Happy Diwali!

Diwali, the Hindu “festival of lights”, is celebrated this week around the world, specifically in many nations in South Asia and in South Asian communities around the globe. Also known as Deepavali, this five day festival celebrates the triumph of good over evil, which is symbolized by the lighting of clay lamps which are placed outside one’s home. The lamps are often combined with decorative folk art designs, called Rangoli, drawn on floors and courtyards with colored rice, sand, and other traditional materials. Originally a harvest festival, the blessings of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth, are also sought by the lighting of the Diwali lamps. Celebrations, which have regional variations, include family gatherings, fireworks, bonfires, and the sharing of sweets. In celebration of Diwali and the upcoming holiday season, the Libraries’ Diversity Cluster encourages you to learn more about this holiday and other holidays and festivals throughout the world.

Here are some sources to get you started:

The book of Hindu festivals and ceremonies / Om Lata Bahadur King Library (2nd floor) | BL1239.72 .B353 1994

The story of Divaali / retold by Jatinder Verma ; illustrated by Nilesh Mistry King Library, Ground Floor, IMC, Juv | BL1139.25 .V47 2002

Religious traditions in modern South Asia / Jacqueline Suthren Hirst and John Zavos King Library (2nd floor) | BL1055 .S88 2011

Invoking Lakshmi : the goddess of wealth in song and ceremony / Constantina Rhodes King Library (2nd floor) | BL1225.L32 R46 2010

Holiday symbols and customs : a guide / edited by Helene Henderson King Reference | GT3930 .T48 2009 | LIB USE ONLY

Encyclopedia of holidays and celebrations : a country-by-country guide / Matthew Dennis, editor King Reference | GT3930 .E53 2006 v.1-3 | LIB USE ONLY

Also, you might want to check out the Indian Students Association’s annual Diwali show, My Big Fat Indian Wedding, this Friday and Saturday. It's always a great production! For more details, click here.

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