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Claflin University to Host NEH Lecture Series Featuring Expert on Bangladesh Literature

Sep 12, 2012

Claflin University will host its third speaker in conjunction with National Endowment for the Humanities Lecture Series.  On Wednesday, Sept. 19, Dr. Thibaut d’Hubert, assistant professor for South Asian languages and civilizations at the University of Chicago, will be the speaker.

His lecture “Rabindranath Tagore: The Univeralism of a Bengali Mind” will discuss the life and literature achievements of Tagore, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913.  It will focus on the way in which Tagore managed to become an icon of the Bengali culture, an ethnic community located between Bangladesh and India.

The public is invited and encouraged to attend d’Hubert’s lecture, which will be held at 6:15 p.m. in the Iowa Room of the James S. Thomas Science Center on campus.  Funding for this free event comes from the NEH.

d’Hubert, who grew up in Paris and rural France, obtained his Master of Arts degree in Bangla from the Institut National des Langues et Civilisations Orientales.  He received his Ph.D. at the École Pratique des Hautes Études in Paris. His significant publications on Bangla literature include “Poetry of Bengal” in The Princeton Encyclopedia of Poetry and Poetics, 4th ed. and “Bengali Literature” in Encyclopaedia of Islam.

Bangla/Bengali is the national language of Bangladesh, and is used in eastern India. The State Department has classified Bangla as a critically needed language in the U.S.

His main field of research is the history of Bangla literature and its interactions with other literary traditions. His research interests include the scientific edition of pre-modern Bangla texts, translation studies, poetics and cultural history.

Besides the critical edition of some Bangla, Sanskrit and Persian pre-modern texts, he is currently working on a book project on Ālāol and Bengali court literature in Arakan. He is coordinating a multidisciplinary project on the reception of the works of the Persian polymath of Herat ‘Abdul Raḥmān Jāmī (1414-1492).

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