Department of Asian Studies
Department of Asian Studies

Seminar Series: Caleb Simmons on "Tipu Sultan, Cultic Kingship, and Sulh-i Kull: Ritual, Law, and the Suspension of Monotheism in the Mysore Sultanate"

Thu, March 28, 2019 | Meyerson Conference Room (WCH 4.118), UT Austin Campus

3:30 PM - 5:00 PM

Seminar Series: Caleb Simmons on

Caleb Simmons, Religious Studies and Classics at the University of Arizona, will speak on "Tipu Sultan, Cultic Kingship, and Sulh-i Kull: Ritual, Law, and the Suspension of Monotheism in the Mysore Sultanate" as part of the Spring South Asia Seminar Series.

This paper builds upon the recent work of Azfar Moin that examines modes of Indo-Persian political theology and the suspension of monotheism by applying Moin’s tripartite paradigm of Islamic kingship to the case of Tipu Sultan (r. 1782-1799). Building upon Moin’s description of cultic kingship, I suggest that Tipu Sultan utilized "ritual mechanisms" to bypass monotheistic laws and enter into alliances with "idol-worshippers." Through an examination of the 18th-century Mysore Sultan reign, I demonstrate how his unique historical circumstances as an upstart ruler in the early colonial period led to a reversal of the stages of Islamic kingship in which he enacted strict Islamic law and "silently" made alliances with Hindu kings.

The seminar series theme is "'Peace with All (Sulh-i Kull) Religions': Indo Persian Political Theology and Cosmopolitanism," convened by Azfar Moin, Religious Studies. A light reception will precede the event at 3pm.

This talk is FREE! and open to the public.

Sponsored by: South Asia Institute

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