International lecture series

International Guest Lecture Series The Art of the Academic Journal: A Personal Approach to Scholarly Writing
March 03, 2023
The Department of Media Studies (PG) organized an International Guest Lecture Series on The Art of the Academic Journal: A personal approach to scholarly writing. The resource person for the talk was Prof. Arthur Asa Berger, a Professor Emeritus of Broadcast and Electronic Communication Arts at San Francisco State University where he taught between 1965 and 2003. He has published more than 100 articles, numerous book reviews, and more than 60 books. Among his latest books is the third edition of Media and Communication Research Methods: An Introduction to Qualitative and Quantitative Approaches (2013), The Academic Writer’s Toolkit: A User’s Manual (2008), What Objects Mean: An Introduction to Material Culture (2009), Bali Tourism (2013) and many more. His books have been translated into eight languages and thirteen of his books have been translated into Chinese.

The session was further enlightened by the Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, Dr. Gopakumar AV. The program coordinator, Dr. Juby Thomas, and the rest of the faculty of the PG Department also graced the occasion with their presence. The session began with the chief guest discussing the importance of journaling and how important it is to write down everything at the end of the day. He continued to talk about how it increases the mental capacity for creativity and knowledge upbringing. He then instructed the students on the seven rules of journaling. According to him, in order to write, you must have ideas, and this is where journaling comes in handy because a journal is an instrument for documenting what people think, he insisted on the students writing more and to be a writer, you must first be a reader, and writing every day will boost your confidence to write even more. He then spoke about his book The Art of the Journal: Perspectives on the Creative Process in which he mentioned Vishnu sir’s invitation to the college for the lecture series in Chapter 2 of his book. In that context, he spoke about Journaling. He emphasized that when we keep a daily journal, we are practicing the art of writing. Additionally, keeping a journal to express your thoughts and ideas can help you improve your communication skills.

His talk ended with an interactive Q & A Session with the students and the staff present in the session, throughout which prof. Arthur Asa Berger answered all the queries. The guest lecture series came to an end with a vote of thanks, which was proposed by Ms. Sanaaz Fathima of 2nd Year MA JMC, concluding the interactive event.

International Lecture Series - ART AND MENTAL HEALTH
November 03, 2022
The Department of Media Studies (PG) organized a session on ‘Art and Mental Health as part of the International Lecture series on November 3rd, 2022. The resource person for the session was Dr. Cheryl McGeachan, who is the senior lecturer at the School of Geographical & Earth Sciences University of Glasgow, Scotland. The participants for the lecture included faculty members, students of MA JMC, and people from outside. A brief profile reading of the international resource person started the session.

Dr. Cheryl began her lecture on the concept of how mental health is such an essential element in today's world. She went on to explain how therapy via art is such an effective way to maintain stable mental health. She stressed the fact that art can be tremendously beneficial to our health and contribute to overall happiness and mental well-being. Art therapy can relieve stress for adults and kids alike. There is a positive connection between art and mental health. Artistic activities such as sculpting, painting, or drawing are known to lower stress levels and promote mental calmness, she explained. She further correlated art and mental well-being through her amazing slides as she showcased various visuals as examples while the participants went on to listen to her in awe.

The session finally ended with a question-and-answer session where Dr. Cheryl enthusiastically answered all the queries. The vote of thanks was proposed by Mr. Vishnu Achyuta Menon, Faculty of the Department of Media Studies (PG) concluded the session on a positive note.

International Lecture Session on “Puppetry and Storytelling in Asia”
September 27, 2022
The Department of Media Studies (PG) organized an International Lecture series on ‘Puppetry and Storytelling in Asia’. The resource person for the session was Dr. Jennifer Goodlander, who is the Associate Professor of Department of Comparative Literature in Indiana University, Bloomington, USA. The participants of the lecture included faculty members, students of MA JMC as well as external participants.

A brief introduction about the resource person kick-started the lecture session. The resource person then began her presentation on the said topic.

