[INDOLOGY] New book on Appaya Dīkṣita

Jonathan Duquette joduquette at gmail.com
Sat Feb 6 11:04:34 UTC 2021

** Apologies for cross-posting **

Dear Colleagues,

I am delighted to announce the publication of my new book: *Defending God
in Sixteenth-Century India: The Śaiva Oeuvre of Appaya Dīkṣita
The book is published in the Oxford Oriental Monographs series (OUP).

Best wishes,



*Defending God in Sixteenth-Century India: The Śaiva Oeuvre of Appaya

This book is the first in-depth study of the Śaiva oeuvre of the celebrated
polymath Appaya Dīkṣita (1520-1593). Jonathan Duquette documents the rise
to prominence and scholarly reception of Śivādvaita Vedānta, a
Sanskrit-language school of philosophical theology which Appaya
single-handedly established, thus securing his reputation as a legendary
advocate of Śaiva religion in early modern India. Based to a large extent
on hitherto unstudied primary sources in Sanskrit, Duquette offers new
insights on Appaya's early polemical works and main source of Śivādvaita
exegesis, Śrīkaṇṭha's *Brahmamīmāmsābhāṣya*; identifies Appaya's key
intellectual influences and opponents in his reconstruction of Śrīkaṇṭha's
theology; and highlights some of the key arguments and strategies he used
to make his ambitious project a success. Centred on his magnum opus of
Śivādvaita Vedānta, the *Śivārkamanidīpikā*, this book demonstrates that
Appaya's Śaiva oeuvre was mainly directed against Viśiṣtādvaita Vedānta,
the dominant Vaiṣṇava school of philosophical theology in his time and
place. A far-reaching study of the challenges of Indian theism, this book
opens up new possibilities for our understanding of religious debates and
polemics in early modern India as seen through the lenses of one of its
most important intellectuals.

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