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Expressing Narratives of Panchatantra through Dance in Chennai to teach Lessons of Life

Stories of Panchatantra are all about separation of friends, gaining of friends, war and peace, loss of gains and ill-considered action or rash deeds

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Dancing to stories of Panchatantra
Indian Dance Form. Pixabay
  • A dance narration was organized as a part of a recent summer program for high school pass outs at IIT-Madras
  • The recital is based on the stories of Panchatantra, also known as five principles of life that are the ancient Indian collection of animal fables
  • These principles of life were narrated to the princes in the form of tales by Vishnu Sharma

Chennai, June 29, 2017: Dancing is a form of expression that exhibits power to educate one of the practical ways of life. When a narrative is communicated through dance, it leaves an indelible impression on the learner. On similar grounds, a dance narration was organised was organised as part of a recent summer programme for high school pass outs at IIT-Madras.The recital is based on the stories of Panchatantra, also known as five principles of life that are the ancient Indian collection of animal fables.

The Research Science Initiative-Chennai programme, organised by PSBB Group of Schools is a six-week exhaustive research programme as part of which selected participants are trained in different subjects under experts from reputed colleges and bestowed life lessons through amusing and educative cultural programmes.

Being a part of educational programme this year, dancer Pavithra Srinivasan was summoned to teach students on the stories of Panchatantra through the dance form – Bharatanatyam.

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According to Pavithra, the reason behind choosing the stories of Panchatantra was presenting the examples related to all types of human conditions.

When such narratives are expressed through a visual medium like dance, it prompts speculation of thoughts thus creating an in-depth understanding of the subject and spurring critical reasoning skills among the viewer, says Pavithra.

She further added, “The most interesting aspect about the Panchatantra is that the words of wisdom are imparted by animals interacting with humans.”

Pavithra chose the story of the monkey and the crocodile for narration The tale teaches how to think intelligently in difficult situations. Another story of a crow who tries to emulate the peacock is a lesson which edifies that one should cherish its own peculiar character.

Psychologists confirm that such setups of storytelling help the viewer to easily perceive the message hidden in the story.

“Storytelling involves a combination of audio-visual and kinesthetic (hand movements by storyteller) movements. This makes it easier for the viewer to visualise the story and learn it faster. Anything that we picture stays in the brain for a longer time. This makes storytelling a powerful learning tool,” says psychologist Dr Nappinai Seran.

It is believed that Panchatantra was inscribed in the 3rd century BC by Vishnu Sharma. Sharma devised this medium of instruction to educate the three sons of the king Amarasakthi. Panchatantra according to Sharma

Panchatantra is all about separation of friends, gaining of friends, war and peace, loss of gains and ill-considered action or rash deeds. These principles of life were narrated to the princes in the form of tales. Many of these stories have formed the background of Tamil literary works like Silappadikaram, the tales have also found a spot in the Western literary works as well, having been primarily translated into classical Persian.

– by Naina Mishra of Newsgram. Twitter: @Nainamishr94

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Researchers At IIT-Madras Develop AI Technology To Convert Brain Signals Into Language

Brain signals are typically electrical signals

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Brain
Electrical signals, brain signals, or any signal in general, are waveforms which are decoded to meaningful information using physical law or mathematical transforms such as Fourier Transform or Laplace Transform. Pixabay

Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT-Madras) have developed an Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology to convert brain signals of speech impaired humans into language, the Institute said on Monday.

The researchers can potentially interpret nature’s signals such as the plant photosynthesis process or their response to external forces.

Electrical signals, brain signals, or any signal in general, are waveforms which are decoded to meaningful information using physical law or mathematical transforms such as Fourier Transform or Laplace Transform.

These physical laws and mathematical transforms are science-based languages discovered by renowned scientists such as Isaac Newton and Jean-Baptiste Joseph Fourier.

“The output result is the ionic current, which represents the flow of ions which are charged particles. These electrically driven ionic current signals are worked on to be interpreted as human language meaning speech. This would tell us what the ions are trying to communicate with us,” said study researcher Vishal Nandigana, Assistant Professor, Fluid Systems Laboratory, Department of Mechanical Engineering, IIT Madras.

“When we succeed with this effort, we will get electrophysiological data from the neurologists to get brain signals of speech impaired humans to know what they are trying to communicate,” Nandigana added.

The researchers are working on how these real data signal can be decoded into human languages such as English, and if the real data signal can be interpreted as a simple human language that all human beings can understand.

Brain signals are typically electrical signals. These are wave-like patterns with spikes, humps and crusts which can be converted into simple human language, meaning speech, using Artificial Intelligence and Deep Learning algorithms.

Brain
Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology Madras (IIT-Madras) have developed an Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology to convert brain signals of speech impaired humans into language, the Institute said on Monday. Pixabay

This enabled the researchers to read the direct electrical signals of the brain.

They tested this concept by getting experimental electrical signals through experiments in the laboratory to get signals from nanofluidic transport inside nanopores.

ALSO READ: Higher Poverty Associated with Increased Youth Suicide Risk: Researchers

The nanopores were filled with saline solution and mediated using an electric field, the Institute said in a statement. (IANS)