ZUBAAN PUBLISHERS RESEARCH GRANTS FOR YOUNG RESEARCHERS FROM THE NORTHEAST, 2022-23
APPLICATION DEADLINE: 28 NOVEMBER 2022.
[Find a PDF version of this call here]
Zubaan Publishers is offering a number of research, documentation, archiving and publishing grants for 2022-23 for young researchers from the eight northeastern states and the eastern Himalayan region. The grants provide a modest fund to prepare written, multimedia, visual and other creative content focusing on the themes detailed below in the call.
Zubaan Publishers have been working with researchers, writers, photographers, artists, etc. for the past decade and more to support the feminist movement in the Northeast India region. Our work prioritizes knowledge production from indigenous feminist perspectives and provides a platform for this knowledge through books, essays (making these available online and offline), visual archives, exhibitions, etc. Born out of this vision, the Fragrance of Peace project attempts to reconfigure the lens through which the Northeast and its contiguous region are viewed by, or placed in the social, economic and political landscape of mainland India and beyond.
It is continually defined, described and constrained within a particular identity that deprives it of its internal richness and variety. This region, slightly less than a third of the total in India, is home to many peoples, religions, ethnicities, customs, practices, languages and histories. Their collective grouping, the brainchild of colonial administrative practices, has also become a marker of their ‘separateness’ as an entity, despite their wide internal variety. An argument that is often used to hold the category of ‘the Northeast’ together is an assumed similarity of ethnic identity – and yet, not only are these states ethnically very diverse, but ethnicity often extends beyond state and national borders into other, neighbouring territories.
To continually push the homogeneity of identity in popular cultures and socio-anthropological studies does a massive disservice to the region’s diversity and also contributes to its marginalisation, structurally binding it to the idea of an imagined periphery. However, a growing body of work in the region is effectively transforming the narrative of the periphery. Our work hopes to support, build and collaborate with the communities that are writing their own histories while charting new maps of language and vocabulary rooted in community wisdom.
Details of the Research Grant
This research grant, now in its fifth year, hopes to encourage young writers, researchers and artists to contribute to the diversification of knowledge production. It supports work within the broad framework/themes mentioned below examined through the lens of gender.
Previous themes have prioritised issues not covered by mainstream media. This year, expanding the grant’s ambit, we invite proposals from young researchers working to centre the diverse forms of knowledge production embedded in the region, to build a repository of its multiple, rich histories.
We strongly encourage applications which look at women’s, queer, feminist and oral histories, from community researchers, writers, artists, etc. who have been historically marginalized not only in terms of the mainland but within the region as well. Through this grant, we hope to support such groups and individuals in telling their own stories on their own terms and to therefore contribute to the growing body of knowledge. The applications can focus on building a narrative through storytelling, podcasts, visual mediums, research papers, etc. and the scope of the research and output has to be completed within the grant period of 8 months. The paper/content themes can focus on community histories, experiences during the pandemic, notes on lived realities, political and social commentary, cultural production, labour and migrant relations, indigenous histories, etc. Please note that these examples are indicative and not exhaustive.
The final submissions will be in English (though we hope to develop the capacity to support work in other regional languages in the future). For multimedia content, the language can be non-English but subtitles/transcripts in English have to be provided. All papers/content written with the support of the grant will be published electronically by Zubaan Publishers on various digital platforms. They may also be compiled in other formats and made widely available.
The proposals may be for academic research papers, long-form journalistic essays or long interviews, visual essays, graphic stories on a particular subject, audiovisual content, etc. thematically aligned with the call. Hybrid or creative forms are welcome.
[Note: Papers which are a part of an ongoing or recently completed PhD thesis will not be covered by this grant.]
All selected candidates will be allotted individual mentors for the grant duration of 8 months (from the date of signing the contract) and will have access to a network/mentorship panel consisting of writers, researchers, artists, etc. who will support, guide and provide additional perspectives to the candidates work.
- If you are from Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura and are less than 45 years of age, you are eligible to apply. The research grant is also open for applicants from hill regions of districts Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Kurseong.
[Note: Preference will be given to candidates based locally and working actively within the community.]
- You must be fluent in reading and writing English.
[Note: If you feel that you fit into the eligibility criteria and have an interesting proposal to discuss, which may not be in English but has the scope of being translated/adapted, please write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org before submitting your proposal.]
- You must commit to researching and writing a 10,000 words (minimum) essay or an equivalent for other content — e.g. a complete graphic story comprising at least five double-page spreads, a photo essay with 8-10 photos with detailed captions and context, a podcast series, etc. The grant allows you to develop graphic narratives, do extended interviews, or produce creative works such as audiovisual output, photo essays, etc. instead of the essay, all within a specified timeline.
[Note: Since we have a limited number of grants available, we would like to encourage applicants who can commit to submitting the first drafts of their work within 5 months after the methodology workshop. Please apply ONLY if you feel you can fulfil these criteria so as to not deprive other deserving applicants.]
- Send in a grant proposal (maximum two pages) which clearly describes what you wish to do, what sources you will tap (primary and secondary), the subject of your research and a timeline.
[Note: If you need clarification on the research proposal format, please write to us at email@example.com for a sample research format.]
