India and South Asian Studies

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Searching for Ashoka

Reveals how the persona of India's most famous emperor was constantly reinvented in ancient times to suit a variety of social visions, political agendas, and moral purposes.

Early Buddhist Society

A richly scholarly yet accessible and imaginative account of society in the time of the Buddha.

Honeymoon Couples and Jurassic Babies

Contextualizes Sabha Theatre historically, politically, and aesthetically, revealing how it expresses a Tamil Brahmin identity that is at once traditional and modern.

Hindutva and Violence

Examines the place of history in the political thought of Vinayak Damodar Savarkar, one of the key architects of modern Hindu nationalism.

Christianity and Politics in Tribal India

Chronicles the astonishing and counterintuitive spread of Christianity among a group of previously isolated tribes in a remote and hilly part of Northeastern India.

When Does History Begin?

Documents how the premodern techniques of narrating the past in South Asia were deeply transformed by colonial modernity, resulting in newer forms of truth-telling within the Sikh community.

Nine Nights of Power

Explores the rich diversity of narratives, rituals, and participants connected with one of the most important celebrations for Hindus in South Asia and in the diaspora.

Singing the Goddess into Place

Explores how a folk ballad in southern India transforms the landscape and embeds the deities that are its subject within the social worlds of their devotees.

Religion and Empire in Portuguese India

Examines the colonization of Goa in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and the durability of Portuguese rule.

The Truths and Lies of Nationalism as Narrated by Charvak

Edited by Partha Chatterjee
Notes by Partha Chatterjee
Subjects: Asian Studies

Rejects Hindu nationalism and pluralist secularism in favor of a revitalized politics of Indian federalism.

Empire News

Examines English-language Indian newspapers from the mid-nineteenth century and their role in simultaneously sustaining and probing British colonial governance.

The Mughals and the Sufis

Examines the relationship between Mughal political culture and the two dominant strains of Islam's Sufi traditions in South Asia: one centered around orthodoxy, the other focusing on a more accommodating and mystical spirituality.

Many Mahābhāratas

A major contribution to the study of South Asian literature, offering a landmark view of Mahābhārata studies.

The Hagiographer and the Avatar

Examines the key role of a hagiographer within a charismatic religious movement.

Till Kingdom Come

By Lokesh Ohri
Subjects: Asian Studies

The first book to offer a detailed framework, a fine-grained history, and an analytically nuanced understanding of one of the rarest branches of Hindu worship.

The Other Rāma

A systematic analysis of the myth cycle of Paraśurāma (“Rāma with the Axe”), an avatára of Viṣṇu with a much darker reputation.

The World of Agha Shahid Ali

Critical essays on the transnational Kashmiri-American poet.

The Muslim World in Modern South Asia

Sets out the challenges presented to Muslim societies by Western dominance over the past two hundred years, and explores Muslim responses, particularly in the context of South Asia.

South of the Future

Unique interdisciplinary analysis of gendered and racialized economies of care in South Asia and the Americas.

Material Acts in Everyday Hindu Worlds

Broadens the parameters of religious studies by accounting for material acts that help shape religious worlds.

Partition's Legacies

By Joya Chatterji
Introduction by David Washbrook
Subjects: Asian Studies

Essays on modern Indian history and the legacy of Partition.

Fiction as History

Explains the Hindi novel’s role in anticipating and creating the story of middle-class modernity and modernization in North India.

The Great Agrarian Conquest

Groundbreaking analysis of how colonialism created new conceptual categories and spatial forms that reshaped rural societies.

Living Landscapes

Explores the role of meditation on the five elements in the practice of Yoga.

Himalayan Histories

A rare look at the history of Himalayan peasant society and the relationship between culture and environment in the Himalayas.

Essays of a Lifetime

A distillation of the historian’s finest writings on modern Indian historical themes.

The Concept of Bharatavarsha and Other Essays

This exploration of key terms related to social and political order, found in early Indian texts, challenges the idea of a unified ancient India and a unified national identity at that time.

Nine Nights of the Goddess

Explores the contemporary nature and the diverse narratives, rituals, and performances of the Navarātri Festival.

Sons of Sarasvati

Edited and translated by Chinya V. Ravishankar
Introduction by Chinya V. Ravishankar
Subjects: Asian Studies

Presents rare biographies of traditional Indian scholars during the nineteenth century, a critical moment of transition for the Indian intellectual tradition.

Hindu Pasts

Challenges the monolithic view of Hinduism in the nineteenth century, and instead offers a vision of India that contains a rich multiplicity of Hinduisms, women’s stories, and cultural histories.

Religious Journeys in India

Explores how religious travel in India is transforming religious identities and self-constructions.

Ritual Innovation

Challenges prevailing conceptions of what religious ritual does and how it achieves its ends.

Protestant Christianity in the Indian Diaspora

Captures how Indian Protestant Christians negotiate their religious and cultural identities within the Indian diaspora.

Text and Tradition in South India

Essays on Telugu and South Indian literature and culture by distinguished Telugu scholar Narayana Rao.

