Dr. Anasuya Bhar | Romanticism, A Journey Into the 'Life of Things'

Foundational Lecture Series:

Speaker: Dr. Shiladitya Sen

Topic: Women in Shakespearean Drama, in the Audience and on the Stage

Date: 27 January 2021

Atul Krishna Binodini Devi Creative Writing Competition Prize Distribution Ceremony

Date: 6 February 2021

Videos of Lectures conducted by the English Department

1. Foundational Lecture Series:
Speaker: Dr. B. Mangalam
Topic: 17th Century England and John Milton
Date: 7 November 2020

2. Foundational Lecture Series:
Speaker: Dr. Urmi Ray
Topic: Reliving Descartes' Discourses
Date: 23 November 2020

Title of the Lecture: "Shakespeare in Germany and the Invention of Politics", and "Re-inventing Shakespeare's Magic, Music and Media in The Reception of A Midsummer's Night's Dream"
Department of English
12 September 2019

On 12 September 2019, Professor Peter W. Marx and Dr. T. Sofie Taubert, from the University of Cologne Germany, visited Janki Devi Memorial College to deliver a public lecture organized by the college's Department of English. The title of their lecture was "Shakespeare in Germany and the Invention of Politics", and "Re-inventing Shakespeare's Magic, Music and Media in The Reception of A Midsummer's Night's Dream" respectively. Both the speakers before their lecture planted a sapling in the college; as part of the college's greenery drive. Dr. Swati Pal, the principal of the college exchanged a few words and gifts of appreciation before the commencement of the session. Dr. Indu Jain introduced the speakers to the attending scholars comprising of literature students and faculty.

Dr. Taubert took the initiative to start the session by her insightful lecture on the fairies of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. The highlights of her lecture revolved around challenging the notions of fairy magic on stage. Her research was diverse and it spanned from the sound, movement, entomology and dance of the fairies on stage to other media adaptations. She added that the fairy magic in Shakespeare's play allowed aesthetic experimentation in later adaptation which transcended to actual physics and laws of nature. Her concluding remarks were of self-reflection on theatre, as well as on media technology in general.

Professor Marx's lecture was inclined towards Shakespeare's History plays, in particular Richard III. His research was oriented towards the quest of a heroic ideal in Shakespeare's works, which he called "the Shakespeare Cycle". Through Richard II, he delivered a discourse on the rise of the hero in a fascist world. His lecture gradually transitioned from the will power of a hero to contemporary idealism of a hero, especially in the post WWII scenario. Professor Marx's examples were diverse and contemporary including the popular TV show Game of Thrones to the poster of Donald Trump.

Both the speakers sat for a joint Q&A session after the lecture. A diverse set of questions were asked by various faculty members and the attending students. The answers of the speakers were insightful and it gave a new perspective to attending scholars about the Shakespearean studies.


Title of the Lecture: "What has History Ever Done for Us"
Department of English
17 October 2019

Under its Distinguished Lecture Series, on 17th October 2019, the department of English of Janki Devi Memorial College invited the prolific historian Dr. Benjamin Zachariah. The title of the public lecture that Dr. Zachariah delivered was "What has History Ever Done for Us". Dr. Swati Pal received the guest and offered the distinguished speaker a set of gifts as a token of appreciation before the commencement of his lecture. Together Dr. Pal and Dr. Zachariah planted a sapling in the college as part of the college's greenery initiative. Dr. Sanjukta Naskar introduced Dr. Zachariah to the audience enlisting his various research works and ongoing projects to the attending teachers and students from various disciplines.

Dr. Benjamin Zachariah started his lecture by throwing light on the problematic aspect of Interdisciplinarity and the notion of historical studies. To put forth his arguments he cited diverse examples such as Monty Python's Life of Brian, the history of Jews, and his fellow contemporary historians. A particular highlight of his lecture, especially for the English department, was his argument where he compared historians to the literary critics. Towards the latter half of his lecture he discussed the profession of a historian and how it worries him. Some of his concerns were regarding the linguistic aspect of historical discourses in contemporary times. He ended his lecture by relating his own research in the contemporary and turbulent times, and what does it mean for him to be a historian.

