June 22, 2010

NATURE, CULTURE AND RELIGION AT THE CROSSROADS OF ASIA
Edited by Marie Lecomte-Tilouine


‘A rich and wide-ranging collection that should be consulted by anyone who wants to know what meaning “nature” has in Asian world religions and in many contemporary Asian societies.’
David N. Gellner
Professor of Social Anthropology
University of Oxford

‘This interdisciplinary book is a significant, original and valuable contribution to…the Himalayan environment. …The book will appeal to students of the Himalaya and of the environment generally and…to scholars in religious studies. Several of the essays will work well in courses in Himalayan anthropology and religion as well as in environmental studies.’
Arjun Guneratne
Macalester College
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388 pages 215x140 mm 14 illustrations Hardback
Published price Rs 750
ISBN 978-81-87358-46-6
CULTURE STUDIES, HIMALAYAN ANTHROPOLOGY, RELIGION, ENVIRONMENTAL STUDIES
Pub date June 2010

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Nature, Culture and Religion at the Crossroads of Asia explores how ethnic groups living in the Himalayan regions understand nature and culture. The first part addresses the opposition between nature and culture in Asia’s major religious traditions such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam and Shamanism. The second part brings together specialists of different representative groups living in the heterogeneous Himalayan region. They examine how these indigenous groups perceive their world. This includes understanding their mythic past, in particular, the place of animals and spirits in the world of humans as they see it and the role of ritual in the everyday lives of these people. The book takes into account how these various perceptions of the Himalayan peoples are shaped by a globalized world. The volume thus provides new ways of viewing the relationship between humans and their environment.
Marie Lecomte-Tilouine is Senior Researcher in Social Anthropology at CNRS, France, and teaches at the Institut National des Langues Orientales, Paris. She has recently published Hindu Kingship, Ethnic Revival and Maoist Rebellion in Nepal (Collected Essays), Oxford University Press, New Delhi, 2009.

Contents
Introduction - Marie Lecomte-Tilouine
PART I – Hinduism, Buddhism, Islam and Shamanism
At the Articulation of Nature and Artifice - Charles Malamoud
Nature and Culture in Tibetan Philosophy - Stéphane Arguillère
Allah, Saints and Men in Islam - Marc Gaborieau
Variations in Shamanist Siberia - Roberte N. Hamayon
PART II – Himalayan Case Studies
To be more Natural than Others - Marie Lecomte-Tilouine
Subjectivity and Governance in the Himalayan Environment - Ben Campbell
Political Aspects of the Territorial Cult among the Mewahang Rai - Martin Gaenszle
‘Wilderness of the Civilization’ - Subhadra Mitra Channa
Love and Vengeance in Indus Kohistan - Claus Peter Zoller
Conceptions on Tibetan Relics - Rachel Guidoni
Plant Growth Processes and Animal Health in Northwest Yunnan - Andreas Wilkes
Terrace Cultivation and Mental Landscapes in Southern Yunnan - Pascal Bouchery

The Sacred Confluence, between Nature and Culture - Chiara Letizia
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