International Seminar




11th – 14th October/2012

Organizer – Department of English, Sibsagar College, Joysagar, Assam, India

Drop Down Menu We thank all the Distinguished Guests, Collaborators, Participants, different government and non-government Agencies, Sponsores for the successful completion of ISEIL. Thank you all.



Thematic Rationale-


Ethnicity, Identity and Literature are indices to complex phenomena in all the societies which are too slippery to make a categorically comprehensive negotiation. The thought processes and activities in relation to these that we describe with intellectual parameters are found to be variously featured which results in opening up possibilities for reader/observer centric, community centric negotiations. Literature at times is also politicized in their creations, readings and interpretations. All these call for quite new approaches, in so far as the contours of Ethnicity, Identity and Literature depend on territoriality, society and culture given the backdrop indicated here. But, there are occasions when attempts are made to particularize the general and generalize the particular thereby making a fuzzy appropriation of the otherwise highly nuanced self-defining systems of meanings. Moreover, contrary to the belief that globalization might mitigate the localized issues, something diametrically opposite has erupted thereby adding a linear dimension to the questions of ethnicity and the associated phenomena since the 1960s. This linearity is further complicated by the nature of formation and emergence of ethnic identity in countries like India where numerous groups are not newly formed unlike the migrant communities in the west but are aboriginal in nature to a great extent, hence inheriting indisputable rights of assertion in multiple ways. So, Ethnicity, Identity and Literature call for a dialogue with a shifting emphasis on perspectival variations. This seminar is organized to address this issue on the basis of the following themes. Papers associated with the themes but not mentioned specifically will also be accepted. All paper proposals will be peer reviewed. Time allotted for the presenters for both presentation and discussion will be 20 minutes.

Confirmed Plenary Speakers



Keynote Speech

University Professor Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak  



Columbia University



New York



United States






Professor Sergei Serebriany



Russian State University for the Humanities



Russian Federation






Professor Mohandas Balakrishna Menon



Assistant Vice-Chancellor (Academic Support)



Wawasan Open University









Professor Kalpana Sahni



Retired Professor



Jawaharlal Nehru University



New Delhi






Dr. Annada Charan Bhagabati



Honorary Coordinator and Head of Division, North Eastern Regional Center of



Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts, New Delhi (IGNCA)



Former Vice-Chancellor, Rajiv Gandhi University



Arunachal Pradesh, India






Dr. Brinda J. Mehta



Germaine Thompson Professor



French and Francophone Studies



Mills College in Oakland









Dr. Peruvemba S. Jaya



Associate Professor



Department of Communication



University of Ottawa








Our Plenary Speakers

Professor Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak

Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak is University Professor, the highest honor given to a handful of professors across the university, and a founding member of the Institute for Comparative Literature and Society at Columbia University.  She did her B.A. English (First Class Honors), from Presidency College, Calcutta, 1959 and got Ph.D. in Comparative in Literature from Cornell University in 1967. She is also a D. Litt of the University of Toronto, 1999 and D. Litt from the University of London, 2003 as well. Her academic credentials include D. Hum, Oberlin College, 2008, D. Honoris Causa, Universitat Roveri I Virgili, 2011 and D. Honoris Causa, Rabindra Bharati, 2012. Her fields encompass feminism, marxism, deconstruction, globalization etc.  So far as books are concerned, one has to mention Myself Must I Remake: The Life and Poetry of W. B. Yeats (1974), Of Grammatology (translation with critical introduction of Jacques Derrida, De la Grammatologie, 1976), In Other Worlds: Essays in Cultural Politics (1987; Routledge Classic 2002), Selected Subaltern Studies (ed., 1988), The Post-Colonial Critic: Interviews, Strategies, Dialogues (1990), Thinking Academic Freedom in Gendered Post-Coloniality (1993; 2d ed. forthcoming), Outside in the Teaching Machine (1993; Routledge Classic 2003), Imaginary Maps (translation with critical introduction of three stories by Mahasweta Devi, 1994), The Spivak Reader (1995), Breast Stories (translation with critical introduction of three stories by Mahasweta Devi, 1997), Old Women (translation with critical introduction of two stories by Mahasweta Devi, 1999), Imperatives to Re-Imagine the Planet / Imperative zur Neuerfindung des Planeten (ed. Willi Goetschel, 1999; 2d ed. forthcoming), A Critique of Postcolonial Reason: Towards a History of the Vanishing Present (1999), Song for Kali: A Cycle (translation with introduction of Ramproshad Sen, 2000), Chotti Munda and His Arrow (translation  with  critical  introduction  of  a  novel  by Mahasweta Devi, 2002), Death of a Discipline (2003), Other Asias (2005), An Aesthetic Education in the Age of Globalization (2012), Du Bois and the General Strike (forthcoming). Her significant articles include Subaltern Studies: Deconstructing Historiography (1985), Three Women's Texts and a Critique of Imperialism (1985), Can the Subaltern Speak? (1988),The Politics of Translation (1992), Moving Devi (1999), Righting Wrongs (2003), Ethics and Politics in Tagore, Coetzee, and Certain Scenes of Teaching (2004), Translating into English (2005), Rethinking Comparativism (2010), A Borderless World (2011), General Strike (2012).  Professor Spivak is also an activist in the fields of rural education, feminist and ecological social movements since 1986.

