Date of Award

12-2018

Degree Type

Creative Project

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

History

First Advisor

Ravi Gupta

Second Advisor

Norm Jones

Third Advisor

Gordon Steinhoff

Abstract

The relationship between European science and religion has varied considerably through time and among different traditions. This monograph attempts to catalogue one such variant by exploring the context entrance of European science into the Indian subcontinent, at the beginning of the British colonial period, by focusing on how a single religion leader drew upon European notions of science in building his reformed Vedic theology. Dayananda Saraswati (1824-83) spent much of his life traveling northern India as an itinerate ascetic and ultimately founded an intellectual lineage that was instrumental in the Indian Independence movement. Despite having no formal British education included many semi-correct details about the worldview of European science in his theology. This suggests that he found considerable information about European science through non-formal channels, and that he valued this information highly. Most importantly, this hints at the larger networks of information sharing and changing values that were hallmarks of the early colonial era in India.

Comments

As per departmental requirements, This submission also includes two secondary papers, revised from graduate seminar papers. The first on the historiography of Saiva Siddhanta Literature. The second on the application of Edward Said to videogames based on fictionalized locations.

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