Yoga and Globalization: The Inception of Postural Yoga

Looking at the textual sources, historical circumstances, and geo-political processes that helped create the conditions for the emergence of modern postural yoga, this course utilizes a recent swath of critical historical studies on the pioneers of modern yoga and their cultural milieu. Students will also closely study the primary source texts of these architects of modern yoga, such as the writings of Swami Vivekananda, Tirumalai Krishnamacharya, and Swami Kuvalayananda, which will be contextualized through a consideration of the dynamic cross-cultural encounters that these authors skillfully navigated. This will equip students with the tools to recognize the myriad ways in which modern yogic traditions traced their roots and adapted to new contexts in the great diasporic profusion of yoga into what is now a globalized and heterogeneous "world" tradition.
Course Number: REL530
Units: 3.0