Harald Wiese

Sanskrit as an Indo-European Language

Students of Sanskrit can choose among several good textbooks. Whichever they may choose, learning Sanskrit is a daunting task. This book is not an alternative textbook for learning Sanskrit. Instead, it is to accompany these textbooks and written in the hope to make Sanskrit learning easier by explaining words and grammatical forms from an Indo-European point of view. Consider, for example Old Indian ad which means “to eat”, but is also historically related to both English (abbreviated by E) eat and New High German (NHG) essen. There was an Indo-European (IE) root ed that branched out into all these words over some millennia. Even E tooth and NHG Zahn stem from IE ed.

Harald Wiese

Exchange, gifting, and sacrificing
Premodern Indian perspectives

In both the Vedic and the classical periods, a special elite class of people existed that were called Brahmins. In a rough manner, one might say that their material wellbeing depended on dakiā in the Vedic period and on dāna in the classical one.

Broadening the perspective beyond dakṣiṇā and dāna, this book is on all sorts of giving in the context of pre-modern India, using Vedic, Sanskrit, Buddhist and, to a much lesser extent, Roman and Christian sources. The Brahmanical theory of the gift (i.e., the theory of dutiful gifting, dharmadāna) is a major focus of, and has provided a major motivation for, this study.

Dominik Wujastyk et al.

On the Plastic Surgery of the Ears and Nose
The Nepalese Recension of the Suśrutasaṃhitā

A thousand-year-old Ayurvedic manuscript containing the Compendium of Suśruta was announced to the scholarly world in 2007. The Nepalese manuscript, since adopted by UNESCO as part of the Memory of the World, reveals the state of classical Indian medicine in the ninth century. It enables us to study the changes in this medical classic that have taken place from the ninth to the nineteenth century, when printed texts began to dominate the dissemination of the work. The present monograph describes the research project focussed on this manuscript and offers an edition, study and translation of the historically important chapter about the plastic surgery on the nose and ears.

Frances Anke Niebuhr

Dhārī Devī, Goddess of the Floods
Development, Disaster and the Transitions of a Place of Worship

The trajectory of the Dhārī Devī Temple epitomises the idea of catastrophes as watersheds. In particular, flood disasters have accompanied transformation processes of the site located on Alaknanda River in the Indian Himalayas. As early as 1894, a flash flood had a significant impact on the site and the identity of the deity. Local flood legends gained new topicality with the planning of a hydroelectric power plant in the vicinity. They became part of debates surrounding the construction scheme that required the relocation of the sacred site. This case study explores flood discourses and illuminates their influence on a development project. It further demonstrates how previous controversies framed the public interpretation of two flood disasters in 2012 and specifically of the "Himalayan Tsunami" in 2013.

Marco Lazzarotti

God, Jesus and the Ancestors
An Ethnography of the Ancestors’ Rites in the Taiwanese Catholic Church

In this book the author describes the Ancestors Ceremonies as practiced in the Taiwanese Catholic Church. The author’s point is to demonstrate how the Chinese symbolic universe made a deep translation of the "new" symbolic system represented by the Catholic doctrine. At the same time the effort of the Catholic Church in order to adapt the Gospel message to the local situation built up a particular phenomenon that the author defined as cultural dialogue. It is this dialogic relationship the process that the author defines as Culture.

Elmar Josef Renner and Vipul Goswami

bāteṁ. Hindi-Grammatik kommunikativ 2


The Copenhagen Hindi Course contextualises grammar in 46 lessons. This allows a communicative teaching approach. The second part (L 24-46) focuses on the verbal system in its entirety and on complex syntax. The contexts are taken from the lives of the authors and their families and friends. Instead of representing a textbook that pledges to offer a complete view on Hindi speaking society, the textual fragments underlying the exercises invite teachers and learners to offer their own perspectives while communicating in Hindi in order to acquire it.

Each lesson is centered around one main grammatical structure and provides a variety of exercises which makes the workbook applicable in various course formats. The lessons correspond roughly to the following levels of the CEFRL: L 24-39 = B1.1, L 40-46 = B1.2

Volume 1

Elmar Josef Renner and Vipul Goswami

bāteṁ. Hindi-Grammatik kommunikativ 1

The Copenhagen Hindi Course contextualises grammar in 46 lessons. This allows a communicative teaching approach. The first part (L 1-23) focuses on the nominal constructions, some important verbal constructions and the syntax of the simple sentence. The contexts are taken from the lives of the authors and their families and friends. Instead of representing a textbook that pledges to offer a complete view on Hindi speaking society, the textual fragments underlying the exercises invite teachers and learners to offer their own perspectives while communicating in Hindi in order to acquire it.

