The present volume forms the ninth in a series of proceedings of the triennial International Conference on Early Devotional Literature in New Indo-Aryan Languages which was held in Heidelberg, Germany in 2003. The conference covered a wide range of topics relating to the Bhakti tradition. The volume unites twenty contributions which reflect original research carried out by their authors in the period between 2001 and 2003.
For all their diversity, not a few of the articles bring to mind that the term Bhakti is a locus where various concepts and often composite religious identities meet. As the focus of the conference was on the northern vernacular traditions, with no Sanskrit and little Dravidian material being discussed, the contributions represent facets of a broad South Asian religious and literary complex, of which Indic and Islamicate traditions as well as a whole gamut of literary languages is constitutive.
The contributions address literary genres and historiography, manuscriptology, painting, hagiography, various sects, musical practice as related to Bhakti authors and sects, and the interface of yoga and the Indic and Islamicate traditions, respectively.
An indispensable volume for scholars of South Asian religion and culture.
Monika Horstmann (Boehm-Tettelbach) is a retired professor of Modern South Asian Studies at the South Asia Institute, University of Heidelberg, Germany.
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