Chair: THOMAS BLOM HANSEN, Stanford University

CABEIRI D. ROBINSON, University of Washington, Seattle

"The Territoriality of the Refugee Body and the Sovereignty of Azad Kashmir"

In this presentation, I examine the history and historicity of the “refugee of Jammu and
Kashmir” as a rights-bearing political subject in Azad Jammu and Kashmir and Pakistan. Its history is grounded in the development of the ‘Hereditary State Subject’ as a political identity in the Princely State of Jammu and Kashmir though which the ‘people of the State of Jammu and Kashmir’ (aw~m-e-riy~sat or aw~m-e-Kashm§r) struggled to define and enforce limits on absolute sovereignty and grounded their rights claims against the monarchical state. Its historicity emerged from the ways that multiple social groups, political parties and the regional successor states of the Princely State of Jammu and Kashmir employed the symbolic territoriality inherent in categories of political identity to make claims on absent and lost geographic territories by claiming to represent the displaced and the dispossessed. On the contested political terrain, the Kashmir borderlands extend not only across the disputed Line of Control or in to the disputed “occupied” territories, but also through the indeterminate sovereignty of the bodies of its subjects.

ANGANA CHATTERJEE, California Institute of Integral Studies

"Archaeologies of Violence: Regularized States of Exception in India-ruled Kashmir"

How does engaging the effects of India’s rule in Kashmir demand an acknowledgement of India’s neo-imperial configuration as “nation” and a recognition of the nation as a compulsorily violent and heteronormative entity? Citing the work of the International People’s Tribunal on Human Rights and Justice in India-held Kashmir, I elaborate on military governance and the shaping of a people’s tribunal to solicit counter-memory. In what ways might the work of “writing Kashmir” constitute a feminist praxis, one that integrates critiques of gendered violence and attention to the complex labor of witnessing as intervention instantiated by the People’s Tribunal?


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