STUDENT: Olander, Dillon
Earth was a very interesting, emotional film that takes you from an idyllic time of religious harmony to the terror surrounding the petition of India
Film Viewed: Earth and Pakistan, to the shocking conclusion. When the movie finished, I was surprised with a number of things. First, I expected from my research the
(1998) film would end on a happier note. Second, I was surprised that the Ice-Candy Man really betrayed the couple and abused the trust of the lame little
Directed By: Deepa girl. It’s not stated but it seems certain he was the one who killed the other man; that the Ice-Candy Man did it out of romantic jealousy for getting
Mehta (Indian- the girl, completely unrelated to the larger religious tensions which he just used as a cover for his murder. Third, it very shocking and disturbing
Canadian) how quickly neighbors and friends who had lived together in harmony for generations, talking in the park and flying kites, could so quickly devolve
[M] Review [10 out
Screening: Swan into mutual distrust and violence. It is even more disturbing that this was based on historical fact, and the director Deepa Mehta definitely
Hall 3rd Floor conveyed the dark side of humanity in a very believable and cinematic way. I would recommend this film, but not before you’re about to go to a
Screening Room; party, because it will leave an impression on yoy after the film ends.
Exhibit Viewed: The “Elephants, Paisleys, & Plaids” exhibit I viewed last month had a very interesting collection of various Indian textiles. It featured items from
“Elephants, everyday Indian life, such as the sari, to the old and probably expensive, such as the printed cotton wall hanging from the early 18th Century.
Paisleys, and Many cultures and religions were meshed together in India, and this shows in their textiles. Cotton, silk, indigo, floral and geometric designs, and
Plaids” other characteristics of the old Indian textile industry were long coveted by the West, from the time of Marco Polo to Christopher Columbus’ search
Organizers: Kira for “the Indies” that would instead lead him to discovering the Americas. They have had a lasting influence on Western culture, many probably
Muroe (student don’t even know they originally came from India. The eight parts the exhibit were divided into were: shisha (mirror work), the sari, the Nehru
[S] Review [10 out curator) jacket, the Buta motif, Indian elephant prints, Madras plaids, printed/painted cotton fabrics, and the salwar suit. The most striking items to me
of 50] Visit Date: were the beautiful wall hanging from the 18th century, the elephant square mandala textile, and a bright salwar suit that was blue with pink
1:00pm, October embroidery. One of the things I noticed about the printed cotton fabrics was that one of them was the style used on my pillows at home, and my
23rd 2009, at the parents’ mattress cover. The shisha reminded me of the fake jewelry my younger female cousins would wear when playing dress-up. I found it
Textile Gallery in interesting that the typical roles of the sari (originally used by married women) and the salwar suit (originally used by unmarried women) have
Quinn Hall, evolved over time so now the salwar is simply the comfortable and informal thing to wear in the city, with the sari just being the more formal form
of dress for women now. I thought the textile exhibit was very interesting and informative, a lot of work went into it, but it almost seemed too
small and didn’t have as many older Indian textiles as I expected.
News Story: This recent news article discusses the very recent decision by the Indian government to create a 29th state, giving into the demands of a regional
Magnier, Mark. politician on an 11-day hunger strike. The new state of Telangana is being split off from Andhra Pradesh, and it has already led to fears that many
"India's 29th stateregions will now be petitioning to split off and create their own state, and possibly undermine the national stability of India. Chandrasekhar Roa,
could lead to many the regional politician, seemed to be following Gandhi’s philosophy and struck a nerve with many people. The article says the move seems to have
more." Los Angeles been made by a panicked government, and not well though-out of how it could serve as a catalyst for similar calls across the country. I agree with
Times. 12 Dec the article, if it only takes a hunger strike to get your own state then that is a recipe for disaster and instability.