Professor Sergei Serebriany


Sergei Serebriany (b. 1946) graduated in 1968 from the Institute of Oriental Languages, Moscow State University, where he had studied Hindi, a bit of Sanskrit, and a lot of Marxism-Leninism. More important was an academic year (1967-68) spent in India, mostly  in Varanasi and Pune. From 1970 up to 1992 he worked at the Gorky Institute of World Literature (Moscow) doing research in Indian and comparative literature. In 1974 he submitted a PhD thesis on the 15th century Indian author Vidyāpati. Before “perestroika” he was not allowed to go to India again, but after 1987 visited India several times, attending various conferences at various cities. In 1992 he joined the newly founded Russian State University for the Humanities (Moscow) and since 2006 is the director of E.M. Meletinsky Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at this University. The list of his publications (mostly in Russian) includes a monograph on Vidyāpati (1980), a translation from Sanskrit into Russian of Vidyāpati's book of stories “Purusha-parīkshā” (1999), a monograph on the history of novel writing in India, and quite a few research papers (some of them in English and French) on various topics of Indian literary and cultural history.

Among other things, in 1990 he wrote a postface to the Russian translation of Birendrakumar Bhattacharya's   novel “Mritunjay” and in 2004 a short entry on “Assamese literature” for the Big Russian Encyclopeadia. He also translated Indian writings from Hindi, Bangla and English. In 2009 a collection of his papers in Hindi translations, under the title “Rūs aur Bhārat: sāhitya, cintan, itihās”, was published in Delhi. At present his research interests extend to Indian and comparative philosophy, comparative history and comparative studies of cultures (civilisations).


Professor Mohandas Balakrishna Menon


Professor Mohandas Menon has a professional career comprising teaching, training, research and administrative experience in higher education and school education, in both face-to-face and distance education contexts. After over a decade of research and teaching at the Centre of Advanced Study in Education,  M.S. University of Baroda, India (1976-1987), Prof. Menon joined the Indira Gandhi National Open University, India as its first Planning Officer, founded IGNOU’s Planning and Development Division in 1987 and contributed to the planning of IGNOUs initial phase of academic programmes. He then moved to the School of Education of IGNOU as Professor and Director in 1991.  In  1996 he was appointed by the Ministry of Human Resources Development, Government of India as the Chairman and CEO of the National Open School (renamed National Institute of Open Schooling) for three years.

Considering his contributions in open learning in India, The Commonwealth of Learning  (COL) appointed Prof. Menon as Education Specialist in 2001 and later as Team Leader of its Education Programme. He was responsible for all COL’s initiatives in teacher education by ODL during 2001 to 2008. He worked extensively at national and institutional levels in several countries in Sub-Saharan Africa, South and South-East Asia and Caribbean in building capacity in development, delivery and quality assurance programmes for education professionals by ODL and technology mediated learning.

In 2008, UNESCO appointed Prof. Menon as the Chief of Educational Planning and Management and Deputy Director/Director (In-charge) of UNESCO-UNRWA Education Programme with head quarters in Amman, Jordan supporting the school education, vocational and technical education and teacher education of the Palestine Refugees in Gaza strip, West Bank including Eastern Jerusalem, Lebanon, Syria and Jordan. Since April 2011 he is the Assistant Vice-Chancellor for Academic Support in Wawasan Open University, Penang, Malaysia.

