India Remixed

The Global Arts & Humanities Festival returned in Spring 2018 with India Remixed. As the world’s largest democracy, India is a nation composed of diverse states and territories, with many different languages and myriad forms of cultural expression. India Remixed brought together some of today’s most prominent cultural luminaries who are shaping and making contemporary Indian culture in a global context.

What I was actually writing was a novel of memory and about memory, so that my India was just that: ‘my’ India, a version and no more than one version of all the hundreds of millions of possible versions.

Salman Rushdie, on Midnight’s Children

India Remixed at a glance

Jan 8 | The Golden Age of Indian Cinema exhibit begins | Wells Library Scholars Commons

Feb 14 | Aman Sethi - Scholars Series | 6:00 | GISB Auditorium 0001

Feb 15 | Mitra Sharafi - Scholars Series | 12:00 | Maurer School of Law 335

Feb 16 | Indian Literature in Maps exhibit begins | Herman B Wells Library Lobby

Feb 22 | Vir Das + Asif Ali | 7:30 | Buskirk-Chumley Theatre

Feb 23 | Bharti Kher - Artist Lecture | 5:00 | Fine Arts Building Auditorium 015

Feb 23 | Bharti Kher - Messengers - exhibit opening | 6:00 | Grunwald Gallery

Feb 28 | Matt Rahaim- “Instruments of Culture: The Commonest and Most Despised Instrument--The Harmonium and Indian Nationalism”| 4:30 PM | Mathers Museum

Mar 1 | Pop-up India: Exhibit at IU Archives | 12:00 | Wells Library E460

Mar 1 | Holi Festival/First Thursdays Festival feat. Red Baraat | 4:00 | Alumni Hall

Mar 1 | Intro to Bollywood Feature and Documentary Films series begins | 1:00 | Wells Library Media Services

Mar 2 | Indian Classical Music Recital: Khayal Vocals with Tabla | 12:00 | Hoagy Carmichael Room

Mar 2 | Grand Chef Challenge and Tasting | 4:00 | McNutt Dining Hall

Mar 3 | Raas Royalty | 7:00 | IU Auditorium

Mar 6 | South Asian Primary Sources and Archives Workshop | 11:00 | Wells Library W138

Mar 7 | Charu Gupta - Scholars Series | 6:00 | GISB Auditorium 0001

Mar 22 | Leela Gandhi - Scholars Series | 7:30 | GISB Auditorium 0001

Mar 24 | Game Night inspired by South Asian Culture | 2:00 | Wells Library Media Services

Mar 24 | An Introduction to Hindi | 2:00 | Wells Library Media Services

Mar 27 | Salman Rushdie Book Discussion | 6:00 | Wells Library

Mar 28 | Kanwal Rekhi - Scholars Series | 4:00 | SPEA A225

Mar 29 | Sir Salman Rushdie | IU Auditorium

Apr 4 | Radha Lakshmi artwork display | GISB Foyer

Apr 4 | Raju Narisetti - Scholars Series | 6:00 | GISB Auditorium 0001

Apr 5 | Giri & Uma Peters at First Thursdays Festival | 5:00 | Fine Arts Plaza

Apr 5 | The Namesake - Mira Nair: Living Between Worlds | 7:00 | IU Cinema

Apr 5 | Mira Nair pop-up library and exhibit begins | IU Cinema

Apr 10 | Madame Gandhi - lecture | 6:00 | Mathers Museum

Apr 11 | Madame Gandhi - performance | 9:00 | The Bishop

Apr 12 | Mira Nair | 7:00 | IU Cinema

Apr 13 | Salaam Bombay! - Mira Nair: Living Between Worlds | 3:00 | IU Cinema

Apr 13 | Monsoon Wedding - Mira Nair: Living Between Worlds | 6:30 | IU Cinema

Apr 13 | Mississippi Masala - Mira Nair: Living Between Worlds | 9:30 | IU Cinema

Apr 15 | Queen of Katwe - Mira Nair: Living Between Worlds | 3:00 | IU Cinema

Apr 26 | Student Research & Creative Activity Presentations | 3:00 | Wells Library Hazelbaker Hall

Event descriptions

Vir Das and Asif Ali
A Night of Stand-up Comedy
Thursday, February 22, 7:30 pm
Buskirk-Chumley Theatre

Vir Das (headliner) is one of India’s most popular stand-up comedians today. A Bollywood actor and a Netflix sensation, his work focuses on stereotypes, global politics and the ridiculousness of pop culture. His first Netflix special, Abroad Understanding, was released in 2017, and his tours have sold over half a million tickets, reaching audiences all over the globe.