After the lecture, the floor was opened for a Q&A session which was chaired by Ms. Indu Jain from the English department. The attending academicians including teachers and students asked a diverse set of questions to which Dr. Zachariah replied insightfully. The overall event was enriching and insightful.


Title of the Lecture: Using RTI- Exercising The Right to Question
Department of English,
4 September 2019

Anjali Bhardwaj, founder of the Satark Nagrik Sangathan, a citizen's forum committed to transparency in governance, met with students and faculty of JDMC on 4th September 2019, as a part of the college's Distinguished Speaker Series. The title of her session was "Using RTI- Exercising the Right to Question". As part of the college's tradition, Mrs. Bhardwaj planted a sapling in the college with the principal Dr. Swati Pal. Dr. Sanjukta Naskar introduced Mrs. Bhardwaj to the attendants before the commencement of her interactive session.

During the session Mrs. Bhardwaj spoke extensively on the RTI Act, and its several facets. Beginning with defining the RTI, and contextualising it's implications and meaning. She extensively focused on the people's movement behind its implementation. She shed light on its significance, especially for those citizens whose accessibility to information is continually denied on the basis of social exclusion. She elaborated on the struggles of two exemplary women, who were the pioneers to exercise the RTI, for ration information. Towards the latter half of her session she spoke on the need for systematic accountability vis-a-vis modes of governance, and took the discussion forward by addressing several questions that the students raised.

After the end of her lecture the formal Q&A session with the speaker took place. Mrs. Bhardwaj responses were critical and enlightening. She seamlessly translated technicalities of the RTI to be understood in simple terms through examples and discussion. It was enriching for both the attending faculty and students.


Topic:Forms and Dynamics of Religious Transformations Across Times, Contexts and Locations

Speakers: Prof. Christopher Key Chapple & Prof. Rakesh Chandra

Date & Time: October 23rd , 2019 , 3:00 pm

Venue: Seminar room, JDMC

An international seminar was organized by the Department of Philosophy, Janki Devi Memorial College on 23rd October, 2019 in college premises on 'Forms and Dynamics of Religious Transformations Across Time, Contexts and Locations'. Prof. Christopher Key Chapple is an Indologist and scholar of international repute working on areas of religion. He is Doshi Professor of Indic and Comparative Theology at Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles. He spoke on religious pluralistic practices in Los Angeles, and emphasized that the study of religion requires an understanding of various other disciplines such as Geography, Theology, History and Sociology and how they help in understanding each other. He said that it is important to master the techniques of understanding the meanings of life minus consumerism and concluded by saying that religion should be seen as a part of life and not just an abstract belief and it is imperative for everything to change including religion. Prof. Rakesh Chandra is associated with the Department of Philosophy, University of Lucknow and is a member of the Indian Council of Philosophical Research. He focussed on the significant roles of rational scrutiny in religious practices. He began with numerous thought provoking questions that re-examined the existing notion of religion in the minds of people thereby opening grounds for re-assessing its role and meaning in each life.


Public Lecture (July 25, 2019)

A workshop on legal-literacy was organised on April 22, 2019 for Second Year Hons students who had opted for the English GEC Contemporary India: Women and Empowerment. Ms Diksha Lamba interacted with the students on various legal issues regarding Indian women.

A lecture-demonstration by Dr Sanjay Kumar, Department of English, Hansraj College was organised for the English Hons third year students on March 30. This was followed by a theatrical performance by Pandies Theatre of scenes from Brecht's The Resistible Rise of Arturo Ui.

The Department, in collaboration with the Department of Political Science, organised a talk by Dr Maidul Islam, Department of Political Science, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta on March 11. Dr Islam spoke on his book Indian Muslim(s) after Liberalization.

The Association invited Dr Debdatta Chowdhury from the Department of Gender Studies, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta. She delivered a lecture on 'Urban Centres across the Indo-Bangladesh Border' to the students on March 5.