Each lesson is centered around one main grammatical structure and provides a variety of exercises which makes the workbook applicable in various course formats. The lessons correspond roughly to the following levels of the CEFRL: L 1-12 = A1, L 13-23 = A2

Volume 2

Philippe Bornet, Nadia Cattoni (Eds.)

Significant Others, Significant Encounters
Essays on South Asian History and Literature

This volume is dedicated to Maya Burger, professor emerita at the Faculty of Arts, University of Lausanne. It gathers contributions by friends, colleagues, and former students that echo the multiple dimensions of her work. Organised in four parts, Indology, History of Religions, History of Orientalism, and Hindi and Translation, these contributions explore different examples of encounters with “significant others”. Analysing original historical and literary sources and reflecting on the methodological dimensions, the authors offer innovative perspectives on various processes of interaction and exchange between the Indian subcontinent and the wider world and within the subcontinent itself.

Tilman Schalmey

Computerlinguistische Datierung schriftsprachlicher chinesischer Texte

The chronological classification of texts can be crucial for clarifying authenticity and interpretation. The dating of written Chinese sources can be made difficult due to imitation of antique models and unclear authorship. This book is the first to examine the development and application of computational methods for dating Chinese texts. It introduces a lexeme-based method that aims at counteracting the stylistic rigidity of the written language and aiding philological work. Moreover, this study examines language change, the general suitability of digital methods for the study of Classical Chinese texts and the Hanyu da cidian 漢語大詞典 as an important data source for lexicographic dating.

Bindu Bhadana

Postnational Perceptions in Contemporary Art Practice

Media and Cultural Studies, Vol. 3

This publication focuses on the works of Chitra Ganesh (b.1974), Tejal Shah (b.1979) and Nikhil Chopra (b.1976) in order to highlight the changing relationship of the gendered body with national identity in contemporary art practice. Ideas of national belonging are challenged precisely through a concerted focus on identities marginalized by the nation. It proposes the ‘postnational’ as an empowering term to mark the shift away from the nation, and, employing a post-structural framework, it argues that the nature of national identity is in itself a construct.

Tony Robinson and Minsun Ji

A Flying Dragon
King Taejo, Founder of Korea’s Choson Dynasty

Yi Seong-gye (1335-1408)  began life as an obscure warrior of Korea’s borderlands, but rose to overthrow the 500-year Goryeo dynasty and become King Taejo, who founded the 518-year Joseon dynasty, Korea’s final royal lineage and the longest lasting Confucian dynasty in history. King Taejo’s momentous life intersected with watershed East Asian developments: the collapse of the Mongol Empire in Korea, the rise of China’s brilliant Ming dynasty, the pacification of massive Japanese pirating operations, and the rise of Asia’s most thoroughly realized Confucian society in Joseon. This biography tells the tale, ending with the tragic descent of King Taejo‘s own family into fratricide and grief.

Judith Müller, Juliane Dame, Sneha Sharma, Carsten Butsch (Eds.)

Aktuelle Forschungsbeiträge zu Südasien
12. Jahrestagung des AK Südasien, 21./22. Januar 2022, Bonn/online

Geographien Südasiens, Vol. 14

Extended Abstracts of the 12th Annual Meeting of the AK Südasien, 21./22. Januar 2022, Bonn/online

Monika Horstmann and Dalpat S. Rajpurohit

In the Shrine of the Heart
Sants of Rajasthan from the Sixteenth and Seventeenth Centuries

In the early modern period, the Sants emerged in North India as devotees of a formless interior god. The volume introduces seven Sant authors living in Rajasthan in the period from the first half of the sixteenth to the eighties of the seventeenth century. It explores their complex cultural background, their literary conventions, and their sectarian network, and presents samples of their poetry in the original Hindi with English translations. By far the most of the compositions in this volume have not been translated before, and of one of these the original text is published also for the first time.

Sant poetry has been transmitted in oral and written form. It owes its continuing vitality largely to congregational and private performance. This fact has been illustrated by a number of audio and video samples.

Vitus Angermeier, Christian Ferstl, Dominik A. Haas, Channa Li (Eds.)

Proceedings of the 12th International Indology Graduate Research Symposium (Vienna, 2021)

Puṣpikā – Tracing Ancient India through Texts and Traditions: Contributions to Current Research in Indology, Vol. 6

In the series Puṣpikā – Tracing Ancient India through Texts and Traditions: Contributions to Current Research in Indology, the proceedings of the International Indology Graduate Research Symposium (IIGRS) are published. Puṣpikā is a peer-reviewed series that provides early-career scholars with a platform to share the results of their research on pre-modern South Asian cultures.

This is the 6th volume in the series, containing thirteen articles based on the talks presented at the 12th IIGRS online and in Vienna, Austria on 22–24 July 2021.

Malini Ambach, Jonas Buchholz, Ute Hüsken (Eds.)

