Sectarianism and the Politics of Shii ritual in Contemporary Pakistan
With Paul Rollier, Assistant Professor in South Asian Studies, University of St. Gallen, Switzerland.
In this seminar, Paul Rollier focuses on popular piety among Pakistan’s Twelver Shii community, and on the politics of public ritual in relation to international reformist movements and mounting sectarianism in the country. Based on extensive ethnographic fieldwork, Rollier documents the renewed vitality of local heterodox practices and challenges the presumed influence of transnational Shii clerical networks in shaping the theological and political orientation of Pakistani Shias. He also reflects on the escalating level of violence against Shias in the country and on its relationship to sectarian conflicts in the Middle-East.