2009. Web. 13 Dec [R2]This news story is interesting because the world seems to finally be embracing India as a nuclear power. If India is developed to sustain its
2009. energy needs from nuclear power, instead of fossil fuels, then that will be better for the environment in the long term. There is always a question of
<http://www.latim safety after Chernobyl, and where to put the nuclear waste as the debate over Yucca Mountain in the United States shows, but it really does seem
es.com/news/natio like one of the least bad options for India right now. Solar and wind are not efficient or reliable enough yet. Although they may be more effective in
n-and-world/la-fg- the future, India cannot wait around for that to happen. The United States entered into a landmark nuclear treaty with India a few years ago, and
india-states12- now with Russia deciding to make a similar move it shows both strategic cooperative planning and the world’s acknowledgment of India as a future
[R] Review [10
2009dec12,0,2665 global power. [R3]Viewed:http://www.indiancricketleague.in/teams/player-profiles/Chandigarh-Lions/Andrew-Hall.html
out of 50]
Andrew Hall is the captain of the Chandigarh Lions, born in South Africa in 1975. He bowls and bats with his right-hand, and is an “all rounder.”
News Story: He began to play cricket at the age of 4, and represented his province when he was 18. He officially retired from international cricket in 2007, but
Lamont, James. he still plays in India, for the Hyderabad Heroes and Chandigarh Lions.
"Russia to supply Something I noticed while looking at all the Indian teams on the site (Chandigarh Lions, Chennai Superstars, Delhi Giants, Hyderabad Heroes,
India with nuclear Royal Bengal Tigers, Mumbai Champs, Lahore Badshahs, Ahmedabad Rockets) is that they all look like international times. There are players from
reactors." FT.com. South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, England, and many other countries, even Zimbabwe. This probably reflects the extent of the old British
07 Dec 2009. Web. Empire’s influence. [R4]I went to the Diwali Festival a month ago, and it was definitely an interesting experience. There were
13 Dec 2009. technical difficulties with the sound, and it did run overtime, but it was fun to watch. I spoke to Professors Dholakia in the beginning and sat near
<http://www.ft.co them and the child dancers, who were very adorable when they finally got to go on the stage! Two students from Calcutta, who were dressed up
m/cms/s/0/89c986 and would later go on stage, gave me their emails for my research project on the Bengali film industry. All of the Indian attire looked astounding,
24-e352-11de- very bright and festive. The appetizer was good, but it was not enough to hold me over to dinner. The girl who played the two traditional Indian
What can be done politically and economically to ensure that India develops while preserving as much of the environment and native wildlife as
At the core of the world’s environmental problems is overpopulation, and nowhere is that more evident than in India, a country smaller in territory
than the United States but with over three times the population. It is the responsibility of not only their government, but also the international
community, to responsibly handle their development and achieve the right balance. The environment doesn’t know political boundaries; it is
interconnected and affects everyone.
India’s economy is growing at an extremely rapid rate, and will eventually overtake China’s growth rate, perhaps as soon as this year (Economic
Times). As these two titans race to catch up to the United States and Western Europe, it is the natural environment which is paying the price. Of
E1 course that is true for any other country which has undergone industrialization and economic development, but the stakes are higher here because
of their enormous, billion-plus populations. With automobiles being a major source of air pollution, building public transportation and high-speed
railways in place of highways could go a long way. Indian Railways is already planning to expand, and compete with the airways (Forbes). The shift
to CNG in Indian cities was positive, but natural gas is scarce too, and car congestion may still be too much for the cities to handle.
What the United States and others can do is offer economic incentives directly to the local leaders and the MNC’s in India, so they are encouraged
to promote greater efficiency and sustainable planning. The Earth simply does not have the carrying capacity for every Indian to be as consuming
and wasteful as the average American. India has the gift of a developing infrastructure, unlike the United States, so they should learn from our
mistakes and get it right now because it is the developing nations who will shape the world throughout the 21st century.
Sharma , Shantanu . "India set to beat China in growth rate." Economic Times. Web. 01 Dec
Can there be a place for “adda” and a work/life balance in India as it is rapidly modernizing into today’s capitalist world, and what could be lost by
forgetting this part of culture?