Prof. Menon has worked extensively in the area of open and distance learning especially for teacher education. He has been closely involved in the Open Educational Resources (OER) initiatives for the last ten years. While in the Commonwealth of Learning, he was associated with the development of teacher training course-ware called STAMP 2000+. He was also COL’s representative in the TESSA (Teacher Education for Sub-Saharan Africa) Consortium which has launched the multi-lingual OER for teacher education for Sub-Saharan Africa. He continues to be an associate member of TESS-India initiated recently in Indian Sub-continent. Presently as Assistant Vice Chancellor in Wawasan Open University he is steering an OER- integration and e-learning project with a focussed objective of transforming the University’s course development and delivery to suit the changing technological and open access scenario. Prof. Menon has published extensively in international journals and presented in various Conferences and Seminars across the world.

Prof. Menon holds a PhD in Education with specialisation in Educational Technology and Instructional Design, and a Master of Education from the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, India. He obtained his Bachelor of Education from the University of Mysore, Master of Science in Botany from the University of Calicut and Bachelor of Science from the University of Kerala, India. For Post-Doctoral Research in ICT Applications in Education Prof Menon was awarded an ODA-TCTP attachment to the University of Leeds in 1992, a Visiting Professorship by the Commonwealth of Learning and a Research Grant by the Spencer Foundation, Chicago in 1995.  

He was conferred the Honorary Doctor of Letters by the Open University of Sri Lanka in November 2008 for his contributions to the education in Commonwealth countries for over 30 years.


Professor Kalpana Sahni


A well-known academic, Kalpana Sahni has been recognized as a scholar of unusual diversity who has written extensively on Russian literature and culture and Central Asia. Her fieldworks in the old mohallas of Samarkand, Bokhara, Turkestan and Dushanbe have given her a unique experience of multi-cultural issues. She has been a consultant to The Aga Khan Foundation and the Rolex Mentor and Protégé Arts Initiative Programme.

Having spent her early schooling years in Moscow, she returned there for her Doctorate, subsequently joining the faculty of the Centre of Russian Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi (from 1972 to 2003) where she became Chairperson.

Professor Sahni is the author of a number of well known books:Mikhail Bulgakov’s Prose, Arnold Heinemann, New Delhi, 1984,Crucifying the Orient. Russian Orientalism and the Colonization of Caucasus and Central Asia, The Institute for Comparative Research in Human Culture, Oslo, White Orchid Press, Bangkok, 1997,Multi-Stories. Cross-Cultural Encounters, Routledge, New Delhi, 2010, Balraj and Bhisham Sahni. Brothers in Political Theatre, Sahmat, New Delhi 2012.

Her edited books include: Reminiscences on Tolstoy, Arnold Heinemann, New Delhi,1980, A Black Rainbow Over my Homeland. A Commemorative Volume on Faiz Ahmed Faiz, Mouin Besseiso, Alex la Guma, Afro-Asian Writers’ Association, New Delhi, Bhisham Sahni, Sampoorna Natak (A Complete Collection of Plays in Two Volumes (in Hindi), Rajkamal Prakashan, New Delhi, 2011.


Dr. Annada Charan Bhagabati


Dr. Annada Charan Bhagabati is a social anthropologist trained at the Universities of Gauhati (B.Sc. Honours, 1956), Calcutta (M.Sc., 1958) and Auckland (Ph.D., 1967). As a recipient of Commonwealth Scholarship offered by the Govt. of New Zealand, he carried out doctoral research among the Maoris in northern New Zealand (1962-65).

Dr. Bhagabati was a Professor and Head of the Department of Anthropology at Dibrugarh and Gauhati Universities at different periods. He was also the founder Professor and Director of the Institute of Social Change and Development, an ICSSR Institute at Guwahati (now named as Omeo Kumar Das Institute of Social Change and Development). Professor Bhagabati served Arunachal University (now named as Rajiv Gandhi University) as its Vice-Chancellor for five years (1993-98)

Earlier, he was deputed to Mexico (El Colegio de Mexico) for two years by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations as a Visiting Professor of Indian Studies. He has been a visiting scholar, under Cultural Exchange Programmes, in the former U.S.S.R. and Hungary. He was the President (Anthropology-Archaelogy Section) of Indian Science Congress in 1988. He was President of North East India History Association (1997). Dr. Bhagabati has published numerous research papers. His special areas of research interest are social change, ethnicity and identity, and tribal transformation in north east India.

