[INDOLOGY] Doc/Post doc History of mathematics in astral sciences -ancient and medieval India

Agathe Keller kellera at univ-paris-diderot.fr
Wed May 8 07:15:45 UTC 2013

Dear Colleagues,

Please find attached a call for application related to a PhD and/or
post-doctoral positions that is advertised in the context of the ERC
project SAW "Mathematical Sciences in the Ancient World", dealing with the
history of mathematics in astral sciences in India.
I am pasting bellow the gist of the scholarship call, more details are
given in the attached file.
I would be grateful  if you could forward this call to whoever might be
interested in it, and do not hesitate to contact me if you have any
Agathe Keller, with the SAW group

 The great majority of mathematical texts known from the ancient and
medieval Indian subcontinent are chapters in theoretical treatises on
astral sciences written in Sanskrit. Are these mathematics different from
the mathematics found elsewhere in the Indian subcontinent and not related
to astral science? What was the relation between the chapters on
mathematics and the computations and algorithms expounded in other chapters
of the same treatise? How were these mathematics related to mathematical
tools used in the wider realm of the astral corpus (in horoscopy,
astrology...). For example a research proposal could aim at tracing and
characterizing the use of similar algorithms, like the Rule of Three, the
Pythagorean theorem, rules to derive and interpolate Sines, algorithms to
solve indeterminate problems, or others, in different parts of a treatise,
or else across different texts by a same author. Were there mathematical
practices that were standard in astral science and not found in
mathematical chapters and vice-versa?

More generally, any research project that would help understand the
specificities of mathematical activities adhering in one way or another to
astral sciences, by contrast to other mathematical practices attested to in
the Indian subcontinent, and/or involve sources in Indian languages that
are not Sanskrit would be welcomed.

Applicants are expected to mention specific sources and topics on the basis
of which they intend to explore these questions.


   The deadline for applications is: June 21, 2013 (for the position to be
   taken up as of September 1, 2013 or as early as possible thereafter).
   Short-listed candidates will be informed at the beginning of July 2013 and
   phone or Skype interviews are expected to take place during the first week
   of July 2013.

   The scholarship is granted for one year. Pending positive evaluation,
   the doctoral scholarship is renewable for two additional years and
the post-doctoral
   scholarship is renewable for one additional year. The monthly stipend
   amounts to about 1400 euros for the doctoral scholarship and to about 2000
   euros for the post-doctoral scholarship (amounts to be updated at the
   contract signing). It includes social security benefits and retirement
   provisions. In the case of a doctoral scholarship, the recipient, under the
   supervision of Agathe Keller, will have to achieve a degree of the academic
   institution the SAW project is affiliated to.

   Applications should be sent to the SAW Project Director Karine
Chemla by email
   only: chemla at univ-paris-diderot.fr. It is recommended to request an
   email acknowledgement of receipt.

   Information on the SAW project is available online at

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