Unpacking Apartheid, Challenging Privilege

This workshop sets the tone of the conference by looking at our roles in microagressions and macro- and micro-forms of caste oppression. First aiming to make visible what is hidden in plain sight, we explore how caste privilege erases the bodies of members of our own community and dehumanizes those with privilege.  Bring your own experiences and share in forming empathy to take a stand against these day to day biases, where too often we remain silent and hence complicit.

Experiences of Caste

Opening ourselves and sharing our own vulnerabilities, we explore the different ways caste is experienced in the diaspora.  Whether those that have gained from privilege or those that have suffered from its oppression, we share our stories, narratives and connections to this little discussed topic.

Rebels, Reformers, and Revolutionaries

This workshop presents an alternative narrative of Sikh history.  Centering a Dalit narrative, we explore little discussed rebels, reformers, and revolutionaries.  From Bhai Jaita to Giani Ditt Singh, from BR Ambedkar to Bant Singh, we will revisit Punjab’s past and present through a different lens. Can we challenge internal hegemonies and better express the mission of Guru Nanak?

Building Begampura

The one that faces the Guru (the ‘Gurmukhi’) walks a difficult path, because it challenges the status quo. We do this together. During this workshop, we explore the ways Gurbani and the Gurus challenged patriarchy and oppression, and inspire each other through looking at Gurbani and how to make it part of our daily lives.  We look specifically at the baani around Begampura.

Caste Beyond Punjab

This workshop delves into the influence of caste far beyond Punjab.  Old notions of hierarchy and privilege did not remain in Punjab as many of our families, our culture, our music, and our beings have carried it to a new land.  Here we explore how caste, even if unnamed, continues to influence so many of our traditions and haunts our community today.

Caste Through Media, Art, and Culture

This workshop delves into the influence of music, media, art, and culture in perpetuating and challenging caste.  We look with a critical eye at the forms of culture we consume and what are its implications.