Journal Article

The Guru's Weapons

Anne Murphy

in Journal of the American Academy of Religion

Published on behalf of American Academy of Religion

Volume 77, issue 2, pages 303-332
Published in print June 2009 | ISSN: 0002-7189
Published online July 2009 | e-ISSN: 1477-4585 | DOI:
The Guru's Weapons

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This article presents the biography of a set of objects held to be powerful within Sikh traditions, with a focus on how these objects operate within a field determined by colonial and post-colonial formations of value and meaning, in relation to pre-colonial forms of the same. The article describes cultural production that articulates the sphere of the religious, highlighting how different frames of knowledge—pre-colonial, colonial, and post-colonial—interact in the articulation of this sphere. As such, I address an ongoing debate in the historiography of South Asia regarding the relative influence of colonialism in South Asia that has significant potential impact on our understanding of South Asian religions like the Sikh tradition.

Journal Article.  10473 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Religious Studies

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