Wednesday July 17, 2019



Convener: National Council of Indian Culture (NCIC)

Date: July 11-13, 2014


Venue: National Council of Indian Culture, Divali Nagar Compound

Narsaloo Ramaya Marg, off Endeavour Flyover,

Chaguanas, Trinidad and Tobago, West Indies.


Theme: Towards a vision for the Indo Caribbean Diasporic Culture

Conference Chair: Joe Ramkissoon

Conference coordinator: Dr. Primnath Gooptar




Over the years, the Caribbean Indian Diaspora has given rise to a large body of literature that has mobilized the interest of scholars on a wide range of issues relating to the Diaspora both within the Caribbean and internationally. In this context, the nature of the Indian Diaspora has been discussed and documented in previous conferences. However, there is a paucity of literature on emerging and future trends in the Caribbean Indian Diaspora. The NCIC, therefore, in hosting this conference as part of its 50th Anniversary programme, proposes that this conference focus on the future of Indian culture within the Caribbean Diaspora.


Largely therefore the main objective of the conference will be to provide a forum for scholars  of diverse interests and backgrounds to engage in discussions on innovative approaches to the challenges facing the  future of the  Indian Diaspora in the Caribbean. This conference brings together intellectual and practice-based contributors who will examine the concept of Indo Caribbean culture as a constructive characteristic of future community life. It   will also explore the full range of Indian cultural experiences in Caribbean communities in charting the way forward. This conference, therefore, affords an open, collaborative atmosphere for scholars, leaders, specialists, visionaries, reformers and innovators to discuss future opportunities and challenges facing Indo Caribbean Culture. It is also hoped that this forum will serve to stimulate further exchanges of ideas and strengthen existing linkages within Diaspora networks.

In addition, the NCIC proposes that the conference examine issues and challenges relating to the future conservation, transmission and integration of the Indo Caribbean Diaspora and offer fresh perspectives on issues such as racism, assimilation and identity on how these impact on the Diaspora. The organization therefore invites paper proposals for this conference on the following sub- themes, which are by no means exhaustive. Prospective presenters may submit proposals for consideration on themes not mentioned below, but which relate to the overarching theme as outlined above.

Initial submissions will be in the form of abstracts followed by full paper submissions (see guidelines below) once abstracts have been approved.


        i.                        THE HERITAGE AND HISTORICAL CONTEXTS

This panel will explore the range of legacies and historical experiences that continue to shape host communities in the Caribbean diaspora. It would consider issues such as religio-cultural beliefs and practices; cultural and economic traditions; Language as a vehicle for the transmission of culture; cultural diversity, ethnicity and nationalism; and adaptations, assimilations and synthesization of Indo Caribbean culture in the region.


      ii.                        THE PERFORMATIVE, VISUAL AND CREATIVE ARTS

 This session would explore issues relating to new opportunities for creativity within the Caribbean context; challenges of the evolving performative, visual and creative arts in the Indo Caribbean Diaspora environment; future changes in the Diaspora in terms of traditions and innovations; constraints, responsibilities and sustainability in terms of the construction of new vistas for the arts in the Indo Caribbean Diaspora.


    iii.                        TECHNOLOGY, E- CULTURE AND ENTREPRENEURSHIP

How will technology alter the modes in which we think and present Caribbean Diasporic traditions to future generations? How will the internet, YouTube, e-mail, Skype and other internet based social media help to customize connectivity across borders   and reshape the entrepreneurial spirit in theIndo Caribbean diaspora? Are Indo cultural identities or activities tied to opportunities for entrepreneurship? These and other issues will form the bulk of presentations in this panel.


The papers in this panel will focus on future trends in culinary and medicinal practices and how Indian traditional foods affect healthy lifestyles within the context of the Caribbean diaspora. Do traditional Diaspora foods have a place in the new evolving culinary and medicinal environment in the Caribbean? What is the future of Indian street foods in the Caribbean? What about the practice and propagation of Yoga in the Caribbean. 


       v.                        SUSTAINABLE INDIAN  CULTURAL DEVELOPMENT

While the heritage and other aspects of the Diaspora have often been addressed, a less extensively explored aspect concerns the development of self-sustaining models for Indian cultural development within the Caribbean context. In that environment the survival of Indian culture in the Caribbean is increasingly dependent on how entrepreneurs harness East Indian cultural heritage and human resources within the Diaspora. The presenters will address issues such as: How do governments, private sector, civil society and entrepreneurs embrace Indian cultural assets in creating innovative ideas for sustainable development within the Diasporic context? What activities, assets and entitlements can guide future business models in terms of adaptive strategies for long-term sustainability? How do such sustainable development programs focus on the preservation, propagation and transmission of Indian cultural trends from one generation to the next without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own Indo cultural needs? How can integrated approaches to new business models enhance the future quality of life of Indo Caribbean artistes and society?



This panel will focus on the role of NCIC and other voluntary organizations within the Diaspora in the development of future Indian cultural programming. Do such organizations have a role to play in developing trends within the Diaspora? How can they shape future trends within the diaspora? How can they help in promoting greater cultural participation within the Diasporic thematic context outlined above? How will they enable experimentation and social change within the cultural milieu of Indo Caribbean Diasporic contestations? What are some of the future challenges such organizations are likely to face in developing perspectives that encompass pluralism and diversity as major characteristics in Caribbean Diasporic societies? What is the future role of religion and spirituality in Indo Caribbean Diasporic Culture? Does religious conversion have an impact on Indo cultural practices in the Diaspora?


   vii.                        YOUTH AND GENDER ISSUES

Presenters in this panel will discuss issues relating to gender equity and youth and the important role and contribution they are expected to make in the future diasporic cultural development within the Caribbean context.