The unique characteristics of human life include things such as complex language and communication, setting aside time to reflect and think,
finding a place to socialize. “Adda” is all of these things for the Bengalese Indians; humans are not just machines to be used and exploited by the
market. There definitely will be a place for “adda” in modern India, but I believe that “adda” itself will have to be modernized.
Finding the balance between work and life is not a unique situation for Indians, this debate on “adda” losing a place in modern Indian life is a sign
E2 of a larger problem afflicting humans of every culture. Despite rising standards of living for most Americans, we are at the same level of happiness
as we were decades before, and the same is also true for Japan. “In Japan, real average income was six times higher in 1991 than it was in 1958.
During the post–World War II period, Japan was transformed at unprecedented speed from a poor nation into one of the world’s richest countries.
But the average happiness of a Japanese citizen, measured on a scale of 1–4, stayed exactly the same at 2.7” (Brooks). In the same article, it
shows how poor countries can be just as or even more happy than more stable and wealthy ones. Becoming capitalist and industrialized does not
equal increased happiness, old needs and wants are just replaced by new ones. The balance between work and life will be just as important to
[E] [C] [30 out of Indians in this modern age as it has in all other ages before it. The “nostalgia” for it reveals that Indians do still value it, they will just need to adapt
150] and modernize it to fit with the changing society. Some of those changes should probably be to help everyone feel like they can belong as equals:
rich and poor, male and female, master and servant.
In conclusion, “adda” is not laziness or in danger of becoming extinct, it is adapting yet always present in some form where human life can be
[E] [C] [30 out of
The Third and Final Continent
After reading Jhumpa Lahiri’s story “The Third and Final Continent” last week, I was very impressed by her realistic-fiction writing skills, the quality
reminded me of stories I used to read in my advanced placement English classes. Listening to her speak to the freshmen that afternoon also
impressed and inspired me. She really brought the town and the character to life, especially how she developed the relationship between the
protagonist and Mrs. Croft in such a touching yet believably realistic way. It was also very easy to relate to the main character, and put myself in
his shoes, to see what a newcomer to America must feel like after travelling here. The cultural differences, from dress to food to what you call
certain things like saying a phone is “busy,” may seem small but they really must be a culture shock for someone just thrust into the situation and
experiencing it all for the first time. I think Jhumpa Lahiri is a very talented author, and I may read some more of her stories when I get the
[C2]What happened in Bhopal, India 25 years ago on December 3rd, 1984?
Theresa Murphy does an excellent job, bringing light to a catastrophe which very few people outside of India seem to know about. Thousands of
people died within the first few weeks, and children of the survivors are still born with serious birth defects. Despite being the largest industrial
disaster yet, there seems to be a media blackout on the topic. It is not only the scale of the disaster, but also the irresponsibility of Union Carbide
that makes this incident so tragic. Prime Minister Singh has recently said "the enormity of that tragedy of neglect still gnaws at our collective
conscience," but he could not have been talking about the world’s collective conscience. There is definitely prejudice involved here, because if a
similar event had ever happened in the United States there is no way anyone could have gotten away with it, and we would never hear the end of
it. It is the deafening silence, the lack of media coverage on the Bhopal gas tragedy, which is most striking to me.
"Bhopal marks 25 years since gas leak devastation." BBC. 03 Dec 2009. Web. 08 Dec 2009.
[C3] India has seen a sharp decrease in its Bengal Tiger population. Why is this? And what is being done about it?
James LeShane does a good job describing some of the factors which have led to the decrease of India’s tiger population. The loss of their natural
habitat is leading cause of the displacement and disappearance of the Bengal tiger populations, and it is another example of India’s economic
development not always taking conservation into consideration. To solve that will need serious planning, but there is another factor which James
mentions. The Bengal tigers are in danger even in the national parks, due to poaching, and demand is high because Traditional Chinese Medicine
highly values all the parts of a tiger. The governments of China and India are trying to cooperate on this issue, an as recently as September are
now discussing it as part of the political forum. The best solution to this is to educate the rural Chinese and improve their healthcare system,
because as long as there is demand there will be poachers in India trying to make a profit.
