[INDOLOGY] Nazis, India
Jan E.M. Houben
jemhouben at gmail.com
Wed Oct 31 18:30:26 UTC 2018
You are doing it again!
Which only confirms the aptness of my analysis at www.academia.edu/7378413
(last version with minor corrections 30-10-2018, pp. 9-12).
Point 1 of your representation of my argument is *almost* correct with one
crucial distinction: this was never my objection but an observation.
Gradually, the points of your representation swim away from my brief
Until at points 5 and 6 it is diametrically opposed to the conclusions
reached in my analysis (as it is very clear in my review
that I consider* Love in a Dead Language* (by Lee Siegel) and "Ypsilon" (by
Hermann Weller) to be significant masterpieces).
From* almost *correct to diametrically opposed in just five to six steps.
This is also what I predicted:
"the author of such allegory or caricature cannot himself explain it
without, in some sense, destroying the piece of art he has created" !
On Wed, 31 Oct 2018 at 17:58, Joydeep <jbagchee at gmail.com> wrote:
> Not again! We’ve gone over this ground already. Eli already raised these
> ‘misunderstandings’ of *The Nay Science *before. We comprehensively
> responded to him in “Theses on Indology.” But if Jan wishes to have it all
> explained again, here we go. Jan raises the following objections:
> 1. That we did not define German by race or nation or language.
> 2. That we overlooked the commonality of German Indology with other
> 3. That we made a subset of German Indology stand in for the whole.
> 4. That we critique Indology because we stand for tradition.
> 5. That we therefore stand outside a European tradition of critical
> 6. And finally, that our work lacks the proper graces.
> The definition of German Indology in terms of allegiance to intellectual
> concerns and a methodological and institutional paradigm is wholly
> consistent within itself, and misunderstandings such as those voiced in
> points 2 and 3 only arise because scholars insist on the categories of
> nation, language, and ethnicity. Finally, we can continue to repeat tropes
> of “European = critical,” “Indian = traditional.” By now it is amply clear
> whose work is critical and who is desperately trying to protect traditional
> authority and privilege. Who is caricaturing whom here?
> In order not to belabor the discussion, I have appended a list of our
> writings where further clarifications to Jan’s comments can be found. If
> there are new objections, Vishwa and I will be happy to respond to them.
> But let’s not self-defeatingly keep proposing ethnic or national
> definitions of “German” and stereotypes of “the critical European” vs. “the
> uncritical Indian.” It only confirms the point.
> On “German Indology and National Socialism” see “Jews and Hindus in
> Indology,” 24, n. 95, 26, n. 105, 27, n. 106, and 69, n. 199. On “Andrew
> Nicholson” see “The Real Threat to the Humanities Today,” 1–16. On “Jürgen
> Hanneder” see “5 in 10—Interview with Joydeep Bagchee” and “Against
> Occidentalism: A Conversation with Alice Crary and Vishwa Adluri in *The
> Nay Science*.” On “caricature” see “Method and Racism in German
> Mahābhārata Studies,” 1–6. On “voluminous publication” see “Theses on
> Indology,” 9–10 (on Bronkhorst), 10 (on Hanneder), and 11–14 (on Witzel).
> On “the European critical method of textual study” see *Philology and
> Criticism*, 63–65, and 99–100 (on Bronkhorst), 45–157 (on Bigger),
> 169–314 (on Grünendahl), 269–70 (on Slaje), 270–71 (on Hinüber), 271–72 (on
> Fitzgerald), 272 (on Pollock), 320–36 (on Witzel), and 429–78 (on
> Brockington). On accepting “any traditionally proposed interpretation […]
> without much reflection” see ibid., 111–13 and 144–45 (on Austin), 21,
> 28–29, and 113–14 (on Fitzgerald), 270 (on Bronkhorst), 434–35 and 466, n.
