The University of Iowa

Fulbright Lunch & Learn Oct. 7 - 'Classical and Folk Traditions'

September 22nd, 2016

Frederick Smith

View event poster here. 

The 2016-2017 Fulbright Lunch & Learn seminar series kicks off with "Classical and Folk Traditions: Exploring the Mahabharata in the Himalayas," featuring guest speaker Frederick M. Smith, Ph.D., professor of Sanskrit and classical Indian religions at the UI, and department chair of Religious Studies & Asian and Slavic Languages and Literature. This event will take place Friday, October 7, from 12:30-1:20 p.m. in 1117 University Capitol Centre (Fulbright alumni and grantees are invited to gather for light refreshments from 12:00-12:30 p.m. prior to the seminar).

Professor Smith's latest Fulbright project in the Indian Himalayas (August 2015-July 2016) focused on the superimposition or commingling of modern religious geography on the geography of the Indian national epic, the Mahābhārata (ca. 200 BCE-200 CE), and how it is consistently confirmed through narrative production, small scale religious processions and pilgrimage, and commemorative performances of various kinds. His talk will include a video presentation of some of the relevant processions and performances.

Professor Smith is the only University of Iowa faculty member to be awarded three Fulbright Senior Research awards. He has lived and worked intermittently in India for more than forty years, including several years in the western Himalayas, in the state of Uttarakhand. He teaches Sanskrit language and various courses on Indian religion and comparative religion.

This event is free and open to the public - bring a brown bag lunch and a friend and come prepared to learn!

This series is co-sponsored by the Iowa Chapter of the Fulbright Association and UI International Programs.

Individuals with disabilities are encouraged to attend all University of Iowa-sponsored events. If you are a person with a disability who requires a reasonable accommodation in order to participate in this program, please contact Karen Wachsmuth at