Samuel, G.

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Geoffrey Samuel(b. 1946/11/22 - )

Geoffrey Samuel’s research extends over a number of interrelated areas within religious studies, social anthropology, comparative sociology, and cognate disciplines. Theoretically, his interests centre around an understanding of cultural processes and their effects on human behaviour, in terms which recognise the embodied character of human existence and which give proper weight to both human consciousness and biology. He is particularly interested in religion (including ‘shamanism’) in relation to healing, gender and ecology, including the ways in which these issues manifest in contemporary societies.

His main ethnographic focus has been on religion in Tibetan societies. His work on Tibetan religion has also extended into the social history of Indic religions more generally. Other research topics include Tibetan medicine and health practices, the anthropology of music, research on Buddhism and other new religious movements (paganism, shamanism, esotericism) in the UK and Australia, and research into Islam in the UK and Bangladesh. He has carried out extensive field research over many years in India, Nepal, Tibet, and other Asian and Western societies.

His recent research, organised through the Research Group on the Body, Health and Religion (BAHAR), focusses on the understanding of healing processes in a variety of contexts: folk healing practices in Asian societies, ‘traditional’ Asian medical and yogic practices aimed at healing, and Western adaptations and developments of such practices within the field of complementary and alternative medicine. This research has included two major externally-funded projects under his direction, an AHRC-funded project on Tibetan longevity practices (with Cathy Cantwell and Rob Mayer) and a Leverhulme Trust-funded project on Tibetan medicine in the Bon tradition (with Colin Millard). Currently he is involved in a Templeton Foundation-funded project on meditation-derived compassion training for nurses and other health staff in Sydney, NSW.

In 2008-11, he also took part in an ESRC-funded project on young Bangladeshis, marriage and the family in Bangladesh and the UK directed by Dr Santi Rozario.
(Source Accessed Aug 7, 2020)

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