Cultural Studies (132)

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    Borobudur by: Caesar Voute 5,200.00 4,680.00

    Borobudur was constructed during the eighth century as a guide to the Noble Path of the Buddha. Born from silence and unfolding into the serenity of the other shore, it expresses the glory of Indonesia’s awareness and creativity, the smile of her plastic forms over the centuries as well as her travels along the edge of thoughts that cross the endless corridors of memory.

    Though the Western world rediscovered this magnificent structure almost 200 years ago, this sacred place nonetheless remains seated in its enigmatic depth, engulfed in vaporous illusions, waiting for someone to find the base simplicity of its Truth. This book is a catalyst and invites adventurous minds to find new directionJs by bringing into focus the vast universe of the Borobudur in order to cultivate the Way to weeding out error. The questions posed or solutions offered herein are like water and waves: different yet identical in essence. They stir discussion.

    One of the special contributions of this book lies in its correlating the cyclical movements of the Sun and Moon with the numerical symbolism of Borobudur. The authors cite the magical effect of the Sun suddenly appearing out of the volcano Merapi and empowering the Borobudur-mountain with its radiant energy in poetic imagery. This magic moment of satori or enlightenment echoes the experiences of the unknown Shailendra monarch who had commissioned the monument’s construction and the inspiration that made the architect envision this Buddhist wonder.

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    This book is the first-ever effort to gauge Buddhism’s impact on socio-economic life under the Palas in Bengal and the Bhaumakaras of Orissa.

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    Buddhism and Socio-Economic Life of Eastern India by: Bimal Chandra Mohapatra 500.00 450.00

    With the revival of Brahmanical Hinduism sometime around the fifth century ad, Buddhism had been dying out in India. But, paradoxically perhaps, in Bengal and Orissa, it saw not only its resurgence, but also a spell of its climactic glory — for the rulers of these Eastern Indian regions, during eighth-twelfth centuries, were the devout adherents of Buddhist faith. At the secular layers, the Eastern Indian society of the times, as elsewhere in the subcontinent, was going through a period or transition: from the ancient to medieval. This book looks at the status of Buddhism in Bengal, Orissa, and their peripheral regions in Eastern India during 8th-12th centuries ad. Yet, more significantly, it is the first ever effort to gauge the impact of Buddhism on contemporary socio-economic life, ruled by the dynastic families of zealous Buddhists, namely, the Palas in Bengal (ad 750-1199) and the Bhaumakaras of Orissa (ad 756-c.950). Contextually, Dr. Mohapatra evolves indepth, analytical perspectives on pre-medieval religion, society and economy in Eastern India — drawing on wide-ranging sources: both primary and secondary. Supported by relevant visual material, extensive bibliographic references, and a glossary of non-English words, the book is invaluable to the students/specialists of Buddhist studies and Indian history.

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    This book offers a fresh exposition of the Buddhist theory of meaning (apohavada) against the backdrop of Indian linguistic thought and shows how this theory is positioned vis-a-vis current issues and assumptions in language. Consists a very useful glossary.

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    Buddhist Theory of Meaning and Literary Analysis by: Rajnish Kumar Mishra 550.00 495.00

    For over two millennia, language has been one of the prime concerns in nearly all philosophical systems of India: Grammar, Mimamsa, Nyaya, Vaisheshika, Jaina and Bauddha which, in turn, not only have shaped the Indian perception of vak, but also constitute the essential background to study the major concerns of language that have been taken up in the subsequent phases of philosophical-linguistic developments. Rajnish Mishra’s book offers a fresh, in-depth exposition of the Buddhist theory of meaning (apohavada) against this stupendous backdrop of Indian linguistic thought and also tries to show how this time-honoured theory is positioned vis-a-vis the current issues and assumptions in language. Surveying the evolution of apoha across the ages — specially in its four kindred perspectives, viz, the Abhidharmika, the Sautrantika, the Yogacara and the Madhyamika schools of Buddhist philosophy, the author sets out, on its basis, a cognitive-epistemological model for literary analysis and illustrates as well the applicational aspects of this model with meticulous analysis of Wordsworth’s poetic masterpiece, ‘Tintern Abbey’. Based, as it is, on wide-ranging primary sources, including the Buddhist philosophical-epistemological texts in Sanskrit, the book sheds altogether new light on the Buddhist theory of meaning and, simultaneously, argues against the fallacies that have cropped up around its latter-day interpretations. A work of specific contemporary relevance to the ongoing post-structuralist debates, the book also carries a comprehensive, highly valuable cross-referential glossary of ‘conceptual’ Sanskrit terms.

