South Asia

Organized Panel Session

129 - Secular Religiosity and Religious Secularity: Rethinking the Indian Agency in the Shaping of Modernity

7/7/2018
12:10 PM - 1:40 PM
Location: Jacaranda II, First Floor

This panel examines discourses on the “religious” and the “secular” in modern India in order to explore the ways in which India has played a unique role in shaping modernity.


In recent decades, the notion of “modernity” and its related concepts have been frequently critiqued as modern Western constructs subsequently imposed on the rest of the world. While recognizing the importance of this critique, it must be noted that by criticizing the tyranny of “Western modernity,” we risk neglecting the agency the non-Western world exerted in shaping modernity. Hence, we have to resist the notion that the East was merely a passive recipient of Western influences.


The three papers analyze how the concepts of “the religious” and “the secular” were employed and elaborated on in modern India. They may seem to fit into the typical modern dichotomies of tradition and modernity, the transcendent and the rational, and East and West. However, each paper shows that these concepts did not necessarily result in static dichotomies, but were used in various unique ways. The mere use of these “modern concepts of religion” signifies neither a passive reception of Western intellectual products nor a simple inversion of Western Orientalism. Rather, it gives evidence of the creative and complex processes through which inhabitants of the non-Western world took agency in shaping modernity.


As a panel with “Creative Panel Formats,” we will hold a pre-Symposium in Tokyo, and open the materials at https://goo.gl/S7LvfG. We expect the audience have a look at them and actively join our panel.

Presentations:

Send Email for Kana Tomizawa (Kitazawa)

Send Email for Kana Tomizawa (Kitazawa)

Send Email for Kana Tomizawa (Kitazawa)

Eijiro Hazama

The University of Tokyo, Japan

Presentation(s):

Send Email for Eijiro Hazama

Raghuramaraju Adluru

Indian Institute of Technology Tirupati, India

Presentation(s):

Send Email for Raghuramaraju Adluru

Ashok Vohra

University of Delhi, India

Presentation(s):

Send Email for Ashok Vohra


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