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New Book on South Asian Festivals

Apr 30, 2013

“South Asian Festivals on the Move” is a new book edited by Prof. Ute Hüsken and Prof. Axel Michaels. The book is part of the series “Ethno-Indology – Heidelberg Studies in South Asian Rituals”.

The book “South Asian Festivals on the Move” discusses festivals in South Asian traditions in India, Nepal, Sri Lanka and Germany. It consists of the four chapters “Festivals as Sites of Public Negotiation”, “The Global and the Local”, “People on the Move: Festivals and Processions as Public Events” and “The Old, the New and the Old Renewed”. The volume contains contributions by various scholars. Eva Ambos and Prof. William Sax for example write about “The Kandy and Kataragama Festivals in Sri Lanka”. Prof. Christiane Brosius examines the “Spatial Politics of a Public Art Festival” and Prof. Jörg Gengnagel “The Worship of the Royal Insignia in Jaipur”.

The basis of the book is a workshop-conference that took place at Oslo University in summer 2011. The content is mainly based on the workshop´s programme which consisted of sessions like "Political Festivals and the Festive Aspects of Political Activities" and "Festivals as Heritage – Remodeling of Group Identities". The participants were mainly members of the Collaborative Research Center “Ritual Dynamics” (SFB 619), members of the project “Religion on Stage: Traditional South Asian Performances in New Public Spheres and Media” of the Cluster of Excellence “Asia and Europe in a Global Context”, and members of the Oslo project on “Ritual traditions in Kanchipuram”.

"South Asian festivals on the move" was published in the series "Ethno-Indology - Heidelberg Studies in South Asian Rituals" by Harrassowitz. It is edited by Prof. Ute Hüsken and Prof. Axel Michaels and has 431 pages including a number of illustrations and maps. Among others, the book has been funded by the German Research Foundation (Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft), the Sonderforschungsbereich 619 Ritual Dynamics at Heidelberg University and the Cluster of Excellence “Asia and Europe in a Global Context".

Prof. Dr. Axel Michaels is Co-Director of the Cluster of Excellence "Asia and Europe in a Global Context" and Director of the Department of Classical Indology of the South Asia Institute, Heidelberg University. Furthermore, he is Speaker of the Collaborative Research Centre 619 "Ritual Dynamics" as well as of the Council 106 "Cultural Anthropology, Religious Studies, Non-European Cultures" of the German Research Foundation.

Prof. Dr. Ute Hüsken is Professor of Sanskrit at Oslo University. She lectured at Göttingen University and later at the Department of Classical Indology of the South Asia Institute, Heidelberg University. Hüsken was member of the executive committee of the Dynamics of Ritual collaborative research centre at the University of Heidelberg, and was Co-Chair of the steering committee of the Ritual Studies Group (American Academy of Religion).


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