University of Virginia, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences

Symposium on Citizenship, Belonging, and the Partition of India

Friday April 9, 2021 from 9:00 to 1:30 PM EST via Zoom
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Amitav Ghosh

Fall 2020 Seminar Series: “Indian Ocean Worlds and the Anthropocene”
 

Deborah Baker

Fall 2020 Seminar Series: “Narrative in the Age of Political Extremism”
 

Annual Report 2019-20

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About the Institute of the Humanities & Global Cultures

The Institute of the Humanities & Global Cultures (IHGC) offers a vision at once local and global, and a mission both academic and socially engaged.

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The New (ab)NORMAL: Humanities Week 2021 | April 19-23, 2021

Puzzle Poetry

Puzzle Poesis

UVa's Puzzle Poetry working group was launched in the fall of 2017 by Neal Curtis and
Brad Pasanek as an experimental and collaborative endeavor. The group seeks to treat
poems as puzzles, isolate the substance of prosody, and apprehend shape as a medium. 
They are makers, coders, and subformalists. 

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Asian Cosmopolitanisms

Asian Cosmopolitanisms

A new IHGC lab on Asian Cosmopolitanisms aiming to reconceptualize the study of Asia
across the disciplines of the humanities and interpretive social sciences.

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CHCI

Humanities Informatics

Consortium of Humanities Centers & Institutes 2018 Annual Meeting | June 13-17, 2018
A conference on Humanities Informatics that showcased the power of the humanities
to address the urgent questions about the ‘human’ in our information age.

WATCH CHCI 2018

Achille Mbembe

Achille Mbembe Lecture

"Negative Messianism in the Age of Animism" | September 18, 2017

WATCH THE LECTURE

Ghosh

Amitav Ghosh

IHGC Writer-in-residence
Watch his lectures

Global Map

Global South Initiative

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded the University of Virginia $3.47 million to launch a major humanities initiative dedicated to the study of the Global South. The College and Graduate School of Arts & Sciences has matched the grant, making the initial five-year investment to launch the initiative about $7 million.

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News & Announcements

Fri Oct 08
| Morven Farm
Sharing and Planning Gathering on Practice-Based/Practice-Led Research in Arts, Culture, and Performance

Sharing and Planning Gathering on Practice-Based/Practice-Led Research in Arts, Culture, and Performance

Fri Oct 08


Fri Oct 15
9:00 am - 6:30 pm | Wilson Hall 142
Empires in Global Context: A Symposium

Empires in Global Context: A Symposium

Fri Oct 15


Empires in Global Context”

A One-Day Workshop, sponsored by the Institute for the Humanities and Global Cultures

Co-organizers: Krishan Kumar (Sociology)  and Ted Lendon (History)

Friday, October 15, 2021, 9:00 am to 6:30 pm.  Room: Wilson 142

 

Program

(All participants from UVA except where shown)

9:00-9:15. Introduction to the workshop.

9:15-10:45. The Roman Empire in Global Context. Peter Fibiger Bang (University of Copenhagen, History)

                        Discussant: Ted Lendon (History)

10:45-11:00 Coffee Break

11:00-12:30. The French Empire in Global Context. Laurent Dubois (History)

Discussant: Marlene Daut (African-American and African Studies)

12:30-1:30 Lunch

1:30-2:45 The Ottoman Empire in Global Context. Dimitri Kastritsis (University of St. Andrews, History).      Discussant: Amanda Phillips (Art History)/Joshua White (History)

2:45-4:15 The British Empire in Global Context. Paul Halliday (History)

                        Discussant: Krishan Kumar (Sociology)

4:15-4:30 Tea Break

4:30-5:45 The Chinese Empire in Global Context. Ellen Zhang (History).