Dr. Goodlander began her presentation on the concept of puppetry as a global tradition. She went on to explain how this traditional form of art is an excellent medium of storytelling and highlighted that a puppeteer can be an important source of storyteller.

Through her illustrated videos and pictures, she briefly touched upon puppetry traditions of Cambodia, Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam. She pointed out the importance of involving the new generation and getting them interested in order for this ancient art form to survive and continue to thrive. She explained the religious reflections and aspects which are present in some of the puppetry traditions, which mostly depicts the stories of Ramayana and Mahabharata.

“Village culture is never changing as compared to modern culture,” Talking about the importance of preserving such traditional art forms, Dr. Goodlander remarked that while modern culture changes, village culture remains unchanged. She pointed out that technological industrialization, urbanization and globalization lead to mass culture and universalism. This is important in terms of continuation of traditions which can change accordingly overtime.

Dr. Goodlander further explained the topic of art forms evolving over due time with an example of fusion culture. This art form has changed due to advancement of technologies as well as involvement of new generation and it is known as “Fusion Wayong” which is a Puppetry art form originating in Malaysia. This art form is a classic example of traditional Puppetry mixed with today’s Hip-hop culture.

Dr. Goodlander captivated her audience with her own small rendition of Puppetry, explaining how Jesters played an equally important role in Puppetry. Her Puppetry skills managed to make several faces smile.

The lecture ended with a question-and-answer session where the resource person exuberantly answered all the queries. The Vote of Thanks was proposed by Dr. Ravi Kumar, faculty of the Department of Media Studies (PG).

International Expert Lecture Series- Global Media Ethics
September 03, 2022
Department of Media Studies (PG) organized an International Lecture series on ‘Global Media Ethics’ via the zoom platform on 03-09-2022. The resource person for the session was Dr. Anita Varma from the School of Journalism and Media, Moody College of Communication, The University of Texas, Austin. The faculty members, students of MA JMC as well as externals were all part of this session.

The session started with a brief introduction about the international guest, her works, and contributions which was then followed by a presentation given by the resource person herself. Dr. Anita Varma in her presentation started with understanding the concept of ethics and then ventured into a broader term of discussion that being ‘Global Media Ethics’. She mainly pin-pointed and focused on three main words/terms that were strongly tied with the understanding of Global Ethics, those words being: Dignity, Social Justice, and Solidarity.

It was interesting how she explained the depth of those words and the role they play in using Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Furthermore, inclusion as an act of solidarity, perspectives, and emotions were all topics covered in her presentation. In addition to this, she gave a gist of three stories one of them being titled “After Homes The collapse in Earthquakes Puerto Ricans Ask: Are We Safe?”

The reason behind this was to make the participants understand solidarity as an ethical media practice that starts with people living the issue. Dr. Anita Varma summarized her delivery on the topic ‘Global Media Ethics’ by mentioning three key takeaways. The first is “Ethics is about doing what’s right even if it is easier, faster, or more profitable not to bother”, followed by the second “Global media ethics is concerned with advancing unifying principles such as dignity, justice, and solidarity” and finally “Climate change offers one case of why global media ethics matter”.

The session concluded with a question-and-answer interaction where the guest enthusiastically answered all the queries that the participants had. The vote of thanks was proposed by Mr. Viju V V faculty of the Department of media studies (PG) after which the session ended. Overall, it was a very interesting and thought-provoking session.

International Lecture Series on Radio Engagement & Well-being for Older Adults
August 29, 2022
Department of Media Studies (PG) organized a lecture series on the topic “Radio engagement and well-being for the older adults”. Dr. Amanda E Krause, lecturer, at the Psychology College of healthcare sciences at James Cook University, Australia was the resource person for the day. The session took place on an online platform, zoom where all the media students and faculties participated in the session. The event began with a welcome speech delivered by Dr. Juby Thomas, Coordinator of the Department of Media Studies (PG).

