CFP: Indian Studies Journal on "Re-engaging with the Epics in Literature and Arts" and other General Areas
Call for Papers
We are inviting articles and book reviews on the Focus Area and the General Areas for the Volume II, Number 2, 2017. However we are open to inclusion of new topics/areas as per the scope of the journal:
Focus Area: Re-engaging with the Epics
The Concept Note
Epics not only reflect the milieu in which they are created, but also have a lasting impact on milieus that follow. Hence, to disassociate epics from culture is impossible. However, the very notion of an epic suggests a hierarchal world order with a hero who is able to transcend seemingly insurmountable difficulties to succeed in a quest that others find too daunting to even contemplate. Such a hierarchal world order, not unnaturally, opens up numerous possibilities in the modern and postmodern retellings of epics — where either the marginalised are focussed upon, or there are no margins or centre. Hence, re-engaging with epics has been a favoured trope or theme in literature, mainly over the last hundred years. Some such examples are Dharamveer Bharati’s Andha Yug, Chitra Banerjee’s Divakaruni’s The Palace of Illusions, M.T. Vasudevan Nair’s Bhima, Shyam Benegal’s Kalyug and Mani Ratnam’s Raavan.
Again the impact of the epics has been profound on the culture of the subcontinent. While the epics evolved with different versions as per the regional variations in the span of long time, they have also influenced historically not only the field of literature but other fields of arts, fine arts and the social sciences. Even recently astroarchaeological projects have been under taken to understand them scientifically. New advances in the genetic studies have also provided new tools to explore various fields spread over a vast geographical locations.
For this volume, we are inviting scholarly articles of 3,000-5,000 words (including endnotes and references) on the above topic. Given the scope of the journal, articles should be able to show how the text is connected to Indian culture. Papers may include
- Studies on retellings of epics in the form of parodies/pastiches/satires, Feminist/Marxist/Dalit/Postcolonial interpretations.
- The epics in transition and variation
- Impact on visual and performing arts
- Impact on the social sciences
- Ethical boundaries in the epics and their implications today
- Astroarchaeological studies on the epics
- Genetic explorations of the themes
- Locating the physical geography of the epics
- Indian Cultural Traditions: Dharma, Religions, sects, belief systems, rituals etc.
- Narrative Traditions: Poetry, literature, Oral traditions, katha traditions etc.
- Visual Traditions: Art, architecture, folk painting etc. in various states
- Performing Traditions: Music, dance, drama, folk theatre, etc.
- Musical Traditions: ballads, tattvas, oggukatha in Telangana, Rajasthan’s tradition of singing the Ramayana and the Mahabharata etc.
- Historical Traditions: Myths, Puranas, Chronicles, Accounts etc.
Submission Deadline: August 15, 2017
Publication Schedule: Status of the paper will be conveyed by August 15, 2017. Queries prior to August 15 would not be entertained.
Criteria for Consideration of Materials
Primary Criteria for Consideration for Peer Review: All the materials must meet the following criteria first. Otherwise, the materials will be rejected without formal review:
- Originality: Original ideas, new areas explored while drawing upon existing scholarship.
- Relevance: Topics must be relevant for discussion in the present context.
- Interdisciplinarity: Interdisciplinary approach is a must.
Types of materials to be published:
Critical Articles: Minimum 3000 and maximum 5000 words (including citations, notes etc)
Book Reviews: Reviews of books (not older than 2 years) relating to the thrust areas. Between 1000-1500 words.
Publication Fee: There is no publication fee for the inaugural issue.
Scope: Broad Areas
India a Cultural cauldron:
India is a pluralistic society with multiple cultures and languages. It believes in the Vedic aphorism “EkamSathviprahbahudavadanti”. As such it forges a unity while retaining its rich diversity. To project its catholic character it uses the word Dharma instead of religion to refer to any of its belief systems.So, we invite interdisciplinary discussion on belief-systems, religions, sects and rituals right from the prehistoric times to our modern period involving metaphysics, cultural anthropology, philosophy, arts and literature.
Indian Literature and Languages:
India has a vast sub-area under this category ranging from Sanskrit, Pali, Prakrit, Tamil, the regional languages from the ancient times, Persian and Urdu from the medieval times and English from the modern period. Vast bodies of literature were produced in these languages with separate character and identities. The journal does not invite articles on simply social picture etc; rather it welcomes articles and notes that address interdisciplinary discussion of the issues and themes involved in the production and reception of literature. We are particularly interested in discussion of the representation and contextualization of Indian visual and performing arts in literature. Other big areas are—issues relating to gender, ethnicity, and environment. Our focal points of discussion are interrelationships of Indian bodies of literature in various languages and the impact of Islamic and western intervention on these traditions.
Indian Visual Arts at Interdisciplinary Cross-roads:
Indian arts—painting, sculpture, architecture, evolving from distant past went through transformation and modification at various states (engineered by many collective and individual forces). In our times, with the advent of the digital media, Indian visual arts are being presented, represented, used and received in unprecedented ways. Apart from aesthetic appreciation, the reception and representation has much to do with identity, ethnicity and culture. This has also made it necessary to shed new light on the actual contexts, conditions and reception of art. Bharatiya Prajna welcomes submission on these varied areas with the key aim of exploring the Indian tradition and how Indian arts progressed through various interdisciplinary exchanges. Authors are encouraged particularly to undertake critical engagement with the iconography for exploring the cultural aspects of the times and evolution of responses to them. They are also encouraged to critically discuss the aesthetic theories associated with the arts and the scientific principles and techniques followed by the artists and artisans.
Indian Performing Arts:
Before the introduction of the print media, literature in the subcontinent was mainly an art of performance aided by visual media and music. In course of time many of them have lost their classical character and acquired a symbiotic relationship with the popular folk and rustic levels. Even though signs of regeneration were visible in the 18th century, the arrival of western education which depended heavily on the supposed superiority of the written word impacted the growth of the indigenous native art forms. The amazing skills of the performers received less attention. Still, the power of real India lay always in its power to preserve what is essentially ‘Indian’, that is, the spirit of the people who somehow managed to keep the traditions alive.
In this section, we welcome submission on these questions primarily and in-depth study into the art-forms for the purpose recording the lost arts as history and for showcasing whatever are still in existence. Of course, we are interested in modern forms which evolved from the Indian tradition with active interaction with the western tradition. But mere discussion for the sake of publication and promotion is discouraged. We welcome submission on all forms of performing arts: dance, drama, recitation, puppetry, martial arts, rituals etc.
The subcontinent has attracted the peoples of distant places since time immemorial for various reasons. Its rich diversity and its myths and legends in epics and other literary sources fascinated and allured many minds. Over the ages the stories were contextualized over a vast region and they went though such mutative transformation that in many cases they became unrecognizable from the sources. With few exceptions the writing of history as a separate discipline started much later with the introduction of western education under the influence of the European Enlightenment. But the weight of the Indian tradition of storytelling has been such that even modern historians could not ignore them nor could they totally rejecting them.
In this section we welcome submission on the representation of India in all eras—right from the ancient to our modern times. We also welcome authoritative articles on the recent researches in the history and archaeology of the subcontinent.
The soul of India lies in the collective harmony of many traditions of music created and carried forward from the past in different parts of the continent. We want to discuss all forms of music and musical instruments and analyze them from the interdisciplinary perspective. We invite theoretical discussion of the traditions and of the arts of the masters with special focus on the theme of originality, variety and individuality.