HNDI 110/ 510 - Elementary Hindi I
Seema Khurana, Swapna Sharma
An in-depth introduction to modern Hindi, including the Devanagari script. A combination of graded texts, written assignments, audiovisual material, and computer-based exercises provides cultural insights and increases proficiency in understanding, speaking, reading, and writing Hindi. Emphasis on spontaneous self-expression in the language. No prior background in Hindi assumed. Credit only on completion of HNDI 120.
HNDI 130/530 - Intermediate Hindi I
Seema Khurana, Swapna Sharma
The first half of a two-term sequence designed to develop proficiency in the four language skills. Extensive use of cultural documents including feature films, radio broadcasts, and literary and nonliterary texts to increase proficiency in understanding, speaking, reading, and writing Hindi. Focus on cultural nuances and Hindi literary traditions. Emphasis on spontaneous self-expression in the language. After HNDI 120 or equivalent.
HINDI 132/532 - Accelerated Hindi I
TTh 4- 5.15 pm
A fast-paced course designed for students who are able to understand basic conversational Hindi but who have minimal or no literacy skills. Introduction to the Devanagari script; development of listening and speaking skills; vocabulary enrichment; attention to sociocultural rules that affect language use. Students learn to read simple texts and to converse on a variety of everyday personal and social topics
HNDI 150/550 - Advanced Hindi
An advanced language course aimed at enabling students to engage in fluent discourse in Hindi and to achieve a comprehensive knowledge of formal grammar. Introduction to a variety of styles and levels of discourse and usage. Emphasis on the written language, with readings on general topics from newspapers, books, and magazines. Prerequisite: HNDI 140 or permission of instructor.
SKRT 110/510, LING 115/515 - Introductory Sanskrit I
An introduction to Sanskrit language and grammar. Focus on learning to read and translate basic Sanskrit sentences in Devanagari script. No prior background in Sanskrit assumed.
SKRT 130/530, LING 138/538 - Intermediate Sanskrit I
The first half of a two-term sequence aimed at helping students develop the skills necessary to read texts written in Sanskrit. Readings include selections from the Hitopadesa, Kathasaritsagara, Mahabharata, and Bhagavadgita. After SKRT 120 or equivalent.
SKRT 150/550 - Advanced Sanskrit: Dharmasastra
Introduction to Sanskrit commentarial literature, particularly to Dharmasastra, an explication and analysis of dharma (law or duty). Discussion of normative rules of human behavior; historical traditions of writing on the Indian subcontinent. Prerequisite: SKRT 140 or equivalent.
SNHL 110 - Elementary Sinhala I
First half of a two-term sequence focusing on all four language skills. Basic grammar, sentence construction, simple reading materials, and use of everyday expressions. Course taught through distance learning using videoconferencing technology from Cornell University. Enrollment limited; interested students should e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Credit only on completion of SNHL 120.
SNHL 110 - Intermediate Sinhala I
Further development of speaking, listening, reading, and writing skills in Sinhala. Communicative approach to the exchange of ideas and information, with early emphasis on oral skills and reading comprehension. Prerequisite: SNHL 120 or equivalent. Course taught through distance learning using videoconferencing technology from Columbia University. Enrollment limited; interested students should e-mail email@example.com for more information.
TAML 130 - Intermediate Tamil I
The first half of a two-term sequence designed to develop proficiency in comprehension, speaking, reading, and writing through the use of visual media, newspapers and magazines, modern fiction and poetry, and public communications such as pamphlets, advertisements, and government announcements. Prerequisite: TAML 120 or equivalent. Course taught through distance learning using videoconferencing technology from Columbia University. Enrollment limited; interested students should e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
TAML 150 - Advance Tamil I
Improvement of high-level language proficiency. Introduction to the long and continuous literary history of Tamil through the reading of non-contemporary Tamil writings, as well as ancient Tamil literary works. Texts may include various genres. Prerequisite: TAML 140 or equivalent. Course taught through distance learning using videoconferencing technology from Columbia University. Enrollment limited; interested students should e-mail email@example.com for more information.
TBTN 110 - Elementary Classical Tibetan I
First half of a two-term introduction to classical Tibetan. The script and its Romanization, pronunciation, normative dictionary order, and basic grammar. Readings from Tibetan literature and philosophy. Course taught through distance learning using videoconferencing technology from Columbia University. Enrollment limited; interested students should e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Credit only on completion of TBTN 120.
TBTN 130 - Intermediate Classical Tibetan I
Continuation of TBTN 120. Introduction to more complex grammatical constructions. Further development of reading ability in various genres of Tibetan literature written prior to 1959. Prerequisite: TBTN 120 or equivalent. Course taught through distance learning using videoconferencing technology from Columbia University. Enrollment limited; interested students should e-mail email@example.com for more information
SAST 057/RLST 015 - Gods and Heroes in Indian Religions
TTh 1.00- 2.15
The basic doctrines and practices of India’s three classical religions, Buddhism, Jainism, and Hinduism, explored through close reading of texts in translation. Lives of the founders, great monks, nuns, and lay followers of Buddhism and Jainism; myths of the major Hindu gods; heroines and goddesses in the three traditions. Enrollment limited to freshmen. Preregistration required; see under Freshman Seminar Program.