"TCM fuels tiger poaching ." asiaoneNews. 18 Sep 2009. Web. 08 Dec 2009.
[C4]Has the explosive economic growth in India had a serious negative impact on the environment in terms of pollution or has the development
been done in an environmentally conscious way?
Nicholas Andre does a good job discussing how India’s industrialization has had a negative impact on public health and agriculture, as well as the
environment. He shows that environmental problems are real and will have concrete effects, whether it is pollution leaking into the water supply
Why did India and Pakistan split over religious reasons in the 1940’s?
Religious differences are said to be the primary cause of the division between India and Pakistan. Before the partition, Islam and Hinduism existed
harmoniously in India for centuries. This includes the time of the Muslim and Persian rulers of the Mughal Empire, especially the reign of King
Akbar, which promoted religious diversity and tolerance. There were many who even tried to religiously reconcile these two great religions, such as
Kabir and Nanak, the latter who founded Sikhism. Even during the times of colonization in the 19th and 20th centuries, Christian Britain and Hindu
Q1: India/Global India were able to reach mutual understand and harmony, and partook in exchanges of culture and ideas. Gandhi, for a later example of cultural
and intellectual exchange between India and the West, learned the ideas of civil disobedience from Western philosopher Henry David Thoreau. In
turn, Martin Luther King II used the nonviolent protests of Gandhi as an example for the American Civil Rights movement. This is important
because the religious differences between the Hindus in India and the Muslims in Pakistan not only led to the partition of greater India but also
could, and have almost in the recent past, lead to nuclear war and the deaths of millions.
How has India managed stay unified since 1947, despite having so many different languages and cultures? India’s culture is so diverse, and it
never really existed as a modern nation-state before its independence. As the Sakai@URI site says, it is really creating one culture out of many,
similar to the United States and “E Pluribus Unum.” But America started off as a Christian and British-ethnic country, with some Dutch and French
Q2: India-Cultural and Spanish, and then the African slaves and waves of immigrants came later. In contrast, India has been largely settled for thousands of years,
Differences and had basically been a collection of different countries, each with their own language and ethnicity and religious sect. I think it’s remarkable that
they have been able to not only stay together but really flourish as one nation, not including the British partition of Pakistan and India at the very
beginning. It makes me wonder if India was not partitioned when they were given independence, if they would have been just as successful
keeping the Pakistanis and Bangladeshi together with them as one nation.
Questions [Q] [10
out of 50]
Questions [Q] [10 Can there be a place for “adda” and a work/life balance in India as it is rapidly modernizing into today’s capitalist world, and what could be lost by
out of 50] forgetting this part of culture?
Every culture has faced this when adapting to the modern, capitalist way of life. Work begins to take priority over relaxation, chatting with friends,
debate, and other activities that do not produce goods/services that could be sold in the market. It seems that Calcutta and the Bengali region
Q3: ‘Adda’ and especially take pride in this time for “adda” and are feeling its loss. Americans and Europeans also debate what the proper balance should be
Indian Modernity between work, and a life outside of work, with many psychologists saying that finding a proper balance is necessary to leading a successful life. Not
all of life should be dedicated to work, and humans should be treated as more than just labor or consumers in the market, we aren’t machines.
Europeans countries, such as France, have legislated mandatory vacation time and a limit to how many hours you can work in a week. The cultures
in Japan and China have stressed work and education and have allowed it to take over their lives, which have led them to economic success. But
my question is if it’s necessary to a nation in the process of rapid development to become consumed by work, if it’s necessary for India to abandon
“adda,” or if they can find balance even as they are progressing into the 21st Century, and if it could have an unseen positive effect on Indian
Would Mohandas Gandhi be proud of India and the larger world today, and how may we better honor his legacy and teachings in today’s
Much praise is and should be given to Gandhi, who always took the higher moral road despite his own suffering, and his “light” is much needed in
today’s world. Many of the guiding principles and ideological conflicts of today could be said to have been foreshadowed by Gandhi, his teachings
and his life. We have made remarkable progress, with great debt to Gandhi himself: from Martin Luther King II ending racial discrimination in
Q4: India/Ghandi America to Nelson Mandela ending apartheid in South Africa. The United Nations and its “millennium goals” are trying to end extreme
poverty/hunger, and preventable diseases like malaria and HIV/AIDS. India has made great economic, technological, and social progress for its
people. But the world has also faced setbacks: wars across Asia, genocides in Africa, near nuclear war between India-Pakistan and America-Russia.