A series of public lectures was conceptualised by the Department to facilitate academic discourse amongst the faculty and the students. The broad framework of the series was titled as 'Defining the Urban and Urbanity in the 19th Century'. The first lecture was delivered by Sambudha Sen, Prof and Head, Department of English, Shiv Nadar University on February 26. Prof Sen spoke on the colonial encounter in Bengal as evidenced in Hootum Pyanchar Naksha.

The Department, in collaboration with Iridiscent, organised the second edition of the Writers' Festival on February 14. The event commenced with a panel discussion centered on 'Speaking Truth to Power'. The panel consisted of eminent writers Sidhartha Sarma, Parvati Sharma, Devapriya Roy, Himanjali Sankar, poet Nitoo Das, performance-artist Amitesh Grover, translator Arunava Sinha, journalist Anant Nath and publisher Arpita Das, moderated by Shantanu Ray Chaudhuri, senior editor. The panel engaged in a lively discussion on the challenges, possibilities and responsibilities faced by writers and other creative artists in contemporary times. The event concluded with the students interacting one-on-one with the panelists.

On February 6, the Aruna Chakravarti Intra-College Creative Writing Competition was held. Students of various disciplines participated in the competition. Ms Yamini Negi was adjudged the winner.

Dr Namita Sethi presented a foundation lecture on January 22 to the English Hons second year students on 'The 18th Century Country and City in Visual Arts and Literature'.


On 13 November 2018, a Workshop on 'Media, Culture and Critical Thinking' was conducted for the students. Dr Ruma Sen was the resource person for the interactive session.

A Students' Seminar was organised for the students, who are involved in the Department Research Project of 'Memoirs', on 5 November. The students presented papers with their working titles where they examined the relationship between food, memories and self-formation.

On 31 October Dr Payal Nagpal and Mr Ankan Dhar organised a production of two plays by the second year students who have opted for the English GE Text and Performance. 'The Fault' and 'Swanuraag', each of approx 10 mins were conceptualised, scripted, directed and performed by students of various disciplines who were taught various theatrical systems and performed in front of the college as part of their practical demonstration.

A Students' Seminar was organised by Dr Payal Nagpal for the English Hons III Year students on 22 October. Dr Anand Prakash was invited as the Chief Guest to discuss the student presentations. Based on the theme of '19th Century European Realism' the papers focusing on areas like comparative analysis of Victor Hugo’s short stories, cinematic adaptations of 19th century novels, thematic implications in the novels and biographical readings of texts.

On 10 October, the Association in collaboration with Iridescent, the creative writing society, conducted a Poetry Workshop. Ms Ananya Dasgupta was the resource person for the session.

A screening of A Streetcar Named Desire was organised for the students by the Association on 6 October.

On 3 October, the Association organised a Book-Jacket Designing Competition for the students. The event was judged by Ms Smita Mitra. Shahana Khatoon, Muskan Tyagi and Udisha Bhati received the first, second and third prize, respectively. Himanshi Duseja received a certificate of special mention. The entries were displayed on the wall of Room 13.

Ms Sanjukta Naskar organised a screening of Through the Looking Glass for the English Hons Second Year students on 1 October 2018. On 28 September, Mr Ankan Dhar organised a presentation and discussion on the Indian classical technique of acting - abhinaya, for the Second Year students of GE Text and Performance.


English Association Activities 2018-19

In-Charge: Sanjukta Naskar, with Ankan Dhar

The prize distribution ceremony of Atul Krishna Binodini Devi Creative Writing Competition was held on 19 September 2018. Nishtha Arora from Shaheed Bhagat Singh College (Morning) received the first prize. Shahana Khatoon and Himanshi Duseja received the second and third prize, respectively. Yamini Negi and Yashkirti were awarded Special Mention prizes. The students were addressed by the Principal, former Principal Dr Aruna Chakravarti and the judges of the competition, Ms Anjali Deshpande and Ms Saira Mujtaba.

On 12 September, the Atul Krishna Binodini Devi Creative Writing competition was organised. This year’s genre was Chat Fiction. Students from various courses of the college, as well students from across institutions of Delhi participated.

