The British foundation ARCADIA awarded Prof. Dr. Christiane Brosius (HCTS Professor of Visual and Media Anthropology) a grant of 775,000 euros for the documentation of endangered historical sites in Nepal. Over a test period of two years, 400 temples, monasteries, and other building types will be documented and inventoried in an freely available online database of the “Nepal Heritage Documentation Project”.
It will comprise descriptions, pictures, inscriptions, and architectural drawings of buildings that have been destroyed or damaged by earthquakes and urban change and emphasise the need for their preservation or reconstruction. Under the direction of Prof. Brosius, 16 specialists from the fields of architecture, anthropology, history, indology, and digital humanities from Heidelberg and Kathmandu will collaborate to achieve this goal.
(Picture: Patan Durbar Square, Nepal, 2017 | © Christiane Brosius)
The Rhein-Neckar-Zeitung published on Wednesday, 25 July, 2018 an article "Unterwegs in schillernden Gender-Welten", which gives insights into Prof. Ute Hüskens (Head of the Department of Cultural and Religious History South Asia at the South Asia Institute) academic career, research interests, current emphasis on teaching as well as her private life.
The article first portrays Hüskens academic career: She studied Indology, Tibetan and Burmese Studies, sociology and anthropology, which emerged from an interest in Buddhism, yoga and meditation. For her PhD thesis she focused on Therāvada Buddhism, which is practiced today for example in Sri Lanka, Myanmar, Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia. In her thesis she compared the rules for Buddhist nuns with those for monks. Due to her expertise in this field, contemporary Buddhist nuns consult with her regarding details of their monastic discipline and procedures, especially in the context of the revival of the ordination of women into Theravāda Buddhism. For her Habilitation, Hüsken worked on a South Indian Hindu tradition, focusing on prenatal life-cycle rituals of the Vaikhānasa tradition.
After completing her studies, doctorate, and Habilitation, Hüsken directed a project in the Collaborative Research Center "Ritual Dynamics" here in Heidelberg from 2003 to 2008. From 2007 onwards, she spent 10 years as professor of "South Asian Studies" at the Department of Culture Studies and Oriental Languages at the University of Oslo, where she got to appreciate a very advanced gender equality.
Since 2017, Hüsken is Professor and Head of the Department of Cultural and Religious History of South Asia. Through teaching units and course focusing on Spoken Sanskrit, she facilitates that the students experience Sanskrit not only as a written, but also as a spoken language. For her research, she emphasizes the advantage and opportunities emerging from interdisciplinary projects and exchange.
In issue 22 of the International Journal of Hindu Studies, Prof. Monika Boehm-Tettelbach (Monika Horstmann, former head of Modern South Asian Languages and Literatures), Anand Mishra (Department of Cultural and Religious History of South Asia) and Prof. Karin Polit (former member of Department of Anthropology) contributed with several articles.
Prof. Karin Polit wrote on “Gifts of Love and Friendship: On Changing Marriage Traditions, the Meaning of Gifts, and the Value of Women in the Garhwal Himalayas”, Prof. Monika Boehm-Tettelbach and Anand Mishra jointly worked on “Transcreating the Bhāgavata Purāṇa”, Prof. Monika Boehm-Tettelbach on “Three Brajbhāṣā Versions of the Bhāgavata Purāṇa” and Anand Mishra on “Meaning in the Structure of the Bhāgavata Purāṇa”.
The International Journal of Hindu Studies offers a scholarly exploration of topics in Hindu studies, fostering new work in neglected areas, alternative perspectives, and the exchange of information. The Journal supports critical inquiries, hermeneutical interpretive proposals, and historical investigations into all aspects of Hindu traditions.
All articles are available here.
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