The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

The Oldest College Newspaper in Pennsylvania

The Lafayette

With new South Asian history professor, a first for the college

Future professor of south Asian history, Hafsa Kanjwal. (Courtesy of Hafsa Kanjwal)

In seeking to broaden their own subject range, Lafayette’s history department has expanded the college’s faculty arsenal with its first South Asian history professor.

Hafsa Kanjwal, who will begin in fall 2017, is currently finishing her Ph.D. at the University of Michigan. As a graduate student instructor, she has taught for Islam in South Asia and Introduction to Women’s Studies.

Adding to her experience, Kanjwal has done research on the social and cultural history of the Kashmir region, a land disputed between India and Pakistan.

Kanjwal wrote in an email that she looks “forward to teaching a broad range of courses on South Asia, Islam and women and gender studies.” She also noted that she is excited for the opportunity to design her own courses on South Asian history.

In 2008, Kanjwal received her undergraduate degree from Georgetown University, where she studied ‘Regional Studies of the Muslim World.’ She worked and travelled for two years prior to attending the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where she started her doctorate in 2010.

Kanjwal did one year of field work in Srinagar, in Indian-administered Kashmir and is currently finishing up a joint dissertation in Qatar.

Kanjwal herself is most looking forward to introducing this field of history to the campus and working one-on-one with Lafayette students.

History department head Joshua Sanborn said that despite the addition of a new professor, the history faculty is not growing, as one of the U.S. history professors will be retiring.

The department has been working toward expanding its coverage of different historical time periods and regions for many years now, Sanborn said.

“In the past 10 to 15 years we have become very much a history department that covers the whole world and that one of the things we’re very interested in doing is being able to provide global education,” he said.

“We have added African history, Middle Eastern history and now South Asian history,” he said.

According to Sanborn, further expansions within the department depend on the growth of the school and how that affects the number of students taking history.

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