At present Prof. Bhagabati is the Honorary Coordinator and Head of Division of North Eastern Regional Centre, Guwahati, of Indira Gandhi National Centre for Arts, New Delhi.


Dr. Brinda J. Mehta


Brinda J. Mehta is the Germaine Thompson Professor of French and Francophone Studies at Mills College in Oakland, California, where she teaches postcolonial literature, transnational feminist theory, cultural studies, and French realist fiction. She is the author of four books: Notions of Identity, Diaspora and Gender in Caribbean Women's Writing (2009), Rituals of Memory in Contemporary Arab Women's Writing (2007), Diasporic (Dis)locations: Indo-Caribbean Women Writers Negotiate the Kala Pani (2004) - Winner of the Frantz Fanon Award for outstanding work in Caribbean thought, and Corps infirme, corps infâme: la femme dans le roman balzacien (1992). She has published numerous articles on postcolonial African and Caribbean literature that have appeared in journals such as, the South Atlantic Quarterly, Meridians, Callaloo, Le Maghreb littéraire, among others. She is completing her fifth book, Dissident Creativity and Social Justice: The Transnational Voices of Arab Women.

Dr. Peruvemba S. Jaya


Peruvemba S Jaya is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication, Faculty of Arts, at the University of Ottawa. Prior to that, she has been in teaching in faculties of business in the USA and Canada.  She has a PhD in Business Administration (Organizational Behaviour and Organizational Studies) from the University of Rhode Island, USA, MA in Sociology from the Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi, India and BA (Hons) in Sociology from the University of Delhi, India. Her research interests include the areas of gender diversity and multiculturalism in the workplace, immigration and gender, immigrant women, South Asian immigrant women’s experience, immigrants’ issues, interpersonal communication, identity formation and construction processes, postcolonial theory, and intercultural communication. She is also interested in ethnic media, qualitative research methodologies. She is a research affiliate of the Atlantic Metropolis Center of Excellence for research in Integration Immigration and Cultural Diversity.

Currently she is working on projects on ethnic identity among East Indian immigrants from the African Diaspora, a Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada funded project on multicultural media in Ottawa as part of a team of researchers, ethnic media and representation of South Asian women, a sociological comparison of Bangladeshi Muslim and Indian Hindu wedding practices and rituals and the construction of gender in the Canadian construction industry. She has published in journals such as Organization, the Journal of Applied and Behavioral Management, Journal of International Business and Entrepreneurship, Journal of East West Business, Journal of the Academy of Business Education, Canadian Ethnic Studies.  She has published numerous conference proceedings in a range of national and international conferences and presented numerous papers at many national and international conferences.


Sub-themes -

Ethnicity, Identity and Literature – Theoretical Formation


Ethnicity, Identity and Literature – Multicultural Dimension


Multicultural Classrooms and Open and Distance Learning (ODL)


Ethnicity, Identity and Literature – Postcoloniality


Rights to Self-determination and Ethnic Identity


Global and Glocal- Culture, History, Economy, Language, Rights and Policies

Round Table –

There will be one Round Table on the Stone Bridge (Xila Xako) over the Namdang River at Sivasagar, Assam.   A limited number of paper proposals will be accepted for this. The Round Table proposers are Prof. Kandarpa Das, Director, IDOL, G.U. and Dr. Hemanta Kumar Nath, Sibsagar College.

Proposals for Poster Presentation, Virtual Presentation and Video Conferencing –

Poster presentation, Virtual presentation and presentation through Video Conferencing in the HD mode will also be available. But the presenters will have to register like the other participants paying the same amount of registration fee.