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    Original inhabitants now living as refugees in their own land — this is the plight of Kashmiri Pandits now. This book describes the life, customs and traditions of the half-a-million people of this community, and their march from medieval times into the modern age.

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    Cashmere Kashir That Was by: S. Sapru 220.00 198.00

    India is a land of communities, and Kashmiri Pandits are one of them. Though they are the original inhabitants of the Kashmir valley, famous the world over for its beauty and learning, they are living in their own country as refugees since 1989 due to religious persecution, ethnic cleansing and terrorism — their only fault lay in their religion, Hinduism. This book describes basically the life and times of the half-a-million people of this community living in peace and harmony with nature. It also delves into the march of the people from medieval times into the modern age and the impact of transport and communication technologies that opened a window for information flow into the valley cocooned for so long due to the high mountains all around. Customs and traditions are described in a changing scenario brought about by the introduction of the English language in the late 19th century.

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    This volume addresses the wisdom of yoga with a practical approach. It unveils yoga in its true sense. Yoga is not meant for doing, but for being; being in our real nature, being in complete communion with the Supreme Consciousness, i.e. Truth, Bliss and Consciousness, enabling one to celebrate his life.

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    Celebrating Life with Yoga by: Ajay Bhardwaj 395.00 356.00

    This volume addresses the wisdom of yoga with a practical approach. While many people think of yoga simply as a series of postures and breathing exercises, which is only a part of the vast yoga wisdom, it unveils yoga in its true sense. Yoga is not meant for doing, but for being; being in our real nature, being in complete communion with the Supreme Consciousness, i.e. Truth, Bliss and Consciousness.
    Yoga helps one to discover oneself “who am I”? And the moment we know who we really are, every moment of life becomes a celebration. Yoga is thus the key to celebrating the life festival. Giving an introduction to the origin, history, traditions and different paths and aspects of yoga, the book authoritatively answers the basic questions: how can we apply yoga in our personal, family and social life?, what are the causes of suffering?, how can we live a stress-free and blissful life? and how can we attain the supreme goal of life, i.e. Self-realization, God-realization?
    As the book is designed to conform to the course contents of yogic science of Indian universities, it will be of great use to students, academicians and yoga aspirants alike.

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    This book makes an in-depth study of the history of evolution, penetration and growth of nagasvaram into the cultural moorings of south India. It makes a systematic study of nagasvaram from different perspectives, its accompanying instruments, its relevance in temple festivals, marriages, the traditions associated, its prevalence and acceptability among south Indian states. It also introduces the all-time great maestros of nagasvaram.

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    Celestial Nagasvaram by: Geetha Rajagopal 1,200.00 1,080.00

    Nagasvaram, world’s loudest non-brass acoustic instrument, is known as mangala vadyam (auspicious instrument), and raja vadyam (king of all instruments). This popular wind-group musical instrument is well known all over the south Indian states, more specifically in Tamil Nadu. Its origin is associated with the Thiruvarur Temple and its legacy continued all through the Pallavas, Colas, Pandyas, Nayakas, and Marathas. It has imprinted its sheen on all the rituals, especially, on the temple festivals and marriages.
    This book makes an in-depth study of the history of evolution, penetration and growth of nagasvaram into the cultural moorings of south India over a period of 800 years. It makes a systematic study of nagasvaram (myths associated with it, its making, types, etc.), its accompanying instruments, its relevance in temple festivals, marriages, the traditions associated with nagasvaram, its prevalence and acceptability in Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka and Kerala, in addition to Tamil Nadu where it rules the roost. It widely introduces the great maestros of nagasvaram, for whom it was a nishkama karma.
    Kings, temples and mathas were the promoters of this blissful instrument. At present this artform faces severe challenges from the all-pervasive Western musical instruments. The author suggests ways and means of how to maintain the legacy of nagasvaram live, and the need to preserve the rich heritage of our musical tradition for the benefit of our posterity to realize the Supreme Bliss in their life.
    This book, rare of its kind, will enthrall those who are keen on instrumental music, especially the faculty, students, and professionals in the field of music, religion and art.