English Hons II year students - Yamini Negi, Alveena, Sohini Hazra and Oishee Roy attended a panel discussion titled ‘Is there a secret sauce to democracy?' at the India Habitat Centre to commemorate the International Day of Democracy on 10 September. The panel discussion was organised by the British Council. On the same day, Dr Antara Datta organised a screening of The French Lieutenant’s Wife for Eng Hons III students.

On 8 September the Association organised a Turncoat Debate for English Hons students. The topic was 'English Literature is now, Literature in Translation. The judges were Dr Sudha Upadhyay and Ms Ruchika Bhatia. The first prize was won by Bhavya Pathak and Gitanjali S Pillai, the second prize by Nitika Yadav and Ritigya Malik and the third prize by Oishee Roy. Muskan Tyagi received a Special mention prize.

Mr Ankan Dhar organised a screening and discussion on the folk theatre form of Chhau for students of GE II year Text and Performance course on 31 September.

The students of the three years held elections amongst themselves to elect the Student Office-bearers. Muskan Kashyap is the President, Yamini Negi is the Vice-President and Avneet Kaur is the Secretary of the Association. The Executive Members are Kritika Mahajan, Anahita Kampani, Shraddha Maggu and Muskan Malhotra.

On 30 August the Association organised a Freshers' Welcome for the English Hons I year students. The Principal and the Teacher-in-charge formally welcomed them to the department. Dr Antara Datta screened Beloved for the English Hons II year students on 28 August.
On 16 August the department organised a farewell lunch for Ms Rita Sinha, who retired on 17 August 2018.
Ms Tarini Pandey organised a screening of The Birdcage for English Hons II year as ‘Drag as Subversive’ with reference to Funny Boy (Paper VI) in room 13 on 14 August 2018.


  1. A workshop on “Creative Writing” was conducted by Dr. AnjanaNeira Dev on 17 November 2017 for the students.
  2. Ms Rita Sinha delivered a Foundation Lecture titled "Ambedkarite Philosophy" on 14 November 2017.
  3. A lecture was delivered by Dr. Oinam Kamala Kumari titled "Manipuri Poetry and ThangjamIbopishak" on 8 November 2017 for the students of the English department.
  4. The Department of English, in collaboration with the Department of Commerce, organised a talk by Prof. Annette Ameraal on 10 November 2017. The title of the talk was "Strategies in Emerging Markets."
  5. Dr. Snjay Kumar, Hansraj College delivered a lecture demonstration on Creative Writing with special reference to Script Writing on 14th October, 2017.
  6. The Department co-organised a national seminar with the Shakespeare Society of India on 27 October 2017. The theme of the conference was “Shakespeare Now."
  7. Dr. Jitender Gill delivered Foundation Lectures on the Greek Epic, Roman Society and Literature, and Modernism for the students of the English department.
  8. The students displayed their work and participated in a poster making competition for a Breast Cancer Awareness programme organized by Bliss Foundation on 29th September, 2017. The students also helped in the organization of the event as volunteers.
  9. Dr. AkhilKatyal conducted a creative writing workshop with English Hons. II Year, SEC (Translation) students on 21 September 2017.
  10. Mr. Siddharth Sharma delivered a lecture to III Year students on 14 September 2017 on Post- War Britain. The topic of the lecture was "The Book of Reflection- John Fowles, the Victorian Age and You."
  11. The English Literary Association organized the Atul Krishna Binodini Devi Creative Writing Competition on 13 September 2017. Ms. Urvashi Butalia and Dr. Chandana Dutta kindly consented to judge the student entries. The prize distribution program was held on 22 September 2017. It was a moment of immense pride for the department and College as Asmita Bhattacharya, B.A. (Hons.) English, III Year student won the first prize consecutively for the second time in the year 2017. The second and third prize winners of the competition are as follows:

    2nd Prize was bagged by Shaurya Singh Thapa, Hindu College, D.U.
    3rd prize was shared between Zainab Batool , Shaheed Rajguru College of Applied Sciences for Women(D.U.) and Raghavendra Singh Rana, Dyal Singh College (D.U.)
  12. Mr. RonojoySircar delivered a lecture on “Postmodern Narrative and the Influence of the Real” on 24 August 2017 as part of the Foundation Lecture Series, organized by the English Department.
  13. The English Literary Association organized the Departmental Freshers’ Day on 4 August 2017.


