Conference Events

In addition to the more than 140 panels, the conference chair and committee invite distinguished speakers and renowned performers to present during the Joseph W. Elder Keynote Lecture, the Plenary Address, the All-Conference Performance as well as other designated special events. As new events are added to the schedule, information will be made available in the Special Events section.

5:30 pm – 6:30 pm
Madison Ballroom
Cash bar

Join conference attendees and participants for a welcome reception following a day of thrilling Symposia.

Performance: Sapna Kumar, Stand Up Comedian
9:00 – 9:45 pm
Wisconsin Ballroom
A cash bar will be set up beginning at 8pm for the evening performance.

5:30 – 6:30 pm
Madison Ballroom
Cash Bar
Join conference attendees and participants following Friday’s sessions for a reception prior to the Joseph W. Elder Keynote Address.

Keynote Address: David Shulman, “How to Wake Up in Sanskrit (or Tamil or Telugu)
6:45 pm – 7:45 pm
Wisconsin Ballroom

All-Conference Dinner
8:00 pm – 9:00 pm
Purchase dinner tickets to attend a buffet dinner in the company of your fellow conference attendees. The All-Conference Dinner is an exceptional networking opportunity designed to meet and discuss with other scholars as well as recognize the achievements of the special guests and conference speakers.
Capitol Ballroom

Plenary Address: Ananya Vajpeyi & Iftikhar Dadi, “The Artistry of Free Speech in South Asia and South Asian Studies
1:45 – 3:30 pm
Wisconsin Ballroom

Performance: One Day in the Season of Rain (Mohan Rakesh’s Hindi play, Ashadh ka ek din, in English translation)
8:00 – 10:00 pm
Play Circle Theater (800 Langdon St., Madison WI 53706)

Film Night
8:00 – 10:00 pm
Grab some popcorn and gather ’round for a special evening of film screenings! Lively discussion to follow each film.
2nd floor, Madison Concourse Hotel & Governor’s Club

Networking Events
8:00 am – 12:00 pm
Madison Ballroom

Sunday is devoted a series of organized networking events aiming to bring South Asian scholars of all disciplines and geographic regions of study together for intellectual discussion. This is an ideal time to begin gathering panel members together for the following conference. We will have a special focus as well on introducing graduate students to the larger South Asian academic community through mentoring and mingling.

Film Screening
8:00 am – 1:00 pm
Capitol Ballroom (2nd Floor)
Vivek / ‘Reason’ –
Anand Patwardhan
Coffee, tea, and snacks served

Conference Events

Keynote Address

Joseph W. Elder Keynote Lecture

Each year, the Conference Chair invites a distinguished scholar or expert on topics related to South Asia to attend the Annual Conference on South Asia and deliver the keynote lecture. (Friday, Oct 12, 6:45 pm)

Plenary Address

Plenary Address

The Conference Chair organizes a special session and invites several speakers to attend the conference and present on an issue related to South Asian studies in connection with the year's theme. (Saturday, Oct 13, 4 pm)


Film Screenings

The Annual Conference on South Asia screens films and documentaries in relation to all aspects and areas of South Asia.



The Conference Committee invites special guests to the conference to present evening performances for conference attendees. These performances include appearances by musicians, actors, poets, magicians, filmmakers, and other artists.

Special Events

Special Events

Individuals are invited to submit requests to hold special events at the conference. Examples of special events in the past include photo exhibits, documentary screenings, art exhibits, and other events.


Association Meetings

Various associations hold important meetings and receptions at the Annual Conference on South Asia. Schedule yours today!