Parsis in India and the Diaspora

Author: John Hinnells
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134067526
Format: PDF
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The Parsis are India's smallest minority community, yet they have exercised a huge influence on the country. As pioneers in education in nineteenth century India, and as leading figures in banking and commerce, medicine, law and journalism, they were at the forefront of India's industrial revolution. Parsis were also at the heart of the creation of the Indian National Congress in the nineteenth century and contributed some of the great leaders through into the twentieth century. This book, written by notable experts in the field, explores various key aspects of the Parsis. It spans the time from their arrival in India to the twenty-first century. All contributions are based on original research and most of them use hitherto unexplored primary sources. The first part of the book analyzes the topic of Parsi migration from very different points of view; the second part presents leading Parsi personalities of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The final part is a set of studies of the Parsi traditional community in Bombay and an examination of three different diasporas. The concluding chapter, by John R. Hinnells, shows the range of contributions of Parsis to modern India and also in the diasporas, where the Zoroastrian religion is practiced in more countries around the globe than at any time in its history of more than 3,000 years.

South Asian Religions on Display

Author: Knut A. Jacobsen
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 113407459X
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Religious procession is a significant dimension of religion in South Asia. Processions are central not only in Hinduism, but also Islam, Christianity, Jainism and Sikhism, which have large procession rituals. The last years have seen an increase in processions and ritualizations of space both in South Asia and in the South Asian Diaspora. Processions are religious display events and the increase in processions are functions of religious pluralism and competition about public space as well as economic prosperity and a revival of religious identities. Processions often bring together religion and politics since they are about public space, domination and contestation. Written by leading specialists on religious processions and ritualization of public space in South Asia and in the Diaspora, this volume presents current research on the interpretations of the role of processions, the recent increase in processions and changes in the procession traditions. South Asian Religions on Display will appeal to students and scholars of Asian studies, anthropology, religion and political science.

Shakespeare and Indian Cinemas

Author: Poonam Trivedi
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 9781138946927
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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This book is the first to explore the rich archive of Shakespeare in Indian cinemas, including less familiar, Indian language cinemas to contribute to the assessment of the expanding repertoire of Shakespeare films worldwide. Essays cover mainstream and regional Indian cinemas such as the better known Tamil and Kannada, as well as the less familiar regions of the North Eastern states. The volume visits diverse filmic genres, starting from the earliest silent cinema, to diasporic films made for global audiences, television films, independent films, and documentaries, thus expanding the very notion of 'Indian cinema' while also looking at the different modalities of deploying Shakespeare specific to these genres. Shakespeareans and film scholars provide an alternative history of the development of Indian cinemas through its negotiations with Shakespeare focusing on the inter-textualities between Shakespearean theatre, regional cinema, performative traditions, and literary histories in India. The purpose is not to catalog examples of Shakespearean influence but to analyze the interplay of the aesthetic, historical, socio-political, and theoretical contexts in which Indian language films have turned to Shakespeare and to what purpose. The discussion extends from the content of the plays to the modes of their cinematic and intermedial translations. It thus tracks the intra-Indian flows and cross-currents between the various film industries, and intervenes in the politics of multiculturalism and inter/intraculturalism built up around Shakespearean appropriations. Contributing to current studies in global Shakespeare, this book marks a discursive shift in the way Shakespeare on screen is predominantly theorized, as well as how Indian cinema, particularly 'Shakespeare in Indian cinema' is understood.

Women Religion and the Body in South Asia

Author: Kristin Hanssen
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 135135759X
Format: PDF, ePub
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Noted for their haunting melodies and enigmatic lyrics, Bauls have been portrayed as spiritually enlightened troubadours traveling around the countryside in West Bengal in India and in Bangladesh. As emblems of Bengali culture, Bauls have long been a subject of scholarly debates which center on their esoteric practices, and middle class imaginaries of the category Baul. Adding to this literature, the intimate ethnography presented in this book recounts the life stories of members from a single family, shining light on their past and present tribulations bound up with being poor and of a lowly caste. It shows that taking up the Baul path is a means of softening the stigma of their lower caste identity in that religious practice, where women play a key role, renders the body pure. The path is also a source of monetary income in that begging is considered part of their vocation. For women, the Baul path has the added implication of lessening constraints of gender. While the book describes a family of singers, it also portrays the wider society in which they live, showing how their lives connect and interlace with other villagers, a theme not previously explored in literature on Bauls. A novel approach to the study of women, the body and religion, this book will be of interest to undergraduates and graduates in the field of the anthropology. In addition, it will appeal to students of everyday religious lives as experienced by the poor, through case studies in South Asia. The book provides further evidence that renunciation in South Asia is not a uniform path, despite claims to the contrary. There is also a special interest in Bauls among those familiar with the Bengali speaking region. While this book speaks to that interest, its wider appeal lies in the light it sheds on religion, the body, life histories, and poverty.

