Mrinalini Rajagopalan, Associate Professor, Department of the History of Art and Architecture, University of Pittsburgh
Chaired by Sai Balakrishnan, Assistant Professor of Urban Planning, Graduate School of Design, Harvard University
How do we tell little histories of grand cities? How do we tell big histories of modest monuments? How can we present alternate histories of a city that has heretofore been told through emperors, colonizers and ambitious architects; monumental mosques, revered tombs, and royal forts; and of extensive urban planning schemes stretching over seven hundred years. What of the poets, travelers, soldiers, refugees, dissidents, archaeologists, and nationalists who lived and worked in Delhi as the city grew around them and sometimes with little regard to them? What can we say about the affective landscape of a city that was the locus of the anger of colonial retribution, the hubris of imperial building, the violence of Partition, the nostalgia of preservation, and the pride of Hindu nationalism? These are the tasks of my presentation, which places subaltern agents and emotional affects as crucial vectors in the building and destruction of Delhi between 1857 and 2000. In doing so, I present alternate urban histories of Delhi that substantially expands the corpus of the city’s makers and their motivations.
Mon, Nov 19, 2018 at 06:00pm
Mon, Nov 19, 2018 at 07:30pm
How should societies identify and promote merit? Enabling all people to fulfill their full potential and ensuring that competent and capable leaders are selected to govern are central challenges for any society. Failure to meet these challenges can have enormous costs, for individuals and for societies as a whole. The richness of China’s historical experience and its distinctive current practices offer useful tools for reflection and comparative analysis. Does the case of China offer any lessons – positive or negative – for India to consider?
Tue, Nov 27, 2018 at 06:00pm
Tue, Nov 27, 2018 at 08:30pm
Sat, December 8, 2018 at 04:00pm
The ‘material turn’ in art history opened new avenues for research with fresh approaches that shift our attention from considering an object as a static thing in an absolute state to putting more emphasis on the process of making and its use and reuse. A chipped area in a miniature painting is no longer an unfortunate loss but a site of excavation for information about material conditions of production and use, while unfinished surface in a stone sculpture provides a laboratory to explore artisans’ hands at work. This symposium brings together scholars whose research embraces methodological interventions and theoretical implications of art history’s material turn in the field of South Asian art and architecture, mostly focusing on the period between 500 CE and 1500CE. Thematically organized, papers demonstrate how attending to thingness and the process of making helps reveal hitherto invisible connections across time and space. Going beyond the rubric of material agency, papers also explore the importance of considering somatic intelligence and ritual technology that developed to activate power and sacrality of objects and buildings in Indic religious contexts. Further consideration of ritual knowledge helps situate the trace of time left in matter through artistic mediations in historical and experiential contexts.
Symposium organizer: Jinah Kim, Gardner Cowles Associate Professor of History of Art & Architecture, Harvard University
Keynote Speaker: Vidya Dehejia, Barbara Stoler Miller Professor of Indian and South Asian Art, Columbia University
Sat, Dec 8, 2018 at 04:00pm
Sat, Dec 8, 2018
AJAY SINHA, Professor of Art History, Mount Holyoke College
Chair: JINAH KIM, Gardner Cowles Associate Professor of History of Art & Architecture and Faculty Director, Arts @ Mittal Institute
In the Spring of 1938, an Indian dancer, Ram Gopal, posed in a variety of fantastical costumes for the American photographer, Carl Van Vechten, in New York City. Studying over 100 large-size photographs resulting from the photoshoot, the lecture builds an illustrated story of their mutual fascination and exchange, triggered by the camera. The remarkable images, now part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscripts Library, Yale University, show traces of the myriad, transcultural relations being performed during the photoshoot. They reveal an interplay of differing investments in the image when we ask: What does the Indian dancer show the camera; what does the American photographer see through his lens? Their visual exploration helps us elaborate on an underrepresented history of exchanges between the cultural worlds of India and the U.S. in early-20th century.
