4.4 Humanities and Social Sciences

HSS301: Construction of identity and knowledge

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

Course Outline The course explores how identities are constructed and how these constructions intersect with the construction of knowledge. Through scholarly readings, fiction and films we will explore the mutual constitution of identities and the nature of knowledge. Readings will range from Focauldian perspectives on the birth of society and the archeology of knowledge, to subaltern studies discussion on colonial and postcolonial knowledge(s), to Donna Harraway’s manifesto of the Cyborg.

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HSS302: Concepts of space and time in the humanities and social sciences

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS304: Visual art: Studio practice and theory

[Cr:4, Lc:1, Tt:0, Lb:6]

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HSS402: Introduction to linguistics

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS601: Identity, power and place

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS602: Social theory: concepts and debates

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS603: Advanced qualitative research design and methods

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS611: Literary appreciation

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS612: The idea of evolution: Before and after Darwin

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:1, Lb:0]

Course Outline This course will look at the genesis, the historical development and the social, cultural and religious impact of Darwin’s theory of evolution by natural selection. Starting from pre-Darwinian ideas about creation of the earth and life upon it, this course will trace the historical development of Darwinism. We will try to place Darwin’s contribution in his social context of 19th century England, the center of the industrial revolution, capitalism and imperialism. Along with an examination of the scientific debates over adaptation and natural selection, we will look at the social and religious implications of Darwinism. Debates over sociobiology and creationism will be examined. We will also look at the reception of Darwinism in India, including the attempts to reconcile it with a Hindu worldview.

Selected Readings

HSS613: The social history of science in modern India, 1780-1950

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

Course Outline This course will deal the social history of, and the historiographical debates surrounding, science in Modern India.

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HSS614: Women’s history of science

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

Course Outline This course will examine history of science, both in the West and in India, from a womens perspective.

Women have been conspicuous in the enterprise of science by their absence: a handful of notable exceptions prove the rule of their exclusion from the professional world of science.

The course will ask the question: Why? Why has the world of science been a world without women, for most of its history? What is the extent of progress that women have made over the last 100 years of so? And what structural obstacles still remain?

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HSS615: Introduction to archeology with special reference to the Indian subcontinent

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS616: Bones, stones & chromosomes: The story of our evolution

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:1]

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HSS617: From Plassey to partition: A history of modern India

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS618: India from prehistory to early history

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS619: Ancient greek theatre: Aeschylus, Sophocles and Euripides

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS620: Imagining India: An intellectual history of orientalism

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS621: Intellectual and cultural sources of modernity

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:1, Lb:0]

Course Outline This course is aimed at answering the question: What is modernity? What makes a society modern? How does the Indian experience of modernity differ from societies in Europe and North America and from its neighbors in Asia?

This course will start with the assumption that the transition from traditional to modern societies results from the interaction of a number of deeply structural processes of change taking place over a long period of time. These processes include the political, the economic, the social and the cultural. While the political (the rise of the nation state) and the economic (the rise of industrial capitalism) will not be ignored, the emphasis will be on the social and cultural/intellectual factors in the emergence of modernity.

We will focus on the following cultural and intellectual movements that have shaped the modern consciousness:

How these intellectual-social currents, which gathered force first in Europe, Britain and North America gradually became globalized will be our second main focus of interest. Here we will look at:

Selected Readings

HSS622: Cities: Urban theory and laboratory

[Cr:4, Lc:2, Tt:0, Lb:2]

Course Outline

HISTORY:
What is a city, evolution of settlements to cities, early and classical cities, medieval cities, colonial cities, industrialization and the city, trade and the city, Islamic city, city in Hindu thought and planning, port cities, the modernist city, Globalization and the city.
FORM:
Understanding urban form, map reading and interpretation, city in literature, art, film; Lynch’s ’Image of the city’; Public space and public life, ’organic’ city versus planned city, Google earth and the city, case studies (may include Mohenjodaro, Banaras, Rome, London, New Delhi, New York, Jaipur, Istanbul, Venice, Paris, Chicago, Mexico city, Chandigarh among others.)
FUNCTION:
Understanding urban transportation, waste collection and disposal, electricity and water distribution and services in the city, urban ecology, city-hinterland relationships, urban farming, city and water, urban parks.
THEORY:
urban systems, central place theory, world systems theory, capitalism and the city, flexible accumulation through urbanization, theory of gentrification, sustainability issues in the city, urban sprawl, climate change and the city, segregation, politics of development in cities, migration and urban slums, politics of participation and protest, Social difference (gender, caste, class, nationality) in the city.

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HSS623: Bodily encounters: Mobility, migrancy and movement

[Cr:4, Lc:2, Tt:0, Lb:2]

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HSS624: Understanding cultures: Past and present using fieldwork, laboratory and archives

[Cr:4, Lc:1, Tt:0, Lb:3]

Course Outline This course introduces the students to multiple methods of understanding human cultures across the ages. It is an interdisciplinary introduction to methods used in Anthropology, Archeology and History. The course is largely field based and incorporates theory through engaging students in situated practices. A significant portion of the course will be taught in the field.

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HSS625: The archaeology of ancient technologies

[Cr:4, Lc:2, Tt:0, Lb:2]

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HSS626: Economic history of modern India

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS627: The idea of India: Intellectual imaginary of nation

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

Course Outline This course will engage with the ideas on India articulated by the leading figures of modern India M.K. Gandhi, Jawaharlal Nehru, B.R. Ambedkar, V.D. Savarkar, M.S. Golwalkar, S.A. Dange, M.N. Roy among other thinkers and in the process deal with the theme of history, culture, religion, caste and class in the imaginary of nation. Focusing on the key texts (stated below) of these thinkers and interpretative secondary readings on them, the course will attempt to understand the durability of their thought and the legacy it has created in contemporary India as indeed the heterogeneous and contested imaginary of nation.

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HSS628: Epistemology of science

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS629: Metaphysics of science

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS630: Social theory and religion

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

Course Outline Religion continues to play a vital role in the lives of contemporary Indians. The growing importance of religion in the public sphere is also self-evident. And yet, a social scientific study of religion is conspicuous by its absence in educational institutions. This is unfortunate as it deprives students of creative ways of thinking about religions, and placing them in history and society. This course is intended to familiarize students with the rich resources social theory offers on how to think about religion. Students will be introduced to nine major theories of religion: Animism and Magic (E.B. Tylor and J.G. Frazer), Religion and personality (Sigmund Freud and Sudhir Kakar), Society as Sacred (Emily Durkheim), Religion as alienation (Karl Marx), The Reality of the Sacred (Mircea Eliade), Societys construct of the heart (E.E. Evans-Pritchard), Religion an Cultural System (Clifford Geertz), Religion as Source of Social Action (Max Weber) and Evolutionary theories of religion.

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HSS631: Epistemology and logic

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:1, Lb:0]

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HSS632: Philosophy of rationality

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:1, Lb:0]

Course Outline This is a theme based course on reason and rationality. It is a reading course.

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HSS633: Ethics

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS634: Themes in infrastructure studies

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

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HSS636: Climate change and sustainable development

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:1]

Course Outline The course initiates a study of climate change impact, adaption and mitigation strategies in the framework of sustainable development.

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HSS637:Reading Records

[Cr:4, Lc:3, Tt:0, Lb:0]

Course Outline This course acquaints us with the nature and the culture of the colonial archive in South Asia. It proposes to study samples from different genres of English Language record. It reads records along and against the archival grain to study the politics of truth.

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HSS638:Ethnographic research and writing

[Cr:4, Lc:2, Tt:2, Lb:0]

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