An even more pressing issue is how the world’s economy is not sustainable by our planet’s ecology, leading to huge environmental problems, and
possibly inevitable resource wars. Gandhi remains a modern-day “saint,” an icon of powerful ideals, someone we would look to for moral advice.
Looking at global history since Gandhi’s death and the current state of the world, would Gandhi be proud of India and the world? With all the issues
Question: Will India have enough fresh water resources to continue its growth and sustain its people, and what reforms may be necessary to make
India’s rural agriculture and water management more efficient while also raising its farmers out of poverty?
I think this concern, along with concerns on education and energy, is going to be one of the key issues that will determine India’s future. The
environmental impact and sustainability of India and China’s rise has been front-and-center on the global talks for climate change, with the
Himalayan glaciers which provide water for India’s rivers already starting to shrink. The outcome of the 21st Century for all humanity is going to
Q5: India-Economy depend on how we manage our most scarce and valuable resources, notably energy and fresh water. Panaguriya’s article helps reinforce this,
saying how the poverty and inequality between regions and between urban/rural is mostly because of the dominant but poor agricultural sector.
Finding an environmentally-sustainable, poverty-alleviating, development-enabling solution that transforms India’s agricultural and water
management will get at the root of the problem. Simply reforming India’s labor laws for manufacturing, or improving its rural healthcare system or
electrical infrastructure, will only be addressing the symptoms and not the cause. The answer to this question could be critical to India’s future and
possible superpower status, as well as the well-being of the world in general.
Question: How does the status of women differ among India’s many regions and cultures?
Since we have learned that India’s regions have so many cultural differences, from language to ethnicity to religion, then I don’t think it would be
accurate to try and label the status of Indian women as if they were a single, identical group. There must be differences on how the different
cultural groups, from the Punjab in the northwest to the Tamils in the south to the Bengali in the east, treat and think of women in their societies.
Q6:India-Women Some groups are probably more liberal and respectful to women, and aim for equality of the sexes. Other groups are probably more conservative
and traditional, and think quite differently of the type of role that women should have in society, such as some ancient custom of “sati” when the
widow would set herself on fire when her husband died. It would be inaccurate to try and group all Indian women together, so I would like to know
how the status of women differs among India’s many regions and cultures.
Question: Why do Indian entrepreneurs seem to be more attracted to information technology and services than any other area of business?Why is
this an interesting question?: It may not be true, but it seems like most Indian entrepreneurs, especially those with an international focus, seem
more drawn to IT than anything else. This is helping to define the course of the whole nation, even though only a fraction of India’s overall GDP is
Q7:India- in IT. Computer technology is certainly the mark of a more advanced country, and will likely have a big payoff, but if it was such a guaranteed
Entrepreneurship success then why is the Chinese economy focusing on consumer goods instead of IT? What is attracting Indian entrepreneurs to IT more than other
areas, and not going the same route as China? I believe this is an important question because it is determining the foundation for the rise of India,
and these different economic decisions and paths will determine not only if India or China will have the strongest economy in the 21st Century but
also which country will be used as a model for other developing nations.
Question: Does India really have to choose between the economy and the environment?Why is this an interesting question?: Das writes “I used to
believe that one could create industry and jobs and still protect the environment. But now I am less sure. Increasingly, it looks as though there is a
trade-off, and one has to choose between human beings and nature” (Das, p. 289). Is this really accurate? It seems to me like investing in green
Q8:India- Business jobs will be the future, building and upgrading more energy-efficient and planet-friendly infrastructure could create millions of new jobs in both
India and America, it only requires innovation. You can have environmental, labor, and healthcare regulations and still have a functioning economy.