Asif Ali (opening act) is an American comedian, actor and writer based in Los Angeles. He has performed on hit shows such as Modern Family, Arrested Development, Marvel Agents of Shield, and on Comedy Central. Named one of Comedy Central’s “Comics to Watch,” Asif is a versatile comic and improviser who has performed across the world.

Free, but ticketed. Tickets are available through the Buskirk-Chumley box office.

Bharti Kher: Messengers
Artist Lecture and Exhibit Opening
Fine Arts Building Auditorium (FA015)
Friday, February 23, 5:00 pm

Exhibit to run February 23 - March 31 at the Grunwald Gallery

Bharti Kher is a globally-renowned installation artist based in New Delhi. Her exhibition of sculptures and paintings at the Grunwald Gallery will highlight her use of the bindi as artistic medium, reflecting its multi-faceted meanings.

Free, no ticket required. A reception in the Grunwald Gallery will follow the artist’s lecture.

Instruments of Culture: The Commonest and Most Despised Instrument--The Harmonium and Indian Nationalism
Mathers Museum
Wednesday, February 28, 4:30PM

The harmonium, notes Matt Rahaim (an Associate Professor of Ethnomusicology at the University of Minnesota), is a widely-used instrument in India, but has also long been condemned as a “plague,” a “menace,” and “the bane of Indian music.” During the Indian independence movement, both British and Indian scholars condemned the harmonium for embodying an unwelcome foreign musical sensibility. It was banned from All-India Radio from 1940 to 1971, and still is only provisionally accepted on the national airwaves. The debate over the harmonium hinged on putative sonic differences between India and the modern West, and the attempt to banish the sound of the harmonium was part of an attempt to define a national sound for India, distinct from British modernity. Rahaim’s talk will explore the intertwined aesthetic and political ideals that underlie the harmonium controversy.

Sir Salman Rushdie
Lecture and Ceremony
IU Auditorium
Thursday, March 29, 5:00 pm

Sir Salman Rushdie is a prominent writer who has written extensively on modern India. One of the world’s most influential living writers, his bestselling novel Midnight’s Children earned him the Booker Prize in 1981. Rushdie received a Queen’s Knighthood in 2007. His most recent novel, The Golden House, was published in 2017. Rushdie will receive an honorary degree and deliver a talk titled “Wonder Tales: East meets West,” at the IU Auditorium. This event is sponsored by IU’s Office of the President and IU Office of the Bicentennial.

This event is free but ticketed. Tickets will be available for reservation at the IU Auditorium box office on February 2nd.

Madame Gandhi
Mathers Museum of World Cultures
April 10, 6:00 pm

The Bishop
April 11, 9:00 pm

Madame Gandhi is a rapper, drummer, electronic music artist, and feminist activist. Her music elevates and celebrates the female voice. Before releasing her 2016 EP Voices, she gained recognition as the former drummer for M.I.A. She has performed extensively, from the Pitchfork Festival to the Museum of Modern Art. She will give a lecture and perform during her visit, as well as work with elementary students as part of the Lotus Blossoms program.

The lecture at the Mathers Museum of World Cultures is free.

The performance at The Bishop is ticketed, with limited seating. Early-bird tickets are on sale at The Bishop. General tickets will be on sale in February. Doors will open at 8:00 pm.

Mira Nair
Lecture and Q&A
IU Cinema
April 12, 7:00 pm

Mira Nair is an award-winning filmmaker whose films focus on issues of identity, race, gender, and cultural displacement. Her debut feature film, Salaam Bombay!, was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 1988. Her latest film, Queen of Katwe (2016), was named as a Critics’ Pick by the New York Times. IU Cinema will be featuring several of her films in collaboration with India Remixed before and after her visit. Her lecture will be followed by a moderated Q&A. This event is sponsored in part by IU Cinema.

