[INDOLOGY] CFP: Provincializing Brahmins: New Directions in the Study of Caste in Premodern South Asia full-day symposium at the 50th Annual Conference of South Asia, Madison - Wisconsin

Eric Gurevitch ericmgurevitch at gmail.com
Tue Mar 29 17:59:36 UTC 2022

We invite paper submissions to participate in a full-day symposium at the 50
th Annual Conference of South Asia, Madison - Wisconsin on Wednesday,
October 19th, 2022. The theme of the symposium is “Provincializing
Brahmins: New Directions in the Study of Caste in Premodern South Asia.” We
especially invite papers from early-career scholars.

Symposium description: The study of caste in the premodern period has
historically proceeded from the perspective of Sanskrit legal digests (
dharmaśāstra) composed by Hindu Brahmins. But Brahmins never had a monopoly
on defining caste. And Brahminical articulations of caste often proved
difficult to put into practice. Philosophers contested the ontology of
social classes, religious reformers challenged the boundaries of caste, and
even Hindu Brahmins themselves came to question the practicality of strict
social and religious boundaries. This symposium aims to “provincialize
Brahmins” by exploring premodern constructions of caste from the
perspective of texts, languages, and religions that have been neglected by
the study of Hindu Sanskrit dharmaśāstra.

This symposium brings together an interdisciplinary group of scholars whose
research establishes a new program in the study of premodern caste. Each of
our panelists examines how either an individual caste or the caste system
as a whole was constructed, contested, or represented outside of Sanskrit,
Brahmanical religions, and legal texts. In displacing the perspective of
Hindu Brahmins, this panel explores new perspectives on the understanding
of personhood, agency, and subjectivity in premodern South Asia.

If you are interested in presenting, please submit a paper title and
150-word abstract to the following link by April 30th, 2022:

Take care,

Eric and Seema

Eric Gurevitch

PhD Candidate, South Asian Languages and Civilizations and

Committee on Conceptual and Historical Studies of Science

University of Chicago

gurevitch at uchicago.edu


Seema K. Chauhan

Asoke Kumar Sarkar Early Career Fellow in Classical Indology

University of Oxford Balliol College

seema.chauhan at balliol.ox.ac.uk

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