Cultivating the Humanities and Social Sciences: Addressing Multiple Marginalities in South and Southeast Asia

A Symposium organized by The Association for Asian Studies (AAS) and The Regional Center for Social Science  and Sustainable Development (RCSD)

As part of a new transnational Project supporting under-resourced scholars of Asia, this three-day symposium will bring together early-career scholars, students, artists and public intellectuals to reflect critically on issues of social, cultural, economic and political marginalization.

With generous support from Sweden, the symposium on Cultivating the Humanities and Social Sciences: Addressing Multiple Marginalities builds on a prior series of skill-building workshops organized by the Project’s implementing partners located in Cambodia, India, Pakistan and Thailand. This event will highlight current research and local perspectives from communities in South and Southeast Asia, with an emphasis on strengthening emerging scholars’ analytic and interpretive competencies. The symposium will focus especially on conflict and post-conflict areas, where marginalization has entailed multiple intersecting forms of exclusion, inequity and vulnerability.

Organized around a series of roundtable discussions, research presentations and workshops, the symposium will showcase new scholarship in the Humanities and Social Sciences on a wide array of topics and questions that both emerge from and affect the region. Issues addressed will include, but not be limited to, gender and transgender inequalities; local strategies to mitigate environmental risk; forced-displacement and scholars-at-risk; natural resource conservation and human rights; digital humanities and activism; and non-traditional security issues.

A priority for the symposium is to reframe academic debate in a manner that centres perspectives from the margins and enables participation from under-resourced scholars and institutions in South and Southeast Asia. The emerging scholars selected by the Project’s regional partners will be the driving force in these conversations—furthering their research and analytical skills, sharing local knowledge and strategies for coping with censorship and authoritarianism, exploring possibilities for partnership, and expanding their professional networks across borders and between the margins.

God and Vaiṣṇavism: An Online Workshop, 23-26 May 2022, 3pm CEST

An Online Workshop
23-26 May 2022, 3.00-5.30pm CEST

The purpose of the online workshop God and Vaiṣṇavism is to locate the Vaiṣṇava concept of God within a global philosophical framework. Each speaker in the workshop will explore a concept of God in one of the main Vaiṣṇava traditions or texts. The main question to be addressed is: What is the Vaiṣṇava concept of God? Or more specifically: What attributes does God possess according to particular textual sources and traditions in Vaiṣṇavism? There will also be more general talks on philosophy and the concept of God.

The workshop will be held on Zoom. There will be no fee for participation. Registration however will be required.

The workshop is part of “A Philosophical Approach to the Vaiṣṇava Concept of God,” a project funded by the John Templeton Foundation through the Global Philosophy of Religion Project, hosted by the University of Birmingham. The workshop is supported by the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies and the Institute for Vaishnava Studies.

List of Talks:
• Varieties of Theism, Benedikt Göcke (Ruhr-University Bochum, Germany)
• Thinking about God, Graham Oppy (Monash University, Australia)
• Philosophical Issues with the Concept of God, Rebecca Chan (San José State University, USA)
• The Concept of God in the Bhavagad Gītā: A Panentheistic Account, Ricardo Silvestre (Federal University of Campina Grande, Brazil) and Alan Herbert (Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, UK)
• Form and Beauty: God in the Bhagavata Purāṇa, Edwin Francis Bryant (Rutgers University, USA)
• Reflections on Pāñcarātra Conceptions of Deity, Gavin Flood (University of Oxford, UK)
• Expounding God’s Singularity in the Mahābhārata Epic, Angelika Malinar (University of Zurich, Switzerland)
• The Āḻvār concept of God: A Look at Toṇṭaraṭippoṭi Āḻvār’s and Maturakavi Āḻvār’s Objects of Worship, Suganya Anandakichenin (University of Hamburg, Germany)
• The Concept of God in Madhva’s Tatva-vada, Shrinivasa Varakhedi (Central Sanskrit University, India) and Srinivasa Kumar Acharya (Manipal Academy of Higher Education, India)
• Non-theism and Theism in the Nimbārka Sampradāya, Vijay Ramnarace (Georgetown University, USA)
• God in Puṣṭimārga, Frederick M. Smith (University of Iowa, USA)
• A Polyvalent Concept of God in the Caitanya Vaiṣṇava Tradition, Ala