GENEVA, N.Y — Vasudha Narayanan will speak Sept. 28 in the second Fisher Center program this semester at Hobart and William Smith Colleges.
Her topic, “Re-presenting Hindu Women: Texts, Contexts and Realities,” is part of the center's focus this semester on Gender, Religion and Politics.
Narayanan's talk will begin at 7:30 p.m. in the Geneva Room of the Warren Hunting Smith Library; it is free and the public is invited.
A professor of Religion at the University of Florida and a past president of the American Academy of Religion, Narayanan will discuss how Hindu women have been depicted in a variety of ways by texts, scholars and observers.
She will examine multiple frames of reference of Hindu women, and address issues of cultural and political contexts and agency, including the audiences for these descriptions, both in India and the United States. Narayanan studies temples across Southeast Asia and elsewhere to elaborate Hindu traditions as a global religion.
Her scholarship intervenes in common misunderstandings and misperceptions with the hope that knowledge of different communities, languages, beliefs, ways of life and world views will inspire respect.
Narayanan has written numerous books including Hinduism; The Vernacular Veda: Revelation, Recitation, and Ritual; The Way and the Goal: Expressions of Devotion in the Early Srivaisnava Tradition; as well as chapters and journal articles. Her forthcoming book is Global and Local Hindu Traditions.
She will also attend a roundtable discussion the following morning. Lesley Adams is overseeing the Center this year while Betty Bayer is on sabbatical.