South Asia FLAS fellow Quinn Clark was awarded a Summer 2015 FLAS fellowship to study Urdu at the American Institute of Indian Studies in Lucknow, India. He writes:
“In Indian history, ‘nawab’ was an honorific title for regional rulers during and after the Mughal Period. Like many other kings, the Nawabs flexed their power through the commissioning of impressive architecture, ornate dress, and lavish lifestyles. But the nawabs also acquired their reputations through the patronage of the arts and an appreciation of life’s finer things. And Lucknow was the city of many of the great Nawabs of India. Today in Lucknow, ‘nawabi’ has come to describe something refined and somewhat decadent. Something fit for a Nawab. And so as a FLAS Fellow in a homestay in old Lucknow, I have enjoyed my share of “nawabi food”. While the amount of kabobs and biryani has stretched my waistline, it has also increased my ability to connect with locals in Lucknow’s old city. A tremendous amount of pride is put into the array of Lucknow’s decadent, delicate eating options. It sometimes seems that people enjoy describing these nawabi dishes as much as they do consuming them. And so I’ve learned the value of connecting over one of the most basic constituents of life: a meal. Even if – occasionally – that meal is fit for a king.”
FLAS Fellowships are funded by the International and Foreign Language Education office of the U.S. Department of Education. FLAS fellowships support undergraduate, graduate and professional students in acquiring modern foreign languages and area or international studies competencies. Students from all UW departments and professional schools are encouraged to apply. Find out more about the FLAS Fellowship here.