Resource: Recorded Lectures on Environmental History of South Asia

Julie Hughes's picture

Dear H-Environment readers,

Those of you with an interest in South Asia and its environmental history may appreciate the links below to recorded lectures from the past two years at the Nehru Memorial Museum and Library in New Delhi, courtesy of its current director (and environmental historian) Mahesh Rangarajan. Participants include William Beinart (speaking on Africa), Madhav Gadgil, and many other lesser known historians, ecologists, and activist-scholars. My own talk on the Indian pangolin is included, too, from this past March.


Julie Hughes, Vassar College


List of NMML 2013 Public Lectures in the ‘Science, Society and Nature’ series with audio links:

1.     Kathleen D. Morrison, University of Chicago, USA, ‘Human face of the land: Why the past matters for India’s environmental future’, 11 February, 2013.

2.     J. Srinivasan, Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, ‘How should India deal with climate change?’, 13 March, 2013.

3.     Deepak Kumar, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, ‘Reason, Science and Religion: Gleanings from the colonial past’, 22 April, 2013.

4.     Raman Sukumar, Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, ‘Elephant, Empire and Ecology in Ancient India’, 1 May, 2013.

5.     Visvajit Pandya, Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information and Communication Technology, Ahmedabad, ‘In Terra Nullius: The legacies of science and colonialism in the Andaman Islands’, 22 May, 2013.

6.     Harini Nagendra, Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment, Bengaluru, ‘The Challenge of Collective Action: Ecological restoration by people in forests and cities’, 24 May, 2013.

7.     Madhav Gadgil, Goa University, Goa, ‘Science, Democracy and Ecology in Contemporary India’, 17 July, 2013.

8.     Sindhu Radhakrishna, National Institute of Advanced Studies, Bengaluru, ‘Rethinking Animal-Human Boundaries: Musings of a primatologist’, 24 July, 2013.

9.     Kuntala Lahiri Dutt, Australian National University, Australia, ‘Dancing with the River: Hybrid landscapes and livelihoods of chars in Bengal’, 25 July, 2013.

10.     Kartik Shanker, Indian Institute of Science, Bengaluru, ‘Wagging the Dog: The use and abuse of science in marine conservation in Orissa’, 31 July, 2013.

11.     Ambuj Sagar, Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, ‘Climate and Energy: How science and technology can help us develop sustainably’, 7 August, 2013.

12.      K. Ullas Karanth, Science-Asia Wildlife Conservation Society, Bengaluru, ‘Rescuing Nature from Growth and Equity’, 14 August, 2013.

13.      Sagari R. Ramdas, ANTHRA, Hyderabad, ‘Livelihoods and Landscapes in Contention: Interfaces, interactions and insights on forests, farm and pasture’, 21 August, 2013.

14.       E. Somanathan, Indian Statistical Institute, New Delhi, ‘Economics and the Crisis of Ecology’, 4 September, 2013.

15.        Shiv Visvanathan, O.P. Jindal Global University, Sonipat, ‘Impending Battles: Science and democracy’, 11 September, 2013.

16.     Aditi Mukherji, International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development’, New Delhi, ‘An Evergreen Revolution in Eastern India: Are we on the right track?’, 18 September, 2013.

17.     C. R. Babu, Emeritus Professor, University of Delh, Delhi, ‘Conservation of Nature: A strategy for human endurance’, 9 October, 2013.

18.     Aparajita Datta, Nature Conservation Foundation, Mysore, ‘Conservation Challenges in Northeast India: Science, policy, tribal rights and development’, 30 October, 2013.

19.      M. Rajeevan, Ministry of Earth Sciences, New Delhi, ‘The Changing Monsoon and its Manifold Implications’, 13 November, 2013.

20.      Rinki Sarkar, Independent Researcher and Economist, New Delhi, ‘Endangered Landscapes, Unperturbed Response: Socio-ecological concerns in the western Himalayas’, 28 November, 2013.

21.      Harsh K. Gupta, National Disaster Management Authority, New Delhi, Earthquakes: How to cope with them’, 5 December, 2013.

22.     Uma Ramakrishnan, Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Bengaluru, ‘DNA Studies and Evolutionary History: Why species survival is more than a game of numbers’, 18 December, 2013.


List of NMML 2014 Public Lectures in the ‘Science, Society and Nature’ series (held till now) with audio links:

1.     Ronald Herring, Cornell University, USA, ‘State Science and National Specificity: Cotton to Brinjal in India’, 22 January, 2014.

2.     Jayanta Bandyopadhyay, Formerly at Indian Institute of Management Calcutta (IIMC), Kolkata, ‘The Water Futures of South Asia: Essential need for promoting ecological water engineering’, 31 January, 2014.

3.     Bina Agarwal, University of Manchester, UK, ‘Governing South Asia’s Forests: Does women’s presence make a difference?’, 5 February, 2014.

4.     William Beinart, University of Oxford, UK, ‘Bio-invasions, Unruly Plants and Bo-cultural Diversity: Perspectives from Africa’, 13 February, 2014.

5.     Deepak Pental, University of Delhi, Delhi, ‘The Societal Response to Transgenic Crops: Apathy, ideology or fear of the unknown?’, 20 February, 2014.

6.      Prem Kumar Kalra, Dayalbagh Educational Institute, Dayalbagh, Agra, ‘Bio-Inspired System Science: Synergy among nature, science and society’, 6 March, 2014.

7.      Julie Hughes, Vassar College, USA, ‘Thinking (with) the Indian Pangolin: A human-animal perspective on India’s colonial and princely histories’, 20 March, 2014.

8.      R. Geeta, University of Delhi, Delhi, ‘Biodiversity and Bioresources: Through the Evolutionary Glass’, 3 April, 2014.

9.      Sudha Mahalingam, Former Senior Fellow, NMML, ‘Redefining India’s Energy Security: Rethinking paradigms’, 8 May, 2014.

10.      Vidya Athreya, Wildlife Conservation Society, India, Pune, ‘Wildlife in our Backyards and how India Might Show the Way’, 15 May, 2014.

11.       Tsewang Namgail, Snow Leopard Conservancy India Trust, ‘Rising Himalayas and Struggling High-altitude Life: Human-wildlife interaction in the mountains’, 16 May, 2014.