Between Worlds - A Conversation with Mira Nair: The 5th Sarah Kailath Memorial Lecture

Lecture | May 7 | 2:30-4:30 p.m. | International House, The Chevron Auditorium

 Mira Nair, Film Director

 Harsha Ram, Associate Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures and Comparative Literature

 Institute for South Asia Studies, Sarah Kailath Chair in India Studies, International House, Department of South & Southeast Asian Studies, Institute of International Studies, South/Southeast Asia Library | UC Berkeley Library, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive, Ethnic Studies Library, Center for African Studies

ISAS is proud to announce the 5th Sarah Kailath Memorial Lecture - a lecture series on the theme of Women and Leadership. This lecture series has been established in memory of Sarah Kailath (February 5, 1941 - October 15, 2008), a long-time supporter of ISAS’s mission and activities and in whose name the Institute holds an endowed chair titled the Sarah Kailath Chair in India Studies.

Our fifth Sarah Kailath Memorial lecturer will be acclaimed film director Mira Nair. The event will be in the form of a conversation between Ms. Nair and Harsha Ram, Associate Professor of Slavic Languages and Literatures and Comparative Literature at UC Berkeley, and will include a Q&A session where the audience will be able to engage with Ms. Nair.

Speaker Bio
Mira Nair is a prolific filmmaker who fluidly moves between Hollywood and independent cinema. After several years of making documentary films, she made Salaam Bombay! (1988), the first Indian film to win the coveted Camera D’Or at the Cannes Film Festival and more than 25 international awards including an Academy Award nomination for Best Foreign Film. Nair then directed Mississippi Masala (1991), The Perez Family (1995), and My Own Country (1998). Her Monsoon Wedding (2001) won the Golden Lion, Venice’s top prize in cinema. Her most recent films include Amelia (2009), The Reluctant Fundamentalist (2013), Words With Gods (2014), and Queen of Katwe (2016).

Raised in India, schooled at Harvard, and living in New York City, Mira Nair uses her natural grasp of identity conflict to make films that explore race, gender, inter-generational strife, cultural appropriation and displacement. A poignant speaker, she captures beautifully the tug of competing worlds felt by millions of immigrants around the world.

The Sarah Kailath Memorial Lecture on "Women and Leadership," derives from the Sarah Kailath Chair in India Studies. The chair was established by Thomas Kailath, and Vinita and Narendra Gupta in honor of Dr. Kailath's wife, Sarah Kailath, to enhance awareness and knowledge of issues relating to the Indian subcontinent. The current Sarah Kailath Chair is Lawrence Cohen, Chair, Institute for South Asia Studies and Professor, Anthropology and South Asian Studies. Professors Raka Ray, Robert P. Goldman and Thomas Metcalf previously held the Chair.

Preceding Mira Nair's lecture on Sunday, May 7, we will be screening the following selected films from her vast collection:

Admission with Cal ID only for the following film screenings. Lecture on May 7 is free and open to the public.

FILM SCREENING | Wed, April 5 @ 5 pm in 10 Stephens Hall:
The Reluctant Fundamentalist | New Directions in Indian Cinema
A 2012 ​film based ​up​on ​a novel​ ​by Mohsin Hamid, ​on the impact of the Al Qaeda attacks on one Pakistani man and his treatment by Americans in reaction to them​. Starring Riz Ahmed and Kate Hudson.

FILM SCREENING | Wed, April 12 @ 5 pm in 10 Stephens Hall:
The Namesake | New Directions in Indian Cinema
A 2006 drama ​based upon a novel by Jhumpa Lahiri on the struggles of first-generation immigrants from West Bengal to the United States, and their American-born children​. Starring Tabu, Irfan Khan, and Kal Penn.

FILM SCREENING | Wed, April 19 @ 5 pm in 10 Stephens Hall:
Mississippi Masala | New Directions in Indian Cinema
A 1991 film ​that ​explores ​an ​interracial romance between African​ ​Americans and Indian Americans in the ​US.​ Starring Denzel Washington, Sarita Choudhury, and Roshan Seth.

FILM SCREENING | Wed, April 26 @ 5 pm in 10 Stephens Hall:
Queen of Katwe | New Directions in Indian Cinema
A 2016​ true story of a young girl selling corn on the streets of rural Uganda whose world rapidly changes when she is introduced to ​the game of ​chess​. Starring David Oyelowo​ and Lupita Nyong'o.

FILM SCREENING | Wed, May 3 @ 5 pm in 10 Stephens Hall:
Monsoon Wedding | New Directions in Indian Cinema
A 2001 film which depicts romantic entanglements during a ​traditional ​Punjabi ​Hindu ​wedding in Delhi​ and explores the bonds that unite families in touching, dramatic, and comedic ways​​. ​Starring ​Naseeruddin Shah​ and Lillete Dubey.

PLAY | Friday, May 5 to June 25 at the Berkeley Rep:
Monsoon Wedding: The Musical
Award-winning film director Mira Nair brings her exuberant and sumptuous Monsoon Wedding to Berkeley Rep’s stage in this highly anticipated world premiere musical.

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Please note that parking is not always easily available in Berkeley. Take public transportation if possible or arrive early to secure your spot.