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MA Programme

MA Programme

M.A. in Arts and Aesthetics

The School offers an integrated MA programme in Visual Studies, Cinema Studies, and Theatre and Performance Studies. Students of this programme are required to complete sixteen courses of four credits each over the course of the four semesters. Of these, eight courses must be taken among the ten compulsory courses on offer, and the other eight are to be selected from optional courses. While students are expected to take optional courses within the School, they are also permitted to take up to two optional courses from other Centres or Schools.

M.A. Course Structure:

Course Structure: 

The course structure is as follows: 



1: SAA 414     Introduction to Film Studies (Compulsory)

2: SAA 501     Introduction to Theatre and Performance Studies (Compulsory)

3:SAA 405      Methods, Materials and Meaning in Visual Art (Compulsory)

4: SAA 440     Critical Writing for the Arts (Compulsory)




1: SAA 465     Indian Cinema Past and Present (Compulsory)

2: SAA 574     History of Performance: The Indian Context (Compulsory)

3: SAA 401     Indian Art and Architecture from Proto-history to the Eighteenth Century (Compulsory)

4: Optional     Optional Course




1. SAA-568    Film/ Media: Theory and Aesthetics (Compulsory/Optional) **

2. SAA-566    Theatre and Performance Studies: Theory and Aesthetics (Compulsory/Optional) ** 

3. SAA-567    Visual Studies: Theory and Aesthetics (Compulsory/Optional) **

4. ------          Optional Course

5. ------          Optional Course

** In the III semester, students are expected to take any two of the Theory and Aesthetics courses as compulsory courses, as well as two optional courses. If they wish, they may take the third Theory and Aesthetics course as an optional course.




Students take four optional courses in the final semester.


Optional Courses:

Given below is a list of optional courses designed for the M.A. programme, which are taught by rotation. Additional courses may be introduced by guest faculty from time to time.

SAA-403    Visual Culture and the Representation of Difference

SAA-404    Bhakti Movement: Texts Contexts and Performance   

SAA-406    Indian Dance: Theory and Practice  

SAA-408    Art of Indic Asia  

SAA-409    World Theatre Scene: Theory and Practice Interface

SAA-410    Actor and his Art: Body-Mind Dynamics  

SAA-413    The Indian Temple: Development & Form   

SAA-415    Film and the Historical Imagination  

SAA-416    Science Fiction Cinema  

SAA-417    Shakespeare on Indian Stage  

SAA-420    Textual Sources of Indian Art  

SAA-430    Global Art Cinema  

SAA-431    Advanced Research Seminar in Cinema Studies  

SAA-451    Indian Temple Sculpture and Architecture 350 AD to 1350 AD 

SAA-454    Arts of the Mughal Court  

SAA-455    The Cultural History of Modern Indian Theatre  

SAA-456    Music and Modernity: The Case of North India 1850-1960   

SAA-461    Indian Terracotta Art  

SAA-466    Cinema and Modernity  

SAA-468    Buddhist Visual Culture: From Theravada to Neo-Buddhism  

SAA-491    Sound Theories and Practices

SAA-496    India Through the Lens: Photographic Practices

SAA 497     Vijayanagara-Nāyaka Art and Architecture.

SAA-503    The Arts of the Rajput World  

SAA-504    Aspects of Musical Performance   

SAA-505    The Comic Traditions in Performance  

SAA-511    Folklore and Oral Tradition  

SAA-515    Museums and the Representation of Culture

SAA-516    Film Genres – Theories and Histories  

SAA-519    Asian Cinemas  

SAA-521    Contemporary Indian Cinema  

SAA-522    Cinema and Television in the Digital Age  

SAA-526    The Indian New Wave  

SAA-527    Political Theatre in 20th Century  

SAA-551    Modernism & Critical Revisions  

SAA-552    Contemporary Indian Theatre: Movement & Institutions  

SAA-553    Dance, Body and Society : Functional Perspective &Changes  

SAA-554    Music and Community  

SAA-555    Living Traditions of Indian Performing Arts

SAA-557    Adaptation and Staging of Texts   

SAA-558    Cultural Studies and Performance  

SAA-559    Asian Art: Post-colonial Paradoxes   

SAA-562    Non-Fiction Film Practice  



Eligibility for Admission

The MA in Arts & Aesthetics Admission to the MA is through an entrance examination. Candidates with a Bachelor’s degree under 10+2+3 pattern of education with at least 50% marks are eligible to appear for the exam. For details about the examination, dates, and application forms please see www.jnu.ac.in and follow the links in ‘admissions.’ Candidates seeking admission to the MA are expected to have broad understanding of the history, practice and theory of Cinema, Visual culture and the Performing arts. Entrance Examination papers from previous years are available at https://admissions.jnu.ac.in/searchquestionpaper.aspx.


A list of recommended readings to prepare for the entrance exam, can be found by clicking here


The School also accepts international students; the rules and procedures for their admission can be found on the JNU website: https://admissions.jnu.ac.in/


All prospective students are advised to look up the JNU website to download admission forms.

A warm welcome to the modified and updated website of the Centre for East Asian Studies. The East Asian region has been at the forefront of several path-breaking changes since 1970s beginning with the redefining the development architecture with its State-led development model besides emerging as a major region in the global politics and a key hub of the sophisticated technologies. The Centre is one of the thirteen Centres of the School of International Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi that provides a holistic understanding of the region.

Initially, established as a Centre for Chinese and Japanese Studies, it subsequently grew to include Korean Studies as well. At present there are eight faculty members in the Centre. Several distinguished faculty who have now retired include the late Prof. Gargi Dutt, Prof. P.A.N. Murthy, Prof. G.P. Deshpande, Dr. Nranarayan Das, Prof. R.R. Krishnan and Prof. K.V. Kesavan. Besides, Dr. Madhu Bhalla served at the Centre in Chinese Studies Programme during 1994-2006. In addition, Ms. Kamlesh Jain and Dr. M. M. Kunju served the Centre as the Documentation Officers in Chinese and Japanese Studies respectively.

The academic curriculum covers both modern and contemporary facets of East Asia as each scholar specializes in an area of his/her interest in the region. The integrated course involves two semesters of classes at the M. Phil programme and a dissertation for the M. Phil and a thesis for Ph. D programme respectively. The central objective is to impart an interdisciplinary knowledge and understanding of history, foreign policy, government and politics, society and culture and political economy of the respective areas. Students can explore new and emerging themes such as East Asian regionalism, the evolving East Asian Community, the rise of China, resurgence of Japan and the prospects for reunification of the Korean peninsula. Additionally, the Centre lays great emphasis on the building of language skills. The background of scholars includes mostly from the social science disciplines; History, Political Science, Economics, Sociology, International Relations and language.

Several students of the centre have been recipients of prestigious research fellowships awarded by Japan Foundation, Mombusho (Ministry of Education, Government of Japan), Saburo Okita Memorial Fellowship, Nippon Foundation, Korea Foundation, Nehru Memorial Fellowship, and Fellowship from the Chinese and Taiwanese Governments. Besides, students from Japan receive fellowship from the Indian Council of Cultural Relations.