FAQ about SAHSA at AHA

Why does SAHSA charge membership dues?

In line with other affiliate societies of the AHA, SAHSA must charge membership dues in order to pay for space in the annual program and co-sponsor the annual luncheon and reception. Membership dues also enable SAHSA to plan future programming related to South Asian history (such as an annual lecture at the AHA) and other related events. All membership dues are fully tax-deductible.

Does SAHSA assist the AHA program committee in choosing panel sessions for inclusion into every year’s AHA annual meeting?

No, SAHSA has absolutely no input into the selection process by the AHA program committee. After the AHA conveys their final decision to SAHSA, the executive committee considers each South Asia-themed panel proposal not selected by the AHA program committee for potential co-sponsorship. Criteria used by the executive committee include the intellectual diversity and quality represented in the proposal, innovativeness and rigor of the topic, and likelihood of a broad audience.

Does marking a panel proposal as a SAHSA proposal increase the likelihood of acceptance?

No, marking a panel proposal simply alerts the AHA program committee of its identity as a “South Asia” panel and expedites the communication process between the AHA program committee and the SAHSA executive committee regarding proposals not chosen by the AHA program committee.

What are the essential ingredients for a successful panel proposal?

It is impossible to fully predict the ingredients for a successful panel proposal, as both the literal individuals on the selection committee and the conference changes each year. However, each year’s committee members consider the diversity and size of the intended audience, the ability to speak to scholars outside of South Asian history, and the originality of the proposal.