We recently sat down with Sakshi Gupta, an accomplished sculptor and mixed media artist from India and one of the Mittal Institute’s new Visiting Artist Fellows for Fall 2019. Her series, At the Still Point of the Turning World, explores the human condition, transformation, and the momentariness of life, time, and eternity by turning found objects into something new.
Category : India
With my grant from the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute, I spent eight fruitful weeks abroad, studying the how and the why of the limited set of historic designations in Kolkata. My daily activities were structured around site visits, photographic and written documentation of spatial practices and cultural phenomena, investigative interviews with scholars and professionals in the field of conservation, theoretical readings, and archival work. I spent the first six weeks in Kolkata trying to better understand the city’s spatiality and how many Kolkatan’s livelihoods and daily activities engage with the hybridization of the old and the new.
Who will benefit from big health data in India? And who will be harmed? Whom will the data leave behind? We’re at an extraordinarily important time in India where digital health is concerned, and given the infrastructure, internet connectivity, and the sheer number of computer and data scientists available, India is positioned to change the way healthcare delivery has been imagined anywhere in the world. In this podcast, Dr. Satchit Balsari, Assistant Professor in Emergency Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Fellow at Harvard FXB, and Rahul Matthan, Partner with Trilegal in India, discuss the digitization of the health ecosystem in India.
In India, subaltern groups must resort to the universalizing vocabulary of citizenship in order to stake claims for redistribution and recognition. But on what basis do they do this — especially under severe coercion? This week, Alf Nilsen, Professor of Sociology at the University of Pretoria, uncovered the answers to this question by investigating movement patterns in the Bhil heartland of western India, where Adivasi communities have organized and mobilized against the tyranny of the local state.
Around the world, numerous nations have witnessed a resurgence of strongman politics — and with it, many governments are beginning to bypass democratic norms and embrace more populist ideals. We spoke with Rachel Brulé, Assistant Professor of Global Development Policy at Boston University’s Pardee School of Global Studies, to learn more about what nationalist leadership means for India, and its potential effects on political representation throughout the nation.
The World Health Organization estimates that over 1.4 million children in the world are blind, and “approximately three-quarters of the world’s blind children live in the poorest regions of Africa and Asia.” In India, only 40 percent of the 23,000 primary healthcare centers have the capacity to provide refractive services that could eliminate preventable blindness in children. Since 2005, Project Prakash has been working at the very grassroots of India, connecting hundreds of villages to the most sophisticated eye care available and building awareness about treatable and preventable blindness.
Working with the Davis Museum at Wellesley College, Harvard doctoral student Sonali Dhingra has brought to life a collection of South Asian paintings and sculptures from across the Indian subcontinent, provided by private collectors Carol (alumna of Wellesley College, ’79) and John Rutherford. This fall, the Rutherford Collection will be on display at the Davis Museum from September 12 to December 15, 2019.
The beginning of 2020 will mark a massive celebration of science and technology with the India Science Fest, which aims to bridge the gap between science and society. This extravaganza is a non-profit initiative to help youth engage with the latest in science from across the world, fueling curiosity and demystifying the scientific career path. Aspiring Minds, an Indian-born global assessments leader, is a lead organizer of the Festival in association with the Lakshmi Mittal and Family South Asia Institute at Harvard University, the primary academic partner for the event.
The Mittal Institute’s Building Bharat-Boston Biosciences (B4) program works to establish connections between institutions in India and Boston to promote scientific research and build new knowledge in the field of biosciences. Each year, the B4 program holds two workshops in India that convenes a group of talented Indian university students and introduces them to the latest developments in the life sciences. Over the summer, one of these workshops was hosted at IISER in Pune as part of the program, bringing in 25 students from universities and institutions all across India to receive training from experts in Advanced Light Microscopy techniques, ranging from basic microscopy to super-resolution imaging.
By Pranati Parikh. This summer, I participated in the Sanskrit program in Pune, Maharashtra, offered by the American Institute of Indian Studies. It surprised no one, I think, that I spent approximately ten weeks of my summer in India — a country to which I owe my cultural and religious heritage, a country which is home to people who look like me, who use similar blends of spices in their daily cooking, and from whose mouths spills a cadence of speech that echoes my own family. India is as familiar to me as my mother’s hands. And, yet, this summer was a glimpse into a new India. It was a time for appreciating granularities in a familiar topography, and finding it splendidly unfamiliar at every step, yet, in the end, discovering a place for myself.
Until recently, Jhabua — a district in the western part of Madhya Pradesh — was largely a tribal area. But despite its recent development, village communities in the area still lack access to basic resources, such as education, proper nutrition, and clean drinking water. In these communities, excess fluoride in the water has caused skeletal and dental fluorosis, which, at their most severe, can result in stunted, abnormal growth, and damaged joints and bones.
India’s National Digital Health Blueprint (NDHB) illustrates yet another example of the Government of India moving forward with a major health digitization program that will affect millions of citizens. However, data researchers, academics, and activists have expressed some concerns about the development of this policy, bringing up fears of security breaches and privacy controls.