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Mission

The Harvard University South Asia Institute (SAI) engages faculty and students through interdisciplinary programs to advance and deepen the teaching and research on global issues relevant to South Asia. 

About SAI | View the South Asia Institute video 

Upcoming Events


Mon, August 17, 2015 from 06:00pm - 08:30pm  /  The Oberoi Hotel

Kumbh Mela: Mapping the Ephemeral Megacity Book Launch

Please join the Harvard University South Asia Institute for the launch of Kumbh Mela: Mapping the Ephemeral Megacity.

Over fifty Harvard professors, students, administrative staff, and medical practitioners made the pilgrimage to Allahabad, India, to the Kumbh Mela site in 2013, to analyze issues that emerge in any large-scale human gathering. The Kumbh Mela: Mapping the Ephemeral Megacity book consolidates research findings and serve as an example of interdisciplinary research conducted at Harvard.

This launch event will feature faculty leaders from Harvard’s various schools, who will share lessons learned from the project.

High tea reception followed by a panel discussion to accompany the book launch. 

Please RSVP to Namrata Arora, narora@hbs.edu.

Cosponsored with the Harvard Club of India

START
Mon, Aug 17, 2015 at 06:00pm

END
Mon, Aug 17, 2015 at 08:30pm

VENUE
The Oberoi Hotel

ADDRESS
Dr Zakir Hussain Marg, Delhi, India

Thu, September 10, 2015 from 05:00pm - 07:00pm  /  CGIS South, S010

Clothes to Die For

Film Screening and Discussion

Zara Hayes, Director

Ruth BarronAssistant Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School

Chair: Jennifer LeaningFrançois-Xavier Bagnoud Professor of the Practice of Health and Human Rights, HSPH; Director, FXB Center for Health and Human Rights

In April 2013, 18-year-old Shirin became one of thousands of people trapped inside the Rana Plaza building when it collapsed in the worst industrial disaster in the 21st century. In this moving documentary for BBC Two’s This World, Shirin and some of the other survivors tell their remarkable story of survival and escape. Many were rescued by ordinary local people who risked their own lives crawling into the rubble to save them. But Clothes To Die For also reveals the incredible growth of the Bangladeshi garment industry and the greed and high level corruption that led to the Rana Plaza tragedy. This tiny country has become the second largest producer of clothes in the world after China, transforming the country and providing employment for millions of people, most of them young women. As the personal stories of survivors reveal, in Bangladesh even a wage as low as £1.50 a day can be completely life-changing and many don’t want that opportunity taken away. Producing goods for several British and European high street stores, the tragedy at the Rana Plaza sent shock waves around the world about the safety of the Bangladesh garment industry. As one local factory owner said ‘At the end of the day if the retailers want more compliant factories they have to pay us more. Get the retailers together and make sure they pay us five cents more. Not even ten, we don’t even want ten cents, we want five, we’re happy with five cents on each garment’.

START
Thu, Sep 10, 2015 at 05:00pm

END
Thu, Sep 10, 2015 at 07:00pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S010

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street
Cambridge, MA

Thu, September 17, 2015 from 04:00pm - 07:00pm  /  CGIS South, S030

Welcome Back Chaat Party

Celebrate the start of the school year with SAI!

  • Enjoy delicious food from all over South Asia.
  • Meet representatives from student groups across Harvard that focus on South Asia.
  • Learn about SAI’s internship and funding opportunities.

If you are interested in representing your South Asia focused student group at this event, please email us at sainit@fas.harvard.edu.

START
Thu, Sep 17, 2015 at 04:00pm

END
Thu, Sep 17, 2015 at 07:00pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S030
Harvard University

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street
Cambridge MA 02138

Tue, September 22, 2015 from 04:00pm - 06:15pm  /  CGIS South, S010

Rahul Roy Film Festival: When Four Friends Meet & Majma

Film Screening and Gender Seminar

Bunty, Kamal, Sanjay and Sanju, best of friends and residents of Jehangirpuri, a working class colony on the outskirts of Delhi are young and trying to make their lives in an environment which is changing rapidly… girls seem to be very bold… stable jobs are not easy to come by… sex is a strange mix of guilt and pleasure… families are claustrophobic… and the blur of television the only sounding board…

The documentary is part of a South Asia based project under which four films have been made in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Nepal exploring masculinities.

