Master’s Dissertation Prize 2021-22: Winner Announced

It is our great pleasure to announce that the winner of the 2021-22 Master’s Dissertation Prize is

Maya Padamsee, “Narrative, Political Theology and Violence: Serving in Gujarat 2002”.

The standard of work received this year was exceptionally high, but out of a pool of many impressive dissertations the judges agreed that this project was an outstandingly researched, argued, and written thesis, and a very worth winner. The judging panel agreed that this dissertation was an extremely well-written, and theoretically rigorous, focusing on the anti-Muslim pogrom in Gujarat in 2002, and draws upon a wide range of theoretical and methodological approaches to violence, doing history, and interrogating the archive. The most impressive aspect of this thesis is not just its sophisticated application of a variety of theoretical approaches and methodological tools to its subject matter, but the skill with which it uses these to make a number of original interventions into the scholarship on Hindutva, mass violence and the writing/making of history.

Among an impressive spread of submissions, three dissertations were also shortlisted. These include:

Sabah Iqrah Aslam, “Where are you really from? A study into racial discrimination and identity crisis faced by Scottish South Asians” (University of Glasgow)

Umang Sinha, “Technology, Ideology and Efficacy: Tracing the Omnipresence of Religion in Printed Images in 19th and 20th Century India” (University of Cambridge)

Hershini Soneji, “Shaping a System: Rāmānuja’s Refutation of the Nyāya-Avidyā of Advaita” (University of Oxford)

The judging panel would like to thank each applicant for submitting their dissertation to be considered for this year’s Prize. The standard of work we received was exceptionally high, and out of a pool of many outstanding dissertations only one winner could be selected.