                        Discussant: Xiaoyuan Liu (History)

5:45-6:30 Concluding Discussion

Fri Oct 22
| Wilson Hall 142
Professor China Scherz Manuscript Workshop

Professor China Scherz Manuscript Workshop

Fri Oct 22


Fri Nov 05
Ed Welch (University of Aberdeen), “Build the Imaginary: Urban Futures and New Towns in Post-War French Spatial Planning”

Ed Welch (University of Aberdeen), “Build the Imaginary: Urban Futures and New Towns in Post-War French Spatial Planning”

Fri Nov 05


Thu Nov 11
Book Seminar on South Asian Politics, History, and Culture (Featuring Prathama Banerjee & Rochona Majumdar

Book Seminar on South Asian Politics, History, and Culture (Featuring Prathama Banerjee & Rochona Majumdar

Thu Nov 11


The seminar will feature talks and a discussion on two recent publications on South Asian political thought, history, and culture by the featured authors.

 

 

Prathama Banerjee, Elementary Aspects of the Political: Histories from the Global South

Duke University Press, 2020

https://www.dukeupress.edu/elementary-aspects-of-the-political

 

In Elementary Aspects of the Political Prathama Banerjee moves beyond postcolonial and decolonial critiques of European political philosophy to rethink modern conceptions of "the political" from the perspective of the global South. Drawing on Indian and Bengali practices and philosophies from the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, Banerjee identifies four elements of the political: the self, action, the idea, and the people. She examines selfhood in the light of precolonial Indic traditions of renunciation and realpolitik; action in the constitutive tension between traditional conceptions of karma and modern ideas of labor; the idea of equality as it emerges in the dialectic between spirituality and economics; and people in the friction between the structure of the political party and the atmospherics of fiction and theater. Banerjee reasserts the historical specificity of political thought and challenges modern assumptions about the universality, primacy, and self-evidence of the political

 

 

Rochona Majumdar, Art Cinema and India’s Forgotten Futures, Columbia University Press, 2021

http://cup.columbia.edu/book/art-cinema-and-indias-forgotten-futures/9780231201056

 

In this pioneering book, Rochona Majumdar examines key works of Indian art cinema to demonstrate how film emerged as a mode of doing history and that, in so doing, it anticipated some of the most influential insights of postcolonial thought. Majumdar details how filmmakers as well as a host of film societies and publications sought to foster a new cinematic culture for the new nation, fueled by enthusiasm for a future of progress and development. Good films would help make good citizens: art cinema would not only earn global prestige but also shape discerning individuals capable of exercising aesthetic and political judgment. During the 1960s, however, Satyajit Ray, Mrinal Sen, and Ritwik Ghatak—the leading figures of Indian art cinema—became disillusioned with the belief that film was integral to national development. Instead, Majumdar contends, their works captured the unresolvable contradictions of the postcolonial present, which pointed toward possible, yet unrealized futures.

 

Prathama Banerjee is Professor at the Centre for the Study of Developing Societies in Delhi, India, and author of Politics of Time: "Primitives" and History-Writing in a Colonial Society (2006) and Elementary Aspects of the Political: Histories from the Global South (2020).

 

Rochona Majumdar is Associate Professor in the Departments of South Asian Languages and Civilizations, and Cinema and Media Studies at the University of Chicago. She is the author of Marriage and Modernity: Family Values in Colonial Bengal (2009), Writing Postcolonial History (2010), and Art Cinema and India’s Forgotten Futures (2021).

 

Aswin Punathambekar is Associate Professor in the Department of Media Studies at the University of Virginia. He is the author of From Bombay to Bollywood: The Making of a Global Media Industry (2013), co-author of Media Industry Studies (2020), and co-editor of Global Bollywood (2008), Television at Large in South Asia (2013), and Global Digital Cultures: Perspectives from South Asia (2019). 

 

Samhita Sunya is Assistant Professor in the Department of Middle Eastern and South Asian Languages and Cultures at the University of Virginia. She is the author of Sirens of Modernity: World Cinema Via Bombay (in press,). Her interests span world film history, informal practices of media distribution across South / West Asia and the Indian Ocean, and intersections of audio-visual media and literary forms.

Mellon Global South Initiative

Mellon Global South Initiative

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded the University of Virginia $3.47 million to launch a major humanities initiative dedicated to the study of the Global South. The College and Graduate School of Arts & Sciences will match the grant, making the initial five-year investment to launch the initiative about $7 million.