Dr. Amanda Krause discussed her research in the field of changing trends of music engagement in the digital climate and the impact of music engagement on well-being. She started her session by defining what well-being is, further discussing how health is a multidimensional phenomenon that includes different aspects. According to Dr. Amanda, older adults often listen to music to regulate their mood, facilitate social connectedness, provide enjoyment and help to express identity.

In addition to the above, she spoke about how aging and well-being have both positive as well as negative experiences. She discussed the strategies that support the well-being of older members in our diverse communities. Furthermore, she opined on the implications and the impact of radio engagement. She concluded her session with a quote "It's wonderful that all this stuff is on the radio for nothing".

The session came to an end with the question and answer round asked by the faculties and students of the Department of Media Studies. Altogether it was a very insightful session about “Radio engagement and its well-being for older adults”.

International Lecture on 21st Century Storytelling
December 8, 2021
A lecture was organized by the Department of Media Studies (PG) as part of its International Lecture Series on the 8th of December 2021. The topic of discussion was 21st Century Storytelling: The New Poetics – Aristotle meets Janet Murray. The resource person was Dr. Don Marinelli, co-founder of Carnegie Mellon, and Entertainment Technology Center (ETC) and professor of Carnegie Mellon University, USA.

Dr. Gopakumar A V, Dean of Humanities, Kristu Jayanti College welcomed the resource person by providing a brief introduction about his area of interest. He also expressed his gratitude for accepting the invitation for a session with students.

Dr. Don Marinelli was interested in theatrical play in his early years and eventually became a doctor in the field of drama. Until the mid-1990s, he was an associate head of drama. His interests switched from acting to computer science later on. He is an arts and media professor with a background in engineering, along with Kezia Shariff who is an Alumni of Kristu Jayanti College.

He enlightened the students about drama and storytelling focusing on the major aspects that are involved in storytelling. He stressed the importance of plot, characters, relationship, theme, diction, and various elements involved in drama and storytelling. His session was interesting and fruitful as he touched upon the modern additions of storytelling using new media technologies for the plot, crisis management, immersion, agency, and transformation. Dr. Marinelli posted a question before his audience as the most important question to ask when a person is involved in storytelling. He asked: “What is the story behind the story?” He made the session interactive by engaging the audience with some spelling exercises.

The professor compared the ‘old’ poetics of Aristotle with the ‘new’ interventions of poetics. He said “The old poetics are ranked. The plot is the most important element in the process of storytelling followed by character, theme, diction, music (rhythm). There is a science behind the plot and a plot has different elements like reversals, discovery, and recognition”.

The lecturer then narrows down to climatic plot structure and explained the concept of conflict or drama in storytelling. Dr. Marinelli ended the session referring to Janet Murray’s Immersion and Transformation. He explained the virtual and artificial reality by providing examples from “Harry Potter,” to state immersive creation. He also touched upon the areas such as the role of video games in immersion and symbolic drama.

It was an interactive session with 174 participants from diverse streams. The students from English, Computer Science, and Media Studies were glad about the session as the students got the opportunity to post questions and clarify their doubts about 21st-century storytelling. The session was concluded by a vote of thanks by Dr. Juby Thomas, Coordinator of Department of Media Studies, Kristu Jayanti College. The feedback from the students revealed that the session was very useful due to the importance of the topic discussed.

International Lecture Series on Ethnographic Research
Date: 28th of August, 2021
The Department of Media Studies (PG) in association with the Department of English (PG) organized a lecture as part of the, “International Lecture Series” on the 28th of August, 2021. The lecture was on Ethnography, -A Qualitative Research Method. The resource person was Dr. Selvaraj Velayutham, Associate professor, Department of Sociology, Macquarie University, New South Wales, Australia.

Dr. Selvaraj is specialized in the field of globalization, international migration, diaspora and transnationalism, race and ethnic studies, nationalism, multiculturalism, and the sociology of everyday life. He started the session by giving valuable insights on the factors that answer the question of, what is research.

