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NCV alumnus the pioneer for political cinema in Bangladesh

Wednesday 17 May, 2017
by Ash Braithwaite
Naadir Junaid has returned home to kick-start a nation’s social commentary

Alumnus Naadir Junaid was a resident of NCV from 2009. As a Ph.D. student, Naadir truly valued being part of the NCV community. He remained living at NCV while he completed his thesis, “Bengali Political Cinema: Protest and Social Transformation”, in 2013.

Naadir undertook his Ph.D. as a recipient of the prestigious Australian Government Endeavour Scholarship. He was also appointed as an Australian Awards Ambassador in 2016. Ambassador positions are given to a handpicked group of distinguished scholarship alumni from the South Asia region. Recipients promote scholarships and fellowships funded by the Australian government in their home countries. Naadir was previously presented with an Australia Alumni Excellence Award in 2015 for his achievements in Film Studies.

Upon completing his Ph.D., Naadir returned to Bangladesh to teach Mass Communication and Journalism at the oldest and most renowned public university in the Bangladesh, the University of Dhaka. Alongside teaching, Naadir has also published a number of books, the most recent being, An Aesthetic of Protest: The Unconventional Films of Bangladesh.

Naadir developed a strong connection with Australia while he was living at NCV.

“NCV was my home when I was completing my Ph.D. The presence of other Ph.D. students, monthly sessions on various aspects of postgraduate research… all this contributed enormously to make NCV very congenial to my study. I really benefitted from the opportunity to discuss my research with the other Ph.D. students residing in NCV.”

But what made Naadir’s time in Australia so fruitful? Naadir shares:

“We could attend regular suppers, other cultural programs and mingle with friends from different parts of the world. These opportunities truly helped me to feel refreshed when the days were quite demanding. I found the environment of the village most helpful for my study. ”

Some of Naadir’s closest friends were fellow Ph.D. students living at NCV. It was having these friends and the support of Senior Residents at NCV that allowed Naadir to accomplish so much. When asked if there was anything he wished to inform people of about his work in Bangladesh, Naadir said:

“Film studies have been grossly neglected in Bangladesh, and through my research, writings and seminars I am trying to disseminate serious film culture in the country. I am also trying to formulate newer theories and concepts relating to our films which would help filmmakers and film critics develop a critical understanding of films that can be socially meaningful. The production of such socially responsible cinema would help the spectators achieve entertainment as well as develop a critical consciousness. My film research aims to produce new knowledge of such aesthetically innovative and socially conscious cinema.”

You can explore more of Naadir Junaid’s work in his books: Ten Political Films: Thematic and Formal Characteristics (2014) and Bengali Political Cinema: Cinema of Resistance by Ray, Ghatak and Sen (2015).