SDMA Exhibition

Indo-Muslim Cultures in Transition
Conveners: Karen Leonard & Alka Patel
31 October-2 November 2008
The University of California, Irvine: Social Sciences Plaza B 1208

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     This interdisciplinary conference highlights the social, economic, literary, and artistic/architectural transitions taking place in Indo-Muslim cultural centers during the 18th and 19th centuries. This post-Mughal period of consolidation of colonial power in South Asia has traditionally been considered a time of decline in centers of Indo-Muslim or Indo-Persian culture such as Hyderabad and Lucknow, as historical patterns of patronage were displaced by the formation of new social and economic elites. Rather than considering these later developments to be pallid reflections of the high Mughal period (late 16th-17th centuries), our collective project treats them as creative and ongoing transformations.  The inheritors of Indo-Muslim cultures actively interpreted and negotiated with the new forces of colonialism and modernity, transforming older cultural forms. The junior and senior scholars participating in the event concentrate on 18th- and 19th-century literature, history, art and architectural traditions and other cultural productions both at Indo-Persian cultural centers and in their hinterlands.  Panels on Indo-Persian authors and their oeuvres will emphasize the central place Indo-Muslim Hyderabad, Delhi, and Lucknow held in the Persianate world of the 18th and 19th centuries.  Other panels will treat the cultural and economic connections such centers maintained with other locales on pan-Indic and global scales.

Concert & Dinner: 1 November 2008, 7:30 pm
Fee of $30 for non-Conference attendees; contact Sandra Cushman (
by 17 October 2008

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