This is a fall semester program which is also the cultural social semester in the student program. Culture and history in India have been inseparably intertwined through the centuries. Diversity in language, culture, and religion are among the many dimensions that give form to the Indian ethos, one whose engagement with the past has never ceased. This course takes students through a journey of the many conflicts and dilemmas that face Indian society today looking through a peace and social justice lens.
This semester takes students to several locations in southern India and a few select places up North (along with an option to visit the Andaman Islands) giving them the opportunity to interact with people from diverse backgrounds, involved in a range of activities and those who work towards making these experiences and coursework relevant to local communities. Students interact, observe, reflect and learn the concepts, challenges and opportunities in each subject area.
The overall organization of the course allows students to see for themselves some of the places and organizations that shape contemporary India’s views not only in science but also on social issues. They are also provided a historical perspective and hear about current debates which will help them understand these from the larger Asian or global perspective. As students travel, learn, observe and reflect, they not only gain academic knowledge but also take home a unique personal learning experience.