AR3596 - Directed Research Projects - By Priyanka Kanhare
AR3596- Directed Research Projects
Faculty: Priyanka Kanhare
Ethnographic study of Fairs and Fairgrounds in India
The word "mela" originated from the Sanskrit word meaning - "assembly", which means a fair or Hindu festival. It is
typically an essential component of a temporary fair, with scheduled times ranging from one day to several weeks.
Each country, state, town, or village has its own sense of celebration in fairs, each having a different meaning and
different essence, which makes them different from each other. There are various types of fairs, starting from street
fairs, festivals, county fairs, state fairs, trade fairs, travelling carnivals, cultural fairs, etc. India is famous for its festivals
and fairs, which are either religious fairs or celebrations of harvest seasons, forming an integral part of its socio-
cultural setup. They are varied in origin. They attract a large number of people from distant places. This research will
direct students towards an ethnographic study of fairs and fairgrounds, with a focus on: i) constructing a visual
narrative of this cultural landscape; and ii) documenting and analysing the temporalality of space and structure. It will
also be a means of collating data and developing inductive research.