India

Guests watch Vikram Vedha on the opening day of Srinagar's multiplex cinema.

Movie Theaters Are Back in Kashmir. Is Anybody Watching?

The openings are part of an attempt to promote an image of normalcy in a conflict-ridden region

At the 1893 World Columbian Exposition in Chicago, Vivekananda presented a paternal, all-inclusive vision of India that made America seem young and provincial.

The Indian Guru Who Brought Eastern Spirituality to the West

A new biography explores the life of Vivekananda, a Hindu ascetic who promoted a more inclusive vision of religion

A cheetah at Erindi Private Game Reserve in Namibia

Cheetahs Arrive in India After 70 Years of Local Extinction

As part of an ambitious reintroduction plan, conservationists flew in eight of the big cats from Namibia

An inhaled Covid-19 vaccine is displayed at the CanSino Biologics booth at the Hainan International Health Industry Expo in November 2021.

Needle-Free Covid-19 Vaccines Approved in China and India

Doses inhaled through the mouth or nose might provide better protection against mild infections and transmission, preliminary studies show

Cheetahs are listed as vulnerable on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species, with approximately 6,517 mature individuals left worldwide. 

Cheetahs Will Soon Be Reintroduced to India

The felines were declared extinct in the country in 1952

Translator Daisy Rockwell and author Geetanjali Shree hold their International Booker Prize awards.

For the First Time, a Hindi Author Has Won the International Booker Prize

A novel about borders garnered Geetanjali Shree the prestigious award

This watercolor from a devotional poem shows the richness of South Asian art—a long art history overlooked by some in the Western world.

You Can Now Explore an Open-Source Encyclopedia of 10,000 Years of South Asian Art

The online reference aims to make the region's masterpieces more accessible than ever

The jars vary in shape in size. Some are perfectly round, while others are tall and skinny.

Archaeologists in India Find Dozens of Mysterious Giant Jars

The vessels' purpose is unknown, but scholars say they may have been used in ancient funerary practices

Ruins of a 2,000-year-old Buddhist temple, one of the oldest discovered in Pakistan's Gandhara region.

Cool Finds

2,000-Year-Old Buddhist Temple Unearthed in Pakistan

The structure is one of the oldest of its kind in the Gandhara region

Indian buffets invite a range of eaters—from the timid to the adventurous—to explore and experiment without intimidation.

Searching for Curry and Enlightenment on the Indian Buffet Line

A return to trays of glistening tandoori and hand-rolled naan for the first time since the start of the Covid-19 pandemic is a return to normalcy

Yale's namesake sits at the center of this group portrait, Elihu Yale With Members of His Family and an Enslaved Child (circa 1719, attributed to John Verelst).

Who Is the Enslaved Child in This Portrait of Yale University's Namesake?

Scholars have yet to identify the young boy, but new research offers insights on his age and likely background

This iron dagger's well-preserved wooden handle may help researchers date artifacts found in Konthagai.

Cool Finds

Archaeologists Unearth Ancient Dagger Linked to Enigmatic Indian Civilization

A blade found in the state of Tamil Nadu offers new evidence of an urban center that thrived as long as 2,500 years ago

The cave paintings are located in the Aravalli mountain range in northwestern India.

Cool Finds

These Millennia-Old Cave Paintings May Be Among India's Oldest

Locals have known about the artworks for generations, but government archaeologists only began documenting them this summer

The yazh's design is based on detailed descriptions of the ancient instrument.

Listen to the First Song Ever Recorded on This Ancient, Harp-Like Instrument

Tharun Sekar, a luthier based in southern India, has painstakingly recreated the long-lost yazh

A 300-thread count sari woven out of a hybrid Dhaka muslin thread

How Modern Researchers Are Trying to Recreate a Long-Lost Fabric

Dhaka muslin was immensely popular for millennia, but the secrets of its creation faded from memory by the early 20th century

Six of the statues appear to depict Siddhartha Gautama, while five likely portray the Hindu deity and Buddhist bodhisattva Tara.

Cool Finds

Remnants of Tenth-Century Buddhist Monastery Found in India

The excavation uncovered statues of the Buddha and Tara, a prominent bodhisattva

Health workers in protective suits cull ducks in Karuvatta after the H5N8 bird flu strain was detected.

Avian Flu Outbreak in India Results in Mass Poultry Culls

No cases of avian flu have been detected in humans during the current outbreak

Archaeologists have been excavating the site since 2017.

Cool Finds

A Medieval Nun Led This Newly Unearthed Buddhist Monastery in Eastern India

The religious center, located on a hillside away from densely populated areas, may have had all-female or mixed-gender renunciates

After composing and transcribing music for my wedding day, Red Baraat was born. Dave Sharma leads the baraat (wedding procession) on dhol, as I walk with my mother, family, and friends. August 27, 2005.

Smithsonian Voices

Musician Sunny Jain Reflects on Jainism, Jazz and the Punjabi Dhol Drum

While the originations of the dhol are not known with complete certainty, what is known is that it is a sound that has migrated

The group’s identification also highlights how much of ocean life—even when it comes to the largest sea creatures—has yet to be discovered.

Scientists Eavesdrop on New Population of Blue Whales Singing in the Indian Ocean

Scientists have identified a previously unknown blue whale song, suggesting that a distinct population had long gone undetected

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