South Asia

Organized Panel Session

1 - The Politics of the Guru-sphere in Gujarat

Saturday, July 7
10:20 AM - 11:50 AM
Location: Cypress, New Building

Gurus of various strands enjoy tremendous popularity in Gujarat, and their words and deeds carry influence far beyond matters of piety and ritual. This paper investigates the discursive activities of gurus, which I call the guru-sphere, as a key site of political contestation about citizenship and the polity in contemporary times. I consider the historical figures, practices and genealogies that gurus draw upon in their discourses and the political contexts within which they enunciate their messages. The ethnographic analysis of the guru-sphere examines the production of particular types of publics and the nature of deliberation engendered by them, to explore their relationship to the dominant politics in the state.

Mona G. Mehta

Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar, India

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1 - The Politics of the Guru-sphere in Gujarat



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