The conference runs from the afternoon of Thursday, June 21st through noon on Sunday, June 24th

This year, in addition to its usual program of paper presentations and gatherings for informal conversation and consultation, CSRI will host a pedagogy workshop sponsored by the Wabash Institute. Titled, "The Medium and the Mantra – Engaging Diverse Media in Entry- Level Religion Courses," the workshop will be facilitated by Sufia Uddin (Connecticut College).

CSRI will also be happy to welcome Eric Schmidt, acquisitions editor at the University of California Press, who will offer a presentation/Q&A session on publication with the press.

The full conference schedule is below.


4:30 PM: Check-in Begins
Coffee, Meet and Greet

5:15-:6:15 PM: Eric Schmidt, Acquisitions Editor, University of California Press

6:30 PM: Dinner
Sproul Courtyard

Multipurpose Room, Student Community Center

8:45 AM: Meet and Greet

9:00-9:15: Conference Opening, Brian K. Pennington (Elon University)

Welcome, Dean Elizabeth Spiller, UC Davis College of Letters and Science

Session 1: 9:20-11:00Rajbir Judge (UC Davis), chair

9:20-9:50: Amy Allocco (Elon University), 'Tell Us Your Name and Do as We Say!': Concealing and Revealing in the Making of Family Gods in Tamil Nadu"

9:55-10:25: Nawaraj Chaulagain (Illinois Wesleyan University), "Divine Deception or Priestly Artifice: Its Rationale and Justification in Śrī Svasthānīvrata"

10:30-11:00: Jeremy Saul (College of Religious Studies, Mahidol University), “When Spirit Possession is Deception: Reassessing Religious Tradition as Modern Industry”

Session 2: 11:10-12:50, Shana Sippy (Centre College), chair

11:10-11:40: Philip Deslippe (University of California, Santa Barbara), “Dissimulation in Early American Yoga”

11:45-12:15: Amanda Lucia (University of California, Riverside), “Celebrity, Scandal and the Modern Godmen of India”

12:20-12:50: Tushar Shah (University of Cambridge), “Beware the Charlatan: Sant and Asant in Niṣkuḷānanda Svāmī’s Cosaṭh Padī”

LUNCH: 12:50-1:50 pm

Session 3: 2:00-3:40 PM, Nancy Martin (Chapman University), chair

2:00-2:30: Jamal Jones (UC Davis), “Desire, Deception, and Sinister Sovereigns”

2:35-3:05: Elaine Fisher (Stanford University), “Shadows of Inauthenticity: History and Hagiography in Vīraśaiva/Liṅgāyat Origin Stories

3:10-3:40: Gita V. Pai (University of Wisconsin-La Crosse), “Arts of Artifice: Transformations of the Hindu Divine”

Coffee Break: 3:45-4:15

Session 4: 4:20-5:25, Jeremy Saul (Mahidol University), chair

4:20-4:50: Pratap Penumala (University of KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa), "Two Stories of the Origins of the Pāṇḍavas: Yudhiṣṭira’s Authenticity, Legitimacy and Deceit"

4:55-5:25: Vishal Sharma (University of Oxford), "Nikṛtyā Nikṛtiṃ Hanyāt: Defending Deception in the Mahābhārata Commentarial Tradition"

6:30 PM: Conference Dinner, Multipurpose Room

Multipurpose Room, Student Community Center

Session 1: 9:00-10:40, Gita V. Pai (University of Wisconsin-La Crosse), chair

9:00-9:30: Nancy Martin (Chapman University), “Will the Real Mirabai Please Stand Up?: Competing Claims to Authenticity and Truth”

9:35-10:05: Jason Schwartz (University of California, Santa Barbara), “Accommodating Esotercism or Hiding a Secret in Plain Sight: The Social Place of the Śākta Tantras in the Medieval Deccan”

10:10-10:40: Nkoyo Edoho-Eket (University of Wisconsin-Madison), “#Mood: When the Goddess Becomes a Woman on Social Media”

10:45-11:15: Lynna Dhanani (Yale University), "Devotion to Deceiving Gods or a Dispassionate Being? Objects of Praise and Disdain in Hemacandra’s Hymns"

Session 2: 11:20-12:20, Amanda Lucia (University of California, Riverside), chair

11:20-11:50: Peter Gottschalk (Wesleyan University), “Necessary Subterfuge?: 'Hinduism' and Pedagogy”

11:55-12:25: Shana Sippy (Centre College & Carleton College), “Fictive History, Ignorance, and the Constitution of American Hindu Communities”

LUNCH: 12:25-1:25

Session 3: 1:30-2:30, Elaine Fisher (Stanford University), chair

1:15-1:45: Rajbir Judge (University of California, Davis), “Reform in Fragments: An Essay on Orthodoxy”

1:50-2:20: Reid Locklin (St. Michael’s College, University of Toronto), “(Mis)Translating Self-Realization: Strategic Misreading in an Advaita Commentarial Tradition”

Coffee Break: 2:30-3:00

Wabash Workshop: 3:00-5:00 PM, Introductions by Reid Locklin (St. Michael's College, University of Toronto)

"The Medium and the Mantra: Engaging Diverse Media in Entry-Level Religion Courses," facilitated by Sufia Uddin (Connecticut College)

Conference Dinner: 7:00 PM

Home of Archana Venkatesan and Layne Little

912 Sproul


10:00-11:30: Summative Session, Archana Venkatesan (UC Davis) Chair

Corinne G. Dempsey (Nazareth College), Final CRSI Reflections and Open Discussion of Dissimulation, Deception, Illusion and Subterfuge in South Asian Religions

Brian K. Pennington (Elon University), Business Meeting

LUNCH: 12:00
912 Sproul