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- DescriptionA complex body of religious practices that spread throughout the Hindu, Buddhist, and Jain traditions; a form of spirituality that seemingly combines sexuality, sensual pleasure, and the full range of physical experience with the religious life - Tantra has held a central yet conflicted role within the Western imagination ever since the first 'discovery' of Indian religions by European scholars. Always radical, always extremely Other, Tantra has proven a key factor in the imagining of India. This book offers a critical account of how the phemen has come to be. Tracing the complex genealogy of Tantra as a category within the history of religions, Hugh B. Urban reveals how it has been formed through the interplay of popular and scholarly imaginations. Tantra emerges as a product of mirroring and misrepresentation at work between East and West - a dialectical category born out of the ongoing play between Western and Indian minds. Combining historical detail, textual analysis, popular cultural phemena, and critical theory, this book shows Tantra as a shifting amalgam of fantasies, fears, and wish-fulfillment, at once native and Other, that strikes at the very heart of our constructions of the exotic Orient and the contemporary West.
- Author BiographyHugh B. Urban is Assistant Professor of Religion and Comparative Studies at Ohio State University. He is the author of The Economics of Ecstasy: Tantra, Secrecy, and Power in Colonial Bengal (2001) and Songs of Ecstasy: Tantric and Devotional Songs from Colonial Bengal (2001).
- Author(s)Hugh B. Urban
- PublisherUniversity of California Press
- Date of Publication01/10/2003
- SubjectNon-Christian Religions
- Place of PublicationBerkerley
- Country of PublicationUnited States
- ImprintUniversity of California Press
- Content Note16 b/w illustrations, 2 tables
- Weight463 g
- Width152 mm
- Height229 mm
- Spine22 mm
- Format DetailsTrade paperback (US)
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