The Center for South Asian Studies initiates and supports outreach activities within the University and the wider Honolulu community. It partners with two community-based groups Milun and Lotus. It also works closely with the Honolulu Academy Arts and the Doris Duke Foundation for Islamic Art on exhibitions, film screenings, and lectures. The Center collaborates with the UHM-based student group, Lovers of South Asian Culture. A new initiative sponsored by the Friends of East-West Center has lead to India Seminar meant to for those who might not be familiar with the country but have a keen interest in learning about it.
All our events are open to the public, and they address a wide range of topics related to South Asian studies. Visiting scholars and cultural performers have come to the university through long-standing endowments from the G. J. and Ellen Watumull Memorial Fund and the Rama Watumull Distinguished Indian Scholars Program. The Center for South Asian Studies’ annual Spring Symposium focuses on a selected theme and presents distinguished keynote speakers. Further, the annual Spring Symposium provides a forum for faculty and students to present their current research in a comparative and interdisciplinary setting. Past Spring Symposium participants include Robert Goldman, Ronald Herring, P. S. Jaini, Ayesha Jalal, Gananath Obeyesekere, A. K. Ramanujan, Shanaz Rouse, Kirin Narayan, Jayadeva Uyangoda, Gail Minault, Vaidya Shriram Sharma, Gerald James Larson, Osman Bakar, Gyan Prakash, Murray B. Emeneau, Bh. Krishnamurti, Norman Zide, Ashis Nandy, Netika Raval, Ashok Malhotra, Steven Collins, Arindam Chakrabarti, Sudhir Kakar, Michael Witzel, E.Valentine Daniel, Sudipta Kaviraj, Kapila Vatsyayan, Bapsi Sidhwa, mehreenn Jabbar, Urvashi Butalia, and Rimli Bhattacharya. The Center also hosts special cultural events featuring music, dance, and drama performances by South Asian artists.