Everyday Sustainability

Illuminates the contradictions that emerge within conscious capitalism initiatives that are designed to empower women.

Re-ending the Mahabharata

Offers a fresh perspective on the Mahābhārata based on an exploration of its ending, the Svargārohaṇa parvan.

Vernacular Catholicism, Vernacular Saints

A collection of Raj’s groundbreaking ethnographic studies of “vernacular” Catholic traditions in Tamil Nadu, India.

Undervalued Dissent

Uses two case studies to demonstrate how neoliberal reforms in India have de-democratized labor politics.

The Dashing Ladies of Shiv Sena

Explores the activities and political personas of women activists in Shiv Sena, a militant Indian political party.

Contesting Feminisms

Creates a new space for hybrid feminist analysis of Asian Muslim women’s lives.

A Very Old Machine

Argues that Indian cinema’s deep nineteenth-century past continues to play a vital role in its twenty-first-century present.

Mappila Muslim Culture

Thorough exploration of the distinct culture of the Mappila Muslims of Kerala, India.

A Hindu Theology of Liberation

Discusses Hindu Advaita Vedānta as a philosophy of social justice for the modern world.

The Hidden Lives of Brahman

Uses both textual and ethnographic sources to demonstrate that in Śaṅkara’s vedānta, brahman is an active force as well as a transcendent ultimate.

Lord Siva's Song

A translation of the Īśvara Gītā, a parallel text to the Bhagavad Gītā that promotes religious inclusion.

Homegrown Gurus

Exploring homegrown movements and figures, proclaims “American Hinduism” as a distinct religious tradition.

Ecology Is Permanent Economy

Explores the nonviolent philosophy and environmental activism of India’s Sunderlal Bahuguna.

Emerald City

A fascinating study of the gemstone industry of Jaipur with special emphasis on its ownership class.

Gandhi's Ascetic Activism

Discusses Gandhi’s creative use of ascetic practice, particularly his practice of celibacy, for nonviolent activism.

Somatic Lessons

Looks at narrative in the history of ayurvedic medical literature and the perspectives on illness and patienthood that emerge.

Yogi Heroes and Poets

An exploration of the history, religion, and folklore of the Nāths, a Hindu lineage known for Hatha yoga practice.

Kama's Flowers

Explores the transformation of Hindi poetry as it reflects a changing society during the period from 1885 to 1925.

Hinduism as a Missionary Religion

Reconsiders whether Hinduism can be considered a missionary religion.

Transnationalism Reversed

Examines transnational movement building through a focus on acid attacks and organizing against acid violence in Bangladesh.

Invoking Lakshmi

A multi-faceted portrait of Lakshmi, Hindu goddess of wealth and prosperity. Includes translations of verses used to invoke this goddess.

Colonizing the Realm of Words

Details the transformation of Tamil literary culture that came with colonialism and the encounter with Western modernity.

Phenomenology and Indian Philosophy

Addresses not only the basic theme of phenomenology, but its aesthetic, social, psychological, scientific, and technological aspects as well.

Siva's Demon Devotee

An exploration and translation of the work of Hindu poet-saint Kāraikkāl Ammaiyār.

The Teachings of the Odd-Eyed One

A study and translation of a tantric contemplative manual and the commentary on it.

The Bhagavad Gita

An interlinear edition of the spiritual classic that provides devanagari, transliterated Sanskrit, and English versions of the Gītā.

Poems on Life and Love in Ancient India

The oldest surviving anthology of lyric poems from India, the Sattasai presents the many aspects of love and provides a realistic counterpart to the Kāmasūtra.

Tamil Geographies

How perceptions of land and space influence social and aesthetic conditions in the Tamil region of India.

Yoga and the Luminous

A fresh look at Yoga philosophy.

Modern and Global Ayurveda

A comprehensive overview of Ayurveda.

The Socially Involved Renunciate

A translation and analysis of Guru Nanak’s description of the Sikh path to spiritual liberation.

A Survey of Hinduism

The third edition of this well-regarded introduction to Hinduism adds new material on the religion’s origins, on its relations with rival traditions, and on Hindu science.

The Demon's Daughter

This sixteenth-century work has a modern sensibility, presenting characters' inner worlds and understanding love as the fullest realization of the individual.

Gandhi's Pilgrimage of Faith

By Uma Majmudar
Foreword by Rajmohan Gandhi
Subjects: Asian Studies

Documents the lifelong journey of faith—full of challenges along the way—that made Gandhi the enlightened spiritual leader we revere.

Make Me a Man!

Looks at the ideals of masculine Hinduism—and the corresponding feminine ideals—that have built the Indian nation, and explores their consequences.

Female Infanticide in India

Examines female infanticide in colonial and postcolonial India.

Hindu Bioethics for the Twenty-first Century

Explores contemporary controversies in bioethics from a Hindu perspective.

Making Virtuous Daughters and Wives

An exploration of Hindu women’s folk religion focusing on goddess worship and women’s rituals.

Classical Indian Philosophy of Mind

Addresses the psycho-physical dualism of the Nyaya school of Indian philosophy with references to both Indian and Western philosophy.

