7 episodes

The American Institute of Indian Studies (AIIS) was founded nearly sixty years ago to further the knowledge of India in the United States by supporting American scholarship on India. The programs of AIIS foster the production of and engagement with scholarship on India, and promote and advance mutual understanding between the citizens of the United States and of India. AIIS seeks to provide access to scholarship about India to a wide and diverse audience.Through this podcast series, we hope to explore various exciting AIIS initiatives and engage with our current and former fellows, students, instructors, and researchers in this challenging time for connection.

American Institute of Indian Studies Podcast The American Institute of Indian Studies

    • Education

The American Institute of Indian Studies (AIIS) was founded nearly sixty years ago to further the knowledge of India in the United States by supporting American scholarship on India. The programs of AIIS foster the production of and engagement with scholarship on India, and promote and advance mutual understanding between the citizens of the United States and of India. AIIS seeks to provide access to scholarship about India to a wide and diverse audience.Through this podcast series, we hope to explore various exciting AIIS initiatives and engage with our current and former fellows, students, instructors, and researchers in this challenging time for connection.

    60th Anniversary Series - Philip Lutgendorf and Sara Simons on AIIS and Family, Memories, and Support

    60th Anniversary Series - Philip Lutgendorf and Sara Simons on AIIS and Family, Memories, and Support

     This year, the American Institute of Indian Studies turns 60! To celebrate the history of AIIS, we have launched a year-long series of audio interviews exploring  the history of AIIS over the last 60 years including the founding of the institute, its impact on scholarship and students, and the future of AIIS. 
    In this episode of our 60th anniversary series, former AIIS President and Professor Emeritus in the Department of Asian and Slavic Languages and Literature at the University of Iowa, Dr. Philip Lutgendorf, interviews Sara Simons of Philadelphia, former Career Advisor in the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, as well as former AIIS fellow and current benefactor. In their interview, they discuss the Simons family’s many links with AIIS, Sara’s memories of the institute and of cultural life in Delhi over the years, and her decision, together with her brother, as longtime friends of AIIS, to support the Junior Fellowship program.
    Visit aiis60.org to explore interactive timelines, a founding history of AIIS, information on centers and programs, and to stay up to date on AIIS 60th anniversary events.
    *Transcript coming soon*
    ERRATA: At one point in this conversation, the play Ghasiram Kotwal is mistakenly attributed to Girish Karnad, rather than Vijay Tendulkar. The discussants apologize for the error.
    Produced by AIIS
    Music “Desh” by Stephen Slawek

    • 34 min
    60th Anniversary Series - Sumathi Ramaswamy and Ralph W. Nicholas on History, Founding, and Reach of AIIS

    60th Anniversary Series - Sumathi Ramaswamy and Ralph W. Nicholas on History, Founding, and Reach of AIIS

    This year, the American Institute of Indian Studies turns 60! To celebrate the history of AIIS, we have launched a year-long series of audio interviews exploring  the history of AIIS over the last 60 years including the founding of the institute, its impact on scholarship and students, and the future of AIIS. 
    In this inaugural episode of our 60th anniversary series, current AIIS President and James B. Duke Professor of History at Duke University, Dr. Sumathi Ramaswamy, interviews former AIIS president and William Rainey Harper Professor Emeritus of Anthropology and of Social Sciences at the University of Chicago, Ralph W. Nicholas. During their interview, they discuss the history of the institute, its founding in a specific political atmosphere, Dr. Nicholas’ presidency during a unique time in US-India relations, and the impact of AIIS across scholarly fields.

    Visit aiis60.org to explore interactive timelines, a founding history of AIIS, information on centers and programs, and to stay up to date on AIIS 60th anniversary events.