Clay Endowments & Grants

Clay Endowments & Grants

The Institute of the Humanities and Global Cultures (IHGC) invites proposals for funding from the Buckner W. Clay Endowment to support innovative work in the global humanities at the University of Virginia. The Endowment provides an ambitious basis of support for faculty and student research and teaching to be conducted under the auspices of the IHGC. Faculty and students from across all schools and disciplines at the university are welcome and encouraged to apply. 

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Bologna

Summer School in Global Studies and Critical Theory

The Academy of Global Humanities and Critical Theory is a new research entity jointly promoted by the University of Virginia, Duke University and the University of Bologna. It is conceived as an intellectual space for scholars coming from different research fields and geographical regions to work together on the redefinition of the humanities in a global age.

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Mapping Indigenous/UVA Relations: Stories of Space, Place, and Histories is a participatory action methodological project that focuses on sparsely documented Indigenous relations with the University of Virginia. This project combines archival materials related to Indigenous histories and presences in and around UVA with Virginia tribal citizens’ personal digital stories that...

My research focuses on sabils, or charitable water fountains, as a key location for exploring vernacular water architecture and investigating the underlying conceptual frameworks that give them life. Sabils are important parts of the built environment of Cairo, drawing on religious precedence and enacting everyday ethical notions of reciprocity. They are particularly important in the changing...

The focus of my research while a Mellon Humanities Fellow takes off from the ubiquity of the phrase: "the long eighteenth century." Proliferating in calls for participation and panel descriptions throughout art history and visual culture studies, if the mark of an elongated eighteenth century is inescapable, this terminology merits further scrutiny. During my period as a Mellon Fellow, I will...

What meaning did a fictional Ottoman tale and the manuscript containing it have to those who copied, read, heard, and owned it? An Epic Tale of Sorrow and Joy is an interdisciplinary microhistory that explores the many meanings, uses, and journeys of an otherwise unremarkable manuscript—the only extant copy of an eponymous Ottoman Turkish story of forced migration, fortune, and loss...

“If human beings suddenly ceased imitating, all forms of culture would vanish.” This striking statement by René Girard not only ascribes to mimesis the ability to generate culture, but also implicitly challenges scholars to determine how mimesis operates within the cultural field they study. Many have risen to this challenge, but the question still remains: How does mimesis operate within...

How did the partition of the Indian subcontinent resolve the problem of belonging for minority religious communities – in India, Pakistan, and later, Bangladesh? If Pakistan was designed to create a ‘homeland’ for the Muslims of the subcontinent, was India meant to serve as a homeland for the Hindus? How, then, did the Hindus of Pakistan and the Muslims of India learn to live and build...

Since the mid-1980s, art photographers from metropolitan France have been training their lenses on places throughout the country they call home. Their work constitutes a dynamic, thoughtful, and altogether transformative way of envisioning what on the surface might seem like perfectly mundane locations, but which the photographs endorse as landscapes endowed with the capacity to expand and...

I am beginning a new project at IHGC, one that builds from the methods that I developed in my first book, Mining Language: Racial Thinking, Indigenous Knowledge, and Colonial Metallurgy in the Early Modern Iberian World (Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture for the University of North Carolina Press, May 2020). My new project turns from mining to agriculture,...

Higher Powers: Alcohol and After in Uganda’s Capital City is a collaborative monograph (co-authored by George Mpanga and Sarah Namirembe) that draws on four years of fieldwork carried out with Ugandans working to reconstruct their lives after attempting to leave problematic forms of alcohol use behind.  Given the relatively recent introduction of Western ideas of alcoholism and...

Project Summary: My project on Byzantine urbanism and Athens in particular, seeks to reconstruct the topography and spatial layout of Byzantine Athens (4th-15th c AD), and better understand contemporary living conditions and socio-economic activities in the city. Emphasis is placed on city-making processes and particularly the role of non-elite, ordinary people in them. Similar to...

Project Summary: My current book project reframes narratives of photography’s origin and originality by zooming into the first one hundred years of photography in Senegal (1860-1960). Senegal has received significant attention as one of the epicenters of modernism in the Black Atlantic, and yet, the advent of photography in the country in the 1840s has hardly been considered in...