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Symposium in honour of Axel Michaels

May 30, 2014

On the occasion of the 65th birthday of Prof. Axel Michaels, Director of the Cluster "Asia and Europe", a symposium was held on May 30 at the Karl Jaspers Centre. The full-day programme was jointly organised by the South Asia Institute and the Cluster.

Under the title "Texts, Practices, Beliefs - Responses to the Oeuvre of Axel Michaels", more than 10 scholars from all over the world examined the main research foci of Prof. Michaels, "Hinduism" and "Nepal". During the first half of the day, Prof. Laurie Patton (Duke University), Prof. Michael Witzel (Harvard University), Prof. Johannes Bronkhorst (University of Lausanne), and Prof. Rich Freeman (Duke University) presented lectures on "Hinduism". The sessions were chaired by Sudhir Kakar and Prof. Heidrun Brückner (University of Würzburg). The afternoon was dedicated to the topic "Nepal" with talks by Dr. Anne de Sales (Paris, Oxford), Prof. David Gellner (Oxford University), Prof. Charles Ramble (Oxford University), and Prof. Niels Gutschow (Honorary Professor at Heidelberg University). They were chaired by Prof. Bernd Schneidmüller (Department of History at Heidelberg University) and Prof. Madeleine Herren-Oesch (Institute for European Global Studies at University of Basel). In the evening, a reception with a surprise programme closes the day of celebration.

Prof. Axel Michaels heads the Department of Cultural and Religious History of South Asia at the South Asia Institute of Heidelberg University. He is one of the founding Directors of the Cluster of Excellence "Asia and Europe in a Global Context" since 2007 and member of the Academic Advisory Council of Heidelberg University since 2014. From 2002 to 2013, he headed the collaborative research center 619 "Ritual Dynamics" at Heidelberg University. Michaels received his habilitation degree from the University of Kiel in 1991 and served as Visiting Fellow at Wolfson College (Oxford), Director of the Nepal Research Centre (Kathmandu) and Professor of Religious Studies at the University of Berne. In 1996 he became full professor in Classical Indology in Heidelberg. His research interests are the history and practice of Hinduism, especially in Nepal, Hindu law, and ritual studies.

The symposium was organised by Prof. Jörg Gengnagel (South Asia Institute), Prof. Ute Hüsken (Oslo University) and Prof. Monica Juneja (Cluster "Asia and Europe").

Further information
Press Release by Heidelberg University
(German)
Detailed programme of the symposium

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