Some of the other issues that can be discussed here relates to how youth and gender shape identities in the modern world; How Indo Caribbean communities challenge or reinforce gender inequalities in the evolving Diasporic centers?; In what ways can future Indo Caribbean Diasporic activities offer opportunities for women and youth to chart new approaches to Indo cultural manifestations in view of their contributions, challenges and vulnerabilities within the Caribbean context?



Indian movies have played a major role as a bonding agent in the Indian Diaspora. This panel will consider issues related to the ‘footprints’ and ‘limits’ of Indian movies in the Diaspora; the inter-generational issues that encourage Indo Caribbean movements toward assimilation, acculturation and syncretization; how and why, and in what ways ‘the Bollywood identity’ performs a gate-keeping function within the Diaspora?



This panel will examine issues such as: How has Divali Nagar contributed to the development of future Indo Caribbean Diaspora communities? What are some new perspectives that might find parallel acceptability alongside traditional concerns in future Divali Nagars? What are some new cross-‘technoscapes’, ‘ethnoscapes’ and ’ideoscapes’ that can possibly influence approaches to future Indo cultural developments in diaspora communities within the context of  Diwali Nagar? In what ways and to what extent can present evolving trends of contemporary Indo Caribbean culture problematize the survival of Divali Nagar in diaspora countries?

Presenters on this topic may also consider the following topics: Traditions vs. innovations in future Divali Nagar productions; Socio-religious context of Divali Nagar and future trends; Divali Nagar: shifts, possibilities and perspectives in the 21st century.


       x.                         FUTURE DIRECTIONS FOR INDO CARIBBEAN CULTURE

While many Indian Diaspora communities such as Guyana, Suriname and Trinidad were formed through indentureship, since the second half of the 20th century a re-migration process has been taking place from former colonial communities to metropolitan areas such as USA, Canada, England and Holland. As a result, large proportions of second and third generation Indians populate these areas. In the global village we now live in, many boundaries that separated metropolitan areas and Caribbean countries have literally vanished and have been replaced by transnational links and conventions. Papers in this panel will reflect on future directions in the evolution of Indian culture in the Caribbean and may consider the following issues: The development of Indian Culture as a tourism product; Social benefits to communities; Community capacity building through Indian Culture; Values and ethical challenges in managing Indian Culture in a westernized society; Managing Indian Culture for sustainable development within the diaspora; increased connectivity through social media and networks ;cultural institutionalization  and cross-border mobility of Indo Caribbean  culture  and other Diasporic cultures; The role of UNESCO in the promotion of Indo Caribbean Heritage; technological innovations and the reshaping of Indian Diaspora communities for 21st-century Indo Caribbean Cultural practitioners.






An abstract must have a short, specific title, which clearly defines the content of the paper.


a.       Length of Abstracts — Abstracts should be about 250 words; written in English and single-spaced using Microsoft Word 10.0 (12-point Times Roman font).


b.      All abstracts must be submitted by e-mail as Microsoft Word attachments.


c.       All submissions should contain the following information: Conference theme, sub theme, paper title, author's name, institutional affiliation (if any), mailing address, e-mail address, telephone contact followed by the text of the abstract.


d.      Abstracts should be submitted together with a copy of the author’s CV and addressed to:


NCIC International Diaspora Conference; C/o The Secretary


NCIC: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  and copied to Primnath Gooptar at:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


      ii.            DEADLINES: The following deadlines will guide our preparations: 
a. Final date for the submission of proposals (abstracts): 30 April 2014.
b. Final date for the submission of full papers: 15 June 2014.
c. Final date for confirmation of attendance at the conference: 10 June 2014


     iii.            CONTACTS:

  1. Primnath Gooptar,  Conference Coordinator

 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Tel:  1 868 470 0133 (mobile)


  1. The Secretary, NCIC.

 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.       Tel: 1 868 671 6242 (office)


  1. Joe Ramkisson, NCIC.

 Chairman, Conference Committee

 This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.        Tel: 1868 665 2113 (office); 1868 681 6435 (mobile)  


    iv.            FORMAT OF PAPER:

All conference participants whose proposals are accepted will receive confirmation from the coordinators within two weeks after the deadline for submission of abstracts. All papers are to be submitted in typewritten form in MS Word 10.0. using MLA formatting. Papers should be approximately 5000 words in length, should reflect original, unpublished work and should be of publishable quality.


v.            REGISTRATION: There will be no registration fee for participants

            However, all participants are required to fill out and return the preregistration form. (See NCIC website at

     vi.            TRAVEL AND ACCOMMODATION:

Foreign participants will be required to fund their international travel and local accommodation. For suggested available accommodation and associated costs, see the document entitledTRAVEL AND ACCOMMODATION” at The conference committee will provide local transport to and from the airport for all foreign delegates to the conference. Breakfast and lunch will also be provided for all paper presenters during the conference days (12 &13 July).

   vii.            AFFILIATED ACTIVITIES:

There will be a formal opening ceremony on Friday 11 July 2014 at 6:00 pm and a cultural evening on Saturday 12 July, 2014.

 viii.            PUBLICATION:
Subject to the authors’ concurrence, the conference committee will select the best papers to publish as a bound volume in 2015.