Recent Events

Ek Gaana, Kayi Zabaan: A Musical Conversation

Songs circulate freely, disembodied from fixed geographies or linguistic contexts. We explore the joy of listening to the “same” song in different languages. Join us in a musical conversation with Yashasvi Arunkumar and Vighnesh Hampapura, and other translators on Zoom.

Date: Sunday, 3rd July 2022

Time: 05:00 pm IST



The Sindhi Sufi: Shah Abdul Latif Bhittai

Professor Rita Kothari talked about Shah Abdul Latif, the wondrous Sindhi Sufi, and his Risalo, a highly unusual document quoted by almost every Sindhi in the world on occasions ranging from the state of nations to cattle, betrayal in love, and the soul’s longing for the beloved. The event revolved around the stories he tells of Sasui Punhu and Umar Marui.

“The echo and the call – it’s all the same

Unravel the mysterious speech and you’ll know

They were always one; you heard them as two”

– Shah Abdul Latif, translated by Prof. Rita Kothari


Ethnographic Fieldwork and Translation

Professor Smita Tewari Jassal drew on her experience of ethnographic fieldwork in the Bhojpuri-speaking region to reflect on how gendered worlds are produced in songMaking sense of how people articulate what is meaningful to them, she highlighted the challenges of ‘translating’ a culture in the process of interpreting its oral traditions. 

This was the inaugural lecture in our Undisciplining Translation series. The lecture series aims to engage with translation by un-disciplining it—by investigating it across disciplines and beyond disciplining acts.

Koi Sunta Hai

To mark the formal launch of our project Translating Bhakti, the singer, song catcher, and educator-curator Shruthi Veena Vishwanath took us on a scintillating journey with Bhakti poetry and music.

“I soon discovered that I needed to translate the poets that I sang in my own way, fully embracing my identities as a woman, and an intersectional feminist, interested in social justice and bringing out the women’s voices in what I believed was the way they might have spoken them in English.”

– Shruthi Veena Vishwanath, The ant swallowed the sun

Cartographies of Knowledge

Professor Arunava Sinha and Professor Rita Kothari traversed the landscapes of literature and their life experiences, especially their coming to translation as practitioners and teachers.

This session, moderated by Sanchit Toor, brought out the role of translation as an exercise in democratising knowledge.

“Translation refuses the arrogance of being the first, the original. It says, “I will listen to you, in your language, on your terms.” It is an ethical way of being.”

– Professor Rita Kothari

Event Recordings

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