> 118 (on Brockington), and the aforementioned pages in the Argument from
> Expertise again. See also “Paradigm Lost,” 215–49 and 53–54 (on Jezic),
> 265, n. 12 (on Brockington), 282, n. 91 (on Witzel, Brockington, Malinar,
> and Szczurek), and 286, n. 104 (on Jezic, Szczurek, and Fitzgerald). See
> also Adluri, comments on Philipp A. Maas, “Negotiating Efficiencies,” parts
> 1–2 and final response. On “a very precise methodic research strategy […]
> which goes back to earlier stages of European philosophy [philology?] and
> critical reflection” see *Philology and Criticism*, 319–20, 323–24, and
> 339–40. On “the art of ignoring” or “methodic ignorance” see “Jews and
> Hindus in Indology,” 66, n. 193 (on Stache-Rosen, Franco, Schechtelich,
> Grünendahl, and Slaje). See also *The Nay Science*, 426, n. 232 (on
> Slaje) and 444, n. 37 (on Steinkellner) and the OBO entry on German
> Indology (on Hanneder). See also *Philology and Criticism*, 432–33 and
> 435–49 (on Brockington’s ignorance of the concept of a Venn diagram). On
> “pure philological and linguistic research” see “Indology: The Origins of
> Racism in the Humanities” 7 (on F. Schlegel) and 8–14 and 17, n. 43 (on A.
> W. Schlegel). On “the research paradigm of philological and linguistic
> research” see *Philology and Criticism*, 326, nn. 7–8 (on Grünendahl),
> 326, nn. 9 (on Pollock and Jamison), and 327–28, nn. 17–18 (on Witzel). See
> also Adluri, review of Pollock, et al., eds., *World Philology*, 908–10
> and Adluri, review of Malinar, *The Bhagavadgītā*, 102–105. On the
> “negativity” of “European critical methods” see *Philology and Criticism*,
> 93, n. 24 and 313, nn. 359–60. See also Bagchee’s forthcoming review of
> Rabault-Feuerhahn, *Archives of Origins *in the *International Journal of
> Hindu Studies*. On the “close relations” of German Indology with
> “European orientalism” see the OBO entry “European Constructions of
> (Except for “European Constructions of Hinduism" all writings are
> available via Vishwa’s or my Academia page)
> Dr. Joydeep Bagchee
> Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München
> Academia.edu Homepage <https://fu-berlin.academia.edu/JoydeepBagchee>
> The Nay Science
> Argument and Design
> Reading the Fifth Veda <http://www.brill.com/reading-fifth-veda>
> When the Goddess Was a Woman <http://www.brill.com/when-goddess-was-woman>
> Transcultural Encounters between Germany and India
> German Indology on OBO Hinduism
> What, then, is Philosophy?
> Philosophy is the supremely precious.
> Plotinus, Enneads I.III.5
> On Sun, Oct 28, 2018 at 4:58 PM Jan E.M. Houben via INDOLOGY <
> indology at list.indology.info> wrote:
>> Dear Shyam Ranganathan,
>> This is a legitimate question, which merits an adequate response.
>> My "two cents":
>> You may already have looked at the bibliographical article “German
>> Indology” by Joydeep Bagchee (JB) (Oxford Bibliographies online:
>> www.oxfordbibliographies.com under “German Indology” or:
>> Since, as I pointed out elsewhere, “Indology was more or less since its
>> beginnings, end 18th – beginning 19th century, mainly “European” in
>> character with intensive cooperations between French, British and German
>> specialists, and has thus not only been sharing Oriental dreams but also a
>> Nazi-nightmare,” the focus on “German Indology” in JB’s article is itself
>> problematic, especially because the author justifies it by invoking “a
>> distinct history and traditions” for German Indology, and “unique concerns
>> that set it apart from other forms of research into India” (“German
>> Indology”, section “Introduction”). Given this and other peculiar premises,
>> the article contains nevertheless useful bibliographic references and brief
>> evaluations (from the author’s point of view) of relevant publications,
>> especially – for your subject – in two sections of the article: “National
>> Socialism” (topic: German Indology and National Socialism) and “German
>> Responses to National Socialist Indology.” Another relevant section is
>> “Orientalism Debate” which, in the view of the author (JB), as he expresses
>> it in his evaluation of Halbfass’s India and Europe (1988), really starts
>> with the publication of “Pollock 1993” (see above). It is hence regrettable
>> but not entirely surprising that the collective volume Beyond Orientalism
>> (1997) is regarded by JB as a work which “does not directly address the
>> orientalist debate; it is really an overview of Halbfass’s work as a
>> post-orientalist scholar.” In this section a reference is lacking to my
>> review of this work which discusses and demonstrates how the work and in
>> particular Halbfass’s dialogical contributions to it are indeed directly
>> relevant to the “Orientalism Debate” (“Orientalism, its critique, and
>> beyond: review article of Beyond Orientalism, ed. by K. Preisendanz and E.
