The Inaugural Asian Arts & Ideas Forum: The Chindia Dialogues (Part I)


Join Chinese and Indian writers for The Chindia Dialogues - Part I, a conversation-filled afternoon that ranges across Rabindranath Tagore's heritage in both cultures, cyber-writing and migration.

1:00 - 2:00 pm
Literary Border Crossings: The Writer as Traveler

Speaking from Goa, Indian author and public intellectual Ashis Nandy sounds a virtual keynote for the "Chindia" dialogues in a conversation with Christopher Lydon of Radio Open Source talks about what Indai and China can learn from each other, their very different paths out of their revolutionary and colonial pasts, and Asia's first Nobel Laureate in literature and global citizen Rabindranath Tagore.  Followed by a conversation between Chinese scholar Shen Shuang and Indian writers Sharmistha Mohanty and Allan Sealy about theire pioneering project in Sino-Indian cultural dialogue, the Almost Island/Jintian Intitiative.

2:15 - 3:15 pm
Cyberwriters & Cybercoolies: China’s New Literary Space

Cyber writing has emerged as an exciting phenomenon in China where the Internet is expanding both literary and civic space and enabling a new, independent breed of writers and bloggers to engage with their readers/"followers." Writer Emily Parker leads a discussion with author and media critic Zha Jianying, Chinese novelist and blogger Yu Hua (China in Ten Words, 2011) and cyber-novelist and reporter Murong Xuecun (Leave Me Alone: A Novel of Chengdu, 2010) on how the Internet is transforming China's literary landscape and upending conventional concepts of writers.

3:30 – 4:30 pm
Literature of Migration: Where Do the Birds Fly?

Which journey is the longest: the one from the village to the city, or the one from one country to another? And how has migration in China and India, from managerial elites to contract workers and refugees, transformed notions of citizenship, identity, displacement and “home”? Writer Amitava Kumar leads readings and a discussion on migrants of all kinds with poet and activist Meena Kandasamy (Ms. Militancy, 2010), Suketu Mehta (Maximum City, 2005) and Su Tong (Raise The Red Lantern, 2004). 

4:45 - 6:00 pm
Conversation: Amit Chaudhuri and Christopher Lydon

Amit Chaudhuri's astonishing breadth of creative achievement stretches all the way from his prize-winning fiction and literary criticism to a project in Indo-Wetsern music that emerges from two musical lineages, North Indian Classical and Western popular, co-existing within him competitively and uneasily, with unexpected results.  In a conversation with Radio Open Source's Christopher Lydon, Chauduri talks about writing and music,  his trip to China, and the challenges of transmitting the poetic and cultural legacy of Rabindranath Tagore.

For a full schedule for the Asian Arts and Ideas Forum, click here.

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To purchase a discounted two-day Chindia pass (Sat. and Sun.), call the box office at 212-517-ASIA (2742).

Can't make it to this program? Tune in to the free webcast from 1:00 pm to 6:00 pm on Online viewers are encouraged to send questions to

The Chindia Dialogues are co-sponsored by the Center for U.S.-China Relations, the Asian American Writers’ Workshop, and the India China Institute at the New School University in New York. Major support provided by the National Endowment for the Arts, Aashish and Dinny Devitre, Dr. Indu & Mridul Pathak, Erpf  Foundation, Weedon Foundation, Arthur Loeb Foundation, China Energy Fund Committee, and other generous Asia Society supporters.

All programs subject to change.

Event Details

Sat 05 Nov 2011
1 - 6 p.m.
725 Park Avenue at 70th Street, New York City
Buy Tickets
$10 Members; $12 students with ID/seniors; $15 non-members. (2-day pass, with Sunday: $15 Members; $17 students with ID/seniors; $20 non-members. Call the box office at 212-517-2742 for 2-day pass.)
Add to Calendar 20111105T170000 20111105T220000 UTC Asia Society: The Inaugural Asian Arts & Ideas Forum: The Chindia Dialogues (Part I) 725 Park Avenue at 70th Street, New York City