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    Cinema Through Rasa by: Prachand Praveer 800.00

    Cinema Through Rasa discusses the important works of the world cinema in the light of Rasa Siddhānta of the Indian classical aesthetics. Rasa Siddhānta was first mentioned in Bharata Muni’s Nāṭyaśāstra – the ancient treatise on dramaturgy. This book catalogues the major cinematic works in the light of Abhinavabhāratī – a tenth-century commentary on the Nāṭyaśāstra by the great Kashmiri Śaivite philosopher Abhinavagupta. Further, it outlines the links between puruṣārtha, the cultural value system of life pursuits in Indian tradition, and aesthetics while citing examples from the works of major directors such as Orson Welles, Luis Buñuel, Ingmar Bergman, Akira Kurosawa, Andrei Tarkovsky, Alfred Hitchcock, Carl Dreyer, Charlie Chaplin, Sergei Eisenstein, Robert Bresson and Satyajit Ray.
    Using contemporary scholars’ interpretation of non-dualistic Kashmir Śaivism tradition, Cinema Through Rasa aims to serve as a tribute to Abhinavagupta’s genius, a commentary on important ideas such as rasa, nature of emotions, cinema and beauty along with a tryst with the masterpieces of the world cinema. The meaning of this book is summarized by this verse – na hi rasād r̥te kaścid arthaḥ pravartate – the medium of cinema, though modern, should be seen as resting in the power of rasa without which nothing makes any sense.
    This book is a translation of the original Hindi book Abhinava Cinema, which was first published in 2016. Abhinava Cinema was lauded as innovative, path-breaking and a must-read for students of literature and cinema studies by scholars and critics.

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    This book stresses the persistence of cultural diversity despite the homogenizing pressure of globalization, but argue that this diversity need not lead to conflict and may be our greatest resource. It contains essays on the idea of India and the American dream, as well as discussing broader questions raised by the meeting of different ways of knowing and being in an enigmatic world.

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    Clasp of Civilizations by: Richard Alan Hartz 750.00 675.00

    Our planet seems to be getting smaller and smaller. We now interact all the time with our once-distant neighbours around the globe. Yet our cultures remain almost as different as ever. Civilizations are the largest widely recognized units of this diversity. Over the centuries, each has evolved its own distinctive contributions to human life. But differences can be a source of conflict as well as mutual enrichment. Since the end of the Cold War, and even more in the aftermath of the events of September 11, 2001, the scenario of a “clash of civilizations” has struck many people as plausible.
    Proposing the alternative scenario of a “clasp of civilizations”, these essays stress the persistence of cultural diversity despite the homogenizing pressure of globalization, but argue that this diversity need not lead to conflict and may be our greatest resource. Given the centrality of religion to many cultures, much depends on the replacement of outdated attitudes of religious exclusivism by a pluralism that embraces the other. A historical landmark in the emergence of religious pluralism was the Parliament of Religions that opened in Chicago on 11 September 1893. This book brings out its significance as a global cultural event, too far ahead of its time to be fully understood by its contemporaries.
    The Parliament brought several notable exponents of Asian spirituality to America, including the charismatic Swami Vivekananda from India. Thus began the contact between these two countries which continues to deepen to this day. Written by an American living in India, the book contains essays on the idea of India and the American dream, as well as discussing broader questions raised by the meeting of different ways of knowing and being in an enigmatic world.

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    The book, a Festschrift volume in honour of Prof. Trichur S. Rukmani, focuses on diverse themes: Patanjali’s Yogasutras, Advaita Vedanta, Gaudiya Vaishnavism, Shaivism, grammar and epic literature. It also addresses issues of contemporary relevance relating broadly to non-violence, environment, gender and syncretism.

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    Classical and Contemporary Issues in Indian Studies by: P. Pratap Kumar, Jonathan Duquette, 1,500.00 1,350.00

    This book is a Festschrift volume in honour of Prof. Trichur S. Rukmani that reflects the plethora of issues which she studied in her scholastic life. It includes twenty-four essays by distinguished scholars on various classical and contemporary issues pertaining to Indian studies. While the volume discusses current research in the field of Yoga — Prof. Rukmani’s primary research field — it also invites further reflection on other areas of Indian thought which have attracted her attention in the course of her long and fruitful academic career.
    The volume is divided thematically into six sections. The first two sections deal with the interpretation of the Yoga, Vedanta and Gaudiya-Vaishnava traditions, exploring issues of hermeneutics, methodology and philosophical analysis. The third section addresses issues of continuity within the Indian tradition and includes essays on tantric Shaivism, Mimamsa and the Bhagavad-Gita. The next two sections feature essays on the Sanskrit philosophical discourse, grammar, epic literature and renunciation in the Indian tradition. The last section of the volume takes up issues of contemporary relevance such as the insights from the Hindu tradition towards environmental ethics, the Svadhyaya movement and its dharmic ecology, non-violence, gender, cultural identity as well as syncretism.
    The volume, including essays as diverse as Prof. Trichur S. Rukmani’s own scholarly interests, will certainly benefit all scholars and students of Indology, especially those concerned with the religious and philosophical traditions of India.

