CGIS South, S153
1730 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA 02138
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
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.
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.
Indrani Chatterjee, Professor of History, University of Texas at Austin
Chair: Jinah Kim, Gardner Cowles Associate Professor of History of Art & Architecture, Harvard University
This talk attempts to simultaneously explain and move beyond the gynopia – the inability to “see” women in their relational capacities – at the heart of modern economic history of the Indian subcontinent. It seeks to extend an argument begun in Forgotten Friends (2013) connecting parts of eastern India to economic networks operating in regions that modern Indians identify as ‘Bengal’ while tracing overlooked women as economic actors in precolonial circuits.
Indrani Chatterjee teaches History at the University of Texas at Austin.
Thu, Oct 25, 2018 at 05:30pm
Thu, Oct 25, 2018 at 07:00pm
In this seminar, with support from the Harvard University Asia Center, Dr. Moeed Yusuf will present his research on US role in India-Pakistan crisis management, captured in his latest book Brokering Peace in Nuclear Environments: U.S. Crisis Management in South Asia. The book proposes an original theory, brokered bargaining, to study regional nuclear crises and specifically US role in crisis management. Drawing upon India-Pakistan crises since their nuclear tests in 1998 (Kargil, 2001-02 standoff, Mumbai, surgical strikes episode 2016, etc.), he will explain the risks of India-Pakistan crises and how they intersect with US and other great power interests and for India and Pakistan’s ability to make strategically independent decisions in times of crises. He will also discuss the prospects of future crises versus dispute resolution between these two South Asian nuclear rivals.
About the Speaker:
Moeed W. Yusuf is the Associate Vice-President of the Asia Center at the U.S. Institute of Peace. Before joining USIP, Yusuf was a fellow at the Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future at the Pardee School of Global Studies at Boston University, and concurrently a research fellow at the Mossavar-Rahmani Center at Harvard Kennedy School. He has also worked at the Brookings Institution. In 2007, he co-founded Strategic and Economic Policy Research, a private sector consultancy firm in Pakistan. Yusuf has also consulted for a number of Pakistani and international organizations including the Asian Development Bank, World Bank, and the Stockholm Policy Research Institute, among others.
Yusuf is teaching peacebuilding at George Washington University and Boston University this summer. He has previously taught at Boston University and Quaid-e-Azam University. He writes regularly for Dawn, Pakistan’s leading English daily.
Yusuf’s books South Asia 2060: Envisioning Regional Futures (Adil Najam and Moeed Yusuf, eds.) and Getting it Right in Afghanistan (Scott Smith, Moeed Yusuf, and Colin Cookman, eds.) were published by Anthem Press, UK and U.S. Institute of Peace Press respectively in 2013. He is also the editor of Pakistan’s Counter-terrorism Challenge (Georgetown University Press, 2014) and Insurgency and Counterinsurgency in South Asia: From a Peacebuilding Lens (U.S. Institute of Peace Press, 2014). Yusuf has served on a number of important task forces, advisory councils, working groups, and governing boards, both in the U.S. and Pakistan. In 2013, he was selected to Nobel laureate, Pugwash International’s ‘Council’ (governing body) and subsequently became the youngest member ever to be included in its global executive committee to serve a six-year term.
He holds a Masters in International Relations and PhD in Political Science from Boston University.
Ajmal Qureshi, Senior Fellow, Harvard University Asia Center; former Representative of the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in Uganda and China
Chair: Professor Roderick MacFarquhar, Leroy B. Williams Professor of History and Political Science, Emeritus
S153, 1st Floor, CGIS South, 1730 Cambridge St., Cambridge
Asia Center Fellows Seminar Series; co-sponsored by the Lakshmi Mittal South Asia Institute
Thu, Apr 19, 2018 at 12:15pm
Thu, Apr 19, 2018
This talk will discuss 16th and early-17th century album and manuscript paintings made for Muslim patrons where the Nāth yogi appears as an emblem and surrogate for the Islamic spiritual path of taṣawwuf (Sufism), an archetype for the mystical traveler (sālik) and a figure of spiritual longing.
Co-sponsored by the Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Islamic Studies Program at Harvard University
Murad Khan Mumtaz, Artist and Researcher
Chair: Jinah Kim, Gardner Cowles Associate Professor of History of Art and Architecture, Harvard University
A reception will follow the seminar.
Fri, Apr 6, 2018 at 03:30pm
Fri, Apr 6, 2018 at 05:00pm
Ancient records of early Buddhism, recovered from Tibet, identify five great centres of learning a thousand years after the birth of Prince Gautama Buddha. Of the five, two are amongst the four hundred Buddhist sites in Bangladesh; Somapura Mahavihara (Paharpur) and Jaggadala. These centers could not have thrived without patronage and proximity of the Silk Road which brought trade and Buddhism close together. Hasna will discuss a trip she took in 2015 and 2017 to Mongolia in search of a connection between Mongolia and India via Bangladesh.
Hasna Moudud, SAI Research Affiliate; Author of “Mystic Poetry of Bangladesh” and “Where Women Rule: South Asia”; Former Senior Fellow Harvard University Asia Center; former Visiting Fellow Ash Center, Harvard Kennedy School
Chair: Roderick MacFarquhar, Leroy B. Williams Professor of History and Political Science, Harvard University
Co-sponsored with the Harvard University Asia Center.
Doris Sommer, Ira and Jewell Williams Professor of Romance Languages and Literatures and of African and African American Studies, Harvard University
Possible through the generosity of the Asia Center
The Humanities have important work to do in developing societies because they foster creative and critical thinking. For its own intrinsic value, the aesthetic judgment that the Humanities hone affords pleasure of freedom and sociability. And related to those pleasures is the general faculty of judgment that free societies depend on. With the activities of Pre-Texts we gather lessons of philosophy, pedagogy, and art — including vernacular arts — to offer high order learning in low-resourced communities. In collaboration with partners in the Indian education and public health sectors, Cultural Agents hopes to contribute to development in India with Pre-Texts by engaging local strengths to promote: Literacy, Innovation, and Citizenship.
Lunch will be provided during the seminar and will be followed by a demonstration of Pre-Texts with audience participation.
Possible through the generosity of the Asia Center