Those laws may not help the economy grow faster, but it will make sure the economy is built on a strong foundation and its growth is solid, not like
the money that evaporated in the financial crash.
How do other regional film industries, such as the Bengali film industry, differ from Bollywood and why haven’t they been as successful outside of
their home region? Why is this an interesting question?: This is an important question because I realized early on in the semester how very
different and unique each region in India is, from Western Bengal to the Punjab to the southern Tamil lands. I know that there are several regional
movie industries, and a difference between mass-media Bollywood blockbusters and the more artsy and independent films. While Bollywood is the
Hindi movie industry, to ignore all the other regions would be to ignore the cultural diversity of India, and one of the most key aspects of India is its
Q9:India-Cinema cultural diversity. To better understand the differences between the regional film industries, how these regions self-express themselves and what
they view as their cultural identity, is integral to understanding the regional differences and thus understanding the dynamics of India itself. This
also raises another question I am interested in, which is: why did the Hindi film industry (Bollywood), succeed and end up dominating the nation
while the other industries have not really spread outside of their home region? Is it something Bollywood has just done right strictly in the business
sense, or is Hindi culture viewed as more transcendent of cultural differences than other regions, or do the industries just have very different goals
where only Bollywood has really tried for mass appeal? These are questions my group project is focused on, with my focus being the Bengali film
Do people of different faiths (Hindu, Muslim, Sikh, etc.) dress differently from each other when they live in the same community/region?
This is an interesting question because Hansen’s review of Pravina Shukla’s book summarizes that Indians dress differently according to
Q10:India/ relationship status, personal style, age and class, etc. From most of the Indian attire I have seen, it tends to be very colorful, even for the men. I
Art/Attire/Folkways thought it would be interesting to ask if Muslim Indians also dress like this, if they really be recognized apart from Hindu Indians by their clothing,
/Film or if Muslim Indians and Hindu Indians don’t have any visible mark to distinguish them from each other.
What can be done politically and economically to ensure that India develops while preserving as much of the environment and native wildlife as
This is a very important question because the industrialization of countries such as India and China, the rebirth of the East, could have enormous
consequences for the environment. If India industrializes just as America and Western Europe did, or even if every Indian is able to consume and
Q11:India/Environ was as much as the average American, there are not enough resources to sustain that level because of the huge population. Not only are there not
ment/Development enough basic resources, such as water and energy, but it would generate enormous amounts of waste and pollution that the planet would not be
able to absorb. The environment would be degraded, and the health and well-being of all humans would suffer. We cannot and should not try to
contain or limit the industrialization of India, but the entire world will probably have to come together as a community to ensure that India and
China do not repeat the West’s mistakes. India must build an infrastructure that efficiently manages its resources, and focus on clean and
renewable energy for electricity. Despite the booming Indian automobile industry, I do not think India can afford to rely on automobiles as the
dominant form of transportation, they should build a transportation network and infrastructure build around public transportation. The decisions
What are the most popular, and most respected, major fields of study for college students in India? Do many foreigners attend Indian universities?
As I learned from my political science course on China, there was a hierarchy of respectable majors in Chinese universities. The most brilliant
students were expected to study engineering, the “ordinary” intelligent students were expected to study medicine, the study of business was
gradually gaining respect, and the rest studied for a liberal arts degree. I thought it would be interesting if there was a similar hierarchy, of what
the most intelligent students were expected to study and which majors were most revered, for students in India. To see where India’s educational
Q12:India- priorities are would also give a glimpse towards what the nation most highly prizes, and what shape the future of India may take.
Education A second question on education, which is interesting to me, is if a lot of foreign students (such as Americans, Europeans, Chinese) attend Indian
universities or not. From what I’ve learned over the semester, India does seem to have admirable and internationally-recognized institutes of
higher learning, such as the Indian Institutes of Technology. Many Indian students used to come to the United States to learn, now many are
staying in India. It would be interesting to learn if things have come full circle, and many foreign students are now going to study in India. When
that does begin to happen in large numbers, it will be a good indicator that India has become a global power, alongside China and the United
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