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    Two centuries of British rule gave English educated Indians a peculiar mindset that tended to undervalue their native ethos and moorings, and make English culture more attractive. This tendency is called “colonial syndrome”. This book attempts to define and elucidate this syndrome and its ill effects, and suggests means to contain and overcome it.

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    Colonial Syndrome by: K. Ramakrishna Rao 1,000.00 900.00

    Two centuries of British rule crystallized in the minds of English educated Indians a peculiar mindset that tended to undervalue their native ethos and moorings, and make English culture more attractive. This tendency is called the “colonial syndrome”. This syndrome has infected the modern Indian elite, who abandon their cultural roots and imitating the Western ways. This situation has drained them off their intrinsic creative capabilities and rendered them less likely to make any significant original contributions to nation building.
    This book, an outcome of Prof. K. Ramakrishna Rao’s work as a National Fellow of Indian Council of Social Science Research (ICSSR), attempts to define and elucidate this syndrome and its ill effects on the modern Indian mindset, and suggests means to contain and overcome it. It alerts people and the leadership about the negative and cascading effects of colonial syndrome, and pleads for Indianization of education, philosophy and psychology, among others in the country. Mahatma Gandhi’s concept of svadeœÁ is the driving force here. It has no negative attributes, only positive self-assertion for common good.
    Colonial Syndrome goes on to analyses Gandhi’s concept of svadeœÁ, and attempts to make clear the difference between education in India and Indian education, Indian philosophy and philosophy in India, and psychology in India and Indian psychology and emphasizes that India had its own unique standing on education, philosophy and psychology which needs to be revived and nurtured for fast social and economic development.

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    The book surveys the Vedic literature, epics, Puranas, classical Sanskrit poetry and prose and the vast Sastras to throw light on diverse facets — from politics, religion and philosophy to agriculture, botany and architecture — of ancient Indian culture.

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    Cultural Glory of Ancient India by: Sures Chandra Banerji 700.00 630.00

    India is a land of communities, and Kashmiri Pandits are one of them. Though they are the original inhabitants of the Kashmir valley famous the world over for its beauty and learning, they are living in their own country as refugees since 1989 due to religious persecution, ethnic cleansing and terrorism — their only fault lay in their religion, Hinduism. This book describes basically the life and times of the half-a-million people of this community living in peace and harmony with nature. It also delves into the march of the people from medieval times into the modern age and the impact of transport and communication technologies that opened a window for information flow into the valley cocooned for so long due to the high mountains all around. Customs and traditions are described in a changing scenario brought about by the introduction of the English language in the late 19th century.

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    The book throws light on the socio-economic and cultural life of the people of Kinnaur in the trans-Himalayan region including a study of their customs and architectural heritage. It also deals with the universe under the various indigenous deities of cults like those of Vishnu, Shaiva and Shakti based on the Shu Republic in 15 deshang (villages) of Kinnaur.

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    Cultural Heritage of the Trans-Himalaya (Kinnaur) by: P.S. Negi 3,200.00 2,880.00

    The work is a study of the cultural heritage of the trans-Himalayan area of Himachal Pradesh, especially Kinnaur, that involves documentation of traditional institutions like temples, monasteries, Bon chos, artefacts, forts and old dialects of various ethnic groups.
    Relying on field studies, the volume throws light on the socio-economic and cultural life of the people of the region of Kinnaur including a study of their customs and architectural heritage. It discusses the indigenous deities (“Shu” on rathang or Shu Republic) that rule and run the administration of the ethnic communities alongside the development administration and democratic set-up from the Panchayats upwards. It deals with the universe under the various indigenous deities of cults like those of Vishnu, Shaiva and Shakti based on an actual field study of the public proceedings of the Shu Republic in 15 deshang or villages of Kinnaur and the U-Khyang and Dhang-U-Khyang, i.e. the festival of flowers and the festival of the Dakhrain, in some deshang. With reference to the deshang, it provides more than a glimpse into their administrative set-up and customary laws and traditions, and describes various architectural designs of the native residential buildings. The book emphasizes the need for necessary conservation measures for the preservation of the cultural heritage of Kinnaur. It would be useful to scholars and students concerned with the study of cultural heritage of India.

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