Aman Sethi: Some thoughts on Money: Demonetization, Digitization, and Control
Global and International Studies Building Auditorium (GA0001)
Wednesday, February 14, 6:00 pm

Aman Sethi is a journalist and associate editor at the Hindustan Times and the former Africa correspondent for The Hindu. His book A Free Man: A True Story of Life and Death in Delhi received the Economist Crossword Book Award in 2011. This event is sponsored in part by the IU Media School.

Seating available on a first-come, first-served basis. Reception to follow.

Mitra Sharafi: Fear of the False: Forensic Science in Colonial India
Maurer School of Law Faculty Conference Room (335)
Thursday, February 15, 12:00 pm

Mitra Sharafi is an associate professor of law at the University of Wisconsin and a legal historian of colonial South Asia. Her first book, Law and Identity in Colonial South Asia: Parsi Legal Culture 1772-1947 (2014), focused on how Parsis, an ethno-religious minority in India, interacted with colonial law to reap collective gains.

Seating is limited, and available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Charu Gupta: Love Taboos: Hindus, Muslims and Moral Panics
Global and International Studies Building Auditorium (GA0001)
Wednesday, March 7, 6:00 pm

Charu Gupta is an associate professor in the University of Delhi’s History department. Her research explores issues of caste, gender, and feminism in Indian culture. Her most recent book is The Gender of Caste: Representing Dalits in Print (2016). Gupta is also the editor of Gendering Colonial India: Reforms, Print, Caste, and Communalism (2012).

Seating available on a first-come, first-served basis. Reception to follow.

Leela Gandhi: Cultures of Nonviolence - CANCELLED
Global and International Studies Building Auditorium (GA0001)
Thursday, March 22, 7:30 pm

Leela Gandhi, currently the John Hawkes Professor of Humanities and English at Brown University, is a literary and cultural theorist who has published extensively on postcolonial theory. She most recently published The Common Cause: Postcolonial Ethics and the Practice of Democracy, 1900-1955 (2014).

Please note - this event has been cancelled.

Kanwal Rekhi: An Entrepreneurial Journey
School of Public and Environmental Affairs - O’Neill Center (SPEA A225)
Wednesday, March 28, 4:00 pm

Kanwal Rekhi came to the United States from India for graduate studies, advanced through the engineering ranks in a number of technology companies, and then co-founded Excelan in Silicon Valley to commercialize ethernet and TCP/IP – standards which became the basis of the Internet. He took Excelan public in 1987, becoming the first Indo-American Founder & CEO to list a venture-backed company on the NASDAQ. He is the current managing director of Inventus. This event sponsored by the Kelley School of Business and the School of Environmental and Public Affairs.

Seating available on a first-come, first-served basis.

Raju Narisetti: Why Honest Journalism is in Peril in the World’s Largest Democracy
Global and International Studies Building Auditorium (GA0001)
Wednesday, April 4, 6:00 pm

Raju Narisetti was named CEO of Gizmodo Media Group in 2016, after successful stints at News Corp, The Washington Post, and the Wall Street Journal. An IU Bloomington alumnus, Narisetti also founded India’s second-largest business newspaper, Mint. This event is sponsored by the IU Media School.

Seating available on a first-come, first-served basis. Reception to follow.

Holi Festival Family Weekend

Celebrate the Festival of Colors with Indiana University. In partnership with the Indian Student Association, the Asian Culture Center, and the Dhar India Studies Program, India Remixed presents a three-day festival with live music, distinguished cultural guests, a dance competition, and more.

March 1:

The weekend kicks off with the monthly First Thursdays Festival. Experience Holi on the Bloomington campus with color, dancing, food, and live music from Red Baraat, the riveting Brooklyn-based octet NPR has dubbed “the best party band in years” as well as presentations by IU student groups Raas Royalty, Hoosher Bhangra, the India Student Association, Beta Chi Theta, and Sigma Sigma Rho. The Holi celebration will culminate in an outdoor color toss in Dunn Meadow.

