Aiming for a Cultural Renaissance in India

A seminar on ARTS AND CULTURE FOR INDIAN RESURGENCE is being held at IIC, on August 1, 2 and 3, 2008 The Director of the seminar is Dr. Bharat Gupt.

Indian Arts, Literature and Culture have been the makers of Indian identity throughout the  history of the subcontinent. Support to Art was a social obligation that supposedly brought  earthly well-being (shubham), aesthetic pleasure {rasaamthhuuti) and spiritual liberation  (moksha). Art was also called a "sacrifice" which needed a little or no money (''dhanaadi  nirapeksha yajanam'). But what is often overlooked is, that Art was a major economic force.  Enough proof of this is scattered all over the subcontinent in the great architectural and  sculptural ruins of edifices. These were raised not in one glorious period of a few hundred  years, as in Greece or Mesopotamia, but for more than two millennia. One might say that  India produced as much architecture and sculpture as rest of the world together and  invested in them not as an indulgence but as a noble aim (dharma-purushaartha). 

In the past, Indian Arts, Literature and Culture have influenced not only Asia and the Mediterranean, but since the 19th century have made a mark on modern Euro American culture and contemporary western disciplines such as comparative linguistics, theory of meaning, communication and performance, aesthetic notions, and styles in music and dance.

Similarly, within the country, the role of Indian Arts in the struggle for freedom from the British rule is well documented. After Independence, their contribution in showcasing India's image in international circles is also well known.

However, in the last two decades, Indian Arts, Literature and Culture seem to be  loosing their prime place and influence in the life of the country. The output of literature in  Indian languages seems to have gone out of spotlight and exchanges between the plastic and  performing art forms from different parts of the country seem to have given way to crass  commercialism and entertainment. 

The aim of this seminar is to chalk out a theoretical framework and a practical plan to  achieve the tangible aim of cultural resurgence in India through the Arts. The three-day  sessions shall cover the two areas each day.

The detailed schedule of each day has been put up on the stagebuzz calendar of events


Editor: Manohar Khushalani

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