He elaborated on the two broad categories of research, i.e., qualitative and quantitative research. He pointed out how both the methods have their limitations and advantages. He said, “With the quantitative method, you should have a good statistical background. While with the qualitative method the challenge is that, as a researcher you should be curious and should have skills to analyse people. You might have to work up a way to make people talk to you.”

He explained the concept of rationalization concerning the current Covid scenario. He spoke about the method of Ethnography which was originated in the discipline of anthropology. He spoke about its history and the essential aspects that are necessary while using this method. He enlightened the attendees on how ethnography can be used to explore structural and institutional factors in different research problems.

He explained the method with some short documentaries and case studies like IKEA shoppers. The documentary showed how IKEA’s maze-like spatial organization is a reason for its success among people. The session was very fruitful and Dr. Selvaraj got a lot of positive feedback from the attendees. The lecture concluded with a question and answer session, which was as insightful and helpful as the whole session.

International Lecture Series The New World Order
The department of Media Studies, Kristu Jayanti college organized a virtual International Lecture Series on “The New Global Order” on April 16, 2021. Mr. Michael Kugelman, Deputy Director and Senior Associate for South Asia Wilson Center, Washington, USA was the keynote speaker.

Speaking on how the global order has changed during the course of the pandemic, Mr Kugelman said, “there was anxiety as well as great hope among people across the world to unite and fight against Covid 19 pandemic. But the initial cooperation and unity didn’t last long. Instead, it has resulted in creating instability in international relations”. He further added that the lack of collaborative effort, divisive and toxic nationalism created a vacuum for global leadership.

A specialist on Afghanistan, India, and Pakistan and their relations with the United States, Mr Kugelman spoke about how South Asia repositioned itself during the pandemic. He said that geographically South Asia is central to the world. South Asian countries has much to offer the rest of the world through its dynamic human resource¬. “Large youth population and growing middle class can contribute significantly to global economy”, said Mr. Kugelman. He also highlighted the issues dominating in South Asia and said, “disputes between India and Pakistan have paralysed South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC). China’s growing influence in the region, its territorial provocation, Belt and Road Initiative and ‘wolf warrior diplomacy have further aggravated the tensions in the region”.

Speaking on India’s role in the changing world order, Mr. Kugelman said, “India should position itself as a ‘soft power’ rather than a ‘hard power’. It had taken the world’s center stage by playing a significant role in distributing pharmaceuticals and covid vaccines to various nations”. He concluded the session by speaking about the issues that could arise with the NATO nations military withdrawal from Afghanistan.

The session was attended by over 150 students from various streams like media studies, political science, sociology and economics.

Prof. Frankie Edozien from New York University addressed the Journalism students

As part of the International lecture series organized by the postgraduate department of Journalism and Mass Communication Prof. Chike Frankie Edozien, addressed the students on January 16, 2019. He is a Journalist and Writer and currently serving as a faculty member of New York University. He is also known to be the first Nigerian to have written a non-fiction book on homosexuality, The Lives of Men, in 2018. He addressed the students on international reporting, focussing more on how developing nations of Asia and Africa are covered in global media. He explained that in the age of technology, the idea of what is local has changed and that it is now local is international. People from all over the world share similar experiences which enable them to connect over the internet.

He defined how the traditional western media look at developing nations and listed five criteria with regard to developing countries that make news – Death, Diseases, Disaster, Despair, and Corruption. He explained that this one-sided portrayal and whitewashing news, is leading to widespread misrepresentation and misconceptions about the countries. This has led to misleading ideas about the countries of Africa and the continent itself.

He elucidated on the need to change this and put the prerogative on the budding journalists to change this perception. This he believes can be done by laying down the importance of story-telling and changing the narrative of the developing nations. It is imperative to create one’s own narratives as journalists, so as to give a clear and truthful picture. He values above all, honest journalism, having compassion, giving the context and historical importance of matters of concern, looking into the nuances, the finer details which will make one’s work stand out and avoiding generalizations that lead to stereotypes.

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