January 2011

Tantric Studies PDF-NOTE: Internet Explorer Users, right click the PDF Icon and choose [save target as] if you are experiencing problems with clicking. Print

Call for Proposals

This Group welcomes proposals for individual papers or preformed panels on a variety of aspects of Tantra, including but not limited to the following topics:

We support the collaboration of scholars in tantric studies across the traditional boundaries of research based on geographic regions, specific traditions, and academic disciplines.


This Group brings together scholars who utilize a range of methodological and theoretical perspectives in their studies of the complex religious, social, and cultural phenomena known collectively as Tantra. Our goal is to provide a venue for scholars of different areas of Tantric studies to collaborate across traditional boundaries of religious traditions (e.g., Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism), present-day nation-states, geography (e.g., India, Tibet, China, Japan), and academic disciplines (e.g., history of religions, anthropology, art history, linguistics, sociology). We seek to be a cross-cultural and cross-disciplinary enterprise. Tantra as a set of practices — a religious technology — and as a set of doctrines explaining, justifying, and rationalizing those practices in fact exists across religious, national, and geographical boundaries. For example, an adequate understanding of Japanese Tantric Buddhist practice and doctrine requires not only locating it in an East Asian Buddhist context, but also in an Indian and South Asian context where the juxtaposition of Buddhist and Hindu Tantras can fruitfully reveal aspects that might otherwise remain obscured. Similarly, by setting Buddhist materials in relation to Hindu traditions, both of which might otherwise be seen either as uniquely Hindu or Buddhist, will be highlighted as part of a broader, shared Tantric discourse. This Group will also allow scholars to present new methodologies for the study of Tantra, and help to bridge more traditional academic approaches, such as textual-based and fieldwork-based studies. We seek to further the study of Tantra as a global, transnational phenomena, and as an important new religious movement. Finally, the Group will also explore new perspectives for studies of gender, power, identity, and sexuality that are so germane to modern religious scholarship.

Anonymity of Review Process

Proposer names are visible to Chairs but anonymous to Steering Committee Members.


Loriliai Biernacki
University of Colorado, Boulder
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Sthaneshwar Timalsina
San Diego State University
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Method of Submission


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