Fielding the Deccan: Landscape, Architecture, and Place in Southern India

Saturday, April 9, 2022 | 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.

Friday—Saturday, April 8–9, 9 a.m. – 6 p.m. in Hahn Hall 101, Pomona College

A workshop sponsored by the Department of History, Department of Art History, Pacific Basin Institute, Middle Eastern Studies/Asian Studies, Benton Museum of Art at Pomona College, and Environmental Analysis.

With its volcanic mountain passes and monsoonal seaports, monumental Indian and Islamic imperial architecture, vibrant arts and world-famous diamonds, the Deccan region of southern India has long been known for its spectacular landscapes and associated artistic production. The lands of the Deccan plateau have been mapped as a zone of encounter and exchange between Sanskritic and Persianate cultures, the edge of the Islamic world, and a global region at the heart of Indian Ocean maritime routes that connected histories between Europe, the Middle East, and Southeast Asia. This workshop explores the construction of a sense of place in the Deccan. It asks, in what ways was the Deccan written, collected, and built? Through the analysis of material culture, built environments, and texts, the workshop examines how the Deccan was made as a space and how space in turn shaped society. The papers presented in the workshop consider how the physical worlds of the Deccan were culturally produced and transformed through architecture, travel, science, language, and poetry.

Friday, 8 April 2022

Hahn Hall 101, Pomona College

9:00 – 9:15 am
Welcome & Introduction to the workshop: Arash Khazeni

9:15 am – 12:30 pm
Glimpses from the Field: Part One

*Please note that all presentations in this panel will be delivered by ZOOM
Chair: Keelan Overton

Pushkar Sohoni (9:15 AM PST = 9:45 PM Pune): Creating an Ecumene: Cultural Boundaries of the Deccan

Helen Philon (10:00 AM PST = 8:00 PM Athens): Restoration and Preservation of Cultural Heritage and its Social and Economic Impact in the Deccan

John Fritz (10:45 AM PST = 6:45 PM London): Discovering Vijayanagara

George Michell (11:30AM PST = 7:30 PM London): Courtly Architecture at Vijayanagara

1:30 pm – 5:00 pm
Placing the Text and Image

Chair: Arash Khazeni

Sunil Sharma: Architectural poetry in Dakhni and Persian: Three case studies

Subah Dayal: From Bandar Abbas to Palikol: Persian-Dutch Translation and Documentary Culture in the Indian Ocean

Keelan Overton: The Deccani trails of a Safavid Qur’an Manuscript

Marika Sardar: Recovering Khanzah Humayun in the Ta’rif-i Husain Shahi

Navina Najat Haidar: Deccani Rocks and Landscapes in Painting

5:00 pm – 6:00 pm: Keynote Lecture, Hahn Hall 101
Sanjay Subrahmanyam: The Deccan as an ‘open’ society in the 15th and 16th centuries: Myths and realities

Saturday, 9 April 2022

Hahn Hall 101, Pomona College

9:00 am – 12:15 pm
Glimpses from the Field, Part Two

*Please note that all presentations in this panel will be delivered by ZOOM
Chair: Keelan Overton

Kavita Singh (9:00 AM PST = 9:30 PM New Delhi): Nine Rasas at the National Museum: The Nauras Exhibition, New Delhi, 2015

Ameen Hullur (9:45 AM PST = 10:15 PM Bijapur): Bijapur Karez: The Water Generator of Medieval Times

Ratish Nanda (10:30 AM PST = 11:00 PM Hyderabad): Conserving the Qutb Shahi necropolis

Uma Magal (11:15 AM PST = 7:15 PM Dublin): Other Kohinoors, The Rocks of Hyderabad

1:30 pm – 5:00 pm
Landscapes of Golconda-Hyderabad

Chair: Nile Green

Karen Ruffle: Scent, Ritual, and Urban Space in Qutb Shahi Hyderabad

Sana Khan: Gulzar-e-Mah Laqa: Cultivating Shi‘a Space in the Deccan

Robert Simpkins: The Ghosts Towns of Hyderabad: Explaining Isolated Golconda-era Structures within the Modern Metropolis

Sylvia Houghteling (ZOOM, 6:30 PM EST): The Qalamkari Textiles of Machilipatnam: The Ecology of Dyeing and the Fame of a Place

Karen Leonard: Gardens as Political Sites in Hyderabad State