Maya has worked on a diverse range of heritage and culture outreach projects, led by high-quality research, during her employment and studies at various universities. Here is a snapshot of those projects.
This pan-European project was a collaboration between 5 academic partners and 1 SME, across 4 European countries. Known as READ-IT, the project firstly built large-scale, open-access, digital investigation tools that help reveal and record evidences of European reading heritages between the 18th and 21st century. Secondly, it shared and engaged public readers in this reading knowledge. READ-IT had an interdisciplinary framework, oscillating between the digital humanities, computer research, humanities and sociology. Led by Le Mans University, the The Open University strand was directed by Dr. Shafquat Towheed. At the Open University, Maya helped lead the outreach and dissemination elements of READ-IT. Funded by the European Joint Programming Initiative on Cultural Heritage grant (830,000Euros) the project ran for just over 3 years, 2018-2021. Take a look at Maya's short who's who video, about her role with READ-IT.
Led by Dr. Shafquat Towheed at The Open University, this project sought to answer questions about reading habits by investigating historical reading practices, and demonstrating their relevance to us today. The outreach project staged a series of events around the UK, including hands-on workshop sessions, round-table discussions, expert public lectures, oral history interviews, and literary readings. Maya led the themed Oral History collection elements of the project. Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the one-year project ran 2015-2016.
This UK-wide, collaborative project commemorated the 70th anniversary of Indian independence. At the Heart of the Nation celebrated the unknown narratives of Indian lives and communities in Britain and their crucial role in the formation of Britain, throughout several centuries. The project produced a stunning photographic exhibition that toured the UK and a digital timeline. With Project Director Professor Susheila Nasta (the Open University), and Dr. Florian Stadtler (the University of Exeter), Maya worked on the project for its entirety (2015-2018). Following on from Making Britain and Beyond the Frame, At the Heart of the Nation was supported by the Open University, the University of Exeter, the Nehru Centre and the High Commission of India. Read a blog post about the project.
Led by Professor Susheila Nasta, these two groundbreaking projects examined and showcased the contributions South Asians made to Britain’s literary, political and cultural life, 1870-1950. Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, Maya worked on the outreach elements of the projects 2013-2015. Beyond the Frame: Indian British Connections extended from a major, collaborative, interdisciplinary project Making Britain: South Asian Visions of Home and Abroad, 1870-1950, which produced the open-access, interactive Making Britain database.
In May 2021, Maya appeared on Great British Railway Journeys (BBC2) with Michael Portillo, for the episode Hackney Wick to Oxford Circus. The interview oscillated around the subject of South Asian food culture in London during the interwar period, the British Empire Exhibition, and life in London for those coming from India in the 1920s and 1930s.
2012 was the 40th anniversary of Idi Amin's expulsion order, which deracinated thousands of people of South Asian origin from their settled homeland in Uganda. Expulsion: 40 Years On commemorated these life-changing events, during a community day event and school workshops in Leeds, in partnership with Leeds Museums and Galleries as well as South Asian Arts. The project, designed and delivered by Maya, was sponsored by the University of Leeds and Arts Council England. Read a blog post about the project.
The At the Heart of the Nation exhibition in Edinburgh, on the Mound, 2017.