Images of the Body in India

Author: Axel Michaels
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1136703934
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This intriguing book engages with the concept of the body in its cultural context by acknowledging and demonstrating that the human body is understood differently in Western and Indian cultures. The contributors go on to show that any attempt to put forward a single concept of the body within Indian culture would be misleading. Divided into three parts, the book examines the considerable and often conflicting variations in body images and body concepts. In Part One the contributors focus on the representation of the body in religious and philosophical texts; representations that emerged from reading, translating and interpreting classical writings from diverse historical and anthropological approaches. Through predominantly ethnographic studies, Part Two explores the role of the body in narratives and ritual performance, from dance to ritualistic ceremonies. Visualisation processes of the body are examined in Part Three, focusing on developments in modern and contemporary periods: from visual practices at the Mughal court, to the multiple bodies of the bride, and the influence of new media. This volume is a fascinating collection of articles for those in the fields of sociology and anthropology, history, religion, cultural studies and South Asian studies.

Exploring the Senses

Author: Axel Michaels
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317342100
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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This fascinating volume offers a transdisciplinary and transcultural approach to understanding the senses by exploring themes in anthropologies of sound, sight, smell, taste, touch, and movement as expressed through aesthetic, perceptual, religious, and spiritual experiences. In drawing upon comparative perspectives from Indian and Western theories, the essays demonstrate the integral relation of senses with each other as well as with allied notions of the body, emotion and cultural memory. Stressing the continued relevance of senses as they manifest in a globalized world under the influence of new media, this work will interest scholars of anthropology, cultural studies, sociology, ritual studies, psychology, religion, philosophy, and history.

Buddhist Stupas in South Asia

Author: Jason Hawkes
Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
ISBN: 9780195698862
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Bringing together the latest research on stupas in South Asia, this volume includes new conceptual paradigms as well as new approaches to monuments, sculpture, material culture, and textual interpretation. The collection utilizes archaeological, art historical and epigraphic evidence in broader cultural and historical frameworks to enrich our understanding, not only of stupa monuments but also ancient Buddhism and the wider history to which they pertain.

Visualizing Medieval Performance

Author: Elina Gertsman
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351537377
Format: PDF, ePub
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Taking a fresh look at the interconnections between medieval images, texts, theater, and practices of viewing, reading and listening, this explicitly interdisciplinary volume explores various manifestations of performance and meanings of performativity in the Middle Ages. The contributors - from their various perspectives as scholars of art history, religion, history, literary studies, theater studies, music and dance - combine their resources to reassess the complexity of expressions and definitions of medieval performance in a variety of different media. Among the topics considered are interconnections between ritual and theater; dynamics of performative readings of illuminated manuscripts, buildings and sculptures; linguistic performances of identity; performative models of medieval spirituality; social and political spectacles encoded in ceremonies; junctures between spatial configurations of the medieval stage and mnemonic practices used for meditation; performances of late medieval music that raise questions about the issues of historicity, authenticity, and historical correctness in performance; and tensions inherent in the very notion of a medieval dance performance.

Literary Cultures in History

Author: Sheldon I. Pollock
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520228219
Format: PDF, Mobi
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"A superb collection. This pathbreaking book is sure to have wide and lasting interest not only for students of South Asian literature, but for anyone interested in the role of literature in cultural self-definition, conflict and change."--David Damrosch, President, American Comparative Literature Association and editor of The Longman Anthology British Literature "This tour-de-force might be not only a landmark in Indian cultural history, but a major accomplishment in the scholarship of global cultures, inviting us to think critically about forms of history and communities of literature."--Walter D. Mignolo, author of Local Histories/Global Designs: Coloniality, Subaltern Knowledges and Border Thinking

Ritual Theory Ritual Practice

Author: Catherine Bell
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199760381
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Ritual studies today figures as a central element of religious discourse for many scholars around the world. Ritual Theory, Ritual Practice, Catherine Bell's sweeping and seminal work on the subject, helped legitimize the field. In this volume, Bell re-examines the issues, methods, and ramifications of our interest in ritual by concentrating on anthropology, sociology, and the history of religions. Now with a new foreword by Diane Jonte-Pace, Bell's work is a must-read for understanding the evolution of the field of ritual studies and its current state.

