Fiji’s legendary singer, Jimmy Subhaydaas (second from left) performing with his group at last year’s Kaise Baat series at the Japan Pacific ICT Theatre.
The University of the South Pacific’s (USP) Faculty of Arts, Law & Education (FALE) in conjunction with USP Research and International and School of Language, Arts and Media is organising the fourth series of Kaise Baat, known as the, Kaise Baat IV: The “Unsmiling Indian”on 1 July 2015 at USP’s Laucala Campus.
The Kaise Baat Series will look at Fiji-Hindi and humour in the context of the myth and stereotyping of the unsmiling “Indian” from Fiji that is founded by James Michener and Paul Theroux.
The Chief Guest for the event is the Minister for Education, Heritage and Arts, and National Archives of Fiji, Honourable Dr Mahendra Reddy.
Kaise Baat, which was initiated in 2012, is viewed as encouraging academic community nexus on promoting, reviving, and discussing Fiji-Hindi as a plantation language unique to the Fiji Islands.
As years passed by, the programme for the Kaise Baat series expanded with guest lecturers coming from overseas.
Event coordinator and senior lecturer of FALE’s School of Language Arts & Media, Dr Mohit Prasad said that last year the event hosted a prominent linguist from Australia.
“Last year we had Professor Jeff Siegel from University of New England (Australia) who spoke on the topic ‘Will Hindi Survive in Fiji: The Importance of Fiji Baat’,” Dr Prasad said.
“His talk provided an overview of the study of Fiji Hindi in the context of other plantation languages from the Pacific and Caribbean.”
“He moderated the first ever academic panel on Fiji-Hindi featuring research students with an interest in the area,” he added.
The Kaise Baat series was recognised at the Canadian Federal and British Columbia Provincial Government levels with awards for contributions towards language revival by the Fiji Canada Day Board (FCDB) in 2014.
This year, the programme will feature USP’s Labasa Campus students from the “Cheenikum Sukalailai Theater” group who will perform a play on diabetes awareness, a performance skit and Act 2 Scene 1 of “Adhuraa Sapnaa” written by renowned Indo-Fijian writer, Raymond Pillay.
The programme will also feature “Bati Ni Tharia” which will see famous media personalities like Nimilote Naisorotabu, Nemani Bainivalu and Manoa taking up the stage.
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