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India in the Eyes of Europeans: Conceptualization of Religion in Theology and Oriental Studies
by Martin Fárek
Karolinum Press, 2022
Paper: 978-80-246-4755-5 | eISBN: 978-80-246-4891-0

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ABOUT THIS BOOK
A re-examination of Western interpretations—and distortions—of Indian religious traditions.
 
In India in the Eyes of Europeans, Martin Fárek argues that when Western scholars interpret Indian traditions, they actually present distorted reflections of their own European culture, despite their attempts at unbiased objectivity. This distortion is clearest in the way India is viewed primarily through a religious lens—a lens fashioned from an implicitly Christian design. While discussing the current international dialogue on the topic and the work of such scholars as S. N. Balagangadhara, Fárek’s study presents the results of original research on several key topics: the problems in assigning religious significance to the Indian traditions that gave rise to Hinduism and Buddhism; Europeans’ questioning of Indians’ historical consciousness; the current debate surrounding the arrival of the Aryans in India; and controversial interpretations of the work of the reformer Rammohan Raj. The result is a provocative study that should prove fascinating to Indologists, theologians, anthropologists, and anyone interested in the history of thought.

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