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Vijaya Nagarajan presents Feeding a Thousand Souls
Thursday, September 26, 7:30pm
Pegasus Books Downtown
Vijaya Nagarajan presents Feeding a Thousand Souls: Women, Ritual, and Ecology in India: An Exploration of the Kōlam.
Every day millions of Tamil women in southeast India wake up before dawn to create the kōlam, a ritual design made of rice flour, on the thresholds of homes. This thousand year old ritual welcomes and honors the goddesses Lakshmi and Bhudevi. Propelled by a lifelong wonder and fueled by deeply informed research, Vijaya Nagarajan provides a poetic and surprising entryway into the layered complexities of Hindu culture. Braiding Tamil women’s voices and the author’s own stories, Feeding a Thousand Souls brings into conversation different knowledge traditions––beauty, history, gender, literature, religion, anthropology, mathematics, and ecology.
Vijaya Nagarajan is an Associate Professor in the Department of Theology/Religious Studies and in the Program of Environmental Studies at the University of San Francisco. She writes about Hinduism, gender, ritual, ecology and the commons. Recently her work has centered around spiritual autobiographies of place, especially around immigration and motherhood. She has been active in the American Academy of Religion and in the environmental movements in the United States.