Abstract Submission

Abstract of individual paper proposals are to be submitted within the specified date as mentioned below and the following ordering is requested to be followed - Title of the Paper, Name of the author/authors, Designation, Institutional Affiliation, Contact details including Phone number, Email Id and the body of the Abstract with not more than four Keywords at the end. The abstract is to be submitted to

Publication –
  Peer reviewed selected papers will be published either in an International Journal or in Book form with ISBN by a leading Publishing House.
Important Dates-
Seminar Dates - From 11th to 14th October/2012.
Submission of Abstract -
  Last date for submission of abstract is extended upto 20th June, 2012. All abstracts are requested to be submitted at
  (Word Limit – 250 - 300 words, maximum four Keywords)
Venue -
  Sibsagar College, Joysagar, Assam, India
Intimation regarding acceptance or rejection of Paper Proposals 30th June /2012
  Last date of submission of full paper is extended upto 25 th August/2012 for all participants - local, national and international.
  Last date of Registration without paper – 11th October/2012 (Spot registration from 11-00 AM to 2-30 PM)
  Spot Registration – 11th October/2012 (from 11-00 AM to 2-30 PM)
  Registration Opens on 1st July/2012
  The seminar language is English
Registration Fee –
  Indian Participants with a Paper 3000 INR
  Indian Participants without a Paper 2000 INR
  Indian Students – 1000 INR
  Indian Research Scholar – 2000 INR
  Participants from Non SAARC countries – 200 US Dollars
  Participants from SAARC countries – 160 US Dollars
Mode of Payment – Mode of Payment of Registration Fee will be informed before 1st July, 2012.
The registration Fee will cover
  Seminar Kit
  Lunches, Tea and Snacks for all the days of the seminar, local transport from the hotels to the college and Sightseeing (Sightseeing will be arranged depending on the willingness of the participants)
Travel Bursaries for Foreign Participants -
Round trip actual air fare in Economy Class (not exceeding Indian Airlines Fare) for foreign participants with a presentation by the shortest route from their entry point in India either to Jorhat (Rowroyah) or Dibrugarh Airport (Mohanbari) will be disbursed upon registration by the due date and on production of respective boarding passes. In cases depending on the merit of the paper proposal, institutional affiliation and location, round trip actual air fare of Economy Class (not exceeding Air India Fare) by the shortest route from and to the place of the participant’s institution may be disbursed on the closing day of the seminar. The beneficiaries will be informed well ahead of time. However, the participants are requested to make travel arrangement from their side/institutions as far as possible. The beneficieries will be selected from among the participants whose abstracts will be accepted.
Travel Bursaries for Indian Participants -
Selected Paper Presenters from India will be allowed second class three tier AC train round trip fare or round trip Economy Class Airfare by the shortest route possible upon production of actual travel documents. The beneficiaries will be selected by the Organizing Committee in due time. However, the participants are requested to make travel arrangement from their side/institutions as far as possible. The beneficieries will be selected from among the participants whose abstracts will be accepted. There will be no provision of TA and DA for the participants from Assam.
Concession -
  There will be a concession of 40 US Dollars for Students and Research Scholars. This applies to those other than the Indians.
Cancellation and Refund Policy –
The participants who register for the seminar will get refund of half of the registration fee after one month from the last day of the seminar upon cancellation of their participation on or before 12th of September/2012. Request for refund for those who notify their cancellation after this date shall not be entertained.
Accommodation could be arranged to the Paper Presenters on request in hotels at Sivasagar, Jorhat and Dibrugarh, but they will have to bear the expenses. The hotel rents are not very high. Alternatively, they can arrange for their accommodation directly. The Organizing Committee will announce the details of the recommended Hotels later.
Sivasagar Climate in October –
The highest temperature in October generally reaches highs of  about 30°C during the daytime and the average minimum temperature comes down to 21°C at night. The relative humidity level is about 80% for the same period.
