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Archive for September 22nd, 2009

38th Annual Conference on South Asia – 22-23 Oct 2009

Posted by ElJay Arem (IMC OnAir) on September 22, 2009

TUWM-Logo-2009-1Pre-Confernce on 22nd October please see here


Friday, October 23, 2009

Welcome Reception & Social Hour
Time: 5:30 – 6:30 PM
Location: Wisconsin Ballroom

All-Conference Dinner
Time: 6:30 – 7:45 PM
Location: Madison Ballroom
Click here to place your meal order. Deadline October 9, 2009.

Keynote Address: Dr. Carla Sinopoli, Professor of Anthropology, University of Michigan
Time: 8:00 – 9:00 PM
Location: Wisconsin Ballroom

“The Local and the Global: Exploring Deep South Indian Histories Through a Fine Lens”

Historical constructions of ancient India often rely on limited and poorly theorized evidence to draw very broad conclusions.  Small numbers of royal inscriptions and scarce and poorly understood material remains are used to create vast narratives – of sequences of empires and of ideological and sociopolitical transformations playing out at a subcontinental scale.  In this talk, I step back from these ‘global’ constructions of ancient India to take a close look at a small part of southern India, which variously moved in and out of the large dramas portrayed in our big narratives.  In so doing, I hope to illustrate how consideration of the material evidence of lived lives of the inhabitants of the Tungabhadra river region of northern Karnataka can add richness to our understandings of long term historical changes and distant pasts.

Carla Sinopoli is Professor of Anthropology at the Department of Anthropology and Director of the Museum of Anthropology, at University of Michigan, where she is also Curator of Asian Archaeology. Her research focuses on  complex societies and political economy in Southern India. She is currently co-directing a multi-year archaeological field project in the Tungabhadra River Valley of South India, focusing on emergent social and economic inequalities and the formation to territorial polities during the South India Iron Age (first millennium BC). Her prior work in the area included a 10-year systematic regional survey of the hinterland of the 14th-16th c AD imperial capital of Vijayanagara, where she focused particularly on examining the relations of imperial and temples institutions in the control and organization of craft production. As curator of the Museum of Anthropology’s extensive collections from Asia, Sinopoli is conducting research and publishing on material culture and trade in South and Southeast Asian history and prehistory.

Conference Performance: Nicolas Magriel, Sarangi Performance
accompanied by James Kippen on Tabla
Time: 9:15 – 10:00 PM
Location: Wisconsin Ballroom

Nicolas Magriel has been playing the sarangi since 1970. He has lived in India for ten years studying with distinguished sarangi players including Pandit Gopal Mishra, Ustad Abdul Latif Khan, Ustad Mohammed Ali Khan and Ustad Ghulam Sabir Qadri. He also studied North Indian vocal music with the renowned khayal singer and musicologist Pandit Dilip Chandra Vedi and dhrupad singing with Ustad Fayazuddin Dagar. He has performed widely in the UK and Europe as a soloist and as an accompanist to vocalists and Kathak dancers, appeared many times on television and contributed sarangi for numerous film and theatre scores. In 2001 he completed his PhD at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London, analysing sarangi style and its relationship with vocal music. From 2002 until 2008 , while continuing to perform and teach sarangi and vocal music, he was working on an AHRC-funded project transcribing and analysing 490 bandishes, the songs of khayal, the pre-eminent genre of Hindustani classical vocal music. In conjunction with this research, he has been learning khayal singing from Ustad Aslam Khan and Batuk Dewanji in Mumbai. Dr. Magriel is now engaged on “Beyond Text: Growing into Music,” a project which focuses on musical enculturation in oral musical traditions.

For more information about Dr. Magriel, please visit

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Plenary Address: Girish Karnad, playwright, actor, director and screen writer
Location: Capitol Ballroom
Time: 3:45 – 5:15 PM

In Play: The Practice of Theatre, Film, and Television in Contemporary India

A dialogue with Girish Karnad

Moderator: Aparna Dharwadker, Professor of Theatre & Drama and English, UW-Madison

Girish Raghunath Karnad (b. 1938) has been a commanding presence in Indian theatre, film, television, and cultural life more generally for more than four decades. His early plays—Yayati (1961), Tughlaq (1964), and Hayavadana (Horse-Head, 1971)—were a seminal part of the effort by a whole generation of playwrights to shape Indian theatre as a major contemporary national tradition in the later twentieth century. Karnad’s distinctive contribution to this movement was to engage deeply with the narratives of the past (myth, history, folklore), and remake them in the image of the postcolonial present. During the 1970s and early 1980s, he emerged as an important figure in the “parallel” or “middle” cinema movement, with leading roles in such groundbreaking films as Pattabhi Raman Reddy’s Samskara (A Rite for a Dead Man, 1970), Shyam Benegal’s Nishant (Evening’s End, 1973), and Manthan (The Churning, 1976), Basu Bhattacharya’s Swami (Husband, 1977), and Jabbar Patel’s Umbartha (The T hreshold, 1982). Over the same period he was the screenwriter and/or director for a number of acclaimed feature films: Vamsha vriksha (FamilyTree, with B. V. Karanth, 1971), Kaadu (1973), and Ondanandu kaaladalli (Once Upon a Time, 1978) in Kannada; and Godhuli (Dusk, with B. V. Karanth, 1977), Bhumika (The Role, 1978), Utsav (Festival, 1984), and Cheluvi (1993) in Hindi. Karnad returned actively to playwriting in 1987 with Naga-mandala (Play with a Cobra), and the classic plays of this second period include Tale-Danda (Death by Decapitation, 1989), Agni mattu male (The Fire and the Rain, 1994), The Dreams of Tipu Sultan (1997), Bali (Sacrifice, 2002), and Broken Images (2004).

Karnad’s unique position as a front-rank playwright, media celebrity, and public intellectual rests on the skill and imagination with which he has balanced his various artistic and cultural roles. He is the recipient of numerous awards and honors, including the Bharatiya Jnanapith Award, the Kalidasa Samman, the Padma Shri, and the Padma Bhushan. He has served as Director of the Film and Television Institute of India (1974-75), Chairman of the Sangeet Natak Akademi (1988-93), and Director of the Nehru Centre (2000-03), and he was recently appointed a World Theatre Amabassador by UNESCO’s International Theatre Institute.

Read a complete biography
written by Professor Aparna Dharwadker.

Plenary Performance: A Staged Reading of Girish Karnad YAYATI (1961)

Request Tickets!
Performed by members of the Department of Theatre and Drama, University of Wisconsin-Madison Directed by Joan Brooks and Barbara Clayton

Lecture Hall, Madison Museum of Modern Art
Location: The Overture Centre for the Arts, 227 State Street
Time: 6:00 – 8:00 PM

A discussion with the playwright will follow the reading.

Read a description of the play written by Professor Aparna Dharwadker

Still from a production of YAYATI, dir. Arundhati Raja, Bangalore, 2008

AIPS & CAORC Reception

Location: Senate Room A
Time: 9 – 11 PM

The Center for South Asia
c/o University of Wisconsin-Madison,
1155 Observatory Drive, 203 Ingraham Hall, Madison WI 53706,

For information regarding the conference, please email:
or call 608-262-4884

(Source: 09/2009 – The University of Wisconsin-Madison)

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