New Voices in Asian Research

New Voices in Asian Research is a collection of papers based on essays that were awarded a YCAR Undergraduate Asian or Asian Diaspora Essay Award.


2019: Volume 03

Understandings of Military Power, Intoxication and Love in Kashmir, India
Harkit Bhandal

In her essay, Harkit considers how patients at the Drug De-addiction Centre in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir reconfigure their relationship to substance abuse through the performance of alternate narratives that are embedded with understandings of romantic love, Sufi thought and nasha (intoxication) to resist the clinic’s ‘recovery’ techniques linked to the structures of military rule. This paper was written for the Making Sense of a Changing World: Anthropology Today (SAP/ANTH 1120) course and was awarded the 2019 Undergraduate Asia Essay Award.

Views on the Model Minority Stereotype in a South Asian Canadian Context
Safa Warsi

Safa’s study focused on the Model Minority Stereotype (MMS), which depicts Asians as scoring high in certain seemingly positive attributes (e.g., competence and achievement), whilst also scoring high in seemingly negative traits (e.g., unsociability and emotional reservation). Previous research on this topic has largely focused on East Asian American samples, finding that internalization of the MMS can have psychologically harmful effects on these individuals. Safa employed qualitative and quantitative methods to explore whether or not the MMS exists in South Asian Canadian populations. This essay was written for an independent study course in Psychology and received the 2019 Undergraduate Asian Disapora Essay Award.

2017: Volume 02

A Spell to Empower Women: Religion, Culture and Domestic Violence in Pakistan
Wardah Behzad

In this essay, Behzad analyzes themes of gender, violence and nationalism in Rukhsana Ahmad’s short story, “The Spell and the Ever-Changing Moon.” An earlier version of this essay was produced for the course, South Asian Literature and Culture (HND 2700) at York University and was awarded the 2017 York Centre for Asian Research Undergraduate Essay Award.

2016: Volume 01

The Making of Bangladesh
Fareeha Alavi

Based on an oral narrative, Alavi analyzes competing nationalist myths that informed the events and aftermath of the 1971 Bangladesh War of Independence in this paper. An earlier version of this essay was produced for the course Introduction to South Asian Studies (SOSC 2435) at York University.

From Roots to Rhizomes: Hybrid, Diasporic Identities in Hema and Kaushik
Srijoni Rahman

In this paper, Rahman analyzes diasporic Indian characters from Jhumpa
Lahiri’s book of short stories, Unaccustomed Earth.  An earlier version of this paper was produced for the course South Asian Literature and Culture (HND 2700) at York University.