SAST 267/RLST 125 - Introduction to Buddhist Thought and Practice
Significant aspects of Buddhism as practiced mainly in India and South Asia, including philosophy and ethics, monastic and ascetic life, meditation and ritual practices, and the material culture of Buddhist societies. The Mahayana tradition that emerged in the first century B.C.E.; later forms of esoteric Buddhism known as tantra; the development of modern Buddhism in Asia and its manifestation in the West. Readings from Buddhist texts in translation.
SAST 275/RLST 119 - Ritual and Theater
This course investigates the relationship between ritual and theater. Ritual often contains or represents a performance, while performance becomes ritualized in many religious and secular contexts. We will study and employ a variety of approaches in ritual studies to explore the meaning and significance of certain South and East Asian theatrical traditions. The goal of this course is threefold: (1) to introduce students to some of the main theories, propounded by Emile Durkheim, Mircea Eliade, Arnold van Gennep, Victor Turner, J.Z. Smith, and others; (2) to expose students to a number of non-Western ritual performances, plays, and devotional dramas; and (3) to equip them with analytical skills to use the categories and methods of ritual studies in other academic fields.
SAST 280/HIST 342/RLST 180 - Mughal India, 1500-1800
Exploration of religion and the state in Mughal India, focusing on the period between 1500–1800. Topics include sacred sovereignty, orthodoxy, Sufism, vernacular literary and religious cultures, and the early colonial encounter.
SAST 306/ANTH 322/EVST324 - Environmental Justice in South Asia
Kalyanakrishnan Sivaramakrishnan, Luisa Cortesi
TTh 1.30-2.20, 1HTBA
Study of South Asia’s nation building and economic development in the aftermath of war and decolonization in the 20th century. How it generated unprecedented stress on natural environments; increased social disparity; and exposure of the poor and minorities to environmental risks and loss of homes, livelihoods, and cultural resources. Discussion of the rise of environmental justice movements and policies in the region as the world comes to grips with living in the Anthropocene.
SAST 321/HIST 389J/WGSS 273 - Islam and Gender in South Asia, 1750-2000
Islamic perspectives on gender issues and how they have evolved historically in South Asia from the eighteenth century to contemporary times. Readings about lived experiences of Muslim women in colonial India as well as texts that offer theological arguments about pressing gender issues. Consideration of polygamy, seclusion (called parda in Urdu), education, property ownership, women’s right to vote, and Muslim women’s mobilization in colonial and post-colonial South Asia.
SAST 323/HIST 313J - British Raj and the Indian Nation (1757-1947)
Drawing on a wide genre of primary sources, this seminar explores the consolidation of British rule over the Indian subcontinent; the transformations brought about by colonial policies; the subsequent rise of resistance movements; the growth of mass nationalism and partition and independence.
SAST 368/RLST 185 - The Mahabharata
We will be reading most of the first 6 books of the Mahabharata and discussing the social and religious issues that are raised in the text. We will examine various symbols and themes that occur in the epic.
SAST 467/567, RLST 127/583 - Visual Worlds of Himalayan Buddhism
The role of images and imagining in the religious traditions of Tibetan Buddhism. How Tibetan Buddhist cultures produce religious images; ways of visualizing those images to invest them with meaning. Topics include specific modes of visual representation, relationships between text and image, social lives of images, and processes of reading and interpretation.
SAST 486 - Direct Study
A one-credit, single-term course on topics not covered in regular offerings. To apply for admission, a student should present a course description and syllabus to the director of undergraduate studies, along with written approval from the faculty member who will direct the study.
SAST 491 - Senior Essay
A yearlong research project completed under faculty supervision and resulting in a substantial paper. Credit for SAST 491 only on completion of SAST 492.
SAST 563/RLST 589 - Reading in Urdu Text
Readings from a range of Urdu texts, with a focus on works produced in the nineteenth century. Topics include Hindu reform, Islamic revival, colonialism, and interreligious polemic. The selection of texts takes into account the research interests of enrolled students.
HIST 070 - Lawyers as Rebels
Examination of how lawyers have worked in illiberal and unjust legal systems. Key themes in global history of the twentieth century, such as imperialism, nationalism, apartheid, holocaust, civil rights, communism, feminism, and LGBT rights. Case studies include Gandhi, Mandela, Hersch Lauterpacht, Pauli Murray, and Asma Jahangir. Enrollment limited to freshmen. Preregistration required; see under Freshman Seminar Program.
HSAR 430/600 - Painting and Poetry in Islamic Art
Relations between the literary and visual arts in the medieval and early modern Islamic world. Focus on the arts of Iran, Turkey, and India. Study of materials from collections at the Yale University Art Gallery and the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library. Includes a field trip to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.
RLST 546 - Tibetan Historical Text
This seminar focuses on a variety of Tibetan sources on Buddhist religious history. Prerequisite: reading knowledge of Classical Tibetan. Graded Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory.
RLST 557 - Medieval Indian Texts
An advanced reading course in Sanskrit texts. Depending on student interest we read literature or philosophy. Prerequisite: two years of Sanskrit.