Health and Religious Rituals in South Asia

Author: Fabrizio Ferrari
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 113684628X
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Drawing on original fieldwork, this book develops a fresh methodological approach to the study of indigenous understandings of disease as possession, and looks at healing rituals in different South Asian cultural contexts. Contributors discuss the meaning of 'disease', 'possession' and 'healing' in relation to South Asian religions, including Hinduism, Islam, Buddhism and Sikhism, and how South Asians deal with the divine in order to negotiate health and wellbeing. The book goes on to look at goddesses, gods and spirits as a cause and remedy of a variety of diseases, a study that has proved significant to the ethics and politics of responding to health issues. It contributes to a consolidation and promotion of indigenous ways as a method of understanding physical and mental imbalances through diverse conceptions of the divine. Chapters offer a fascinating overview of healing rituals in South Asia and provide a full-length, sustained discussion of the interface between religion, ritual, and folklore. The book presents a fresh insight into studies of Asian Religion and the History of Medicine.

The Routledge Companion to the Study of Religion

Author: John Hinnells
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1135252858
Format: PDF, ePub
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The Routledge Companion to the Study of Religion is a major resource for courses in Religious Studies. It begins by explaining the most important methodological approaches to religion, including psychology, philosophy, anthropology and comparative study, before moving on to explore a wide variety of critical issues, such as gender, science, fundamentalism, ritual, and new religious movements. Written by renowned international specialists, this new edition: includes eight new chapters, including post-structuralism, religion and economics, religion and the environment, religion and popular culture, and sacred space surveys the history of religious studies and the key disciplinary approaches explains why the study of religion is relevant in today’s world highlights contemporary issues such as globalization, diaspora and politics includes annotated reading lists, a glossary and summaries of key points to assist student learning.

The Other in South Asian Religion Literature and Film

Author: Diana Dimitrova
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317937325
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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This book introduces the term "otherism" and looks at the discourse of otherism and the issue of otherness in South Asian religion, literature and film. It examines cultural questions related to the human condition of being the "other," of the process of "othering" and of the representation of "otherness" and its religious, cultural and ideological implications. The book applies the perspectives of ideological criticism, theories of hybridity, orientalism, nationalism, and gender and queer studies to gain new insights into the literature, film and culture of South Asia. It looks at the different ways of interpreting "otherness" today. The book goes on to analyze the ideological implications of the creation of "otherness" with regard to religious and cultural identity and the legitimation of power, as well as how the representation of "otherness" reflects the power structures of contemporary societies in South Asia. Offering a well-thought-out reflection on important cultural questions as well as a deep insight into the study of religion and "otherness" in South Asian literature and film, this book is a pioneering project that is of interest to scholars of South Asian Studies and South Asian religions, literatures and cultures.

Law and Identity in Colonial South Asia

Author: Mitra Sharafi
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139868063
Format: PDF, Kindle
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This book explores the legal culture of the Parsis, or Zoroastrians, an ethnoreligious community unusually invested in the colonial legal system of British India and Burma. Rather than trying to maintain collective autonomy and integrity by avoiding interaction with the state, the Parsis sank deep into the colonial legal system itself. From the late eighteenth century until India's independence in 1947, they became heavy users of colonial law, acting as lawyers, judges, litigants, lobbyists, and legislators. They de-Anglicized the law that governed them and enshrined in law their own distinctive models of the family and community by two routes: frequent intra-group litigation often managed by Parsi legal professionals in the areas of marriage, inheritance, religious trusts, and libel, and the creation of legislation that would become Parsi personal law. Other South Asian communities also turned to law, but none seems to have done so earlier or in more pronounced ways than the Parsis.

Zoroastrians

Author: Mary Boyce
Publisher: Psychology Press
ISBN: 9780415239028
Format: PDF, ePub
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Zoroastrianism is significant in the history of religions. It can be traced back to a remote, possibly even Indo-European, past. This element links Zoroastrianism with the beliefs of ancient (Vedic) India, and survives as a subordinate part of what is one of the earliest revealed religions. Zoroaster's own teachings have moreover a highly spiritual and ethical content, which makes them a rewarding study in themselves. This book attempts to trace the continuous history of the faith from the time it was preached by Zoroaster down to the present day - a span of about 3500 years. First taught among nomads on the Asian steppes, Zoroastrianism became the state religion of the three great Iranian empires and had a remarkable influence on other world faiths: to the east on northern Buddhism, to the west on Judaism, Christianity and Islam. With the conquest of Iran by the Muslim Arabs, Zoroastrianism lost its secular power but continued to survive as a minority faith. Despite its antiquity, it remains, therefore, a living religion.

Orientalism and Religion

Author: Richard King
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134632347
Format: PDF, Docs
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Orientalism and Religion offers us a timely discussion of the implications of contemporary post-colonial theory for the study of religion. Richard King examines the way in which notions such as mysticism, religion, Hinduism and Buddhism are taken for granted. He shows us how religion needs to be reinterpreted along the lines of cultural studies. Drawing on a variety of post-structuralist and post-colonial thinkers, such as Foucault, Gadamer, Said, and Spivak, King provides us with a challenging series of reflections on the nature of Religious Studies and Indology.