South Asia Week 2019

South Asia Week celebrates connections with the region and this year runs from 30 September to 4 October.

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South Asia Week celebrates Edinburgh's connections to the region. Activities take place around the city and start on the 30 September until 4 October.

This year there is a wide range of events, including film screenings, exhibition previews, musical performances and more, some of which are part of the wider Geddes Week. 

See the full programme below. Most of the events are free to attend.

Show and Tell

  • When: Monday 30 September, 2pm - 5pm
  • Where: Old College, Lecture Theatre 1.264

An opportunity for all academics interested in South Asia or currently working in the region to showcase their work and discuss opportunities for future collaboration in the region. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite. Please contact india@ed.ac.uk if you would like to share your work with the wider University community.

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Showcasing South Asia at the Edinburgh Festivals

  • When: 30 September, 5 - 6.30pm
  • Where: The Outreach Centre, 9C Holyrood Road, Edinburgh

The University is proud to work with Edinburgh’s Festivals and we are delighted to bring together a panel of participants from this year’s Edinburgh International Book Festival who will share stories from events which had a South Asia focus, illustrated with film and audio excerpts. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Canapé and Drinks Reception

  • When: Monday 30 September, 6 - 8pm
  • Where: The Outreach Centre

To celebrate the launch of South Asia Week, there will be a reception open to all UoE staff and student community to connect with each other. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Connect with Geddes @Dishoom Edinburgh Exclusive Art Tour with Menu Sample (part of Geddes Week)

  • When: 1 October, 10am - 12pm (with breakfast sample menu) and 1 - 3pm (with lunch sample menu)
  • Where: Dishoom, 3A St Andrews Square

Open exclusively for University of Edinburgh students, popular Bombay-Iranian café Dishoom is arranging an exclusive private Art Tour along with a breakfast tasting/lunch sample, drawing on the Edinburgh-Bombay connections where the University also has its local office. The tickets are priced at £15 and can be purchased via Eventbrite.

Book tickets for morning tour    Book tickets for the afternoon tour

Robert Stephens Exhibition Preview – The Walls of Ahmedabad (part of Geddes Week)

  • When: Tuesday 1 October, 3 - 5.30pm
  • Where: The Matthew Architecture Gallery

Ahead of the official exhibition launch, there will be an exclusive opening for all UoE students and staff to have a tour, led by architect Robert Stephens, designed by himself, on Patrick Geddes. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Meet Shazia and Kainat - Their Journey from Pakistan to Edinburgh

  • When: Tuesday 1 October, 4 - 6pm
  • Where: Lister Learning and Teaching Centre - Room 4.35, Roxburgh Place

Hear from Shazia Ramzan and Kainat Riaz about their incredible journey from Pakistan to Edinburgh. Shazia Ramzan and Kainat Riaz were shot alongside Malala Yousafzai on their school bus in the Swat Valley region of Pakistan in 2012. Both of them have been fortunate to receive funding to study the BSc in Nursing Studies at the University of Edinburgh. Join them in conversation and hear from them share their experiences from their time in Pakistan to joining the University of Edinburgh. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Talat Ahmed Book Launch: Mohandas Gandhi: Experiments in Civil Disobedience (Revolutionary Lives)

  • When: Tuesday 1 October, 6.30pm - 8pm
  • Where: Blackwells, South Bridge

Blackwell's is pleased to be hosting the launch of Mohandas Gandhi: Experiments in Civil Disobedience. Dr Talat Ahmed will be joining us instore to talk about the life of the famous Indian lawyer, anti-colonial nationalist, and political ethicist. This event is in association with the University of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Global and the Centre for South Asian Studies. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Bol: South Asian Poetry and Performance Art

  • When: Tuesday 1 October, 8.30pm - 10pm
  • Where: The Loft Bar, Teviot

Bol is a special event dedicated to showcasing South Asian experiences through poetry, spoken word and discussion. A panel of three local poets of South Asian heritage will present their work and fter their performances, there will be an open mic period for anyone who wants to perform, speak or even just share an opinion and start a conversation about their unique South Asian experiences. Please come along to share, or just to listen and learn a bit more about the unique culture and heritage of South Asia and its people. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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A Sri Lankan Homage to Gandhi: Performance by composer Tanya Ekanayaka

  • When: Wednesday 2 October, 1.10pm - 2pm
  • Where: The Reid Concert Hall

New music by Sri Lankan-British composer-pianist Dr Tanya Ekanayaka performed on the 150th anniversary of the birth of Mahatma Gandhi. Dr Tanya Ekanayaka is an internationally acclaimed and award-winning Sri Lankan-British composer-pianist. Classically trained and with an interdisciplinary background in Asian and Popular music, she is also a linguist, musicologist and record producer. Her compositions remain unscored. They evolve when she is at the piano and at times in her sleep and once evolved, remain precisely frozen in her memory. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Links between Gandhi, Tagore and Geddes: Presentations by Robert Stephens and Bashabi Fraser (part of Geddes Week)

