On June 23, 1985, the 329 people on board Air India Flight 182 were killed when a bomb, planted in the cargo hold, exploded while the flight was at an altitude of 31,000 feet in Irish airspace. It is the worst mass murder in Canadian history, yet it has barely made a mark on the collective consciousness of the country.
Dr. Chakraborty, University Scholar and professor in the Department of English and Cultural Studies, has recently written an article for The Conversation about her research on the Air India tragedy and why it has not claimed a prominent place in Canadian public memory. The story, which has a readership count in the tens of thousands, has been republished by Maclean’s, The Wire, Scroll, Business Standard and others. It also appears on McMaster’s Brighter World research hub.
Dr. Chakraborty has spent several years researching the Air India tragedy and its aftermath, and has been engaged in ongoing efforts to document the effects of the tragedy. Her most recent book is the anthology, co-edited with McMaster professor Amber Dean and Angela Failler of the University of Winnipeg, titled Remembering Air India: The Art of Public Mourning (University of Alberta Press, 2017).