Holi Festival/First Thursdays Festival, featuring musical guest Red Baraat
IMU Alumni Hall
Thursday, 4:00 - 6:30 pm
Free, no ticket required.

March 2:

For a different side of the India Remixed Event series, join us Friday afternoon for a celebrity cooking demonstration featuring new mixes of traditional ingredients, starring alumnus and acclaimed restaurateur Rakshay Dhariwal, who will be visiting with chef Rahul Gomes Pereira. They will be preparing dishes from their five-star restaurant À Ta Maison, a luxury dine-in bistro in Sunder Nagar, New Delhi. Whether you’re an international food fanatic, or simply looking to dive deeper into the India Remixed experience, the Celebrity Cooking Demonstration is not an event you want to miss! Free samples of all dishes will be shared with the audience.

Grand Chef Challenge at McNutt Dining Hall
Friday, 4:00 - 6:00 pm
Free, no ticket required. Room to be announced.

March 3

On Saturday, the annual Raas Royalty intercollegiate dance competition takes place at IU Auditorium. Eight teams from across the country will compete in energetic choreographed garba-raas routines, which are traditional forms of devotional dance originating from the Gujurat region of India.

Raas Royalty at IU Auditorium
Saturday, 7:00 pm
Free, no ticket required.

The Golden Age of Indian Cinema
Herman B Wells Library Scholars’ Commons
January 8 – April 10

Spanning the late 1940s through the 1960s, this period saw the production of some of India’s most critically acclaimed directors, actors and actresses, and films of all time – some are renowned not just within the realm of Indian cinema, but throughout the world. This exhibit features rare original film scripts along with their accompanying films, as well as unique books exploring this era. While there, you can also check out books from our Indian cinema-themed collection on display, which explores the diversity of regional cinemas from around the country.

Indian Literature in Maps
Herman B Wells Library Lobby
February 16 - April 28

Indian Literature in Maps celebrates India’s rich literary and cartographic traditions. Pairing passages from India’s most celebrated novels with maps from the Herman B Wells Library map collection, this exhibit provides spatial context to the literature and invites an immersive armchair travel experience.

Red Baraat
IMU Alumni Hall
Thursday, March 1, 5:00 - 6:15 pm

Red Baraat, a lively 8-piece Indian band featuring musicians performing on modern and traditional instruments, will take center stage at the Holi Festival on March 1 and will work with students from the Jacobs School of music during their visit. Learn more about their festivities and the Holi Festival Family Weekend in the section above.

Radha Lakshmi
Various installations around IU Bloomington campus
Wednesday - Thursday, April 4 - 5

Radha Lakshmi, an interdisciplinary contemporary artist, presents works emerging from the “Feminine and Earth” and women’s ritual arts from the South of India. She will create temporary artwork at the April 5th First Thursdays Festival and inside the Global and International Studies building on April 4 as part of her Lotus Blossoms visit. This event is sponsored by the Lotus Education and Arts Foundation.

Giri & Uma Peters
Fine Arts Plaza
Thursday, April 5, 5:00 - 7:30 pm

Giri & Uma Peters (ages 12 & 10) are an Indian-American brother-sister bluegrass duo with astounding talent beyond their years. Giri and Uma will visit multiple local elementary schools as part of the Lotus Blossoms program, in addition to performing at the April 5th First Thursday Festival. This event is sponsored by the Lotus Education and Arts Foundation.

Throughout the semester, IU Cinema and the Herman B Wells library will present several fim programs linked to India. These programs are curated to engage students and speak to today’s world, while looking at the past, embracing tradition, and dealing with migration, identity, and community. The series will include several director talks, screenings, master classes, and discussions. See below for an extended list of the various film opportunities during India Remixed.

Mira Nair: Living Between Worlds
IU Cinema
April 5 - April 15

Mira Nair is a filmmaker completely grounded within the world she lives. Her films often explore the conflicts inherent with families of recent immigration and ways to bridge the gap between cultures, races, and genders. They challenge stereotypes and generational assumptions, while remaining grounded in the values she holds close.

To accompany her visit to Bloomington, IU Cinema will screen five of her acclaimed films and will host her lecture/Q&A. Films are free but ticketed. All screenings and ticket information are listed at IU Cinema’s website.

