Latest News (Archive)

November 4, 2015

'Ghost Mothers' in Thailand - A new DORISEA Working Paper by Andrew Johnson has been published!

DORISEA Working Paper 21:

Andrew Alan Johnson: Ghost Mothers. Kinship Relationships in Thai Spirit Cults

October 18, 2015

A new DORISEA Working Paper by Andrea Lauser - online now!

DORISEA Working Paper 20:

Traveling to Yên Tử (North Vietnam). Religious Resurgence, Cultural Nationalism and Touristic Heritage in the Shaping of a Pilgrimage Landscape


September 30, 2015

Impressions from the field site...

A new Picture Story by DORISEA researcher Volker Gottowik gives an insight into the Indonesian Lingsar festival!

July 23, 2015

Two new DORISEA Working Paper online!

DORISEA Working Paper 18:

Tsuda Koji: Systematizing ‘Chinese Religion’. The Challenges of ‘Three-Teaching’ Organizations in Contemporary Indonesia

DORISEA Working Paper 19:

Benjamin Baumann: The Khmer Witch Project: Demonizing the Khmer by Khmerizing a Demon

April 29, 2015

Ghost Movies, their Makers and their Audiences. A new DORISEA Working Paper online now! 

DORISEA Working Paper 17:

Andrea Lauser in Conversation with the Filmmakers Katarzyna Ancuta and Solarsin Ngoenwichit From Thailand and Mattie Do From Laos


April 22, 2015

New DORISEA Working Paper online!

DORISEA Working Paper 16:

Eva Sevenig: Social Mobility in Baan Hadnaleng: When the Valuation of Communality Allows for a Demarcation Line in a Multi-ethnic Village in Northwest Laos


April 14, 2015

New DORISEA Working Paper online!

DORISEA Working Paper 15:

Justin McDaniel: Spectacle Attractions and Buddhism in Southeast Asia


January 8, 2015

DORISEA Conference: "Kaleidoscopes of Religion: Southeast Asia and Beyond"

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin, 23 - 24 January 2015.

Over the past three years, the research network “Dynamics of Religion in Southeast Asia” has carried out empirical, historical and comparative research into different manifestations of “religion” and its various “others” - including “secularism”, “animism” and “tradition”. Sociologists, anthropologists, linguists and historians have explored how “religion” is materially and discursively constructed in various Southeast Asian contexts, including in Vietnam, Indonesia, Laos, the Philippines, Malaysia and Thailand.

With the conference "Kaleidoscopes of Religion: Southeast Asia and Beyond", the research network wishes to engage with scholars who have worked on “religion” beyond the Southeast Asian region by focusing on three thematic fields: religion and politics, religion and media, and religion and space. Ultimately, the aim is to discuss whether there is a particular quality to the “religious” – and, maybe more importantly, to the study of the “religious” – in the region, and if so, what that would be and how insights from Southeast Asia can contribute to stimulate broader theoretical debates on religion.
For more information, click here...

To see an up-to-date pdf of the programme, click here...

For registration, click here...

See some impressions...


November 28, 2014

Peter Jacksons Keynote Address at the Crossroads Asia Conference in Bonn

To see ANU Professor and Doirsea collaborator Peter Jackson's Keynote address at the Crossroads Asia Conference, click here...


To see Professor Jackson's Keynote Address at the Dorisea Mid-term Conference in 2013, click here...


November 26, 2014

Filipino Catholicism: Philippine Studies Special Double Issue launch

Julius Batista

Julius Bautista presents the fruits of his collaboative fieldwork with Dorisea's Peter Bräunlein published in the article Ethnography as an Act of Witnessing: Doing Fieldwork on Passion Rituals in the Philippines in Philippine Studies: Historical and Ethnographic Viewpoints / Special Double Issue on Catholicism: Vol 62, No 3–4 (2014), 501-528.

Article abstract This article juxtaposes two narrative accounts of ethnographic fieldwork on the Passion rituals of Central Luzon in the Philippines. Framed from two distinct cultural and temporal contexts, these narratives highlight the limits and the possibilities of reflexive participant observation in understanding and depicting Filipino religious culture. The authors problematize the assumption that the researcher is the sovereign determinant of fieldwork parameters and local “informants” are merely complicit with the former’s empirical strategies. The act of witnessing, they argue, is a fluid process of exchange conditioned by the expectations and desires of the researcher’s interlocutors and the researcher’s own anxieties over the academic and personal prospects of his or her work.

