Friday, December 01, 2006

Saroj and Prem Singhmar Chair in Classical Indian Polity and Society: Applicants Invited at University of Alberta, Canada


I have just received the following news from Gaurav Singhmar. I humbly request all Readers to kindly spare a few minutes to review this information and join the efforts to publicize the Singhmar family's search for a reputed historian with a deep understanding of classical Indian society and tradition to apply for the Chair Professorship they have endowed in Canada to promote understanding of these heavily misunderstood aspects of India history in the West.

Drs. Saroj and Prem Prakash Singhmar have recently endowed a chair at The University of Alberta, a major Canadian university. It will bear the title 'Saroj and Prem Singhmar Chair in Classical Indian Polity and Society'. The position will be unique in its kind -- a named chair, with all its attendant prestige, on topics of classical Indian government and society.

The Singhmar family hopes with this establishment to begin the work of promoting a true and correct understanding of classical Indian history, life, and culture, in the West.

Applications are invited from reputed historians comfortable in political theory and with a deep understanding of Indian history life and culture for this position to begin the challenging work of explaining the classical Indian tradition despite the damage done to its interpretation through pervasive Enlightenment values.

The position will be at the University of Alberta in Edmonton, Canada, which, by surrounding this endowment with several others on Indian topics, is positioning itself to be the leader in Indian studies in Canada.

Please join the efforts to give this information wide publicity in order to reach reputable historians sharing a deep regard for Indian nationalism and respect and understanding of India's glorious tradition and history, who can help begin the process of reversing the long decades of bad-mouthing India has received from Western historians ignorant about India. Too many Western historians consider learning a few words of Sanskrit as the be-all end-all of learning about India -- far too many history professors who have somehow learnt a few words of Sanskrit and know nothing more about India, have never even set foot in India, are taken as experts on India, as they heap infamy on India and talk about the "evil" Indian "caste system". They have no idea that Casteism was not originally hereditary and was just like today's Castes of "Engineer"/"Doctor"/"Lawyer"/"Ph.D"/High-school drop-out"/etc. They have no idea how much the Islamic invasion of India and the 1000-year-long genocide has affected Indian society and taken India back centuries compared to the other countries of the world -- so much so that India is seen as nothing more than a "poor" "developing" country by far too many people today.

The same India, whose mathematicians created the foundations of modern science and technology.

The same India whose metallurgists created such technological marvels like the Iron Pillar of Delhi that has not rusted for over 1600 years. Marvels that the science and technology of today has still not succeeded in explaining.

The same India, whose social and religious leaders created over five thousand years ago the "modern" "liberal" framework of freedom of religion, respect for diversity, religious tolerance, and secularism and wove it into the central tenets of Hinduism Jainism and Buddhism -- concepts the West has finally embraced after fighting Crusades and Christian-Jew-Muslim conflicts for over a thousand years.

The full text of the announcement is as follows:
Singhmar Chair in Classical Indian Polity and Society (500 BCE ­ 500 CE)

The Department of History and Classics in the Faculty of Arts, University of Alberta, invites applications for the Saroj and Prem Singhmar Chair in Classical Indian Polity and Society, 500 BCE­500 CE. This is an endowed Chair, the occupant of which will be appointed at the rank of Full Professor. Research specialization is open, but the candidate should anticipate teaching courses that broadly cover the history, ideas, and practices of this period. Competence in Sanskrit and at least one modern Indian language (excluding English and Urdu) is required, and the ideal candidate will have knowledge of modern Indian political life. The successful candidate will have a proven record of excellence in teaching and graduate supervision, and a distinguished research career.

The successful applicant will join a dynamic Department with strengths in both history and classics (www.uofaweb.ualberta.ca/historyandclassics) and will participate in developing a new graduate program in Ancient Civilizations. Equally, this position will support the Faculty-­wide development of research strength in South Asia.

The University of Alberta aims to be one of the world's great universities, by transforming learning, leading ground­breaking research, and uplifting society through new knowledge, leadership, and service. The University plays a key role in the educational, business, and cultural life of the province of Alberta and Canada as a whole, through the impact of its integrated mandate of teaching, research, and community service.

With more than 35,500 students and 12,000 staff, the University grants almost 7,500 degrees annually to graduates of 200 undergraduate and 170 graduate programs. A research­ intensive, medical-­doctoral, multi-­campus institution, the University of Alberta offers a full range of academic and professional programs and has designated 26 areas of established and emerging research excellence.

Greater Edmonton, with nearly one million residents in the city and surrounding communities, offers a unique quality of life and economic combination, a beautiful, park­like setting on a spectacular river valley, low cost of living, the lowest provincial tax regime in the country, affordable housing, and is consistently Canada's fastest growing economy. Edmonton has all the attractions of a big city; yet it is clean, safe, and liveable. Health care in Greater Edmonton, under the auspices of Capital Health, was rated #1 in 2003 by Maclean's magazine and is ranked in the top three percent of North America's largest cities.

Edmonton, the political and administrative capital of Alberta and a gateway to the north, boasts 78 arts and cultural organizations including the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, Edmonton Opera, Citadel Theatre (top­rated in North America), and a score of other professional theatre groups. Greater Edmonton is Canada's Festival City, with more than 30 arts and cultural festivals taking place each year.

Applications, including a curriculum vitae, the names of three referees, and sample publications, should be sent by mail to:
Dr. Daniel Woolf, Dean of Arts
Chair, Selection Committee for Singhmar Chair
c/o Office of the Dean of Arts
Humanities Centre 6­33
University of Alberta
Edmonton, Alberta, Canada T6G 2E5

Candidates should also ensure that three letters of reference are sent directly by the referees to the above address. Applications received by January 15, 2007 will be assured of consideration. Interviews will begin as soon thereafter as possible.

Salary will be commensurate with qualifications and experience. All qualified candidates are encouraged to apply; however, Canadians and permanent residents will be given priority. If suitable Canadian citizens and permanent residents cannot be found, other individuals will be considered. The University of Alberta hires on the basis of merit. We are committed to the principle of equity in employment. We welcome diversity and encourage applications from all qualified women and men, including persons with disabilities, members of visible minorities, and Aboriginal persons.




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