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Archaeology and Religion in South Asia


About the Series

This Series, in association with the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, reflects on the complex relationship between religion and society through new perspectives and advances in archaeology. It looks at this critical interface to provide alternative understandings of communities, beliefs, cultural systems, sacred sites, ritual practices, food habits, dietary modifications, power, and agents of political legitimisation. The books in the Series underline the importance of archaeological evidence in the production of knowledge of the past. They also emphasise that a systematic study of religion requires engagement with a diverse range of sources such as inscriptions, iconography, numismatics and architectural remains.

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Power, Presence and Space South Asian Rituals in Archaeological Context

Power, Presence and Space South Asian Rituals in Archaeological Context

1st Edition

Henry Albery, Jens-Uwe Hartmann, Himanshu Prabha Ray
July 27, 2020

Patterns of ritual power, presence, and space are fundamentally connected to, and mirror, the societal and political power structures in which they are enacted. This book explores these connections in South Asia from the early Common Era until the present day. The essays in the volume ...

Negotiating Cultural Identity Landscapes in Early Medieval South Asian History

Negotiating Cultural Identity Landscapes in Early Medieval South Asian History

2nd Edition

Himanshu Prabha Ray
July 02, 2019

This volume breaks new ground by conceptualizing physical landscapes as living cultural bodies. It redefines dynamic cultural landscapes as catalysts in which the natural world and human practice are inextricably linked and are constantly interacting. Drawing on research by eminent archaeologists, ...

From Temple to Museum Colonial Collections and Umā Maheśvara Icons in the Middle Ganga Valley

From Temple to Museum Colonial Collections and Umā Maheśvara Icons in the Middle Ganga Valley

1st Edition

Salila Kulshreshtha
May 21, 2019

Religious icons have been a contested terrain across the world. Their implications and understanding travel further than the artistic or the aesthetic and inform contemporary preoccupations.This book traces the lives of religious sculptures beyond the moment of their creation. It lays bare their ...

Women and Monastic Buddhism in Early South Asia Rediscovering the invisible believers

Women and Monastic Buddhism in Early South Asia Rediscovering the invisible believers

1st Edition

Garima Kaushik
January 15, 2018

This book uses gender as a framework to offer unique insights into the socio-cultural foundations of Buddhism. Moving away from dominant discourses that discuss women as a single monolithic, homogenous category—thus rendering them invisible within the broader religious discourse—this monograph ...

Buddhism and Gandhara An Archaeology of Museum Collections

Buddhism and Gandhara An Archaeology of Museum Collections

1st Edition

Himanshu Prabha Ray
December 05, 2017

Gandhara is a name central to Buddhist heritage and iconography. It is the ancient name of a region in present-day Pakistan, bounded on the west by the Hindu Kush mountain range and to the north by the foothills of the Himalayas. ‘Gandhara’ is also the term given to this region’s sculptural and ...

Negotiating Cultural Identity Landscapes in Early Medieval South Asian History

Negotiating Cultural Identity Landscapes in Early Medieval South Asian History

1st Edition

Himanshu Prabha Ray
November 29, 2017

This book draws on research by archaeologists, numismatists and historians on the social and cultural construction of landscapes in India. It deals with the perception, use and representation of the landscape as an essential dimension of life in the early medieval period....

Archaeology and Religion in Early Northwest India History, Theory, Practice

Archaeology and Religion in Early Northwest India History, Theory, Practice

1st Edition

Daniel Michon
November 28, 2017

This book explains how the early historic archaeological record of Punjab was put to use in the process of identity formation in the colonial and postcolonial periods. It focuses on the archaeological material with an eye towards how it was shaped by ancient identities....

The Archaeology of Sacred Spaces The temple in western India, 2nd century BCE–8th century CE

The Archaeology of Sacred Spaces The temple in western India, 2nd century BCE–8th century CE

1st Edition

Susan Verma Mishra, Himanshu Prabha Ray
August 16, 2016

This volume focuses on the religious shrine in western India as an institution of cultural integration in the period spanning 200 BCE to 800 CE. It presents an analysis of religious architecture at multiple levels, both temporal and spatial, and distinguishes it as a ritual instrument that ...

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