Hi good people. My name is Jhani Randhawa. I'm a writer, community facilitator and narrative-maker, and I hope to raise funds to pursue a graduate degree starting in fall 2023 in Postcolonial Studies at the University of London School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS). You can learn more about the program I'll be attending here. The funds I hope to raise with your support will be used for my student visa fees (including a £4000 deposit to SOAS), relocation to the U.K., course materials, food, and housing while living as a student in London. While I am also seeking funding through a Fulbright scholarship, the Fulbright will only cover tuition and administrative enrollment expenses. I'm grateful for any financial support you might be able to offer.
A bit about me and what I will be up to at school in London:
I'm an independent scholar, multidisciplinary artist and writer, editor, community volunteer, trained full spectrum doula, and yin yoga practitioner. I have lived a somewhat nomadic lifestyle since I was a child, moving between California, Alabama, Tennessee, Washington, New York, India, the U.K., and Canada. Because of this movement, and in service to it, I hope to finally attend graduate school in an environment and program that is interested in diaspora, migration, and non-Western ways of knowing.
My interdisciplinary research encompasses gendered violence, mental illness, queer friendship and ecology in diasporic South Asian contexts. In a world where access to dignity and justice by and for women and LGBTQ+ people of color is tenuous at best and penalized by state municipalities at worst—while the planetary environment is extracted from and surveilled into crisis—I believe research centering reparative acts by and for women and LGBTQ+ people is innovative, urgent, and necessary. Furthermore, I believe that the SOAS Postcolonial Studies program will make an ideal partner and guide in my work through the program’s creative structural critique, experimental methodologies, and affirmation of ways of knowing from the global south.
My experience as a queer, mixed-race child of diasporic Kenyan-Punjabi and Anglo American families affected by interlocking forces of colonialism and migration, homophobia and gender-based violence, and environmental racism inform my interests in this project, which seeks to unmake extractionary, misogynist, and dis-ecological futures. Over the past ten years, I have committed to living this creative phenomenology meanwhile supporting artists, community activists, interfaith leaders, and storytellers who are critically engaged in questions of what it means to belong in right relation. As a SOAS Postcolonial Studies student, I will not only be uniquely positioned to meet my long-term goals of continued study at the PhD level and the completion of my second book (in progress since 2017); I will also cultivate an international network of peers and UK-based community. But more urgently, in order to rise to the needs of my communities amid current global crises, now is as crucial a time as any to center a deeper study of the theoretical foundations and framing of colonial and postcolonial constructs within and beyond my own interdisciplinary praxis as community-builder, maker, and scholar.
If you want to learn more about me and my practice, you can visit my website https://www.jfkrandhawa.com — on the "Bio" page, there is a link to contact me if you have any questions or want to learn more.
Thank you so much for your support!