Students pursuing BA English course in Mumbai University will now get a chance to study works of new authors. The change has been made to help students enhance their knowledge by studying a diversity of cultures and perspectives.

The new authors will be a part of Indian Writing and American Writing papers which are worth 100 marks each. Manjula Padmanabhan will be added to the second-term drama syllabus in Indian writing and Meena Kandasamy will be added to the poetry syllabus.

“Both are contemporary authors. Padmanabhan is as contemporary as Indian writing gets, and Kandasamy is a Dalit and female perspective that has not been represented in our syllabus thus far,” said Deepa Katre, professor at Annasaheb Vartak College, Vasai.

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Besides this, the core concepts theory paper that has been in place since 2012-13 will be replaced by feature essays by Indian writers. She further added that this will help students understand the key concepts, but will do so through writers who will introduce students to modern ways of writing and thinking. 

She backed the decision of updating the syllabus by saying that such a move ensures that the students’ interest remains intact while keeping the syllabus engaging at the same time.

Essays by renowned authors like Urvashi Butalia, Bhisham Sahni, Vijay Tendulkar and Makarand Paranjape will be included in the syllabus which is a blend of both contemporary writing and historical text.

“For example, knowledge of the Partition is enhanced through writings by Butalia and Sahni. Post-colonialism, a key current concept of literature and the humanities, is explained through an essay by Jasbir Jain,” she added.

Through the American Writing paper, the students will study a variety of cultural perspectives.

“These will introduce students to the contemporary multicultural mosaic of American life. The previous syllabus focused mainly on white writers. We have tried to broaden that focus,” said Dinesh Kumar, professor at V. G. Vaze College. He further added that authors like Toni Morrison, Alice Walker, Amy Tan and Jhumpa Lahiri will include immigrant and Black voices.

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Charvi Is An Intern With SheThePeople.TV