Welcome from the South Asia Center:  

As the new Director of the South Asia Center, it’s a pleasure to welcome everyone to the start of a new year at the University of Washington. I’m honored to follow in Anand Yang’s footsteps at the Center and over the next few years I look forward to working closely with students, faculty, and staff to strengthen the study of South Asia at UW. I’m also eager to collaborate with individuals and organizations in Seattle and Washington to share our passion and knowledge about the region with a wider audience.

Last year was a great one for the South Asia Center. The Center advanced its mission to educate and enrich the wider public about South Asia through activities like the Newspapers in Education Series and through events like the Voices of Partition, which provided a space to remember and reflect on the enduring significance of 1947. We are eager to build on these initiatives and launch several new ones.

An accomplished group of students received South Asian Studies master’s degrees in June 2015 and this fall we welcome a new cohort of students. Our language programs continue to provide rigorous training in Hindi, Urdu, Bangla, Persian, Sanskrit, and Pali and many of our students are supported in their language study with fellowships from the Foreign Languages and Area Studies Program from the Department of Education. Students on campus have the opportunity to learn about the most important aspects of South Asia through an extensive roster of classes. One of the highlights of our undergraduate curriculum is our study abroad program in the Indian Himalayan state of Uttarakhand.

During the last few years many of our South Asia faculty members have carried out new research and published an array of new books on South Asia. Several faculty members are undertaking exciting new research projects. Three faculty members are joining the South Asia fold; I’m delighted to welcome Radhika Govindrajan in Anthropology, Daniel Sheffield in History, and Matthew Mosca in History and International Studies.

We already have many talks, conferences, and events planned for this year and we welcome your participation and input. To find out about upcoming events, please go to our homepage. If you know others who might be interested in learning about the Center, please forward this email onward and encourage them to join the South Asia Center email list. UW Students wishing to join the mailing list, please contact us at this email address.

Please feel free to reach out to Keith Snodgrass, the Managing Director, or myself about events at the University of Washington and in the broader region. We welcome your ideas.

Best wishes for this coming academic year.

Sunila S. Kale
Associate Professor, Jackson School of International Studies
Director, South Asia Center
University of Washington