Pop-up library and exhibit for Mira Nair: Come early for Mira Nair’s lecture, or stop by between movies. The IU Libraries will have a pop-up library at the IU Cinema, featuring books and DVDs that are available to check out. You can also peruse some of IU’s rare Indian film materials, which will be on display.

Introduction to Bollywood Feature and Documentary Films
Herman B Wells Library Media Services
Daily, March 1 - 31, 1:00 - 3:00pm

IU Wells Library Media Services will showcase popular Bollywood feature and documentary films, shown daily on the big screen TV from 1-3pm for the entire month of March.

Research Experiences for Undergraduates
Offices of the Vice Provost for Research and for Undergraduate Education
Research Presentations at Herman B Wells Library Hazelbaker Hall
Thursday, April 26, 4:00 pm

This program supports advanced undergraduate research and creative activity for approximately 6 - 8 students working in the traditions, histories, and cultures of greater India. Funding will go toward semester-long projects that entail sustained research and/or creative activity and will result in a coherent final project of significant disciplinary value—whether in the form of an essay, exhibit, or performance.

Students will work closely with a chosen faculty mentor to focus the research project, outline a research plan, gather the necessary materials, equipment, and/or archives, and craft the final product. All work will take place during the Spring 2018 semester, and the final products will be presented together at a public exhibition at the end of term.

COLL-C107: Global Arts and Humanities: March 5 - May 4
Undergraduate course, meets Mondays and Wednesdays from 8 to 10:30 am

In 2017, the IU Arts and Humanities Council launched its first Global Arts and Humanities Festival. This yearly event is part of the larger arts and humanities initiative undertaken by the college to recognize that “the arts and humanities can enliven any degree or career path. Artists and humanities scholars help us think about the use of materials, the arrangement of space and time, and the presentation of information; they inspire us to experiment with style and expression; they draw us to beauty and sometimes its opposite; they help us navigate competing views and values; they teach us to pause and to play. In a word, the arts and humanities challenge us to grow, constantly, to question and advance our perceptions and beliefs, to lead an ever more thoughtful, more committed life.”

This course will draw from the many events of the Global Arts and Humanities Festival (to be held in the second half of the spring semester each year). Students will learn about the chosen country through visual art, lectures, dance, music, theatre, and film. Through these experiences students will better understand their place in a global society and how the arts might enrich life and advance knowledge. Through these experiences students will develop a foundation for active engagement with the arts and humanities and an appreciation of diversity while at IU and beyond.

INST I100 Introduction to India: India Remixed: Spring 2018
Undergraduate course, meets Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4 to 5:15 pm

Through films, biographies, and current events, Introduction to India: India Remixed is a chance to explore India’s political, religious and cultural complexities, contradictions, and global importance. In addition to learning about India’s linguistic, cultural and religious diversity, you will learn about a collection of globally-impactful socio-political issues India faces today, exploring the historical roots to these issues, as well as the innovative and complex social movements Indians have created to respond to them. You will travel from the colonial subcontinent’s fight for independence and the birth of each of the contemporary nation-states of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh, to the rise of the Modi administration. In the process you will learn about Gandhi’s non-violent resistance, post-independence Dalit organization, Indian women’s movements responses to sexual violence, as well as the increasingly important role India plays in global climate change mediation.

This very special iteration of Introduction to India is designed in collaboration with India Remixed, a ten-week, campus-wide humanities and arts festival hosted by IU’s Humanities and Arts Council. This collaboration will give you the opportunity to deepen your explorations of topics we explore in class through special events hosted by the festival, including film screenings, guest lectures, and artistic performances. You will also have an opportunity to research topics relevant to your own career and scholarly interests. In Introduction to India, you will learn what makes India tick, how Indians are shaping their country and the world, and why this makes India so essential to understand. This course carries a IUB GenEd World Culture Credit and College S&H Breadth of Inquiry credit.

INST S100 Sanskrit for Yoga Teachers: April 2 - April 20
One-credit course, meets Monday, Wednesday, and Friday from 2:30 - 3:45 pm

This class is designed for yoga practitioners who would like to learn more about the Sanskrit language in general, including its origins and uses. The course will also focus on phonology and writing systems as well as the pronunciation of the names of yoga postures as well as mantras. This course is being offered by the Dhar India Studies Program.

