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January Term: UVA in India: India in Global History
Kochi, India; Thekkady, India (Education Abroad Programs Program)
Program Terms: January
This program is currently not accepting applications.
Restrictions: UVA applicants only
Budget Sheets January
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
January 2018 01-OCT-2017
10-OCT-2017 31-DEC-2017 13-JAN-2018
NOTE: The start date is the date students must arrive in Kochi to begin the program; students traveling from the US will need to depart no later than December 30. If accepted to this program, you must commit to or decline participation by October 15.

Indicates that deadline has passed
Fact Sheet:
Class Status:
1st year, 2nd year, 3rd year, 4th year Minimum GPA Requirement: 2.5
Language Requirement:
Open to Non-UVa Students:
Housing: Hotel, With program group Language Courses Offered: No
Language of Instruction: English
Credit Type:
Direct Credit
Program Type:
Faculty led
Tuition Payments Made To:
Education Abroad Advisor:
Ryan Hathaway
Application Fee:
Study Abroad Administrative Fee:
Subject Area:
Asian Studies, Foreign Affairs, Global Studies, History
Program Description:

This January Term course reveals the central role India has played in the long history of globalization, as well as discovering the vast diversity of India’s cultural and environmental heritage. The southern coastal state of Kerala is known for its palm-lined beaches and backwaters, a network of canals. Inland are the Western Ghats, mountains whose slopes support tea, coffee and spice plantations as well as wildlife. For millennia, the Malabar Coast of Kerala was directly in the sights of Arabs, Africans and Europeans for the commodities it offered: exotic spices, cashews, rubber and cotton textiles. We will explore the Indian Ocean port of Kochi, discovering the historic role it played in trans-oceanic trade, and its multi-ethnic and religious identity. A day trip to Alleppy will highlight Kerala’s canal culture and the distinctive temple architecture of the state. For the second half of the course, we will spend several days exploring the Periyar National Forest, a protected environment for tigers, elephants, monkeys, birds and other threatened fauna and flora; as well as tea and spice gardens. An evening will be spent experiencing the colorful dance-drama of Kerala known as Kathakali, which typically draws themes from Indian literary classics such as the Mahabharata and Ramayana. Kerala is a microcosm of India, yet it stands out from the rest of the Indian states for its forward outlook and innovative approaches to education, social welfare, politics and trade.


Fishing nets in Kochi

The class will meet in Kochi. We will visit historical and cultural sites around Kochi, with a day trip to Alleppy. The second half of the course will be in Thekkady, where we will visit Periyar National Park.

Course Objectives

  • Understand India from an historical and contemporary global perspective
  • Explore how cultural and socio-economic factors have influenced India’s interaction with the West
  • Enhance skills in analyzing culture comparatively and the dynamics of international trade over the longue durée
  • Understand the balancing of economic needs with environmental concerns
  • Experience India’s vibrant arts
  • Gain an appreciation of the challenges and joys of learning new ways of living, worshipping, working and cuisine

Housing during the program will be in centrally-located hotels in both Kochi and Thekkady . Breakfast is included at the hotels each morning of the program.


Kerala Backwaters


India in Global History
(SAST 3559; 3 credits)

Info Session
Friday, September 15, 2017, 1pm in New Cabell 144

Course Information
This 3-credit course is open to undergraduates in all years, as well as graduate students with instructor’s permission. Students interested in Global Studies, Foreign Affairs, South Asian Studies, Fine Arts, Environmental Studies will benefit from the course. This course provides a fresh perspective on how to think historically and culturally about globalization. For an introduction to India, this course maxes out on the “India experience,” highlighting culture, history, the environment, unique flora and fauna. For those who have experienced India through exposure to its northern parts, the course offers a great counter-balance to established stereotypes. This inter-disciplinary course will challenge your world-view and offer you alternative ways of thinking about history and culture.


Periyar National Park

The program cost and payment schedule are listed under the "Budget Sheets" link at the top of this page.

Accessibility Statement
The University of Virginia believes in providing reasonable accommodations for students with documented disabilities on an individual and flexible basis. If you believe that you would require adjustments in order to fully participate in this program, please contact the Student Disability Access Center at 434-243-5180 as early as possible in order to begin this dialogue.

Passport and Visa Information
All participants will need a valid passport in order to participate in the program. A valid passport is one that does not expire for at least 6 months past the program end date. US passport holders and students of many other nationalities will need to apply for a visa to India to participate in the program. Begin researching entry requirements (which may include visa documents, vaccines, and/or other requirements) based on the passport you hold; if accepted into the program, you will need to act quickly. Your education abroad advisor will provide instructions for the visa after commitment.

Note that students of Pakistani origin (not just citizenship) should contact the Education Abroad Advisor for this program as soon as possible as visa processing may take longer for these individuals. Students of Chinese origin should also contact the Education Abroad Advisor. Non-US passport holders need to discuss plans to study abroad with an international student advisor.

Drs. Mehr Farooqi and Richard Cohen (,, Middle Eastern & South Asian Languages & Cultures. Both professors are specialists in Indian language, literature and culture, and have guided student groups in India. Prof. Farooqi is deeply interested in bilingualism and multiculturalism, and drawn to translation, literary modernism, intersections between religion and literature, history and art history. She teaches courses on Indian travel writing, South Asian women’s writing, Indian poetry, especially Urdu poetry, literature inspired by the Partition of India, and Dalit literature. Beginning his career as a South Asia specialist, as a Peace Corps Volunteer in India, Prof. Cohen, has administered South Asia programs at four universities. His research specialty is medieval Indian literature. He offers courses on classics of Indian literature, the long history of contact between India, Middle East, East Africa and Europe, and India in current global perspective.

This program is currently not accepting applications.