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Book on Yoga and Popular Culture Seeks Contributors

Yoga in Popular Culture (edited collection)
 
Seeking contributors for an edited volume on yoga in popular culture. This book is envisioned as a cross-disciplinary collection of scholarly work on yoga, with essays that explore the ways that yoga has reflected and changed popular culture in the West.
 
Yoga is experiencing its third “boom” in the United States. The first boom, at the turn of the 20th century, was marked by salons and contributed to interest in Orientalism, the occult, and physical culture. This boom ended during the depression. The second boom grew out of free love and communal living in the 1960s. This spawned interest in transcendental meditation and paralleled the burgeoning fitness movement. The third boom followed soon after, riding on the coattails of the credentialing movement in the health and fitness industry along with the growth in integrative medicine. Yoga teacher trainings grew into a viable business and yoga instruction began to cross over into medial education and healthcare to combat stress. Throughout each of these periods, yoga has held a place in the pursuit of spiritual and physical health as well as the popular culture of the day.
 
Yoga has been a driving force of change. While it serves as a vehicle for personal transformation, it has also become an opportunity for entrepreneurship. Commodification and commercialization of yoga would seem to contradict the teachings of ancient texts upon which the practice is rooted. Yoga can simultaneously be a spiritual pursuit and fitness practice. While there is potential for conflict between the traditionalists who promote authentic yoga and the growing fitness yoga market, a broader spectrum of yoga practice exists. This creates a paradox across yoga culture.
 
Cross-disciplinary contributors are sought from areas including (but not limited to) sociology, anthropology, history, communication, media studies, religious studies, exercise science, theatre, dance, education, health professions, medicine, business and finance. Please note that first person essays on self-transformation through yoga will not be considered. Contributors must be willing to commit to a 6,500 word paper on a scholarly examination of any topic relevant to yoga in popular culture.
 
Submission instructions: Send a 600-750 word abstract along with a 500 word bio in the text of an email to virginia.cowen@rutgers.edu. Do not include attachments. Please include complete contact information for principal author and put “Yoga in Pop Culture Proposal” in the subject line of the email. Deadline to submit abstracts is June 2, 2017. Authors of selected abstracts will be asked to submit a 5,000 – 6,500 word paper by October 2, 2017.

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