The volume comprises papers presented at an international symposium on 'Transmissions and Transformations: Learning through the Arts in Asia' organized by the IIC-Asia Project. The essays, by educationists from different Asian countries, highlight the diverse as also the distinctive ways of transmitting knowledge through the arts and the crafts. The essays are a significant contribution to the recent focus on evolving alternative pedagogical tools in the formal and non-formal systems of education.
The international symposium, held in 2005, gathered on one platform people from different parts of Asia-Singapore, Malaysia, Korea, Thailand, Hong Kong, Mongolia, Kyrgyzstan, Pakistan and Australia, besides India-to explore the Asian methodologies of transmission of knowledge. The participants shared the fund of their experience on innovative projects to use the arts as a tool in the educational system for sensitizing the younger generation towards their cultural heritage. The conference stressed the need for identifying the characteristic features of the numerous strategies for transmitting information, knowledge and techniques that existed in the Asian continent, not only through the written word but also through the oral, the visual and the performative mediums.
The IIC-Asia Project was launched in 1997. In the first phase, seminars were organized, each focusing on a particular region of Asia and covering its social, economic and political dimensions. In the second phase, a thematic approach was adopted. A number of themes were thus covered: India and Asia: Aesthetic Discourses; Transmissions and Transformations: Learning through the Arts in Asia; Embroidery in Asia: Sui-Dhaga-Crossing Boundaries through Needle and Thread; and Culture of Indigo: Exploring the Asian Panorama-Plant, Product, Power. The IIC-Asia Project has also compiled an anthology of Asian Women's Writing. Four festivals of documentary films made by Asian women filmmakers were also organized.