
Time: 6 PM
Room: AB 6/202
The talk is part of a larger project sponsored by the Social Science Research Council on “Mobility and Multilingualism: Impacts of Global Ecological Change on Local Society.”
Displacement is of various types. One form of displacement, development induced forced displacement post India’s independence has grown at an alarming rate. However, as this displacement is of the marginalised sections of the society and justified for the “development” of the country, it has not received the attention it deserves. On the other side, the resistance by adivasis and other natural resources dependent communities to developmental projects has also grown significantly over the years. Among the many people’s movements against “developmental projects”, one powerful struggle that grew to prominence has been the movement against the Sardar Sarovar Project (SSP)- a mega dam on the river Narmada.
In this talk, Nandini Oza will be presenting on the impact the SSP has had on the people and the ecology of the river and will also talk about her work on the oral histories of the Narmada struggle, which is an attempt to bring to the fore the voices of the people of the Narmada valley displaced by the project.
Over the past decade and a half, Nandini Oza has been working on the oral histories of the Narmada struggle as well as with women prisoners and bringing their stories out in public domain in the form of books and in digital format. President of Oral History Association of India (March 2020- March 2022), Nandini is the author of Whither Justice: Stories of Women in Prison (Rupa, 2006), Whither Justice ( in Marathi, 2012), Ladha Narmadecha (in Marathi, 2017), The Struggle for Narmada: An Oral History of Narmada Bachao Andolan by Adivasi Leaders Keshavbhau and Kevalsingh Vasave (Orient Blackswan, 2022).
Nandini has been a recipient of the Sangam house writers’ residency at Bengaluru in the years 2017 and 2022. She also maintains a website and a YouTube channel on the oral histories of the Narmada struggle: https://oralhistorynarmada.in/