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Yoga in Theory and Practice Unit

Call for Proposals

For the 2020 Annual Meeting in Boston, we especially invite proposals on the following topics. Please contact the organizing scholar listed next to each topic for more information:

Yoga and Politics and/or Nationalism, Christopher Miller,

Yoga in Discipling, Matteo Di Placido,

Non-Indian Physical Yoga (Textual Focus), Naomi Worth,

Ethics in Contemporary Yoga, Christa Kuberry,

Yoga as/and Ritual, Seth D. Powell,

Additionally, for a possible Co-sponsored session with the Cognitive Science of Religion Unit and the Yoga in Theory and Practice Unit. In recent years there has been increasing interest in the study of yoga using ideas and methods from cognitive science and neuroscience. This panel aims to bring together scholars of both yoga and cognitive science/neuroscience to gauge the current state of the field.

Statement of Purpose

This Unit seeks to elucidate the religious and sectarian representations of yoga in South Asian history and the profoundly fascinating contemporary yoga culture that has emerged in the past century. Among other topics that are addressed in our Unit is the emergence of modern yoga out of the encounter between Indian and European cultures in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. In connection with this, it examines the relative pervasiveness of spiritual and religious ideologies in manifest or latent forms within the contemporary yoga scene, and the overarching sociological relevance of yoga within global culture. We also examine changing paradigms with respect to the nature and function of yoga in the larger South Asian religious context. Our goal is to provide a venue in which the body of scholars working in this area can collectively evaluate this extremely timely material. We actively pursue scholars from Europe, Asia, and other areas that have worked at length on these issues, so as to bring an important international component to the Unit.


Steering Committee Members



Review Process

Proposals are anonymous to chairs and steering committee members until after final acceptance/rejection