Prakash named new director of Davis Center

Oct. 13, 2003 5:36 p.m.

Gyan Prakash, professor of history, has been named to a four-year term as director of the Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Historical Studies. Prakash, who began his term in July, has announced the theme for the center's weekly seminar program and the roster of Davis Fellows for the year.

A Princeton faculty member since 1988, Prakash specializes in the history of colonial India. His research and teaching interests include the relationship between colonialism and production of knowledge.

He is the author of "Another Reason: Science and the Imagination of Modern India" (1999) and the co-author of "Worlds Together, Worlds Apart" (2002). He also has written "Bonded Histories: Genealogies of Labor Servitude in Colonial India" (1990) and has edited "After Colonialism: Imperial Histories and Postcolonial Displacements" (1995).

The Shelby Cullom Davis Center for Historical Studies was established in 1968 to develop a focal point for historical research at Princeton and to stimulate intellectual exchange both within the Department of History and between the department and visiting scholars. The center is supported by the George Henry Davis 1886 and Shelby Cullom Davis '30 Fund.

The center seeks to involve faculty members from different academic departments. "We have also tweaked the format to make the Davis Center's activities more accessible and attractive," Prakash said.

The center has moved its weekly seminar program from Friday mornings to Thursday evenings at 4:30 p.m. in 211 Dickinson. For 2003-05, the seminar theme is "Cities: Space, Society and History." An Urban Reflection Lecture Series, which will feature distinguished speakers, has been added to this year's program. Scheduled lecturers include architect Rem Koolhaas and Harvard University's Homi Bhabha, among others.

Six scholars from around the world will be in residence as Davis Fellows during the year: Belinda Davis from Rutgers University, a specialist on Berlin; Christopher Friedrichs from the University of British Columbia, who works on early modern cities; Willem Jongman from the University of Groningen, an expert on classical Rome; Christina Jimenez, a historian of urban Mexico; Ranjani Mazumdar, a documentary filmmaker and film studies scholar from Delhi whose specialty is cinema and the city; and Cormac O Grada from University College Dublin, whose subject is the economic demography of Jewish Dublin.

For more information, visit the new Davis Center Web site .

Contact: Lauren Robinson-Brown (609) 258-3601