Cosponsored with the Department of South Asian Studies

Thursday, September 24Till We Meet Again Screening & Panel Discussion on Masculinity and Gender Violence in India

Friday, September 25: The Factory screening and  Q & A with Rahul Roy

 

START
Tue, Sep 22, 2015 at 04:00pm

END
Tue, Sep 22, 2015 at 06:15pm

VENUE
CGIS South, S010

ADDRESS
1730 Cambridge Street
Cambridge, MA

Thu, September 24, 2015 from 04:00pm - 06:30pm  /  Yenching Auditorium

Rahul Roy Film Festival: Till We Meet Again Screening & Panel Discussion on Masculinity and Gender Violence in South Asia

Film Screening and Panel Discussion

Geeta Aiyer, Founder, Direct Action for Women Now Worldwide (DAWN)

Elora Halim Chowdhury, Associate Professor and Chair of Women’s and Gender Studies, U-Mass Boston

Beena Sarwar, Editor, Aman ki Asha, Jang Group Pakistan; former Nieman Fellow and Fellow at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy, Harvard Kennedy School

Chair TBD

In 1999 the film, When four friends meet, ends with the promise that the four young men who are the main protagonists of the film and the director will meet again in ten years. They do meet again in 2012 and the world seems to have changed in the years that have gone by. The four friends are now married, have children and entirely new ideas like the share market have made an entry into what was a working class resettlement area of Delhi. The documentary explores through the everyday of four men the experience of a changing Delhi and how it intersects with their marriage, children, families and work. The documentary criss-crosses between 1998 and 2012 to set up a story that spans more than a decade and brings us up close to the unpredictability of life as well as continuities that belie any simple answers to the idea of the city, its working populations, change and men.

Tuesday, Sept. 22: Screening of When Four Friends Meet & Majma

Friday, September 25: The Factory screening and  Q & A with Rahul Roy

Cosponsored with the Department of South Asian Studies

START
Thu, Sep 24, 2015 at 04:00pm

END
Thu, Sep 24, 2015 at 06:30pm

VENUE
Yenching Auditorium

ADDRESS
2 Divinity Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138

Fri, September 25, 2015 from 04:00pm - 07:00pm

Rahul Roy Film Festival: The Factory & Q and A with Rahul Roy

Film Screening and Discussion

Rahul Roy, Director

Chair TBD

147 workers of India’s largest automobile manufacturing company Maruti Suzuki are on trial for the murder of a senior manager and 2500 workers dismissed. It has been two and a half years and the case drags on. Their bail application has been rejected by the courts. On each hearing they are led to the courtroom by the police while families line up to catch a glimpse. Defence lawyers plan their strategy in the court canteen. Justice seems a dim hope. The film follows the fate of the under trial workers, families and terminated workers to investigate the underbelly of industrial conflict and the elusive nature of justice.

Tuesday, September 22: Screening of When Four Friends Meet & Majma

Thursday, September 24Till We Meet Again Screening & Panel Discussion on Masculinity and Gender Violence in India

 

START
Fri, Sep 25, 2015 at 04:00pm

END
Fri, Sep 25, 2015 at 07:00pm

Announcements


Harvard For Nepal

Harvard for Nepal is a university-wide initiative that aims to unite Harvard in response to the earthquake that devastated Nepal in April 2015.

    Lessons from and for Nepal

    On May 14, SAI hosted panel discussions featuring faculty from Harvard, MIT, Tufts, and Brown on lessons for Nepal across a broad spectrum of issues, including public health, water and sanitation, reconstruction of heritage sites, and equity in humanitarian efforts.