Nearest Airports –
The nearest Airports are Jorhat and Dibrugarh which are not more than two hours journey by air from Delhi. These airports are also connected to Mumbai, Kolkata and Chennai and other airports in India. The organizing Committee will arrange special vehicles to take the delegates to their hotels from Dibrugarh and Jorhat Airports.
Nearest Railway Station –
The nearest Railway station suggested is Simaluguri which is connected with most of the cities and towns in India by trains. Upon proper intimation we might arrange vehicles for the participants alighting at Simaluguri.
Nearest Bus Station -
The nearest Bus station is Sivasagar, in the heart of Sivasagar town from which Buses both private and government run to different parts of the state of Assam like Guwahati, Jorhat, Dibrugarh etc.
Certificate of participation and presentation will be awarded to the participants and paper presenters and also to the Chairpersons of the Technical Sessions if so desired.
Organising Committee
Chief Patron - Mr. Tarun Gogoi
  Hon’ble  Chief  Minister, Assam
Patrons - 1. Dr. Himanta Biswa Sarma
    Education Minister, Assam
  2. Prof. Kandarpa Kumar Deka
    Vice- Chancellor
    Dibrugarh University, Assam
  3. Jatindra Lahkar
    Deputy Commissioner, Sivasagar, Assam
Advisers –
Technical Committee -
Mr. J.P.Chaliha, Member, Assam Human Rights Commission, Prof. Dambarudhar Nath, Dibrugarh University, Dr. Shibao Guo, Associate Professor, University of Calgary, Canada, Dr. Girin Phukan, Director, Institute of Tai Studies and Research, Moranhat, Dibrugarh, Dr. Kandarpa Das, Director, IDOL, Gauhati University, Dr. Bhupen Sarmah, Professor and Director, Omeo Kumar Das Institute of Social Change and Development, Guwahati, Assam, Dr. Aparna Dutta Mahanta, Retd. Professor, Dibrugarh University, Dr. Pona Mahanta, Retd. Professor, Dibrugarh University, Professor M.P.Bezbarua, Gauhati University and Dr. Jaya S. Peruvemba, Associate Professor, University of Ottawa, Canada and all retired HODs of the Department of English, Sibsagar College, Joysagar, Assam.
Expert Members -
Mr. Raju Pokhrel, Associate Professor, Kaliabor College, Assam, Dr. Mridul Bordoloi, Asst. Professor, Dibrugarh University, Assam, Mr. Raju Barthakur, Asst. Professor, NERIST, Arunachal Pradesh, Mr. Chandan Sarmah, Asst. Professor, Dibrugarh University, Assam.
Chair -
  Dr. Prakash Kotoky
  Principal, Sibsagar College, Joysagar, Assam
  Phone - +919435500022
Working Chair
  Dr. Anooradha Chakravarty Barua
  Associate Professor and Head of the Department of English, Sibsasgar College, Joysagar, Assam
  Email -
  Phone - +919435489034
Chief Coordinator -
  Dr. Hemanta Kumar Nath
  Associate Professor
  Department of English, Sibsasgar College, Joysagar, Assam
  Email –
  Phone - +918876440814
Coordinators -    
  Mrs. Gayatree Goswami Email – Phone – 9435096867
  Mr. Chandan Borgohain Email – Phone – 9954484469
  Mr. Pankaj Kalita Email – Phone – 8473948962
  Mr. Golap Panging Email – Phone – 9957325345
  Dr. Sekhar Doley Email – Phone – 9957345290
  Assistant Professors, Department of English, Sibsasgar College, Joysagar, Assam
Coordinator - Web Information
  Mr. M. Rohman
  Assistant Professor
  Department of Computer Science, Sibsasgar College, Joysagar, Assam
  Email –
  Phone - +919435729286
About the College



            Sibsagar College is situated at Joysagar by the side of the historic tank known as Joysagar Pukhuri said to be the largest man-made tank bearing the hallowed memory of Sati Joymati, the Ahom queen, and is 4.5 kms southwest of Sibsagar town.  It was established in 1947, the year of India’s Independence and reflected the spirit of that awakening.  A host of patriots and men of letters were its architects, some of whose names have come to stay in the annals of Assam.  Its motto as printed in Assamese (‘pohar vichari jaon’) on the emblem means ‘quest for light’.

              It was also covered in the seventies under the College Humanities and Social Science Improvement Programme (COHSSIP) as well as the College Science Improvement Programme (COSIP) by the University Grants Commission (UGC), New Delhi. As of now, the college has been recognized by the UGC, as a ‘College with Potential for Excellence’ (CPE) for two consecutive terms – a coveted status in India. Standing as a premier educational institution in this part of the country, it has been producing quality human resource that has stamped its identity regionally, nationally and globally.


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