Fellowships and grants

Money makes the world go round, eh. Enjoy sifting through these to figure out how you’re not eligible for most of them. No, seriously, take a look, fellow academics. Today might be the day.

ACLS offers fellowships and grants in over one dozen programs, for research in the humanities and humanistic social sciences at the doctoral and postdoctoral levels.


Brenda McCallum Prize, American Folklore Society Archives and Libraries Section
Deadline: September 15, 2007

US Institute of Peace 2008–2009 Senior Fellowship Competition in the Jennings Randolph Program for International Peace
Deadline: September 17, 2007
Contact: jrprogram@usip.org

American Academy of Arts & Sciences: Visiting Scholars Program 2008–2009 Call for Applications
Deadline: October 15, 2007

American-Scandinavian Foundation Visiting Lectureships
Deadline: Oct 15, 2007

American-Scandinavian Foundation Awards for Study in Scandinavia
Deadline: November 1, 2007

Berlin Program for Advanced German and European Studies, Freie Universität Berlin
Deadline: December 1, 2007

American Council of Learned Societies 2007–2008 Fellowship and Grant Awards

American Council of Learned Societies China Studies Program

American Council of Learned Societies Henry Luce Foundation Program in East and Southeast Asian Archaeology and Early History


Kicking my addictions

Friends in the blogosphere may have noticed that I have reduced my blog reading, subscribing and commenting drastically of late. Unsubscribing from a blog tends to be an Event in the Blogosphere (I would know). So I would hasten to explain that this means nothing – I still love you, I still read your blog when I can but I can’t have it light up with unread posts in bloglines or I’ll be forced to read it – it just means a reorg of my priorities.

It’s been over a year since I had Raihana, who wreaked havoc with the progress of my academic work-rhythm. Academic work is something I get done in snatches now – until she returns to fulltime daycare – like a fish coming up for air. I always have a running list of academic tasks in addition to domestic tasks, and very limited time to do it all. I also need to find a job.

Blogging had to be dropped from the top middle of my list, so that other income-generating activities could take its place – until I can charge a fee for any foolhardy blog readers I can swindle.

The reorg of my priorities was a hard struggle. But in July, I found a window of opportunity to effect a quick heartless reorganization.

When I returned from my trip to Pakistan, I found myself looking at jetlag, an adjusted circardian rhythm, a changed diet, – in short, I found myself looking at myself and seeing a VOID. A creative void.

In Pakistan, I’d had terrible dial-up. I couldn’t surf the internet, blog endlessly, or write emails to long-forgotten acquaintances. I could just barely send emails that were terribly urgent and important – and missed a deadline or two in the process. Sometimes, I spent days without being online [yes, I know, shudder-shudder].

For TV, I had either my mother’s cooking programmes, my father’s RAW (wrestling), or my nephew and niece’s dreadful American teen sit-coms. No “Law and Order,” no “The Closer,” no “Monk.” In short, I had no TV I wanted to watch. This lasted for a full 6 weeks. It was the equivalent of a “chillaa,” a spiritual retreat usually lasting 40 days.

On most days, since I was in charge of the baby, (Svend didn’t accompany us on the trip), I couldn’t sleep in either. This, coupled with severe jetlag for the 3 weeks of the trip, made me feel like a woman who could pretty much handle anything because she had annihilated all her need for sleep.

When I returned to the US, I found myself purged. I felt like I was staring into the face of a potential new world of new habits. This is my chance, I thought to myself.

In this pursuit, I changed Raihana’s and my schedule. We no longer wake up very, very late in the morning. (We’ll continue to call that “morning”). I slashed my bloglines links with the fury of love, and I kicked my TV addiction.

Yes, I dropped TV.

I hesitated to brag about this early on, wondering how long it would REALLY last. But now that I’ve been TV-free since early July, I feel that I can at last plant my triumphant flag of freedom. I have dumped TV.

No more mindless commercials that stick in my head and play in my head constantly in the middle of the night, and play as soon as I open my eyes in the morning.

No more Law & Order, sadly, but no more Orientalist portrayals of weeping Muslim women and furious Muslim men with dark-lined eyes.

No more watching the SAME episode of “Will & Grace” 54 times just because it’s there.

No more Dora the Explorer and those horrid Wonder Pets either. And no offensive automobile commercials in the middle of kids’ programming.

No more disjointed images of female body parts being used to sell alcohol, shoes, cars, soap, coffee and burgers.

No, I’m no over-achiever. I have netflix.

Now THIS is forever

Everyday, a couple in their late 50s or early 60s visits this cafe.

They enter holding hands, then part briefly while the man brings coffee for both of them. Then they sit down together, gazing at each other affectionately. They hold hands constantly – maybe she has arthritis, but it seems to me that he massages her fingers. Unlike others, neither man or woman have no eyes for any of the youthful occupants of the cafe.

There they sit, wrapped up in each other, talking happily.

And how much time we waste, missing those moments that are right by our fingertips.

Unlikely reimbursement

“When I’m old and grey, and I’ve mentioned my arthritis for the fifteenth time, don’t snap at me, because that is the twentieth time today I’ve sat here with a bright smile waiting for you to finish doing peekaboo from behind the crib.”

Lahore: the most underappreciated city in the world

A beautiful evocative piece by Asad Raza.


“Lahore is the conservatory of a lost world whose traces have been largely erased from more touristic destinations, like Delhi and Agra – I will come to the reasons for this below.  The world in general has few cities that interweave so seamlessly a great vitality today (the city is about the twenty-fifth largest on the globe) with an unbroken and luxurious history (spanning the last two millennia). … 

“In Lahore, by contrast, you can see what tourists can only imagine at the Red Fort or the Taj Mahal: the dense, complex, and still vital operations of an inner city bursting with markets, shrines, mosques, food, dancing girls, riotous children.  That’s what makes Lahore different: its history is sometimes worn on its sleeve and sometimes hidden within, but never is it advertised or reified.  It’s lived.”