Chetana Nagavajara


March 28, 2017
In this interview, IRC-Fellow Chetana Nagavajara speaks about his research for his highly acclaimed book Brecht and France (1994) as well as on his perspectives on literature, performance, and the interweaving of performance cultures and research cultures. Educated at Cambridge and Tübingen and now Professor Emeritus of German at Silpakorn University, Thailand, Nagavajara is a scholar of comparative literature with extensive experience in performance – in Thailand as well as in Germany, France, the U.K., and the USA. Reflecting on his past experiences at the International Research Center, Nagavajara demonstrates the enormous potential of research that crosses disciplinary and cultural boundaries. read more
August 8, 2016
IRC-Fellow Chetana Nagavajara is a music lover. During his fellowship in 2015 he not only closely followed the program of Musikfest Berlin, a renowned orchestra festival, where top international orchestras, instrumental and choral ensembles and the great symphony orchestras of the city of Berlin together present an ambitious festival program with a new thematic focus each year. Prof. Nagavajara also put into words his impressions, thoughts, and criticism of some of the concerts and now shares these reviews with us. A treasure chest of passionate, critical and questioning reflections. read more
September 12, 2009
Interweaving Performance Cultures are encounters of various kinds in which performance practices, conventions, traditions, innovations and theories enter into an integrative, cross-cultural dialogue and/or interaction out of which emerges a seamless unity that enriches mutual understanding and appreciation of contemporary global cohesion. read more
September 12, 2009
At the time of writing this essay (March 2009), an exhibition entitled “Bangkok 226” had just come to a close at the newly created Bangkok Art and Culture Centre. My expectation was to see an exhibition of works in the visual arts that could tell the story of how Bangkok evolved over the past 200 years. In other words, I had expected those works to speak to me on their own terms and be brought together in this specific exhibition in such a way as to engage in a seamless narrative. What I saw confused me. The choice of artworks which had been borrowed from various museums and collections as well as those specifically commissioned for this exhibition could not, on the whole, be justified on the grounds of their aesthetic value. Walking through the exhibition I soon realized that the organizers had had in mind a documentary on the history of Bangkok. Large panels with detailed accounts of the city’s historical development and descriptions of the individual exhibits had been put up. In the spirit of a documentary, the word seemed to have been granted supremacy over visual expression. I was not sure whether this was intentional. read more