    Produced by AIIS
    Music “Desh” by Stephen Slawek

    • 32 min
    AIIS Filmmaker Fellows

    AIIS Filmmaker Fellows

    In this episode, we will highlight the innovative visual and multimodal work of former AIIS fellows and filmmakers. AIIS offers four categories of research fellowships: Junior fellowships, Senior long-term and short-term fellowships, and Performing and Creative Arts fellowships - and within any of these categories, the form that research takes can be moulded to fit what the fellows see as the best format for their work. Several of our fellows have explored visual storytelling as the medium through which to explore their research questions and communicate their findings to the public and back to the communities that they have studied. 
    Joining us in this episode:
    Natasha Raheja, Assistant Professor of Anthropology and Performing and Media Arts at Cornell University. Her projects explore questions of migration, belonging, and citizenship. S Natasha is the director of Cast in India, an observational portrait of the Bengali metal workers who manufacture New York City manhole covers. She is currently working on Kitne Passports?, a documentary featuring Pakistani Hindu migrants in India from different caste backgrounds and an experimental film series tracking human, animal, and object movement across the India-Pakistan border; films in this series include: A Gregarious Species, Kaagaz ke Chakkar, and Enemy Property. 
    Harjant Gill, associate professor of anthropology at Towson University. His research examines the intersections of masculinity, modernity, transnational migration and popular culture in India. His films include: Roots of Love which looks at the changing significance of hair and turban among Sikh men in India; Mardistan (Macholand) which explores Indian manhood focusing on issues of sexual violence, son preference and homophobia; and Sent Away Boys which examines how provincial communities across northern India are transformed by the exodus of young men giving up farming to seek a better life abroad. His website is HarjantGill.com .
    Zoe Sherinian, Professor of Ethnomusicology and Division Chair at the University of Oklahoma.  She has produced and directed two documentary films: This is A Music: Reclaiming an Untouchable Drum (2011), on the changing status of Dalit (outcaste) drummers in India, and Sakthi Vibrations (2018), on the use of Tamil folk arts to develop self-esteem in young Dalit women at the Sakthi Folk Cultural Centre. 
    Nita Kumar, retired Brown Professor of South Asian History at Claremont McKenna College, Claremont, California. Her research is on both the history of modern India, Hinduism, Islam, and modernity, and the anthropology of urbanism and education.  Shankar's Fairies is Kumar's first feature film after two documentaries and two plays. The script is about the power of story-telling and the context of a 1962 India. It is based on her research with children plus the memories of her childhood, bringing together the 'education' from a Catholic school and a domestic servant, Shankar, who told fantastical stories. 
    For more information on AIIS fellowships, visit www.indiastudies.org/research-fellowship-programs/.
    Produced by AIIS
    Music "Desh" by

    • 51 min
    CAORC-AIIS Faculty Development Seminars

    CAORC-AIIS Faculty Development Seminars

    In this episode, we’ll explore the joint work of the Council of American Overseas Research Centers, or CAORC, and AIIS in supporting faculty at community colleges and minority-serving institutions. CAORC has been partnering with member centers since 2017, organizing two-week international study abroad trips focusing on enriching faculty development opportunities through the exploration of complex global issues like climate change, religious and ethnic diversity, and the complexities of urban sustainability. 

    Joining us today to explore the work of CAORC and AIIS is Sandria Freitag, Associate Teaching Professor in the Department of History at NC State University and leader of the CAORC-AIIS faculty development seminars; Maria del Carmen Paniagua, Associate Professor in the Math Department in Ivy Tech-Community College-Bloomington, Indiana; Mukila Maitha, Associate Professor of Geography, Department Chair, and Coordinator of both the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) and Drone Technology Program at Harper College; and Amar Sawhney, Professor of Architecture, Building Construction, and Interior Design and Miami Dade College alongside Jessica Barnes, senior lecturer in Geography at Northern Arizona University. 
    For more information about CAORC-AIIS faculty development seminars, visit www.caorc.org/faculty-development-india.

    Produced by AIIS
    Music "Desh" by Stephen Slawek

    • 1 hr 4 min
    Language Programs in a Pandemic

    Language Programs in a Pandemic

    In this episode, we spotlight the AIIS immersive language programs in India and their response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  Joining us to discuss the monumental task of taking a country-wide language program online in a matter of weeks is Dr. Rebecca Manring, AIIS Language Committee Chair and Professor of Religious Studies at Indiana University; Dr. Ahtesham Khan, Language Coordinator at the AIIS Head Office in India; Taylor Hamilton, recent graduate student in South Asian studies from the University of Washington; and Thomas Crowley, PhD Candidate in Geography at Rutgers University.

    For more information about AIIS language programs, visit https://www.indiastudies.org/language-programs/

    Produced by AIIS
    Music "Desh" by Stephen Slawek

    • 55 min
    AIIS Book Prize Winner Dipti Khera and *The Place of Many Moods*

    AIIS Book Prize Winner Dipti Khera and *The Place of Many Moods*

    In this episode we'll speak with AIIS Book Prize winner Dr. Dipti Khera, Associate Professor of Art History in the Department of Art History and Institute of Fine Arts at New York University, about her new book The Place of Many Moods: Udaipur’s Painted Lands and India’s Eighteenth Century. We'll hear about Dr. Khera's experience with the American Institute of Indian Studies, navigating the publishing landscape, the expansive world of moods and aesthetics, and the complexities of interdisciplinary scholarship.

    Joining us to discuss the AIIS Book Prize and lead us into discussion on The Place of Many Moods is Dr. Deborah Hutton, Professor of Art History at The College of New Jersey.

    The Place of Many Moods is out now through Princeton University Press. You can learn more about this project through Dr. Khera's rich, multimodal book website: theplaceofmanymoods.org.

    Produced by AIIS
    Music "Desh" by Stephen Slawek

    • 1 hr 7 min

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