Humanities in the World

Humanities in the World explores two avenues of inquiry: the global dimension of humanities scholarship, and the role of the humanities in society. Directed by Leela Gandhi, it promotes cross-campus collaboration in such areas, and support important new work that expands the scope of the traditional humanities. Read more.

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Previous Events

  • Manto Nandita Das
    5:30pm - 8:30pm

    Film Screening: Manto with Director Nandita Das

    Ticket Required

    Register for a Ticket on Eventbrite

    The film follows the most tumultuous four years in the life of Manto and that of the two countries he inhabits - India and Pakistan. In Bombay’s seedy-shiny film world, Manto and his stories are widely read and accepted. But as sectarian violence engulfs the nation, Manto makes the difficult choice of leaving his beloved Bombay. In Lahore, he finds himself bereft of friends and unable to find takers for his writings. His increasing alcoholism leads him into a downward spiral. Through all of this, he continues to write prolifically, without dilution. This is the tale of two emerging nations, two faltering cities, and one man who tries to make sense of it all.

    Nandita Das has acted in more than 40 feature films in 10 different languages. She made her directorial debut with Firaaq in 2008 and Between the Lines marks her debut as a playwright and theater director. She is an advocate for issues of social justice and human rights. She was the Chairperson of Children’s Film Society between 2009 and 2012. Nandita Das was the first Indian to be inducted into the Hall of Fame of the International Women’s Forum. She has also been conferred the ‘Knight of the Order of Arts and Letters’ by the French Government. She was at Yale as a World Fellow in 2014.

    Co-sponsored by the Cogut Institute for the Humanities and the Department of Modern Culture and Media .

    Humanities in the World
  • Natasha Eaton
    4:00pm - 6:00pm

    Natasha Eaton — Decolonial Mimesis in South Asia

    Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs

    Natasha Eaton is Reader in the History of Art. Her research focuses primarily on British and Indian art, notions of cross cultural exchange and material culture. Currently she is at work on several projects – art and indenture in the Indian Ocean; collecting and empire; the agency of light in empire. She has published two monographs – Mimesis across Empires: Artworks and Networks in India, 1765-1860 (Duke University Press, 2013) and Colour, Art and Empire: Visual culture and the nomadism of representation (I.B.Tauris, 2013). She is under contract from Routledge to write a monograph on colonialism, tourism and collecting provisionally titled Vertiginous Exchange. Natasha has published in many peer-reviewed journals including The Art BulletinRESJournal of Material CultureOxford Art Journal, Eighteenth-Century Studies, Cultural Critique. Comparative Studies in Society and HistoryJournal of Historical GeographyMARGLiterature Compass and Third Text. She has been an advisor to and is currently is an editor of the journal Third Text. With Alice Correia she is preparing a special issue of Third Text on Partitions in South Asia scheduled for Autumn 2017. She is also the editor of A Cultural History of Color in the Age of Industry (ed.) Natasha Eaton. Volume 6 (eds.) Carole C. Biggam and Kirsten Wolf (general editors) as part of A Cultural History of Color(Bloomsbury: London and New York).

    Natasha’s research and publications have been generously sponsored by The Leverhulme Trust, the British Academy, Yale University and the Society for Eighteenth-century Studies, Historians of British Art Association, the Paul Mellon Centre, the University of Michigan and the Freer Gallery, the Simon Fellowship at the University of Manchester, the Nehru-V&A Trust, the Getty, the AHRC and UCL. She has organised symposia at the Paul Mellon Centre and Columbia University. Natasha welcomes undergraduate and graduate students with an interest in British art and South Asian visual culture, colour, mimesis, the postcolony and materiality.

    This lecture is part of the Art History From the South  Series, which aligns with the Cogut Institute Collaborative Humanities graduate seminar of the same title (HMAN 2400H: Art History from the South: Circulations, Simulations, Transfigurations), as well as the Cogut Institute Collaborative Humanities international symposium entitled How Secular is Art?to be held on October 26-27, 2018. 

    Humanities in the World
  • Oct

    October 26 and 27, 2018

    In South Asian art, the distinction between the “secular” and the “religious,” further complicated by the “spiritual,” has been fraught with contestations. In this symposium, art historians, historians, and philosophers examined the entanglement of art history’s categories and practices with the politics of the present. The symposium positioned itself at the cusp of two dominant discourses: (i) the lingering Orientalist and nationalist projections that emphasize the “religious” nature of South Asian artistic traditions as against Western secularization; (ii) the assertion of the place of art within the modern secular life of nations, which posits the transitions of objects from earlier religious to new artistic denominations.

    Speakers and Participants: Amanda Anderson, Brown University; Ariella Azoulay, Brown University; Akeel Bilgrami, Columbia University; Iftikhar Dadi, Cornell University; Finbarr Barry Flood, New York University; Tapati Guha-Thakurta, Centre for Studies in Social Sciences, Calcutta, and Cogut Institute; Kajri Jain, University of Toronto; Santhi Kavuri-Bauer, San Francisco State University; Sonal Khullar, University of Washington, Seattle; Jinah Kim, Harvard University; Leora Maltz-Leca, Rhode Island School of Design; Saloni Mathur, UCLA; Sumathi Ramaswamy, Duke University; Tamara Sears, Rutgers University; Kavita Singh, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi; Foad Torshizi, Rhode Island School of Design; Laura Weinstein, Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; Karin Zitzewitz, Michigan State University.

    Schedule, abstracts, speaker bios, and recorded talks.

    Co-organized by Tapati Guha-Thakurta and Vazira Zamindar, the symposium was presented by the Cogut Institute for the Humanities as part of its Collaborative Humanities Initiative and by the Center for Contemporary South Asia of the Watson Institute as part of Art History from the South .

    Arts, Performance, Collaborative Humanities Initiative, Conference, History, Cultural Studies, Languages, Humanities in the World, Humanities
  • Kitchens in the inner city of Karachi are invisible, gendered spaces that are emblems of social, spatial and gender inequality. In this presentation, I strive to chronicle the small fragment of life around these spaces, which have complex sociological layers, often missed in statistics. The presentation consists of photographs, texts and reflective poetry about the city of Karachi, Pakistan; its migratory history and urban citizenship. Although the photographs deal in particular with the inner city kitchens, they are reflective of the larger issues of urban density and ensuing pressures.

    A teeming city of 21-24 million people, Karachi is the largest city in Pakistan. It has endured an enormous population growth of 115% from 1998 to 2011. During this period, its population grew from 9.8 million to 21.2 million, transforming it into a major megacity of the world. Many waves of migrations have left different ethnic communities scrambling to find a precarious foothold in the race for space and employment. The pressures on the kitchens, endured mostly by women, stand as symbols of housing injustice - showing the pressing issues of urban density and the affordability crisis.

     Naila Mahmood  is a Karachi based visual artist, writer and documentary photographer. Her work revolves around the complexities of urban spaces. She also does research based photographic projects. Her work has been shown nationally and internationally. She is a member of the Executive Council and adjunct faculty at the Indus Valley School of Art and Architecture. She is the Director of the Vasl Artists’ Association

    This lecture is part of the Art History From the SouthSeries, which aligns with the Cogut Institute Collaborative Humanities graduate seminar of the same title (HMAN 2400H: Art History from the South: Circulations, Simulations, Transfigurations), as well as the Cogut Institute Collaborative Humanities international symposium entitled How Secular is Art?to be held on October 26-27, 2018. 

    Humanities in the World