South Asia Group

Detail from an illustration to a Ragmala series: Shankara Ragaputra of Megha Raga, sub-imperial Mughal, North India, c. 1610-20.Detail from an illustration to a Ragmala series: "Shankara Ragaputra of Megha Raga," sub-imperial Mughal, North India, c. 1610-20.


A coalition of Liu Institute fellows with South Asia research interests formed the South Asia Group in 2017. The group has become instrumental in guiding the Liu Institute’s growth and focus in this important region.

The South Asia Group reflects our efforts to expand scholarship, connections, and student experiences focused on this area and its people. Spearheaded by Amitava Dutt, Susan Ostermann, and Nikhil Menon, the group is interdisciplinary and open to all faculty and students with an interest in South Asia. Guided by the interests of its members, the South Asia Group hosts a variety of South Asia-related programs throughout the year, including regular seminars, panel discussions, and lecture series, all of which are supported by the Liu Institute. The group also works closely with the Notre Dame Global Center in Mumbai, India, to develop links with local universities and colleges.


Overall, the South Asia Group’s coordinated, faculty-led effort advances the Liu Institute’s strategy to expand its South Asian focus and strengthens its general efforts to promote Asia.


Gandhi Horizontal

Examining Mahatma Gandhi’s Significance on the 150th Anniversary of His Birth
Gandhi’s Relevance Today
Wed Oct 2, 2019, 12:30 pm - 1:45 pm
Hesburgh Center for International Studies

Join experts from the Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies’ South Asia Group and the Kroc Institute for International Peace Studies for a panel discussion about pacifist leader Mahatma Gandhi’s global legacy.


  • Amitava Dutt, Professor of Economics and Political Science: Gandhi’s ethics and economics
  • Nikhil Menon, Assistant Professor of History: Views and controversies about Gandhi in India
  • Jason Springs, Associate Professor of Religion, Ethics, and Peace Studies: Gandhi, peace, and nonviolence


Susan Ostermann, Assistant Professor of Global Affairs

Lecture: Rajmohan Gandhi, "Is the Dream Alive? Reflections on Race, Nationality and the Legacies of Mahatma Gandhi and Dr. King"
Tue Oct 8, 2019, 4:00 pm - 5:30 pm
C103, Hesburgh Center for International Studies

Rajmohan Gandhi

Biographer and Research Professor, Center for South Asian and Middle Eastern Studies, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

As polarization seems to sharpen in country after country, and calls to “take our country back” appear to find strong support, this lecture will ask whether the vision of a democratic nation founded not on race or religion but on liberty and equality is outdated.

Recalling the hopes and convictions of India’s Mohandas Gandhi (1869-1948) and America’s Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr (1929-1968), the lecture will refer to threats to equality and freedoms in India under an apparently popular, democratically-elected government under Narendra Modi that claims eagerness to mark the 150thanniversary of Gandhi’s birth, falling on October 2, 2019.

Exploring Donald Trump’s America, the lecture will also look at the legacies of Dr. King and Mahatma Gandhi for help in keeping, or restoring, the United States and India as models for humanity.

For more events, please visit the Liu Institute events site at

Monthly Lecture Series 

September 26 - Neeti Nair (UVA) - 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm 
October 7 - Rajmohan Gandhi (U.Illinois-Champaign-Urbana) - 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm 
November 4 - Neeta Verma (Notre Dame) - 12:00 pm - 1:15 pm
December 3 - Madhav Joshi (Notre Dame) - 12:30  pm - 1:45 pm


Interested in learning Hindi, Bengali, Urdu or other less commonly taught languages important to South Asian studies? 

Find out more information on the CSLC Less Commonly Taught Languages site at


Liu Institute for Asia and Asian Studies
2150 Jenkins Hall
University of Notre Dame
Notre Dame, IN 46556 USA

Phone: 574-631-3222

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