ANTH E454 India Lost and Found Through Film: Spring 2018
Undergraduate/graduate course, meets 2:30 - 3:45 Mondays and 5:15 - 9:00 Wednesdays

This course is an opportunity to learn about India’s linguistic, cultural, and religious diversity through film. The class requires a Wednesday evening film showing in addition to its Monday lecture. This course is sponsored by the Anthropology department.

REL D325 Religions in Practice - Yoga: Spring 2018
Undergraduate course, meets Tuesdays and Thursdays from 1:00 - 2:15 pm

This class explores the origins of yoga in ancient Indian philosophy through close reading of selected Upanishads. Students will move from the earliest days of yoga to an exploration of how and when yoga moved out of India into European and American consciousness, how yoga is currently practiced in India and why the current prime minister of India instituted “World Yoga Day.” This course is being offered by Religious Studies.

Student Exchanges

Visiting performing arts and humanities students from FLAME University will visit Bloomington for a week and collaborate with IU students with related studies, culminating in final thrilling academic and creative projects.

Workshops and Master Classes

Many of the visiting artists and scholars will work directly with IU students, conductng workshops in ares of literature, music, political activism, and more. To name just a few, acclaimed film director Mira Nair will conduct master classes with students from the Media School and IU Theatre during her visit. Artist Bharti Kher will conduct workshops and critiques with students from the School of Art, Architecture + Design.

Pop-up India: Exhibit at the IU Archives
Indiana University Archives, Herman B Wells Library E460
Thursday, March 1, 12:00 - 1:00 pm

Head to the IU Archives for this one-hour exhibit highlighting selections of folktales and British India postcards from the folklore collection, travel journals, features of early international students from India, and selections from the papers of Charles Flaten who was stationed as a Photographic Officer in Chabua and Barachport, India from 1945-1946 during WWII.

South Asian Primary Sources and Archives Workshop
Herman B Wells Library W138
Tuesday, March 6, 11:00 am - 12:30 pm

This workshop is intended to help faculty and students explore primary sources for South Asian Studies. IU Libraries staff will review relevant library databases and online sources, and explore important archival sources, such as the National Archives of India and the British Library. They will also discuss how to arrange for visits to archives in South Asia, and how to determine what materials may be available there.

Game Night inspired by South Asian Culture
Herman B Wells Library Media Services
Saturday, March 24, 2:00 - 6:00 pm

All are encouraged to learn how to play popular Indian-inspired board games such as Ludo, Barakatta, Carrom, Chatarunga, and more.

An Introduction to Hindi
Herman B Wells Library Media Services
Saturday, March 24, 2:00 - 4:00 pm

In these 30 minute workshops, you will be able to impress your friends with basic greetings in Hindi.

One Book, One Campus, One Community: India Remixed Edition
Herman B Wells Library
Tuesday, March 27, 6:00 pm

Students are encouraged to join faculty and IU Libraries staff for for a spirited book discussion of Sir Salman Rushdie’s Haroun and the Sea of Stories. Attendees will have the chance to receive a complimentary ticket to Rushdie’s talk at IU Auditorium. Refreshments will be served.

Festival Partners

India Remixed would not be possible without the support and vision of hundreds of scholars, artists, and organizations across campus and in the community. They include:

  • On campus: School of Global and International Studies, Dhar India Studies Program, The Media School, Asian American Studies Program, the Asian Culture Center, the Mathers Museum of World Cultures, IU Cinema, IU Eskenazi Museum of Art, Jacobs School of Music, School of Art, Architecture + Design, IU Libraries, the Kelley School of Business, the School of Public and Environmental Affairs, IU Auditorium, the Office of the Provost and Executive Vice President, the Office of the Vice Provost for Research, the Office of the President, the Office of the Vice President for International Affairs, and the IU Alumni Association.
  • In Bloomington: Bloomington Department of Economic & Sustainable Development, Lotus Education and Arts Foundation, Buskirk-Chumley Theatre, and The Bishop.