Department of Philosophy and Religion
- Shubha Pathak is a historian of religions who studies the mythological literatures of India, Greece, and Rome. In addition to teaching courses on comparative philosophy and comparative religion, she is researching Greco-Roman and Indian epics in their original and later literary forms, focusing on their theological and narratological dimensions. Her monograph, Divine Yet Human Epics: Reflections of Poetic Rulers from Ancient Greece and India (Center for Hellenic Studies, Trustees for Harvard University, 2014), reveals the similar ways in which the primary Greek and Sanskrit epics address their respective audiences' existential needs. Her edited volume, Figuring Religions: Comparing Ideas, Images, and Activities (State University of New York Press, 2013), shows how metaphor and metonymy theories can be used in comparative religious studies.
DegreesAM (divinity), PhD (history of religions), University of Chicago Divinity School; PhD (social and behavioral sciences), Johns Hopkins University Bloomberg School of Public Health; AB (religion), Princeton University
- CAS - Philosophy and Religion
- Battelle Tompkins - 113
- Tuesdays and Fridays 4:00-6:00pm
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Partnerships & Affiliations
Member, Steering Committee, Hinduism Group
Member, Committee on the Classical Tradition and Reception, Outreach Division
Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities
The philosophical, psychological, and religious aspects of epic poetry and literary creativity; comparative philosophy and comparative religion; literary criticism; and contemporary psychological theories.
Grants and Sponsored Research
2010–11 Faculty Research Award, Office of Academic Affairs, American University.
2008–9 College of Arts and Sciences Mellon Faculty Development Fund Grant, American University.
- Divine Yet Human Epics: Reflections of Poetic Rulers from Ancient Greece and India. Washington: Harvard University CHS, 2014.
- Figuring Religions: Comparing Ideas, Images, and Activities (edited volume). Albany: SUNY Press, 2013.
- "The Divine Character of Poetic Creativity in Rajasekhara's Kavyamimamsa." Papers of the 13th World Sanskrit Conference.
- "Why Do Displaced Kings Become Poets in the Sanskrit Epics?" International Journal of Hindu Studies 10, no. 2 (2006): 127–49.