Efficacious Intimacy ✿ Learnings from the Jugaad Project


31 January 2024

Detail, Angkola, parompa sadun baby sling. From Susan Rodger’s collection

Join Urmila Mohan, Susan Rodgers and Patrícia Rodrigues de Souza to discuss a new book of the Jugaad Project that considers the material basis of religious and political beliefs.

Speakers include:


Patrícia Rodrigues de Souza is Assistant Professor in the Post-Graduation Programme of Religious Studies at Pontifical Catholic University of Sao Paulo (PUCSP), Brazil, where she also earned a Doctorate (2019) and Master’s degree (2015) in Religious Studies. She founded RELIGMA, a research group on Brazilian material religion, and is a member of CERAL, a research group for the study of alternative religions in Brazil.

Susan Rodgers is Professor Emerita, Anthropology, and Distinguished Professor Emerita, Ethics and Society, College of the Holy Cross, U.S. She received her Ph.D. (Anthropology, University of Chicago, 1978) on issues of ethnic identity construction, ritual oratory, indigenous print literature and literacies, and minority/state relations. In addition to an extensive list of publications, Rodgers has guest-curated numerous museum exhibitions on Indonesian arts and textiles.

Image to the left: Sipirok mother and infant, the latter snuggled safely in a magic parompa blessing textile, Sipirok, 1975, photo: Susan Rodgers

Mohan, U. (2023). The Efficacy of Intimacy and Belief in Worldmaking Practices. Routledge

“This book explores ‘efficacious intimacy’ as an embodied concept of worldmaking, and a framework for studying belief practices in religious and political domains. The study of how beliefs make and manifest power through their sociality and materiality can reveal who, or what, is considered effective in a particular socio-cultural context. The chapters feature case studies drawn from diverse religious and political contexts in Asia, Africa, and the Americas, and explore practices ranging from ingesting sacred water to resisting injustice. In doing so, the authors analyze emotions and affects, and how they influence dynamics of proximity and distance. Taking an innovative approach to the topic of intimacy, the book offers a fascinating examination of how life-worlds are constructed by material practices. It will be of interest to scholars of anthropology, religion, and material culture.”


12 March 2024 at 1800 New York Eastern Time

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Register on Zoom

This is a Reinventing the Wheel talk hosted for the Knowledge House for Craft.

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