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19-Sep-2017 18:18

Banaras – also known as Kāśī („City of Light“) or by its official name Varanasi – forms a fascinating confluence of textual and spatial practices.

It is one of the most well-known North-Indian pilgrimage sites (tīrtha) and a centre of brahmanic learning as well as royal patronage.

Based on field work and textual studies, the diverse sounds occurring during marriages and initiations, will be looked at more closely.

It will be argued that the different types of sound produced by different agents (priests, women, musicians), on the one hand, contribute to the creation and structuring of ritual time and space, while on the other, they transcend and radiate the same.

Drawing on ethnographic material, I will then focus on the multiple questions emerging during repeated dialogues with Kedarnath Vyas, who occupies a crucial role in the area as pilgrimage specialist and head of the family in charge of the Jnanavapi.

Our encounters serve to illuminate changes in the management of sacred space, reflect on the consequent repositioning and decline of past religious authorities and spatial practices, such as pilgrimage, as well as imagining possible new visions of religious heritage and its space.

Power and ruler ship was negotiated in space; Gods, Goddesses, kings and priests have been and are highly mobile.

Abstract: In India, the notion of the “fake” ascetic is probably as old as the idea of asceticism as a legitimate way to salvation.In this conflict during the first half of the 20th century the spatial setting of the ruling dynasty’s residence Jaipur provides the stage for representatives of mainly two status groups: the nobility of the local dynasty of the Kachvahas and the court administration with their ruler Maharaja Man Singh II and the religious elite and their representatives.In this paper I would like to contextualize the interaction of these two groups within cultural and social changes that led to a whole series of additions and re-structuring of space from the 18th to the present day.The project focuses on how the earthquakes and the disaster response shape economic recovery, social relations, leadership, and politics in Nepal.

Abstract: In Nepal, as probably elsewhere in South Asia, many rituals performed in public or private space are marked by sound and music.However, there was one major disadvantage brought about by the new location of the Rambagh palace outside the walled city: the Maharaja and his company could not enter into the walled city in a form suitable for ceremonial movements in space.



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