Temples, Texts, and Networks
South Indian Perspectives

For many centuries, Hindu temples and shrines have been of great importance to South Indian religious, social and political life. Aside from being places of worship, they are also pilgrimage destinations, centres of learning, political hotspots, and foci of economic activities. In these tem­ples, not only the human and the divine interact, but they are also meeting places of different members of the communities, be they local or coming from afar. Hindu temples do not exist in isolation, but stand in multiple re­lationships to other temples and sacred sites. They relate to each other in terms of architecture, ritual, or mythology, or on a conceptual level when particular sites are grouped together. Especially in urban centres, multiple temples representing different religious traditions may coexist within a shared sacred space. The current volume pays close attention to the con­nections between individual Hindu temples and the affiliated communities, be it within a particular place or on a trans-local level. These connections are described as “temple networks,” a concept which instead of stable hierarchies and structures looks at nodal, multi-centred, and fluid systems, in which the connections in numerous fields of interaction are understood as dynamic processes.

Tatiana Oranskaia, Anvita Abbi (Eds.)

The Heart of Change - Issues on Variation in Hindi

The present volume, which comprises seven English contributions and four in Hindi, addresses issues of linguistic variation – a phenomenon central to the study of language use – in regard to the major official language of India. It combines multiple theoretical and pragmatic approaches to a variety of linguistic phenomena conceptualised under the designation 'Hindi’ and attempts to obtain a more accurate portrayal of the changing reality behind this versatile taxonomic term. In doing so, this volume provides insight into how the forms and functions of Hindi are changing across borders within and outside of India; the concept of language contact is thus present in several of the studies. The analyses are based upon data observed in written texts, including manuscripts, and elicited from instances of oral speech.

The contributions, prepared by established and emerging scholars from several Asian and European countries, investigate functional aspects of the regional, social, and cultural forms of Hindi and how they interact in differing contexts, time periods, and types of communication. A similar vantage point is being adopted in the investigation of possibilities and constraints of formal variation in the grammatical structures of Standard Hindi. In addition to providing analyses from the perspectives of both general linguistics and sociolinguistics, the book discusses issues associated with teaching Hindi from the perspective of language variation.

The volume is distinguished by its innovative character in terms of both the data utilized in it and the width of its scope, and aims to contribute to a better understanding of ‘Hindi’ as a concept as well as of the general principles of linguistic variation.

Mariana Münning

Sound, Meaning, Shape
The Phonologist Wei Jiangong (1901-1980) between Language Study and Language Planning

One of the leading proponents of the radical linguistic reforms in 20th century China, Wei Jiangong remains hardly known in the West. This book describes how Wei, who was rooted in traditional philology and conceptualizing language as a tool, helped to promulgate a standard language, led the compilation of the world’s most popular dictionary, and helped to drive script reform. While these measures were characterized as violent intervention in the Chinese language sphere, Wei’s careful negotiating of linguistic description and political prescription illustrates how they also may have been steps that helped to achieve linguistic self-determination.

Yurou Zhong, in: China Quarterly (2023), 1-2

Judith Müller, Miriam Wenner, Christoph Dittrich (Eds.)

Aktuelle Forschungsbeiträge zu Südasien
11. Jahrestagung des AK Südasien, 07./08. Mai 2021, Göttingen/Online

Geographien Südasiens, Vol. 13

Extended Abstracts of the 11th Annual Meeting of the AK Südasien, 7th/8th May 2021 in Göttingen (Online):

Barbara Schuler

Theorising Emotions
An Enquiry into the Emotion Knowledge of Premodern Tamil Treatises

It is impossible to imagine human history without emotions. But what is known about theoretical emotion knowledge in premodern South India? This volume offers a first systematic examination of emotion knowledge as found in Tamil treatises and commentaries written from the 11th to 17th century. By following different theoretical strands, it sheds light on the questions that were raised by various emotion theorists, as well as their agenda and theorising practices. It points out changes, linearity, and disruptions in their ideas, as well as historically marginal knowledge. Perhaps surprisingly, the only systematic works on emotion produced by medieval and early modern Tamil thinkers were on emotion in poetics.

Martin Roth, Hiroshi Yoshida, Martin Picard (Eds.)

Japan's Contemporary Media Culture between Local and Global
Content, Practice and Theory

This collection features a wide range of inquiries into Japan’s contemporary media culture, situating popular media content and its related practices and theories in the complex interplay between local and global. The chapters draws attention to several prominent phenomena, suggest new approaches to media culture, and highlight the importance of positionality with regard to research on media culture. The volume documents the results of a series of PhD student workshops held in Kyoto and Leipzig between 2017 and 2019, and continues the discussions started there.

A list of Errata has been added on 14th February 2022.