Contrary to the “Orientalist” myth that Indian philosophies are world-negating, Indian philosophies, including the Upanishads, Bhagavadgita, Buddhism, Jainism, Yoga, Tantra, and philosophies of medicine, developed a rich contemplative as well as empirical argument-rich metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, and aesthetics of the physical and subtle bodies. The proposed research, already taught as a class and delivered as a series of five lectures at 5 different universities in India, promises to look at modern and contemporary Western (phenomenological and analytical) philosophical theories of the body through the lenses of these classical Indian philosophical debates centering the body and the senses. The expected outcome is a book with separate chapters on birth, ageing, illness, death, fatigue, dream and deep sleep, the body in dance, the sense of touch and the hand, suffering, interaction with nonhuman bodies, etc.

Prof. Arindam Chakrabarti earned a D.Phil from Oxford University. Philosophy of language and logic, metaphysics, philosophy of mind, and Indian philosophy are his major areas of specialization. He has been a Visiting Professor at Institute of Advanced Studies in Edinburgh, UK, the Sanskrit University in Tirupati, India, at Trinity College Cambridge, and at the National Institute of Advanced Study, Bangalore, India. In his teaching and research Professor Chakrabarti has been trying to combine analytic, classical Indian (especially Nyāya and Kashmir Shaivism) and continental philosophies. Besides numerous papers in journals and anthologies, his major publications include his book on negative existentials and fictional discourse Denying Existence, an introduction to 20th century Western epistemology in Sanskrit, and five books in Bangla, the latest on the philosophy of food and clothing. His co-edited volumes include Knowing from Words (with B.K.Matilal), Universals, Concepts and Qualities (with P.F. Strawson), Apoha: Buddhist Nominalism (with Mark Siderits and Tom Tillemans), and Mahabharata Now (with Sibaji Bandyopadhyay). The Eastern Philosophy of Consciousness and the Humanities Project (EPOCH Project) with its focus areas on imagination, concepts and emotion, has recently taken off under his direction.