>> Franco, Amsterdam 1997” (15 : 16) IIAS-Newsletter : Newsletter of the
>> International Institute for Asian Studies (Leiden), no. 15. 1998 :
>> https://www.academia.edu/6169112). With regard to Halbfass’s unsurpassed
>> India and Europe (1988), the author (JB) thinks that it “needs revision in
>> light of newer discoveries” but fails to point out that several currently
>> self-styled “new discoveries” need, in fact, also revision in the light of
>> Halbfass’s monumental achievement in comparative philosophy which is
>> exceptionally well-founded both in “Western” and in Indian philosophy.
>> I have in the meantime also updated my almost antique "conference report"
>> (of the 29th DOT of the DMG in Leipzig, 1995)
>> with two "Further Postscripts", the second of which containing a brief *compte
>> rendu* of VA&JB's *The Nay Science* in which I address two
>> "key-problems" that remain in this work, a heavy “stone in the pond” of
>> Indology and Asian Studies, in spite of the large number of reviews and
>> rejoinders that have already appeared, and propose two "keys" to solve
>> With best regards,
>> Jan Houben
>> On Mon, 15 Oct 2018 at 18:26, Shyam Ranganathan via INDOLOGY <
>> indology at list.indology.info> wrote:
>>> Dear all,
>>> Forgive me if this question has an obvious answer that I don't know.
>>> I recall that in *India and Europe,* Halbfass discusses the development
>>> of ideas associated with National Socialism by those who took an interest
>>> in India. I'm wondering if there is anything classic on this topic. I'm
>>> trying to reference, in passing, the racist reception of India in Europe
>>> (the friendliness to "Arya" or "Swastika" for instance) where India was
>>> treated as a kind of European prehistory, and I'm not sure what to point
>>> to. I'm happy to point to Halbfass, though I was wondering if there was
>>> something specifically on this topic (a paper or book).
>>> Shyam Ranganathan
>>> Department of Philosophy
>>> York Center for Asian Research
>>> York University, Toronto
>>> shyam-ranganathan.info <http://shyam-ranganathan.info/>
>>> *Hinduism: A Contemporary Philosophical Investigation
>>> *The Bloomsbury Research Handbook of Indian Ethics
>>> *Patañjali`s Yoga Sūtras
>>> <http://penguin.co.in/book/classics/patanjalis-yoga-sutra/>* (Translation,
>>> Edition and Commentary)
>>> *Translating Evaluative Discourse: The Semantics of Thick and Thin
>>> Concepts <https://philpapers.org/rec/SHYTED>*
>>> Full List, Publications <https://philpapers.org/profile/22035>
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>> *Jan E.M. Houben*
>> Directeur d'Études, Professor of South Asian History and Philology
>> *Sources et histoire de la tradition sanskrite*
>> École Pratique des Hautes Études (EPHE, PSL - Université Paris)
>> *Sciences historiques et philologiques *
>> 54, rue Saint-Jacques, CS 20525 – 75005 Paris
>> *johannes.houben at ephe.sorbonne.fr <johannes.houben at ephe.sorbonne.fr>*
>> *johannes.houben at ephe.psl.eu <johannes.houben at ephe.psl.eu>*
>> INDOLOGY mailing list
>> INDOLOGY at list.indology.info
>> indology-owner at list.indology.info (messages to the list's managing
>> http://listinfo.indology.info (where you can change your list options or
*Jan E.M. Houben*
Directeur d'Études, Professor of South Asian History and Philology
*Sources et histoire de la tradition sanskrite*
École Pratique des Hautes Études (EPHE, PSL - Université Paris)
*Sciences historiques et philologiques *
54, rue Saint-Jacques, CS 20525 – 75005 Paris
*johannes.houben at ephe.sorbonne.fr <johannes.houben at ephe.sorbonne.fr>*
*johannes.houben at ephe.psl.eu <johannes.houben at ephe.psl.eu>*
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