Universität Wien FIND

142083 UE Rethinking the Body in South Asia - Imagination, Representation, and Practice (2021W)

Prüfungsimmanente Lehrveranstaltung


Hinweis: Ihr Anmeldezeitpunkt innerhalb der Frist hat keine Auswirkungen auf die Platzvergabe (kein "first come, first served").


max. 24 Teilnehmer*innen
Sprache: Englisch



Di 11:00-12:30, SR 6, ab 5.10.

Es wird erwartet, dass die Veranstaltung persönlich abgehalten wird, wobei bei Bedarf auch ein hybrides Format möglich ist. "Hybrid" bedeutet, dass die Studierenden vor Ort *oder* online teilnehmen können. Wenn Sie jedoch vor Ort teilnehmen, kommen Sie bitte getestet, geimpft oder genesen zur Universität.
Diejenigen, die nicht vor Ort sein können/wollen, sollten sich vorher mit mir in Verbindung setzen, damit wir die über Moodle zu streamenden Sitzungen besprechen können. Dies sollte eher eine Ausnahme für diejenigen sein, die nicht persönlich kommen können, als die Regel.
Wenn möglich, nehmen Sie bitte an der ersten Sitzung vor Ort am 10.05.2021 teil.


Ziele, Inhalte und Methode der Lehrveranstaltung

What is the body and what is the self in different South Asian contexts? How is it imagined, represented, and used in practice? How are notions of the body connected to cultural memory, biopolitics, and specific identities and worldviews at large? What is a (human) body made of and what constitutes an individual self? What are life and death in relation to the body Indic contexts? What about non-human entities and their interaction with humans? This seminar will delve into cultural questions related to representations of the body in South Asian traditions. We will explore how South Asians have unique perceptions and attitudes toward the body in religious and cultural contexts, as well as the processes of interpreting and representing notions of the body in different media: film, literature, and other expressions of popular culture.
Concentrating mainly on embodied practices such as yoga, ritual acts, chanting, eating, sex, asceticism, healing, possession, and performance in different settings, we will examine how the body is and has been experienced, imagined and represented in South Asia. We will also analyze the ways in which specific bodies have been "othered" as a powerful ideological discourse, which empowers or marginalizes specific communities thereby tackling questions of “race”, caste, class, religion, and gender. Utilizing an interdisciplinary perspective by means of textual study and array of disciplines (notably anthropology), we will explore both insider- and outsider perspectives and issues related to the body from the 2nd century CE up to the present-day.

Art der Leistungskontrolle und erlaubte Hilfsmittel

Weekly assignments (Mini-Essays) and active participation. An oral exam will conclude the seminar.

The oral participation comprises 40% of your grade. Active participation in the discussion and text interpretation and analysis; oral presentation of your weekly mini-essays, etc.
Your written work comprises also 45% of your grade: weekly mini-essays to be submitted via Moodle.

A final oral examination counts for 15% of your grade.

The seminar will be held in English. However, the assignments can be completed in German as well.

Mindestanforderungen und Beurteilungsmaßstab

The Seminar is planned in the in-person format to facilitate group discussions. Regular and active participation in each Seminar session. If there are students participating online who can't make it in person, it is required that you still participate actively (i.e no passive audience possible). In the case of absence without good reason (illness or similar) points will be deducted. There is no written paper at the end of the course, but an oral examination.
The oral examination is a one-on-one conversation of the topics discussed in class and the knowledge obtained. It counts for 15% of your final grade.


Reading material and themes from the weekly discussion. A bibliography and reading material will be provided via Moodle.


Reading material and themes from the weekly discussion. A bibliography and reading material will be provided via Moodle.

Zuordnung im Vorlesungsverzeichnis


Letzte Änderung: Mi 10.11.2021 15:28