    Association-in-charge: Dr. Antara Datta

    Teacher-in-charge: Dr. PayalNagpal

    The following events and activities were organised by the English Literary Association of the Department of English:

    1. The Department collaborated with Max Super Speciality Hospital, Shalimar Bagh, where a day-long interactive session was held on Cancer Awareness on 23rd March, 2017. A delegation of students and teachers attended the event which included presentations by the doctors as well as the students on various aspects of Cancer.
    2. The Department organised an one-day international conference, titled Poetic Montage: Indian Poetic Traditions and the Emerging Subject/Citizen, which was held on 2nd March. Purushottam Agarwal, Vishwanath Tripathi, Ajmal Kamal, Uday Prakash and Michael Creighton were some of the eminent scholars of poetry and poets who addressed the faculty and the students.
    3. On 23rdFebruary, 2017 the department invited Prof. Eiko Ohira from Tsuru University, Japan, to deliver a lecture on “Gender in Women’s Writing in English.” She spoke on Indian English women writers and the way they negotiate the constructs of gender. She especially focussed on Githa Hariharan’s novels to illustrate her argument.
    4. The department in collaboration with the Department of Political Science invited Prof. Akeel Bilgrami, the Sidney Morgenbesser Professor of Philosophy at Columbia University to deliver a lecture on 22ndFebruary. He spoke on the subject “Is there an Indian Secularism?”
    5. On 22nd February, Dr. Payal Nagpal delivered a lecture “Re-imagining India” to students of Australian Universities as part of a programme for international students, in a collaboration of the college with Shri Ram College of Commerce.
    6. On 3rdFebruary, 2017 Dr. Benjamin Zachariah was invited to deliver a lecture on “Historical Methods” to the faculty.
    7. A series of Foundation Lectures were planned where teachers focussed on specific areas within the history of English Literature to supplement the curricular teaching of the department.
    8. On 23rdSeptember, the department in collaboration with the Norwegian Embassy invited Norwegian writer Johan Harstad to speak about his novels.
    9. A creative writing workshop was organised on 23rdSeptember, when Dr. Anuradha Marwaha guided the students and conducted prose-writing sessions in fiction.
    10. In September, the Atul Krishna Binodini Devi Creative Writing Competition was organised. The theme of the competition was “Conflict Blogging,” and witnessed participation of students from across colleges and universities in Delhi. The prize-giving ceremony was organised on 8thOctober, 2016. Judges, Mr. Uttam Sinha and Ms. Tanima Biswas, along with Principal Dr. Swati Pal and former Principal Dr. Aruna Chakravarti, gave away the prizes.
    11. On 2ndSeptember, a creative writing workshop was organised for the Second year students who had opted for Creative Writing Paper under the Skill Enhancement Course. Anannya Dasgupta spoke to the students about various technical aspects of poetry-writing, especially writing ghazals in English.
    12. On 19thAugust, Dr. Anand Prakash was invited to deliver a lecture on “Marxism” to the III year students.
    13. On 3rdAugust, theatre-activist, Jonatan Stanzack delivered a lecture, “Why Palestine Matters,” on the importance of theatre and activism in Israel-Palestine.
    14. 1The Freshers’ Welcome for the new entrants was organised in August 2016. The First year students were introduced to the faculty members and students of the department.

    Atul Krishna Binodini Devi Creative Writing Competition, Department of English

    Dr. Anand Prakash, delivering a lecture on Marxism

    Foundation Lecture Series; Mr. Ankan Dhar

    Foundation Lecture Series; Ms. Rita Sinha

    Johan Harstad on his Novels and Writing

    Jonatan Stanzack on 'Why Palestine Matters'

    Poetic Montage, Department of English

    poetic montage

    Prof. Aqeel Belgrami on 'Is there an Indian Secularism'

    Prof. Eiko Ohira, a lecture on 'Gender in Women's Writing in English'

    Students participating in interactive session at Max Super Speciality Hospital