Monday, 31 October 2011

Indian Doumentary Film Festival in London 2011

Persistence/Resistance: Documentary practices in India, is being held in London between 1-8 November. The festival will run in conjunction with the Magic Lantern Foundation, New Delhi ( at SOAS, University of Westminster, Goldsmiths, and LSE. The festival will feature the work of seven leading filmmakers from India through screenings, conversations, panel discussions and art installations.

For further information about the festival, please follow this link:

Friday, 28 October 2011

Devi: the Goddess and the Modern Indian Woman

Readers may be interested in a free lecture on Monday 31st October 2011 at SOAS from 7 - 8.15 pm in the Brunei Gallery, Russell Square, Thornhaugh Street, London, WC1H OXG. 

Eminent Indian social activist Madhu Kishwar, founder of “Manushi” and one of India’s foremost thinkers in the arena of women’s rights, social justice and collective responsibility, will speak on the top of Devi: the Goddess and the Modern Indian Woman.

She will be joined by Mukulika Banerjee from the London School of Economics. See Mukulika’s blog on the DEVI series at:

For more information, email

Monday, 24 October 2011

The Crisis of Indian Democracy

This year's Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Lecture, on ‘The Crisis of Indian Democracy’, will be delivered by Professor Lord Bhikhu Parekh on Monday 21st November 2011 at 6.30 pm at Chatham House, 10 St James’s Square, London, SWIY 4LE

Admission Free, but subject to personal registration with
or 0207 314 2761

The Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Lecture is kindly sponsored by India Advisory Partners Limited and generously supported by Trinity College,Cambridge, The Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Trust.

Friday, 21 October 2011

Festival of Ideas

The University of Cambridge Festival of Ideas celebrates the arts, humanities and social sciences, and is the only free festival of its kind in the UK.  Festival events are extremely popular, and booking without delay is essential to avoid disappointment.  Visit the Festival of Ideas website for full details on how to secure a place by phone or online:

Events likely to interest readers of the SAALG blog include:

Laying the topmost stone of New Delhi (one of two)
 on 30th September 1927

Moving Pictures, Moving Stories: photographs, films and interviews from the end of the Raj - on Saturday 29 October 2011, 15.00-16.30, Mill Lane Lecture Room 5. 
Dr Annamaria Motrescu and Dr Kevin Greenbank  (Centre of South Asian Studies, University of Cambridge) will discuss the use of these unique archival resources in online projects and classrooms. To book your place, email: or phone: 01223 338094.

Submitted as a cover for a tourist brochure
by Heather Balfour in 1959
Essays of Empire - on Thursday 27 October 17:00-18:00,  Morison Room, Cambridge University Library, West Road, Cambridge, CB3 9DR. 

Dr Seán Lang (Senior Lecturer in History, Anglia Ruskin University,  and Chair of the Better History Group) will present a glimpse of how school children across the globe responded to the pressures for change within the British Empire through their entries to the Royal Commonwealth Society essay competition.
To book:  telephone 0845 271 3333 or online at: 

Links to digital resources:

Films from the archives, Centre of South Asian Studies: and interviews:

Royal Commonwealth Society Essay Competition archive:

Thursday, 20 October 2011

300th anniversary of Tamil New Testament (1711)

Title page of the first part of the Tamil New Testament, printed in Tranquebar in 1714. The revised text is based on the first complete translation of the Tamil New Testament in 1711. 
The 1711 manuscript inscribed on palm leaves in kept in the Royal Library, Copenhagen.
This year sees the Three Hundredth anniversary of the translation of the New Testament into Tamil. To mark this event Daniel Jeyeraj, Professor of World Christianity at Liverpool Hope University, will present a paper examining the Hindu religious traditions, Tamil cultural habits and linguistic factors that influenced the translation of the New Testament into Tamil in 1711. He writes: 

The first Lutheran Pietist missionaries to Tranquebar, India believed that each person should be able to read and understand God's Word in their mother tongue and their love for the Tamil people enabled them to engage in a co-operative endeavour. They learned and borrowed a great deal of translated bible passages from the Jesuits. In their report to European readers they denied this fact. However an examination of their Tamil translation betrays how much they depended on the previous works of the Jesuits. Again the missionaries were unwilling to openly acknowledge the linguistic help rendered to them by Tamil Lutheran converts. 

5.30 pm, Tuesday, 1st November. Venue: Room ST273, Stewart House, 2nd floor. Stewart House is part of the Senate House complex, London WC1. It is most conveniently entered from Russell Square. For map see
All Welcome
Rosemary Seton, Christian Missions in Global History Seminar, Institute of Historical Research, Email:

Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Untold Lives - Sharing Stories from the Past

The Untold Lives blog has just been launched by the British Library. Our collections contain stories of people’s lives worldwide, from the dawn of history to the present day. They are told through the written word, images, audio-visual and digital materials. The Untold Lives blog shares those stories, providing fascinating and unusual insights into the past and bringing out from the shadows lives that have been overlooked or forgotten. The blog will include stories that will be of interest to readers of the SAALG blog. There is already a story about East India Company warehouse labourers, and tales of Austrian and German missionaries and madams in India will appear in the blog soon.

We hope to inspire new research and encourage enjoyment, knowledge and understanding of the British Library and its collections. In addition to stories from the past, we will give glimpses of the hidden life of the Library and provide information about events and exhibitions. The blog will contain many links to act as signposts to research information and online resources that you can explore for work or pleasure.

The Untold Lives blog is managed by the History and Classics department but will include contributions from colleagues across the Library as a whole and from partners in collaborative projects such as Making Britain.

Tuesday, 18 October 2011



Revealing hidden gems:

Asian collections in the 21st century

Monday December 5th 2011


Venue: The Eliot Room at the British Library Conference Centre, 96 Euston Road, London NW1 2DB

Our speakers will be

Gillian Evison and Andrew Skilton of the Bodleian Library on the union catalogue of Buddhist Shan manuscripts project

Annabel Gallop of the BL on the work of the South East Asian section of the British Library, with a visit to the collections

Chris Dillon of University College London on the future scenario for non-Roman script domain names

Yasmin Faghihi of Cambridge University Library on the FIHRIST Islamic Manuscripts Catalogue project of Oxford and Cambridge University Libraries

Peter Kornicki of Cambridge University on the growth of Tangut studies

The cost will be only £25 this year, to include lunch and refreshments (£10fofor students)

For further particulars on how to register please contact Gill Goddard, secretary of NACIRA on: