Open lecture: Faith, Fatalism and Astrology in Indian Cinema


India Centre at Kaunas University of Technology is inviting to an open lecture by Dr Saurabh Kwatra of Indian Institute of Management, Udaipur, India.

About the lecture

From ‘Raja Harishchandra’, the first official Indian film (1913) until recent Bollywood releases of 2020, some things in Indian cinema haven’t changed much. One of these is what could be called the fatalistic view of life or perhaps a subtler ‘theory of karma’. On the other hand, astrology or Jyotish as called in India is even more deep-rooted in culture, tradition, religion and hence everyday life. It is not uncommon for an average Indian to seek the advice of Divinity via these astrologers, god-men, occultists, fortune readers, etc. least twice in life majorly. Thus, a consequential overlap between astrology & cinema appears unavoidable.

With examples of films taken at every step of his talk, the scholar is aiming at communicating the intricate tapestry of Indian society, religion, astrology with cinema through ages.

About the speaker

Dr Saurabh Kwatra ‘Resolve’, an Anglo-Indian by ancestry lives across India & Northern Europe. Professionally, he is an Adjunct Professor, Xavier Institute of Engineering, Mahim, Mumbai (Xavier Group); Visiting Faculty, IIT Bombay; Session Leader, IIM Udaipur Incubation Centre, IIM Udaipur along with running his technical, patent consulting and STEM teaching organization, Trimmed Innovations. He has been associated with Massachusetts Institute of Technology severally during summer programs (2015 and 2017) and will be organizing/hosting an MIT Solveathon in India in 2020 in partnership with MIT Solve, MIT. His favourite domain is material, labour, effort reducing (trimming) eventually leading to cost-cutting in technical products and processes.

His interest in Indian astrology and its interweaving into cinema and society stems from his (The Times of India Group) days where he was Senior Expert for more than 3 years. Association with all segments of society including many film celebrities and was common-place and part of the job.


February 13 d. 13:00

Room 113 (Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities Building)

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