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Narrative Modes of Historical Discourse in Asia

Periodic Report Summary 2 - NAMO (Narrative Modes of Historical Discourse in Asia)

NAMO is an ERC Consolidator project in the humanities concerned researching narrative modes of Asian history writing. The project is proudly hosted by Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland, and is led by a Principal Investigator from Denmark, Dr. Ulrich Timme Kragh. The literary study of narrative in history writing has been a research trend in Western scholarship since the mid-1970s. The NAMO project draws inspiration from this trend, but strives to develop new methods for the study of narrative in classical, medieval, and modern Asian historiography by drawing on Asian literary theories, epistemologies, and theories of history in classical treatises from India, China, and Tibet. During the project's first two-and-half years, the NAMO team and its many collaborators worldwide have successfully worked out these new methods through careful scrutiny of a large number of Sanskrit, Chinese, and Tibetan works. The team has now turned its attention to experiments with employing these methods in a number of applied studies on Asian historical works.

The project has also organized several network-building academic events. The first was a large four-day workshop on literary theory and theory of history entitled "Across Text and Source" held at the University of Chicago in April 2016 with thirty invited experts of European and Asian humanities from around the world. The second was a one-day international workshop on Indian histories of yoga held at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland, May 2016. The third was a three-day conference panel with philosophers of history, literary theorists, and Asian scholars conducted at the conference of the International Network for Theory of History in Ouro Preto, Brazil, August 2016. In the day-to-day running of the project, the NAMO team conducts many local research seminars and hosts a steady stream of foreign visiting scholars at its headquarters in Poznan, where the project will continue to run until November 2019.