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Hindu Philosophy Unit

Call for Proposals for November Meeting

The Hindu Philosophy unit of the American Academy of Religion is pleased to invite proposals for the following sessions to be held at this year’s Annual Meeting:

  • Philosophical Roundtable

This format brings together several participants to discuss either a single argument or a closely related series of arguments from a single author. This year we will discuss Nyāya arguments for the existence of God (or īśvara), focusing on Jayanta Bhaṭṭa’s formulation of the īśvarānumāna in the Nyāyamañjarī (āhnika 3; see the critical edition of Kataoka [2005]). The goal is not to have traditional presentations but to create a space for lively and rigorous discussion. In lieu of traditional paper proposals, therefore, we invite prospective participants to write a short philosophical analysis of Jayanta’s argument.

One might, for example, criticize the inference, or defend it against objections, or simply assess its strengths and weaknesses. Proposals might also consider Jayanta’s argument in light of later formulations and critiques of the inference (see, e.g., Patil, Against a Hindu God [2009]).

  • Traditional Papers Session

For this session we are looking for individual paper proposals rather than full panel proposals. We are open to a wide range of topics related to Hindu philosophy. Possible topics include but are by no means limited to: epistemology, philosophy of language, aesthetics, philosophy and literature, philosophical theology, discourses of ultimate reality, philosophy and pedagogy, lived philosophy, modern Indian philosophy, and philosophy in vernacular texts.

We also seek papers for a possible co-sponsored session with the Tantric Studies unit on Loriliai Biernacki's recent book The Matter of Wonder: Abhinavagupta's Panentheism and the New Materialism (OUP 2023) and on Hindu philosophies of materiality more broadly.

Statement of Purpose

This unit aims to bring together scholars working on Hindu philosophy broadly construed, including not only the classical schools of Nyāya, Mīmāṃsā, Vedānta, etc., but a wide range of intellectual traditions from the Vedic period to the present day. These traditions are vast and varied, engaging with questions of epistemology, metaphysics, philosophy of language, aesthetics, theodicy, ritual theory, ethics, and political philosophy, not to mention areas that have, arguably, no direct parallel in Western thought. Our goals are (1) to advance research in Hindu philosophical traditions, encouraging new approaches and new topics within the field; (2) to explore interactions and influences between Hindu philosophy and other traditions of South Asian philosophy (Buddhist, Jain, Sikh, Islamic, etc.); and (3) to contribute to the study of cross-cultural philosophy at the AAR.


Steering Committee Members


Review Process

Proposer names are visible to chairs and steering committee members at all times