This undergraduate-level course introduces students to the multi-religious complexion of South Asia as a region, with a particular focus upon key religious traditions and the resemblences and interactions between them. This course is divided into two parts. In the first part of this course, students are introduced to key religious traditions of South Asia, Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Islam and Sikhism. Students will be encouraged to survey academic works pertaining to, on the one hand, the literature, doctrines, cosmologies, rituals and histories of, and prominent places of worship in, the Hindu, Buddhist, Jain, Muslim and Sikh religious traditions. On the other hand, the development of South Asia into a distinctive space and spiritual 'homeland' for multi-religious communities. Whilst the first part of the course focuses upon religious traditions autonomously, the subsequent section of the course is thematic and encourages students to make comparisons, and discover sophisticated relationships and dynamic interactions between religious traditions in South Asia. Students are introduced to scholarly writings that are revelatory of the materiality of religious traditions in pre-modern and modern South Asia; everyday forms of piety in South Asia; gender positions in religious traditions; encounters of religious traditions with European colonialism; and, perceptions of the 'other' in pre-modern religious traditions. Herein, students will find multiple sites of resemblances or differences, and cultural negotiations, engagements and contests, within religious traditions in South Asia.
Section 401 - LEC