Replicating Memory, Creating Images: Pirs and Dargahs in popular art and  media of contemporary East Punjab

Yogesh Snehi

This works seeks to conduct a detailed survey of Popular Sufi Shrines in Punjab and document the continued relevance of these shrines in the popular landscape of Punjabis. It is pertinent to note that both in India and Pakistan attempts were made to discourage and dissuade people from venerating these shrines and the political scenario was such that the state attempted to either take control of such shrines or create a milieu where there shrines were perceived as threat. How does a scholar explain the significant presence of these shrines even after these upheavals? This projects attempts to explain this phenomenon through the medium of images and media in the popular Punjabi religious sphere where the images and older art work of pirs/sufi saints and their shrines/khanqahs are reproduced, especially through digital print and electronic media. Such an articulation of popular memory makes the trans-cultural and trans-regional flow of sufi saints and their shrines possible.

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