She Comes to Take Her Rights

Examines the contemporary workings of property law in India through the lives and thoughts of middle-class and poor women.

The Devi Gita

This translation and commentary on an important Hindu text on the Great Goddess envisions a universe created and protected by a compassionate female deity.

Buddhist Fundamentalism and Minority Identities in Sri Lanka

This examination of Sri Lanka's ethnic and religious minorities links the past with the present through a treatment of Sinhala-Buddhist fundamentalist development in the late nineteenth century and its hegemony in the late twentieth.

The Character of Logic in India

The last work of the eminent philosopher Bimal Krishna Matilal, this book traces the origins of logical theory in India.

Dattatreya: The Immortal Guru, Yogin, and Avatara

Presents the multi-faceted Hindu deity Dattatreya from his Puranic emergence to modern times.

Devoted to the Goddess

Examines the legendary life and poetic works of Ramprasad, the eighteenth-century Bengali devotee of the Goddess, whose songs were influential in his own time and remain popular today.

Seeing through Texts

Examines texts and commentaries in the Tamil-language SArivastradition of South India; about the general issues of text, vision, and narrative that such texts raise, and about the implications of these for a particular style of comparative theology.

The Science of Empire

Investigates the complex social processes involved in the introduction and institutionalization of Western science in colonial India.

Images of Women in Maharashtrian Literature and Religion

Edited by Anne Feldhaus
Subjects: Asian Studies

The essays investigate the images of women and femininity found in the traditions of the Marathi language region of India, Maharashtra, and how these images contradict the actualities of women's lives. ...

The Korean Economy

Lee, former South Korean government Minister of Labor for the South Korean government, discusses the country's economic development from 1945-1994 and the public policies that shaped it, arguing that if South Korea is to become a major economic power, the government should withdraw from the economic front line.

Buddhadhamma

Written by one of the most highly regarded monk-scholars in Southeast Asia, this book is a modern distillation of the pivotal doctrines found in the Pali Buddhist canon.

Songs of Wisdom and Circles of Dance

This is a survey of the Ismaili Muslim traditions and a translation of many Santpanth Ismaili Ginans (hymns.)

Language and Style of the Vedic Rsis

Elizarenkova, perhaps the greatest living scholar of the Rand certainly its greatest linguist, explains here the relationships between a very complicated grammatical system and the peculiarities of style ...

The Rise of the Goddess in the Hindu Tradition

This book explores the rise of the Great Goddess by focusing on the development of saakti (creative energy), maya (objective illusion), and prakr(materiality) from Vedic times to the late Puranic period, ...

Authority, Anxiety, and Canon

Authority, Anxiety, and Canon elucidates a principle fundamental to Hinduism's self-understanding—the Veda—while at the same time examining the methodological issues of the role of canon in religious ...

Tukaram

Three centuries after Jnaneshwar, devotional poetry had another full flowering in Western India. Tukaram Maharaj was a merchant and householder who seemed to fail at everything. Bankruptcy, the death ...

Jnaneshwar

Thirteenth-century India saw a huge revival of religious devotion among the common folk, similar to the waves of religious fervor that swept over late medieval Europe. One of the pillars of this revival ...

Pocket Bhagavad Gita

The Bhagavad Gita contains a vision that is not Hindu or oriental but essentially human. It's no wonder that Emerson and Thoreau and Ghandi loved this text and were so deeply influenced by it. Now the ...

The Life And Teachings Of Sai Baba Of Shirdi

A vast and diversified religious movement originating from Sai Baba of Shirdi, is often referred to as "the Sai Baba movement. " Through the chronological presentation of Sai Baba's life, light is shed ...

The Taste Divine

By Vanamali
Subjects: Asian Studies

The recipes, information, and philosophy of food contained in this book are based on the teachings of the Bhagavad Gita. Although the recipes are intended to support a yogic lifestyle, they are not for ...

Eternal Garden

Reveals the mystical teachings and practices of the Chishti Sufi order as taught by the ecstatic Shaykh Burhan al-Din Gharib (d. 1337) and his disciples.

Religious Controversy in British India

This book opens the doors to a social and cultural sphere beyond the limited world of the English-speaking elite and provides the basis for an understanding of religious controversy and internal reform. ...

Texts in Context

Edited by Jeffrey R. Timm
Subjects: Asian Studies

The major religious traditions of South Asia are 'religions of the book'. All accept basic arrays of texts of scriptures, often seen as sacred reservoirs of meaning and power. The West has viewed these ...

Tradition and Reflection

This book examines, above all, the relationship between reason and Vedic revelation, and the philosophical responses to the idea of the Veda. It deals with such topics as dharma, karma and rebirth, the ...

Radhakrishnan

This book presents a critical and comprehensive biography of Radhakrishnan. The authors explain how Radhakrishnan, who had a British knighthood and an Oxford Professorship, and who did not participate ...

The Ritual of Battle

This book is a study of India's great epic, the Mahabharata, against the background of Indo-European myth, epic, and ritual. It builds upon the pioneering studies in these areas by Georges Dumezil and ...