[INDOLOGY] Cultural Connections Between ancient Mesopotamia and India

Kenneth Gregory Zysk zysk at hum.ku.dk
Tue Aug 19 10:18:16 UTC 2014

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Cultural Connections Between ancient Mesopotamia and India
Mesopotamia, the ‘land between the rivers’, is in European scholarly thought part of the ‘Orient’, the Eastern civilizations. The ‘Oriental’ influence on classical civilizations has long been recognized, yet Mesopotamia had, from early on, also connections with civilizations farther to the East, in particular to ancient India. Ancient Mesopotamian civilization is often seen as a ‘precursor’ to the Bible and to Christianity. This conference explores the Eastern connections of ancient Mesopotamian civilizations. This will be explored in a twofold manner: in some cases direct connections and contacts can be established, either via material or textual cultures. In other cases, a comparative approach has the potential of enhancing our understanding of these two ancient civilizations. In bringing together specialists of ancient Mesopotamia and ancient India, the conference will systematically gather the evidence and draw comparisons with the goal of re-orienting both Mesopotamian and Indian studies and offer a fresh perspective on the intellectual, religious, and material cultures of these two geographical areas.

The conference will take place at the University of Copenhagen, southern campus:
Place: Building 27.0.09
Karen Blixens Vej 4
2300 København S

Time: Sept. 12-14, 2014

Participation is free but we ask that those interested in participating register with Troels Arbøll (tpa at hum.ku.dk)

The conference is funded by the generous contributions of the Institute for Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies, University of Copenhagen, and by the Carlsberg Foundation.

Preliminary Program:

Friday, 12. Sept.

9:00              Welcome (Dean Ulf Hedetoft)
9:15              Introduction (Brisch and Zysk)

9:30              Keynote address: I. Winter (Harvard University)
                      Cross-Cultural Analogy and/or Contact between West and South Asia

10:15           Coffee break

Section 1: Science and Knowledge
Chair: TBA
10:45            K. Plofker (Union College, Schenectady, NY)
                      Babylonian Period Relations and “Tamil” Astronomy

11:30            D. Brown (Berlin)
            Cultural Connections Between Ancient India and Ancient Mesopotamia – The Evidence of the Astral Sciences

12:15-13:15                    Lunch

13:15            H. Falk (FU Berlin)
                      The Role of the Iranian Speaking World

14:00            K. Zysk (UCHP)
            Some Connections Between Indian and Mesopotamian Systems of Physiognomy in Antiquity

14:45           Coffee Break

15:15            B. Böck (CSIC, Madrid)
                      Animal Comparisons in the Corpus of Cuneiform Physiognomy

16:00            A. Guinan (University of Pennsylvania)
                      Making a Case for the Transmission of Crow Omens: “A Canopy Most Fatal”?

Saturday, 13. Sept.
Section 2 Religion and Scholarship
Chair: TBA
9:00              A. Parpola
          Iconographic Evidence of Mesopotamian Influence on Harappan Ideology and Its Survival in the Royal Rites of the Veda
9:45              C. Woods (University of Chicago)
          Early Sumerian Writing and Its Relationship to Speech – A Typological Perspective

10:30           Coffee Break (only 15 minutes)

10:45            J. Reade (The British Museum, ret.)
                      India-Mesopotamia Relationships in Modern Scholarship

11:30            N. Brisch (UCHP)
                      Rituals and Divinity in Early Mesopotamia: an Assyriological Perspective

12:15 -13:15 Lunch

Section 3: Material Culture
Chair: TBA
13:15            V. Shinde (Deccan College)
            Trade Between Harappan and Mesopotamian Civilizations in the Third Millennium BCE: An Archaeological Perspective

14:00            J.M. Kenoyer (University of Wisconsin - Madison)
            Tracking Indus Carnelian Beads: Analysis of Bead Style and Technology of the Indus Civilization and Adjacent Regions

14:45 Coffee

15:15            I. Thuesen (UCHP)
                      Arabia Petraea in a Cosmopolitan light

16:00            B. Hildebrandt (CTR, UCHP)
                      Some Thoughts on the Provenance of Silk in Antiquity

16:45            S. Ratnagar (Mumbai)
                      Connections and Similarities

Sunday, 14. Sept.
Section 4: Discussion

10:00            Response: S. Kerner, U. Koch

11:00            General Discussion

From: INDOLOGY [mailto:indology-bounces at list.indology.info] On Behalf Of Kenneth Gregory Zysk
Sent: 19. august 2014 12:15
To: indology at list.indology.info
Subject: [INDOLOGY] Cultural Connections Between ancient Mesopotamia and India

Dear members of the list,

For those who are interested, I attach a copy of the programme for the upcoming conference on the “Cultural Connections Between ancient Mesopotamia and India” to be held in Copenhagen from 12-14 September. All are welcome.
With best wishes,

Kenneth Zysk, PhD, DPhil
Head of Indology
Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies
University of Copenhagen
Karen Blixens Vej 4, Bygn. 10,
DK-2300 Copenhagen S    Denmark
Ph:  +45 3532 8951                                                       Email: zysk at hum.ku.dk<mailto:zysk at hum.ku.dk>

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