The field of humanities is a discourse that traditionally addressed the questions of what is proper to man, rights of man, crimes against humanity, human creativity and innovation, human reflection and performance, human utterance and artefact, this European humanistic legacy barely received any questioning from cultures that faced colonialism. If there were to be a future to the humanities, it is contingent upon the risky task of configuring cultural difference from the singularity of cultural provenance of heterogeneous communities (without community – without ecclesia) that compose our planetary existence. Such a task is inescapable and urgently needed among the cultures of the South that survived colonialism. It is precisely in such a context that Critical Humanities affirms the urgency of collective reflection and innovative research across the traditional disciplinary and institutional borders and communication systems in the Indian context today.
Critical Humanities are at one level little more than communities on the verge (critical) but whose centuries long survival and resilient creations of cultural (and /as natural) habitats are of deeply critical significance to affirm the biocultural diversities that compose the planet.
» The Critical Humanities work advances a double programme: i. Critical theoretical ii. Practical institutional.
» Practically Oriented Critical Researches on:
Cultures of Memory
Visual Traditions of India
Images of India
Images in India
Rhythms of the folk
Rights to Culture
Technics of culture
» The goals of Critical Humanities work are to focus on the least represented and fast receding oral, narrative and visual-performative cultural memories of divergent communities of India and develop Mnemocultural researches and teaching. The emerging research converges theoretical-practical interests to contribute to:
1) Creation of a digital map of Mnemocultures. (A proto version of mnemocultural India has been prepared. Some others pertaining to the North-Eastern region are in the making.)
2) Developed a Hypermedia Panchatantra project. Based on this to develop other Digital Narrative Projects.
3) Projects on Epistemic Comparison of Cultures are in progress.
4) Develop courses and programmes from Undergraduate to Research level. Over 25 courses are already developed and offered at Masters’ and Research level.
These new researches aim at reconfiguring the teaching and research in the field of the humanities from the Indian cultural locations. The cultural forms of divergent communities provide scope for developing bigdata digital cultural projects: strategic traversal across digital passageways is necessary for the sustenance of critical humanities.