College of Letters & Science l Department of Asian Languages & Cultures
Anthony Cerulli is an historian of religions, whose work looks at issues central to the study of religion, such as ritual, comparitivism, and the politics of religious rhetoric. His work also contributes to the fields of narrative medicine and medical humanities. Most of his work is in the field of South Asian Studies, where his research combines ethnographic and philological methods to probe associations between Indian religions and healing systems.
This talk explores developments in India’s early medical traditions, with special attention given to the classical period, when the main Sanskrit collections were produced and the eight parts of classical Indian “life science” (āyurveda) crystallized. Representations of the human body, including ways that the body was understood to thrive and ail, as well as ideas about healing and the impact of a person’s positionality in society and the environment on psychological and somatic well-being, are also discussed.
This talk presents a brief introduction to one of India’s two major Sanskrit epics, the Ramayana. It looks at some of the ways the story has been circulated, recast, and performed throughout South Asia, Southeast Asia, and beyond Asia over the past two millennia.