Thu, 24 Jun

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Zoom Online event

Confronting the Indigo Giant: What is the legacy of Indigo Cultivation in Bangladesh?

An interdisciplinary presentation on an innovative new project combining theatre, ethnography and environmental science: reclaiming the tainted history of Indigo for a more sustainable future. Please note the event takes place at 7.30pm Bangladesh time, 2.30pm UK time.

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Confronting the Indigo Giant: What is the legacy of Indigo Cultivation in Bangladesh?

Time & Location

24 Jun 2021, 19:30 – 21:30 GMT+6

Zoom Online event

About the Event

During the British Raj, to meet the world's insatiable need for blue, vast swathes of the Bengali countryside were given over to the cultivation of the indigo plant. But indigo cultivation was only possible under near slave conditions created by British planters. The atrocities committed by the planters triggered an extraordinary revolution that changed Bengal forever.

Supported by the University of East Anglia's QR Global Challenges Research Fund, this innovative interdisciplinary project explores the terrible history of indigo cultivation. Over the past year, Professor Syed Jamil Ahmed (Dhaka University) has embarked on an epic programme of fieldwork exploring the collective memory of Indigo Cultivation in Bangladesh. Meanwhile, Playwright Ben Musgrave, (University of East Anglia) in association with director Jatinder Verma and Komola Collective, and theatre creatives in Bangladesh, are making a thrilling new piece of drama, INDIGO GIANT, exploring the troubling histories of Indigo cultivation (and, in particular, Dinabandhu Mitra's explosive play NIL DARPAN, which shook colonial India). Finally , Professor M.M.R. Jahangir, of Bangladesh Agricultural University, has conducted  soil science research, in association with social enterprise Living Blue, asking whether there might in fact be a remarkable environmental and economic benefit in the revival of Indigo Cultivation in Bangladesh. 

In this online session, we will introduce you to our project. But we also want to hear about what the history of indigo cultivation means to you, and following our presentation there will be opportunity for questions and discussion.

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