  • When: Wednesday 2 October, 6 - 7pm
  • Where: Adam House, Lecture Theatre 3

Gandhi and Geddes share the same birthday and Tagore knew each of them. In conversation, Robert Stephens, Architect, and Bashabi Fraser, Professor of English and Creative Writing at Edinburgh Napier University will share their positions on Geddes, Tagore and Gandhi respectively. This event will be chaired by chaired by Dr. Dorian Wiszniewski, Senior Lecturer Architectural Design and Theory, Edinburgh College of Art. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Exhibition Opening: Robert Stephens – The Walls of Ahmedabad

  • When: Wednesday 2 October, 7 - 8pm canapes foyer, 8 - 9pm exhibition in Matthew Gallery
  • Where: Minto House

The official opening to Robert Stephens The Walls of Ahmedabad Exhibition which will bring to life the history of Ahmedabad through the eyes of architect and aerial photographer Robert Stephens. Robert Stephens, Principal at Rahul Mehrotra (RMA) Architects, Mumbai has been pursuing aerial photography of urban landscapes over the last decade. Over many years, cities such as Chennai, Mumbi and Delhi have all been well-documented. In a long-awaited exhibition, this official launch will present a dramatic perspective of modern Ahmedabad, through his aerial pictures, taken from as high at 10,000 ft above sea-level. The exhibition is a visual document of Ahmedabad walls, now a part of the old city, referenced upon the footsteps of Scottish polymath Patrick Geddes, who circumambulate the walls of Ahmedabad during the early 20th century. Join us and witness the historic Indian state of Ahmedabad being bought to life through the eyes of Geddes. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Lord Bhikhu Parekh: Gandhi & Intercultural Dialogue

  • When: Thursday 3 October, 4 - 6pm
  • Where: Appleton Tower, Lecture Theatre 2

To mark the 150th anniversary of Gandhi, the University is delighted to welcome Lord Bhiku Parekh to address staff and students as this year’s key note speaker for the University’s first South Asia Week. Lord Parekh’s talk will aptly focus on Gandhi and Intercultural Dialogue. Lord Bhikhu Parekh is an eminent political theorist in Britain and an active member in the House of Lords. Bhikhu Parekh was born in the small hamlet of Amalsad in Gujarat, in 1935. He enrolled into Mumbai University to earn his degree and masters before he went on to pursue his studies from London School of Economics. He completed his Ph.D. in the year 1966. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Sustainable Fashion Launch: Focus India

  • When: Thursday 3 October, 5 - 8.30pm
  • Where: Business School (Auditorium & Concourse)

Earlier this year, led by the University of Edinburgh Business School and the University’s South Asia Regional Office, 24 Undergraduate students from the Schools of Geosciences, Business and Edinburgh College of Art undertook an interdisciplinary Sustainable Fashion Trek to follow the supply chain of cotton in India, visiting the ginning factories in Ahmedabad to fashion houses in Mumbai. Join six students from this year’s trek and hear their experiences from their participation in the trek and views on sustainable fashion. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Henna with Kainat

  • When: Friday 4 October, 9am - 1pm
  • Where: The Exchange Cafe - University of Edinburgh Business School

Kainat Riaz is from Pakistan and is in her first year of her BSc in Nursing. As part of South Asia Week, Kainat has kindly offered to do henna for anyone interested!  The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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In Conversation: Robert Stephen and Dorian Wiszniewski– Ahmedabad Studios

  • When: Friday 4 October, 10am - 1pm and 2 - 5pm
  • Where: Minto House – Studio 4/5

An intimate opportunity for University of Edinburgh students to visit ECA Senior Lecturer, Dorian Wiszniewski’s Ahmedabad studios and hear him in conversation with Robert Stephens – discussing the work of UoE’s postgraduate architect students, the city of Ahmedabad, India and Patrick Geddes. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Sitar Concert: Dr Alec Cooper and Laurence Howells

  • When: Friday 4 October, 1.10pm - 2pm
  • Where: St Cecilia’s Hall

An excellent opportunity to witness The Sitar Project in action with a performance from the two co-directors, Dr. Alec Cooper and Laurence Howells. Dr. Alec Cooper is a PhD student at the University of Edinburgh and through the Sitar Project aims to promote Indian music in Scotland by developing workshops, private lessons, and organising concerts. Alec has also been running sitar workshops at the University of Edinburgh for the past two years, and has recently organised a trip to India with several students in order for them to learn from his guru in Varanasi. Laurence has been playing music all his life, learning pianoforte and viola as a child. Since 2002 Laurence has focused on learning North Indian Classical music, taking taleem (training) from Shri Mehboob Nadeem initially in Hindustani vocal and subsequently on sitar. Mehboob ji comes from an illustrious family of musicians. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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Demons in Paradise by Jude Ratnam: Film screening

  • When: Friday 4 October, 4 - 6pm
  • Where: 50 George Square, Project Screening Room 

Demons in Paradise is a 2017 trilingual Sri Lankan based documentary feature film written by Isabelle Marina and directed by Jude Ratnam in his directorial debut depicting the worst consequences for both Sinhalese and Tamils due to the 30 year long endured Sri Lankan Civil War. The portions of the film were mostly shot in Sri Lanka and was set in France. The film had its world premiere (special screening) during the 2017 Cannes Film Festival in May 2017 and was opened to highly positive reviews making it as an internationally acclaimed and recognised film. The event is free to attend however tickets must be booked in advance via Eventbrite.

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