Lecture „Naodongfang (鬧洞房): A Study about Contemporary Chinese Wedding Games with Sexual Connotation“

Xuan Wang photo 1aXuan Madeline Wang

Ph. D. Candidate, Department of Folklore, Memorial University of Newfoundland, Canada

Visiting Ph.D., University of Tartu, Estonia

Naodongfang (鬧洞房): A Study about Contemporary Chinese Wedding Games with Sexual Connotation

If you paid attention to Oscar Academy Award winner director Ang Lee’s movie The Wedding Banquet (《喜宴》1993), you may have noticed a plot that the American Chinese were practising a series of lively and funny wedding games. This custom is called Naodongfang (鬧洞房)  which indicates wedding games and pranks with sexual instructions that are held by tricksters before, during or after the wedding ceremony. The first officially written reference to it appears in TheHistory of Han Dynasty: Geographic Records (《漢書∙地理志》) around 32-92 BCE.

Over its two thousand years’ history, Naodongfang has relatively established the foundation for the core elements of dirty jokes and sex pranks. This lecture, based on my ongoing PhD thesis, mainly features three topics: 1. the significance of humor, play and jokes in human daily life (broad comparisons with western equivalents such as Shiveree, bachelor parties, mock weddings, groom’s dances, etc.), 2. the significance of folklore subverting authority (unsuccessful efforts, which past governments had made to ban and stigmatize the practice, prove that Naodongfang has essential functions for societies and people), 3. a double-sided sword in gender dynamics (are women victims of the traditions and folklore when sexual assaults happen during Naodongfang?). In conclusion, by answering these questions, I will try to explain why people practise absurd wedding games across the worldwide.

Lecture will be held on 28 of May 2018 at 17:00 at the Institute of Asian and Transcultural Studies, Vilnius University,
A. Binderio aud. (Universiteto Str. 5, Vilnius)


Lecture „Jewish Lithuanian writers discovering India: Textual, Personal and Political Journey“ by Dr. Shimon Lev

S.Lev copy 1While working on my major research focusing on the textual, personal and political encounter between the Jewish and Zionist world with India and its culture, I noticed the relatively large amount of publications about India by Jewish Lithuanian writers and travelers. These phenomena started from the Haskala movement (Enlightenment) till the establishment of the states of India and Israel respectively. In my lecture I will discuss the contribution of these intellectuals and travelers and the role they played in "discovering" India to the Jewish world in Europe and later to the Jewish population in Palestine.

Public lecture will be held on 30 of May 2018 at 17:00
at the Institute of Asian and Transcultural Studies, Vilnius University, Hindi k. room (Universiteto Str. 5, Vilnius). 

Dr. Shimon Lev is aמ artist, curator and researcher in Indian studies focousing on Gandhi, Tagore and the encounter between the Jewish and Zionist world and India. Lev published widely, curated and exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions. He received his PhD at the Hebrew University in 2016 entitled: Clear Are the Paths of India: The Cultural and Political Encounter between Indians and Jews in the Context of the Growth of their Respective National Movements. In 2016 he curated the exhibition the Camera man: Women and Men Photograph Jerusalem 1900-1950. (Tower of David Museum, Jerusalem). These days he works on the second exhibition which will deal with the history of photography in Jerusalem 1949 -1977. His publications include (partial list): The Camera man: Women and Men Photograph Jerusalem 1900-1950 Tower of David Museum, 2016). The Story of Mahatma Gandhi and Hermann Kallenbach (New Delhi: Orient BlackSwan 2012), Vesheyodea Lishol, Tel Aviv: Xargol Publisher, 1998, (Heb.). He was also the academic editor of the Hebrew edition of M. K. Gandhi: Satyagraha in South Africa (Tel Aviv: Babel, 2014) and M. K. Gandhi: Hind Swaraj (Tel Aviv: Adam Veolam, 2016), Clear are the Paths of Indis, The Cultural and Political Encounter Between Indians and Jews in the Context of their Respective National Movement, (Tel Aviv: Gama, 2018), From Lithuania to Santiniketan: Schlomith Flaum, and Rabindranath Tagore, (New Delhi-Vilnius, 2018). Lev teaches in Hadassah Academic College in Jerusalem in the department of Photography Communication.