Images and Empires

Author: Paul S. Landau
Publisher: Univ of California Press
ISBN: 0520229495
Format: PDF
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This volume considers the meaning and power of images in African history and culture. It assembles a wide-ranging collection of essays dealing with specific visual forms, including monuments cinema, cartoons, domestic and professional photography, body art, world fairs, and museum exhibits.

Getting Married

Author: Niels Gutschow
Publisher: Otto Harrassowitz
ISBN: 9783447066631
Format: PDF, ePub
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Getting Married is the third and final volume on Hindu and Buddhist life-cycle rituals among the Newars of the ancient city of Bhaktapur in Nepal. It combines extensive fieldwork and the edition and translation of relevant ritual handbooks. While Handling Death, the first volume, focused on the dynamics of death and ancestor rituals, and Growing Up, the second volume, focused on the rituals of childhood, adolescence and youth (especially the male and female initiation rituals), the present volume deals with a number of rituals related to marriage. After an introductory overview of studies on marriage rituals in Nepal the authors give some basic marriage rules of Hindu and Buddhist Newars, the social topography and hierarchy, the families of the marriage partners as well as the problems of endogamy and exogamy in Bhaktapur. They present a detailed description of Hindu and Buddhist marriage rituals among Newars (which are partly documented on the DVD included in this book) and come to relevant conclusions regarding life-cycle rituals in general and the place marriage rituals occupy in Newar society and Hinduism. Furthermore the texts used by Brahmin and Buddhist priests during these rituals are edited and translated and complemented by comprehensive Appendices including a list of elements of Newar rituals and mantras as well as a mantra and general index to all three volumes. These richly illustrated books have been highly appreciated by the scholarly community as a unique attempt to provide a comprehensive ethno-indological study of all major life-cycle rituals of a certain Hindu and Buddhist community.

South Asian Diaspora Narratives

Author: Amit Sarwal
Publisher: Springer
ISBN: 9811036292
Format: PDF, Mobi
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This book analyses the metaphysical and poetical notions and the processes of ‘rooting into a culture’ and ‘routing out of a culture’ in the context of South Asian diaspora in Australia. These diasporic narratives are often characterised by bifurcated and dislocated identities that exist in a liminal space, in-between two identities, two cultures, and two histories. Yet, ‘home’ remains, through acts of imagination, remembering and re-creation, an important reference point. The author argues that a clearer notion of politics of location is required to distinguish between the different kinds of ‘dislocation’ the immigrants suffer, both psychologically and sociologically. The diaspora is Australia is an under-studied topic, and this book fills a lacuna in South Asian diaspora studies by analysing and calling upon a wide range of works in this field from historical, anthropological, sociological, cultural, and literary studies.

Ritual

Author: Catherine Bell
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199739471
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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From handshakes and toasts to chant and genuflection, ritual pervades our social interactions and religious practices. Still, few of us could identify all of our daily and festal ritual behaviors, much less explain them to an outsider. Similarly, because of the variety of activities that qualify as ritual and their many contradictory yet, in many ways, equally legitimate interpretations, ritual seems to elude any systematic historical and comparative scrutiny. In this book, Catherine Bell offers a practical introduction to ritual practice and its study; she surveys the most influential theories of religion and ritual, the major categories of ritual activity, and the key debates that have shaped our understanding of ritualism. Bell refuses to nail down ritual with any one definition or understanding. Instead, her purpose is to reveal how definitions emerge and evolve and to help us become more familiar with the interplay of tradition, exigency, and self-expression that goes into constructing this complex social medium.