- Submit a writing sample of roughly 500 words or a two-page spread of a graphic story, or an extract from previous work similar to the form of your proposed work, done by you.
- Grant proposals may be creative and do not need to be written in academic language.
- Submit your CV and any other relevant information about yourself that you think is necessary, including proof of age.
- Two names of referees, ideally people you have worked with.
Interested applicants can send their applications to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line Application for Fragrance of Peace Grants 2022. The last date for submission of the application is 28 November 2022.
Shortlisted candidates will be informed by end-December 2022.
Shortlist and selection of grantees
A selection committee will screen all grant proposals. The committee will prepare a shortlist based on relevance to the grant’s priorities as described in this document and may wish to interview some candidates. Interviews can take place via Zoom or phone or in person. The committee will then decide and the candidate will be informed. The committee’s decision will be final.
The first draft of the selected papers is expected in five months after the methodology workshop/webinar, details of which are mentioned below. Depending on the online review and feedback meetings, papers may need to be revised after the first draft. After the feedback meetings, three more months will be provided for the final draft. The total duration of the grant is eight months.
The grant carries an amount of Rs 100,000, less applicable taxes.
Payments will be made in three instalments: 25 per cent on approval of the project and signature of the contract, 50 per cent on submission of the first draft and attendance of review meeting and the final instalment on completion of the study.
All successful candidates will be required to attend a preliminary residential methodology workshop (location to be decided) in the last week of January-early February 2023, as well as a mid-term online review where they will present a draft of their work in order to get feedback from peers and resource people. In the time remaining for the grant, candidates will be required to take the feedback on board and finalize their work.
Zubaan is an independent feminist publishing house based in New Delhi. We publish academic books, fiction, memoirs and popular nonfiction, as well as books for children and young adults under our Young Zubaan imprint, aiming always to be pioneering, cutting-edge, progressive and inclusive. For more information, log onto www.zubaanbooks.com.
The Sasakawa Peace Foundation addresses the diverse and complicated issues that human society is encountering in the 21st century. SPF and Zubaan Publishers work together in Northeast India, on projects linked with writers and literature. For more information, log onto www.spf.org.
Find a PDF version of the FAQs here.
- What kind of research is this grant for?
The grant will fund projects exploring: community histories, experiences during the pandemic, notes on lived realities, political and social commentary, cultural production, labour and migrant relations, indigenous histories, etc., particularly historically marginalized women’s queer, feminist and oral histories, from community researchers, writers, artists, etc. These are a few examples, and this list is not comprehensive.
- Who is this grant for?
This grant is for writers, researchers, artists, etc. from the eight northeastern states and the eastern Himalayan region. However, we strongly encourage applications from young women, queer, trans and non-binary people within the region. Preference will be given to candidates based locally and working actively within the community. This call is not open to non-Indian nationals.
- Can I apply if I live outside of India?
You can apply if you are not a resident of India, but preference will be given to locally-based candidates working actively within the community. You will have to be available for a physical methodology workshop at the end of January 2023.
- Is there an age limit to apply?
Yes, you must be not above 45 years old when applying.
- What language should my submission be in?
All submissions should be in English. For multimedia content, the language can be non-English, but it will have to be accompanied by subtitles/transcripts in English provided by the applicant.
- What kind of content can proposals be submitted for?
You can submit proposals for academic research papers, long-form journalistic essays or extended interviews, written, multimedia, visual and other creative content like podcasts, documentaries, visual essays, graphic stories, etc., thematically aligned with the grant call.
- What should I not submit?
Masters or PhD thesis (whether completed or ongoing), proposals for fiction, poetry, etc., are not eligible as submissions.
- Does my submission need to be final, or can it be a draft?
You should submit a proposal which clearly describes what you wish to do during the grant duration.
- How do we submit multimedia proposals?
You can submit your multimedia proposals in the same format, with a link to a google drive housing the content.
- How do we submit translation proposals?
If you feel that you fit into the eligibility criteria and have an interesting proposal to discuss, which may not be in English but has the scope of being translated/adapted, please write to us at email@example.com before submitting your proposal.
- What will mentorship look like?
Mentors will be individually assigned to you during the grant period. You will be in touch with your mentors over email.
- Where will the final output be published?
All submissions made with the support of the grant will be published and disseminated online by Zubaan. They may be adapted to other formats too.
- Who will own the copyright to the work I submit?
The materials created with the support of the grant will be co-owned by Zubaan and the applicant and will carry the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
- Can I submit earlier work and develop it further through this grant?
If you are submitting a proposal to develop earlier published work, please focus on the differences and material development required for the current project and the importance of developing the project further.
- Will my previously published/ screened work be eligible as a submission?
- Can multiple submissions in various categories or formats be made?
You can make only one submission per category. For example, if you submit one research paper, you cannot submit another research paper. However, you can make a submission in another format, like a video or a graphic story. –
- How will the grant amount be transferred?
The initial instalment of 25 per cent will be transferred through NEFT after the project’s approval, signing of the contract and attendance of the methodology workshop. The next 50 per cent will be transferred on submission of first draft and attendance of the review meeting and the final instalment on completion of the study.