Minor in South Asian Studies

About the Minor:

The minor in South Asian studies is administered by the Department of History. It is a CAS minor and can be taken by students in any NYU school.  It provides a broad perspective on South Asia and opportunities to concentrate on specific areas of interest.  Students have many choices of courses and course combinations. The course list (located below) represents current offerings in 2011, and the list may change in the years to come. There are a wide range of options. Students might choose to study a language and its literature, colonial and postcolonial histories, art and architecture, contemporary politics, literary forms, cinema, and the South Asian diaspora, among other topics. The South Asia curriculum is constantly expanding across departments and schools, and now includes courses in anthropology, history, political science, fine art, film studies, cultural studies, literature, and three modern languages (Bangla, Hindi, and Urdu). Through a consortium with Columbia University, students may also study other of the region’s many modern or classical languages.

For more information about South Asian Studies visit: http://southasianyu.org/.

Declaring the Minor:

In order to declare the South Asian Studies minor, you must complete the South Asian Minor declaration form and submit it to the Undergraduate Administrative Assistant in the History Department.

Students can pursue three broad areas of concentration with four 4-point courses (16 points):

Track A: language and literature. This track provides students with a solid foundation in a modern Indian language. Students must complete a four-semester sequence in either Bangla, Hindi or Urdu. These courses may also be used to satisfy the CAS foreign language requirement.

Track B: history, culture, and politics. This track fosters a broad interdisciplinary perspective on South Asia. All four courses must be non-language courses.

Track C: culture and language. This track combines Tracks A and B. Students must take two language courses at the intermediate level or advanced level, plus two non-language South Asian studies courses. Language courses taken in Track C may also be used to satisfy the CAS foreign language requirement.

Policies Applying to the Minor

All courses for the minor must be completed with a grade of C or better (pass/fail does not count).

  • One College Core Curriculum Cultures and Contexts course on South Asia may be counted toward the non-language minor requirement (in Tracks B and C).
  • The South Asian studies faculty adviser determines the eligibility of courses taught by NYU South Asian faculty which are not currently on the minor course list.
  • One course taken in a study away program can be counted, with the faculty adviser's approval, after examining the syllabus and other documents related to that course, which students must provide.
  • For students who matriculate in CAS as freshmen, at least three of the four courses must be completed at NYU. Transfer students may be allowed to count up to two transfer courses toward the minor (upon review and approval of faculty adviser); they must always complete two courses for the minor at NYU.
  • With prior approval, one independent study course can count toward the minor.
  • One course can automatically double count for the South Asian minor and another major/minor, and two courses can be considered by student petition. Other majors and minors may have stricter policies on double counting of courses; students must check with their other departments.  

The minor does not satisfy either Societies and the Social Sciences or Expressive Culture in the College Core Curriculum.

*Students may apply any course offered by one of the South Asian faculty with the Faculty Advisor’s approval. If a course does not appear on the list below but is taught by one of the South Asian faculty, please submit the syllabus to the Undergraduate Administrative Assistant at history.undergrad@nyu.edu.

South Asian Studies Course Offerings:

*Please note that this list is subject to change, and available courses may vary depending upon the semester.


  • ANTH-UA 104: Anthropology of South Asia
  • Graduate Course: Rediscovering Caste and Race: Crosswords of Culture, Power, and History


  • ARTH-UA 530: South Asian Art I: Indus Valley to 1200
  • ARTH-UA 531: South Asian Art II: 1200 to the Present
  • ARTH-UA 550: Painting Traditions of South Asia, Past to Present


  • CINE-UT 105: Indian Cinemas


  • ENGL-UA 708: Post-Colonial Writer
  • ENGL-UA 721: South Asian Literature in English


  • FIRST-UG 394: The Invisible Economies of Being: Poverty in the Non-West
  • IDSEM-UG 1266: Ancient Indian Literature
  • IDSEM-UG 1335: South Asian Writers


  • HIST-UA 175: Topics in South Asian History
  • HIST-UA 300: Global Asia
  • HIST-UA 326: History of the South Asian Diaspora in North America
  • HIST-UA 569: Colonialism and Decolonization
  • CORE-UA 516: Cultures and Contexts: India


  • SAGC-UF 1001: South Asian Cultures


  • MEIS-UA 301/302: Elementary Urdu I and II
  • MEIS-UA 303/304: Intermediate Urdu I and II
  • MEIS-UA 405/406: Elementary Hindi I and II
  • MEIS-UA 407/408: Intermediate Hindi I and II
  • MEIS-UA 409/410: Advanced Hindi I and II
  • MEIS-UA 415/416: Readings in Urdu Lit I and II
  • MEIS-UA 425/426: Elementary Bangla I and II
  • MEIS-UA 691: What Is Islam?
  • MEIS-UA 717: Modern South Asian Literature
  • MEIS-UA 718: Introduction to Ancient Indian Literature
  • MEIS-UA 783: Seminar: Women and Islamic Law
  • MEIS-UA 863: The Sufis: Mystics of Islam


  • MEIS-UA 422 - 425: Elementary/Intermediate Punjabi I and II
  • MEIS-UA 430 - 433: Elementary/Intermediate Tamil I and II


  • CORE-UA 503: Cultures and Contexts: South Asia
  • CORE-UA 516: Cultures and Contexts: India


  • PHIL-UA 101: Indian Philosophy (“Topics in the History of Philosophy: India”)
  • PHIL-GA 3010: Buddhist Philosophy of Mind Seminar (“Topics in Philosophy of Mind: Buddhist”)


  • POL-UA 562: Politics of South Asia


  • RELST-UA 337: Religions of India
  • RELST-UA 650: Topics in Religious Studies: Yoga and Tantra in History and Today
  • RELST-UA 665: Perspectives on Islam: Islam in South Asia
  • RELST-UA 832: Introduction to Buddhism


  • SCA-UA 313: History and Literatures of the South Asian Diaspora
  • SCA-UA 472: Theories of Gender and Sexuality


  • MCC-UE 1314: South Asian Diaspora: Media & Cultural Politics