Fri, Nov 16, 2018 at 04:30pm
Fri, Nov 16, 2018 at 06:00pm
“Situating Empire: The Great War and Its Aftermath” is a two-day graduate student conference. The conference concerns the role of World War I in political and spatial (re)configurations of empire. They keynote address features Professor Heather Streets Salter in conversation with Antoinette Burton.
View the schedule here
Thu, Nov 15, 2018 at 10:00am
Fri, Nov 16, 2018 at 04:00pm
Musician and author Ali Sethi (Harvard ‘06) demonstrates and discusses the many ways in which Sufi poets and musicians have encoded a subversive ambiguity into South Asia’s religious-cultural ethos.
Wed, Nov 14, 2018 at 05:30pm
Wed, Nov 14, 2018 at 07:00pm
As part of the Artist Talk in our India Seminar Series, we are collaborating with the Lalit Kala Akademi (LKA), Govt of India, to host Kabi Raj Lama, a Nepal-based artist and printmaker as well as a former Visiting Artist fellow at the Mittal Institute. Kabi Raj had two direct experiences confronting traumatic natural disasters: the 2011 Tsunami in Japan and the 2015 Gorkha earthquake in Nepal. The talk will include the artist’s realization that mental health is often ignored in the process of rebuilding after a natural disaster, and how art can be used as a form of healing from trauma. His work reflects the complexities of disasters through an intimate portrayal of personal encounters, and his current project takes his work to a completely new dimension of art therapy and scientific inquiry.
To RSVP email us at email@example.com.
Sat, Nov 3, 2018 at 04:00pm
Sat, Nov 3, 2018 at 06:00pm
Join Vijayendra Rao in a seminar discussing his paper “Deliberative Inequality: A Text-As-Data Analysis of Indian Village Assemblies” (Co-authored with R. Parthasarathy and N. Palaniswamy).
Vijayendra (Biju) Rao, a Lead Economist in the Research Department of the World Bank, integrates his training in economics with theories and methods from anthropology, sociology and political science to study the social, cultural, and political context of extreme poverty in developing countries.
He leads the Social Observatory, an inter-disciplinary effort to improve the conversation between citizens and governments. It does this – first – by improving the quality of civic action by strengthening forums for deliberation and developing tools to facilitate collective action, and – second – by building the “adaptive capacity” of large-scale anti-poverty projects; i.e. the ability of projects to make everyday decisions, and modify project design, on the basis of high-quality descriptive, evaluative and process-oriented information.
His research has spanned a wide variety of subjects including participatory development, deliberative democracy, the rise in dowries in India, the determinants and consequences of domestic violence, the economics of sex work, public celebrations, and culture and development policy.
The paper he will be discussing during this seminar can be accessed here.
Fri, Nov 2, 2018 at 02:00pm
Fri, Nov 2, 2018 at 04:00pm
, Professor of Development Economics and Environment, University of Manchester; Diane Middlebrook and Carl Djerassi Visiting Professor, University of Cambridge
Few programs for economically empowering rural women focus primarily on farming—the one occupation in which women have the most experience in largely agrarian economies. Thus, two Indian initiatives–in Telangana and Kerala– stand out. These initiatives are unique because they seek to improve women’s livelihoods within agriculture through an innovative institutional form, namely group farming. In this seminar, Bina Agarwal examines whether pooling land, labor, and capital and cultivating jointly, enables women farmers to overcome resource constraints and outperform individual male farmers in the same regions.
Thu, Nov 1, 2018 at 11:40am
Thu, Nov 1, 2018 at 01:00pm
A panel discussion on capturing identity, everyday life and activism in South Asia through the digital lens.
AMAN KALEEM and SAMSUL ALAM HELAM
Mittal Institute 2018-19 Visiting Artist Fellows
Chair: Jinah Kim, Gardner Cowles Associate Professor of History of Art and Architecture
Tue, Oct 30, 2018 at 05:30pm
Tue, Oct 30, 2018 at 07:00pm
Come and meet the Mittal Institute visiting artists, view their work, and grab a drink!
Artists include Aman Kaleem, a filmmaker, and Samsul Alam, a visual artist.
Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 04:30pm
Mon, Oct 29, 2018 at 06:30pm