In September 2020, the Indian Parliament passed three acts aimed at restructuring the country’s agricultural sector, setting off a massive protest movement—possibly the largest in human history—among farmers, laborers, and students. These movements, known collectively as the Farmers Protests, lasted from September 2020 to November 2021, and saw the creation of an entire settlement on the outskirts of the national capital, Delhi. At this settlement, protestors not only pushed for the repeal of the agricultural legislation but also created communal kitchens, schools, administrative bodies, and a newspaper. In November 2021, the Indian government repealed all three laws, giving the Farmers Protest a major victory and reflecting a significant shift in the way that popular politics is pursued, discussed, and imagined in the country.
Navkiran Natt is a film-maker, activist, and co-editor of the Trolley Times, the newspaper created in the midst of the Farmers Protests. She has come to be known as not only one of the movement’s spokespersons but also as a critical thinker on the modes and meanings of protest and their connection to such elements as gender, labor, and education. Natt will speak on the ongoing agrarian crisis in India, new modes of protest, the role of women in contemporary agrarian movements, and why the farmers’ movement continues to push for change. She will be introduced by Tyler Williams, Assistant Professor in the Department of South Asian Languages and Civilizations, and the talk will be moderated by Manpreet Kaur, PhD candidate in the Department of Religion, Columbia University.
This event will be a hybrid event. It will be held in Foster 103 and via Zoom. If you would like to attend in-person, please email Lauren Doan at firstname.lastname@example.org as there are a limited number of spaces.