Prof. Audriaus Beinoriaus paskaita Gento universitete

Beinorius Gento universitete 201808-05-2018, Ghent University, Belgium

Astrology and Divination in India: Philosophical, Social and Religious Foundations

Lezing in het kader van de permanente vorming ‘Religieuze tradities van India’. In deze lezingenreeks zullen specialisten uit verschillende achtergronden u inkijk bieden in hun vakgebied. Hierbij komen diverse religieuze tradities aan bod die hun oorsprong vonden in India, zoals het boeddhisme, hindoeïsme en jainisme. Deze worden bovendien gekaderd binnen de geografische en culturele diversiteit die het Zuid-Aziatische subcontinent zo kenmerkt; van Tibet tot Sri Lanka, van Noord- tot Zuid-India.

De permanente vorming staat open voor iedereen met een interesse in Indische religie. Daar de meeste lezingen door buitenlandse gasten worden gegeven, is kennis Engels noodzakelijk.

Daugiau informacijos:


Public lecture “Dying to Save: How Youth are Fighting Terror in West Africa“

Daniel Agbigoa int

Daniel E. Agbiboa, Assistant Professor at George Mason University,

School for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (USA)

Dying to Save: How Youth are Fighting Terror in West Africa

Lecture will be held on 17 May, 2018  at 17:30

In most armed conflicts, youth are typically seen as rebels and foot soldiers of violent groups. This presentation rethinks the role of young people in Africa's armed conflicts, focusing on their positive contributions to peace building and development in their communities.

Lecture will be held at the Institute of Asian and Transcultural Studies, Vilnius University, J. Kovalevskis aud.
(Universiteto Str. 5, entrance from S. Daukantas courtyard). Download poster

Afri ko logo int




Lecture is co-organised by Africa Research and Consultancy Center AfriKo


Public lecture “Soft Power of Korea: Korean Wave Revisited”

VP Keum intProf. Hieyeon Keum (琴喜渊), Department of International Relations, University of Seoul (South Korea)

Soft Power of Korea: “Korean Wave Revisited”

Lecture will be held on 9th May, 2018  at 17:00

Hallyu, or Korean Wave has been referred as the South Korea’s Soft Power Invasion, not only limited to Asia but also to the rest of the world. It is also a new phenomenon that Korea’s popular culture is widely welcomed and liked by the people of the world, especially by Korean culture encompassing everything from music, movies, TV dramas to online games and Korean cuisine and beauty. However, it is not just the short phenomena but a collective of various elements of government policy, enterprise marketing, attractive contents. Like President Obama said, Korean Wave made South Korea’s top priority by the government.

South Korea is one of the countries in the world that dedicated a goal to become the world’s leading exported of popular culture. It is a success story of South Korea to develop and enhance its image not through the hard power but through Soft Power. What are the secrets to the success of Korean Wave and why people in the world like K-Pop?

Lecture will be held at the Institute of Asian and Transcultural Studies, Hindi room. Download poster


Dr. Feyza Görez viešos paskaitos

Feyza nuotr. intMaloniai kviečiame į dr. Feyza Görez viešas paskaitas Azijos ir transkultūrinių studijų centre

2018 m. balandžio 30 d. 17.00 val.

Chinese and Other Civilizations Practices of Castration

Eunuchism is an interesting phenomenon, which could be observed in almost every culture throughout the ages, in different forms and function. The practice was observed in many different cultures with different methods, and for different reasons. In old times, they were influential in private lives, bureaucracy, religious orders, politics, judiciary system, art, and other various parts of social life. Eunuchs still exist and even today, they are officially considered as the third gender in various countries. It will be covered, in this presentation, the physical and characteristic traits and the tragic lives of eunuchs, who can’t be ignored due to their numbers and the roles they played in society, and were sometimes humiliated, in other times feared or respected. It will also cover the castration methods in China, India, Europe, Russia and Ottoman Turkey, from antiquity to the 18th century which were performed on them, and how those methods evolved in time.

2018 m. gegužės 2 d. 17.00 val.

