Punjab Research Group

CALL FOR PAPERS – Sites and Politics of Religious Diversity in Southern Europe

Posted in News/Information, Research by Pippa on March 17, 2009

Editors: Ruy Blanes and José Mapril
Publisher: Brill (pending final approval of MS)
Expected date of publication: 2010

We are pleased to invite you to contribute an essay to a proposed book on “Sites and Politics of Religious diversity in Southern Europe”. Pending approval of the final manuscript, the book will be part of the International Studies in Religion and Society (ISRS) series, published by E.J. Brill.


In recent years, the Southern borders of Europe (from Ceuta to Lampedusa and Athens) have become landmarks for the media and academic verve regarding the migration and diasporas towards and beyond ‘Schengen Europe’. In these debates, religion is acknowledged as playing a central role in the recognition of major societal changes in the continent, being object of political concern and attention: from the recognition of plural forms of Christianity to the debates on a ‘European Islam’, and so on. Yet, in this respect, what goes on around those borders, in the countries that are targeted as gateways for the transglobal flow that finds Europe as its destiny, is still largely uncharted and un-debated.

Traditionally catalogued as ‘single-faith’ nations, part of an alleged ‘Mediterranean cultural continuity’ –a popular interpretation among a generation of anthropologists in the seventies and eighties–, countries like Portugal, Spain, France, Italy and Greece are now experiencing important transformations that defy longstanding categories: Catholic Iberia, Orthodox Greece, etc. Those transformations do not just multiply religious expressions, but also challenge traditional ‘regional’ and ‘national’ socio-political categories, such as nationhood, local belonging, tradition, heritage, citizenship, etc. This book will present and discuss, from a critical point of view, case studies on religious pluralism and diversity in Southern Europe, and on the impact of migrant religiosity in national and EU politics.

We welcome in particular anthropologically and sociologically informed papers that tackle issues directly related to religious diversity and the politics of multiculturalism in this context, focusing on one (or both) of the following approaches: 1) religious pluralism as discourse in the public sphere; and 2) Southern European ethnographies that challenge mainstream perceptions of ‘European religiosity’.


1. We invite you to submit an Abstract Proposal (including title and institutional affiliation) of 300-500 words describing a scholarly essay that you propose to submit with relation to the general theme of the book. Proposals are due to the editors by April 1st, 2009.

2. If your proposal is approved, you will be given guidelines and asked to submit a 8000-word essay (including notes and references) by early July, 2009. Essays must be previously unpublished.

Abstract proposals and further enquiries can be e-mailed to either Ruy Blanes [ruy.blanes@gmail.com] or José Mapril [jmapril@gmail.com].

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SAMAJ – South Asia Multidisciplinary Academic Journal

Posted in Academic Journals, Articles, News/Information by Pippa on January 25, 2009

SAMAJ is pleased to announce the publication of its latest yearly Special Issue on  ”’Outraged Communities’: Comparative Perspectives on the Politicization of Emotions in South Asia”, with articles by Nosheen Ali, Amélie Blom, Thomas Blom Hansen, Pierre Centlivres, Christophe Jaffrelot, Nicolas Jaoul, Ali Riaz, Charlène Simon and Lionel Baixas.


This issue is accessible in full at: http://samaj.revues.org/sommaire234.html

The next issue, edited by Balveer Arora, Stéphanie Tawa Lama-Rewal  and Gilles Verniers, will be devoted to “Indian Elections 2009: Perspectives from the States”.


SAMAJ also features free-subject articles, such as our latest one: ‘Questioning the Role of the Indian Administrative Service in National Integration’ (Dalel Benbabaali).


SAMAJ is a multidisciplinary, peer-reviewed, on-line journal, devoted to social science studies on South Asia. For more information, please visit our website http://samaj.revues.org/


SAMAJ Editorial Board

(Nosheen Ali, Luc Bellon, Amélie Blom, Miniya Chatterji, Jérémie Codron, Gilles Dorronsoro, Nicolas Jaoul, Loraine Kennedy, Aminah Mohammad-Arif, Christine Moliner, Mariam Mufti, Stéphanie Tawa Lama-Rewal and Ingrid Therwath)

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Shared Idioms, Sacred Symbols, and the Articulation of Identities in South Asia, Edited by Kelly Pemberton & Michael Nijhawan, Routledge 2008

Posted in New Publications, News/Information by Pippa on January 13, 2009

shared-idomsAbout the book
How do text, performance, and rhetoric simultaneously reflect and challenge notions of distinct community and religious identities? This volume examines evidence of shared idioms of sanctity within a larger framework of religious nationalism, literary productions, and communalism in
South Asia. Contributors to this volume are particularly interested in how alternative forms of belonging and religious imaginations in South Asia are articulated in the light of normative, authoritative, and exclusive claims upon the representation of identities. Building upon new and extensive historiographical and ethnographical data, the book challenges clear-cut categorizations of group identity and points to the complex historical and contemporary relationships between different groups, organizations, in part by investigating the discursive formations that are often subsumed under binary distinctions of dominant/subaltern, Hindu/Muslim or orthodox/heterodox. In this respect, the book offers a theoretical contribution beyond South Asia Studies by highlighting a need for a new interdisciplinary effort in rethinking notions of identity, ethnicity, and religion.


Table of Contents

Introduction: Towards an Integrative Hermeneutics in the Study of Identity Kelly Pemberton & Michael Nijhawan Part I: Landscapes of Translation: Linguistics, History, and Culture in Focus Chapter 1: A House Overturned: A Classical Urdu Lament in Braj Bhasha Amy Bard & Valerie Ritter Chapter 2: The Politics of Non-Duality: Unravelling the Hermeneutics of Modern Sikh Theology Arvind Mandair Chapter 3: Who are the Vellalas? 20th Century Constructions and Contestations of Tamil Identity in Maraimalai Adigal (1876-1950) Srilata Raman Chapter 4: Can a Muslim be an Indian and not a Traitor or Terrorist? Huma Dar Chapter 5: Variants of Cultural Nationalism in Pakistan: a Reading of Faiz Ahmad Faiz, Jamil Jalibi, and Fahmida Riaz Amina Yaqin Part II: Landscapes of Ritual Performance: Ritual, Agency, and Memory in Focus Chapter 6: Ambivalent Encounters: The Making of Dhadi as a Sikh Performative Practice Michael Nijhawan Chapter 7: Ritual, Reform, and Economies of Meaning at a South Asian Sufi Shrine Kelly Pemberton Chapter 8: Gendered Ritual and the Shaping of Shi`ah Identity Diane D’Souza Chapter 9: History, Memory, and Other Matters of Life and Death Christian Lee Novetzke

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