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PIIRS Global Seminar India, 2018
Haryana, India (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms: Summer
Partner Institution/Organization Homepage: Click to visit
Program Dates & Deadlines: Click here to view
Restrictions: Princeton applicants only
Fact Sheet:
Dept Offering Program: PIIRS Program Type: Study Abroad (summer)
Language of Instruction: English Language Prerequisite: No
Program Features: Academic Study, Community Service, Field Work Degree Level: 1st year u/g students, 2nd year u/g students, 3rd year u/g students
Time Away: Summer Housing options: Dormitory, Hostel/Hotel, Provided by Host Organization
Program Group: PIIRS
Program Description:

Housed in Ashoka University, an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research university with a focus on liberal arts, this seminar will cover how the Indian democratic experience is unsettling identities, unleashing new forms of mobilization and transforming the meaning of citizenship as Indians experience it.

Sonepat, Haryana, India: June 11 - July 20

Application Deadline: February 13, 2018

About the Seminar

Many political scientists have described India as an “unlikely democracy.” As Tocqueville argued, democracy, in principle, transforms all the other social forms it touches, from religion to intermediate associations. This seminar will examine the ways in which the workings of Indian democracy have shaped and transformed the meaning of five institutional formations: constitutionalism, religion, the economy, caste and the city. The aim is not to provide a conventional or comprehensive overview of Indian democracy. It is rather to provide snapshots into the ways in which the Indian democratic experience is unsettling identities, unleashing new forms of mobilization and, in the process, transforming the meaning of citizenship as Indians experience it.

The seminar will be held at Ashoka University, just outside New Delhi. Weekly excursions include sites that are the focus of new forms of religious mobilization, a gram sabha (to experience the workings of village democracy) and, possibly, the Supreme Court of India. Week 6 will feature an immersive field visit to explore democracy and the politics of slum redevelopment.

Faculty Director

Pratap Bhanu Mehta, Vice Chancellor, Ashoka University. An Oxford University graduate in philosophy, politics and economics (PPE), Mehta has a Ph.D. in politics from Princeton University. He has taught at Harvard University, Jawaharlal Nehru University and New York University School of Law. He is on the editorial board of leading academic journals including the American Political Science Review, The Journal of Democracy, and India and Global Affairs. He won the Malcolm S Adiseshiah Award in 2010, the Infosys Prize in 2011, and the Amartya Sen Award for Social Science, 2013.

Seminar Manager

Jayne Bialkowski can be reached at or by calling 609-258-2635.

Distribution Requirements

The seminar fulfills the Social Analysis (SA) requirement and the requirements for the certificate in South Asian Studies.

Costs and Financial Aid

PIIRS Global Seminars cost between $6,000-8000 and are heavily subsidized. PIIRS provides generous funding to students admitted to the Global Seminars who receive term financial aid. Possibilities for additional financial support may be available through the Student Activities Funding Engine (SAFE). Princeton Subsidized Student Loans, available from the Office of Financial Aid, are also highly recommended over charging costs to a credit card. Please consult Financing Options for Students and Parents 2016–17, specifically pages 1–2 and Table 3, and contact the Office of Financial Aid for more information.

To ensure a place in the seminar, a $500 nonrefundable deposit will be charged to participants’ accounts on April 1; the balance of the course fee will be charged to accounts on May 15.

NB: Students who accept a place in a Global Seminar and then, before the seminar begins, withdraw or cannot participate because they are no longer enrolled at Princeton will lose the nonrefundable deposit and any unrecoverable costs. There are no refunds after the start of the program.

The Swani Family Global Seminar.

PIIRS Global Seminars are made possible in part by the generous contributions of alumni and friends and ongoing efforts of the Office of Development.

Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2018 02/13/2018 03/09/2018 06/11/2018 07/20/2018