Chinese Pirate Zheng Shi and Her Extraordinary Life Story

The Presentation will discuss illegal maritime activities in the Canton region during the Qing Dynasty and the extraordinary life of Zheng Shi, the only female pirate of Asian history. Chinese piracy, whose origins go back to Annam, which lies within the borders of Vietnam today, had been continuing since the ancient times in the South Sea of the Canton area. While the pirates had appeared and disappeared since the era of Qianlong, the successful Qing emperor, they had never been as powerful as they were during the era of Jiaqing. It was never easy to knock down the Red Flag Fleet, led by Zheng Shi who was terrorizing the sea and the coast, at that time. Joining as the captive of a pirate and rapidly adapting to this life, Zheng Shi took the control of the fleet upon the death of her husband and ruled the whole South China Sea for ten years via the Sea Acts she enacted. Considering several platforms whereon the woman actually existed in a patriarchal society, woman involvement in such a male-dominated act as piracy, wherein even their presence on the sea was regarded as misfortune will be discussed within the historical framework.

Paskaitos vyks Vilniaus universiteto Azijos ir transkultūrinių studijų institute, J. Kovalevskio aud.

Renginio afiša


Vivek Shukla vieša paskaita

Vivek intChanging Hindi of Social Media and web based content

Languages are dynamic and they keep on changing, evolving and Hindi is no exception. The uses of social media have increased rapidly in last few years in India so had been the case with web based content.  This change had come not only on the level of content but also on the level of language. This talk is an attempt to underline those changes in the language of social media and of web based content.

Public lectures will be held on 20 of April 2018 at 17:00
at the Institute of Asian and Transcultural Studies, Vilnius University,
Hindi k. room (Universiteto Str. 5, entrance from S. Daukantas courtyard). 

 Vivek Shukla: A PhD IN Hindi translation from JNU, New Delhi. He teaches Hindi at Aarhus Universitet. Interested in social media he is working on Hindi swear words these days.

Kitos paskaitos indologams (apie vietą informuos lekt. K. Dolinina):

2018 m. balandžio 17 d. 9.00 val. paskaita „Bhakti period of Hindi Literature: an introduction“

 2018 m. balandžio 18 d. 9.00 val. paskaita „How Indians swear: an introduction“ (skirta 1 ir 3 kurso studentams)

2018 m. balandžio 18 d. 11.00 val. praktinis seminaras „Studying and translating Kabir“

Paskaitos afiša


Profesoriaus Upender Rao vieša paskaita

Profesorius Indija 99702018 m. balandžio 12 d. (ketvirtadienis) 13.00 val. kviečiame dalyvauti profesoriaus Upender Rao viešoje paskaitoje „Sanskrito literatūros ir jos etikos svarba šiuolaikinėje visuomenėje“. 

Paskaita vyks VU Azijos ir transkultūrinių studijų instituto Hindi k. kabinete.

The importance of Sanskrit literature and it’s ethics in present society

Sanskrit language is the store house of the great knowledge. Its literature is neglected in present times. But the literature of Sanskrit carries the world’s most valuable ethics and morality. Sanskrit language possesses universal ethics. Not only ethics, but it also possesses the enormous scientific literature. Sanskrit literature is known for its great poems and world famous dramas such as ‘Abhijnana Shakumtalam’ of great poet Kalidasa, who is famous for his best poetry and similes.

In Upanishad-texts, which were composed in Sanskrit in very ancient period one can find the serious discussion about the ultimate knowledge of ancient Indian sages. Besides, we have six systems of Indian philosophy and the great epics Ramayana and Mahabharata. The ancient medical system of ‘Ayurveda’, which was composed in Sanskrit, is a complete health system through holistic approach. It concentrates on all levels of body, mind, soul, living conditions and environment. Kautilya’s Arthashastra is one more renowned treatise of Sanskrit. We had well developed surgery in Sushruta Samhita. The astronomical observations and Vedic mathematics by Aryabhatta and Varahamihira of ancient India needs to be reopened once again.

Let’s see some of the gems from Sanskrit literature. In a text named ‘Nitisara’ (the essence of maxims) it is said on right conduct that- “Man is bound to experience the fruits of his good and bad actions. The karma does not diminish even after billions of days of Brahma unless one experiences fruits of karma”. And the same text says- One cannot earn or retain wealth without undergoing suffering. There is suffering in earning wealth as well as in spending it. Is not wealth the home of suffering? Thus the ethics of Sanskrit are very important in present day.

Prof. C. Upender Rao, School of Sanskrit and Indic Studies, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, 


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