Social Science Baha

Lecture Series

The Structural Landscape Of Social Science Journals Published From Nepal

Pratyoush Onta
Lecture Series XLVI
March 14, 2011

Pratyoush Onta
The Structural Landscape of Social Science Journals Published from Nepal

In the almost 60 years that have passed since the publication of the first social science journal from Nepal, no systematic inquiry has been made into the social lives of these journals which comprise a special published genre of scholarly media. In that context, this presentation first tries to establish some basic knowledge of this field. The first section provides an account of some of the structural characteristics of the landscape of Nepali journals by focusing on a few parameters: journal titles, institutional and physical sites of their production, their disciplinary focus, circulation, and the languages in which contents are published. The second section discusses the reasons for the almost explosive growth of journals since 1990. The third and final section identifies some factors that influence the longevity and continuity of journals in Nepal.

It is important to note that this presentation does not address the many facets of journal content production and consumption in Nepal. The practices related to peer evaluation or quality control (or lack thereof) of articles, editorial engagement with the text of accepted articles, variety of readings of journal texts made by variously situated academics and others, etc., are some of the more important aspects of content production and consumption that will have to be addressed by future research and writing.

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Pratyoush Onta is a historian based at the research institute and public forum Martin Chautari in Kathmandu. He is the founding editor of the journals Studies in Nepali History and Society and Media Studies.

He is currently involved in research on the history of Nepali magazines and academic journals. He has written on Nepali nationalism, Gurkha history, institutions, area studies and media. He has also written, edited or co-edited several books including Nepal Studies in the UK; Social History of Radio Nepal; Social History of Radio Nepal; Social Scientific Thinking in the Context of Nepal; Radio Journalism: News and Talk Programs in FM; Growing up with Radio; Mass Media in Post-1990 Nepal; Ten Years of Independent Radio: Development, Debates and the Public Interest; and Socially Inclusive Media.

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