The Blue Club
After a resounding success last year, The Blue Club Media Fellowship launched again in 2022 on the 24th of April. This unique three-month national Fellowship program is open exclusively for Dalit women and queer persons interested in improving their writing, editorial, and publishing skills. Fellows will also receive a stipend of Rs 30,000 on completion of the program and a chance to receive online support and training from eminent activists, scholars, media persons, and authors. The Fellowship was designed with the objective to increase the representation of Dalit women and queer writers and journalists in an upper-caste-dominated media industry. This would provide writers themselves with a community to support each other, and also rewrite a narrative fraught with the male ‘savarna’ gaze.
During the Media Fellowship 2021 Convention held at Delhi
Dalit women and queer persons have constantly called out this phenomenon in the callous reporting of sexual violence cases against them, which rob the survivor of any dignity. Through writing workshops and interactions with journalists from the field, the Media Fellowship hopes to reinstate empathetic journalism, that centers Dalit women and LGBTQIA+ individuals and their stories.
During the Media Fellowship 2021 Convention held at Bangalore.
Speaking of her experience with the program, Divya Malhari, a Fellow from the 2021 batch, said, “I found my people through my writing”. Sabari, another fellow recalls, “I usually write creative pieces of work, but The Blue Club taught me to write pieces that are more critical in nature.” Another common thread among all the feedback of Fellows from last year was that it gave them an opportunity to interact with writers from across the country, and broadened their horizons of engaging with others like themselves. This sense of community and a shared learning space was a priceless gift to the Fellows, many of whom have gone on to publish their articles in news and media portals.
Discussing what one might expect if they apply this year, Founder and Director of The Blue Club, Priyadarshini said, “The Fellowship program in 2022 promises exciting new opportunities. We are going beyond literary and news journalism this year, and will also include screenplay writing and an introduction to multimedia content, which is becoming increasingly relevant in the age of digital media.” The Fellowship program has come a long way since its initiation in 2015, Priya points out, “Before we launched in 2020, there was no precedent of such a Fellowship being organized anywhere in the country, and today, we have built it to a stage where it is our primary project, apart from our ongoing grassroots initiatives. This shows the high demand and urgent need there was for this Fellowship, particularly for women and queer persons from vulnerable socio-economic locations.”
Who is eligible to apply?
- If you are a Dalit woman/queer person.
- If you are passionate about subject areas such as Caste and Gender and willing to learn how to write on these topics.
- If you are an aspiring writer or journalist interested in politics, education, environment, law, and health from an anti-casteist feminist perspective.
- If you are a socially concerned writer still exploring your area of interest.
- If you feel your voice has been muffled by caste-gender majorities and are looking for a community of writers and artists.
- If you are born after 1st July 1992 and are must not be more than 30 years of age at the time the Fellowship commences.
- Are currently an Indian national & Resident of India.
During the course of the Fellowship, selected candidates will be expected to:
- Write a minimum of four articles (two short and two long) for The Blue Club in the topic areas given. The articles can be reports, analytical pieces, advocacy-focused articles, personal essays, or screenplays.
- Participate in 8 Zoom discussions each month with journalists, writers, and other workshop facilitators as determined by TBC. The sessions will be held on weekends only.
- Dedicate solid hours every week to read and write about selected topics.
- Receive mentorship in choosing, writing, editing, and publishing articles from the given topic areas.
- Make great connections within the anti-casteist and feminist-media community.
- Receive 30,000 stipend for the three-month fellowship.
To apply this year, visit www.theblueclub.org or click here. Applications close on 30th May 2022. Please contact theblueclub.org for any queries.