Vie scientifique | Journées annuelles du CEIAS

	“Conversion” Religions and Multi-Religious Entanglements in South Asia (8<sup>th</sup> to 19<sup>th</sup> c.): Contexts and Perspectives

“Conversion” Religions and Multi-Religious Entanglements in South Asia (8th to 19th c.): Contexts and Perspectives

24ème Journée du Centre d’Études de l’Inde et de l’Asie du Sud

25 avril 2019 | 9h - 18h

Salle 737 | 54 boulevard Raspail 75006 Paris


Religious conversion and coexistence are concepts at the forefront of contemporary political debates in the subcontinent. Political actors are currently mostly busy wielding distinctions such as indigenous vs. foreign and playing a dangerous game of exclusion and assimilation. Our one-day conference gathers together senior and junior scholars working on a common project which explores a longue durée history of practices and concepts when religious plurality thrived in one of the most travelled maritime regions of the world: the Indian Ocean and south India. From antiquity until the late eighteenth century, this region was a crucial link in a unified world economy and maritime culture. It was also the theater of encounters and circulation of religious actors, objects and ideas between the Mediterranean and West Asian Messianic religions - which we are accustomed now to call, with a Muslim term, Abrahamic - and Indian religious traditions and philosophical systems. We are in particular interested in multi-religious community formation and its effects on political dynamics in the region. State-building, development of new or refurbished local cults, the flowering of multilingual literary forms were only some of the consequences of the early modern political and cultural innovations directly linked to a certain degree of socio-religious mobility created in the multi-religious context of the immediate pre-British colonial period. The hardening of communal boundaries however started also precisely at this moment, and the colonial rule only quickened the creation of “fixed” social and religious categories of caste and religion. In the process the category of Abrahamic religion (Christian, Muslim, Jews) slipped through the British colonial knowledge grid into a “western”, non-Indian religion and thus conceptually unworthy of studying in the “area studies” context. Through this move a whole range of pre-colonial knowledge forms were left invisible and discarded. The final assault on multi-religiosity came from the 19th century revivalist/nativist and purifying efforts of the social and religious reformers who thus tried to cut down inter- and intra-religious networks in the name of ancient history, immobile orthodoxy and new ideological constructs of nation-state and Hinduism. 


9:30 | Zoé Headley (CNRS, CEIAS) Welcome Address

Ines G. Županov (CNRS, CEIAS) Introduction


9:45-10:25 | Istvan Perczel (CEU, Budapest)

A new perspective on the ninth-century Christian copper plates: the testimony of the indirect text tradition


10:25- 11:05 | Radu Mustaţă (CEU, Budapest)

Entangled literary genres: Jesuit accommodatio and Syriac paideia in Malabar, in the times of the Synod of Diamper (1599)


11:20-12:00 | Ophira Gamliel (Theology and Religious Studies, University of Glasgow)

Coastal Judaism of the South Asian Cosmopoleis: Transregional Networks, Continuities, and Change 1200s-1700s


13:00-13:40 | Manu V. Devadevan (Indian Institute of Technology at Mandi)

Religious Encounters in the Context of Changing Systems of Knowledge


13:40-14:20 | Mahmood Kooria (Leiden University)

Matrilineal and Oceanic Encounters: Indic-Abrahamic Entanglements in Premodern Southwest India


14:20-15:00 | Torsten Tschacher (FU, Berlin)

Translation, Islam, and the Formulation of ‘Religious’ Difference in Early Modern South India


15:15-15:55 | Carsten Wilke (CEU, Budapest)

The Archives of the Goa Inquisition: State of the Research


15:55-16:35 | Margherita Trento (University of Chicago)

Tamil Catholic literature between polemic and accommodation, 16-18th centuries


16:35-17:15 | Deepra Dandekar (Max Planck Institute for Human Development, Berlin)

 Translating 'Mahar' as 'Meek'


17:15-18:45 | General Discussion


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