Click here to see the presentation (Julius starts at 19:30) and to learn more about the Philippine Studies Special Double Issue on Catholicism...


November 11, 2014

Haunted Thresholds Exhibition Catalogue - Available now!

Haunted Thresholds explores the unique relationship between spirituality and modernity in Southeast Asia...

Click here to purchase or download the bi-lingual catalogue...


November 10, 2014

Haunted Thresholds Exhibition Opening

Around 70 people attended the official opening of the Haunted Thresholds: Spirituality in Contemporary Southeast Asia Exhibition in Göttingen on November 9. 

The exhibition features a diverse range of works from 15 Southeast Asian artists with a focus on spirituality and modernity. The new works are linked to the past through a focus of spiritual objects from the region from the Ethnographic Collection at the University of Göttingen. 

Click here to see photos of the opening...

To see a review of the exhibition from the Göttinger Tageblatt (in German only), click here...

October 25, 2014

Haunted Thresholds Exhibition Website - Online now!

Haunted Thresholds explores the unique relationship between spirituality and modernity in Southeast Asia. As an exhibition and a research process, the project brings works by 15 artists from the region into an experimental dialogue with ethnographic objects from the Ethnographic Collection at the University of Göttingen...


October 17, 2014

DORISEA Exhibition in collaboration with the Kunstverein Göttingen

HAUNTED THRESHOLDS - Spirituality in Contemporary Southeast Asia


Nguyen Love Man Love Woman

Nguyen Trinh Thi 'Love Man Love Woman' (video still), 2003. Courtesy of the artist

November 9 – December 21, 2014


Vernissage: November 9, 2014 11:30 am

Altes Rathaus • Markt 9 • 37073 Göttingen

Opening Hours: Tue–Sun 11am–5pm


Click here for the press release...


Click here for the website...

Sponsored by Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF), Land Niedersachsen, Stadt Göttingen, Landschaftsverband Südniedersachsen e.V., Sparkasse Göttingen, Dr. Walther-Liebehenz-Stiftung, Universitätsbund Göttingen e.V.


September 30, 2014

Five new DORISEA Working Papers online: Bounleuth Sengsoulin, Boike Rehbein, Khamvone Boulyaphonh and Andrew McAllister!

DORISEA Working Paper 9:
Bounleuth Sengsoulin: The Lao Sangha of Luang Prabang and Their Social Roles in the Post-1975 Period

DORISEA Working Paper 10:
Boike Rehbein: Religion, Science and Capitalism

DORISEA Working Paper 11:
Andrew McAllister: The village in the city: cúng xóm (‘hamlet worship’) in Hồ Chí Minh City during Tết, the lunar New Year festival

DORISEA Working Paper 12:
Khamvone Boulyaphonh: Pha Khamchan Virachitta Maha Thela and the Preservation of the Lao Cultural Heritage

DORISEA Working Paper 13:
Khamvone Boulyaphonh: International Connections of Lao Buddhism as Reflected in Personal Letters Found at Pha Khamchan Virachitta Maha Thela’s Abode (Kuti) in Vat Saen Sukharam, Luang Prabang


June 20, 2014

DORISEA - CETREN Summer School 2014
"Cityscapes and New Religiosities in Asia"

The Summer School “Cityscapes and New Religiosities in Asia” brings the contexts of ‘religion’ and ‘urbanity’ in Asia to the centre stage. It will engage with urban spaces and religiosities through case studies especially in India, China, Vietnam, Korea, Thailand, Singapore, Cambodia and the Philippines. 

Dates: 10-17 August, 2014
Venue: Tagungszentrum an der Sternwarte, Göttingen (Germany)

Click here for more information

Click here for a downloadable pdf



June 13, 2014

Read our new DORISEA Working Papers from Anthony Reid and Janet Hoskins

DORISEA Working Paper 7
Janet Hoskins: From Colonial Syncretism to Transpacific Diaspora. Re-orienting Caodaism from Vietnam to California

DORISEA Working Paper 8
Anthony Reid: Patriarchy and Puritanism in Southeast Asian Modernity



April 10, 2014

Lecture Series of the Institute for Social and Cultural Anthropology
Göttingen Research Campus Anthropology Colloquium (GRCAC) Open Lectures

Thursdays 16.00 c.t., Ethnologie Lecture Room, Theaterplatz 15, Göttingen.
Open Lectures - English titles in English language.

upcoming lecture:

July 17

Der 'Amerikanische Krieg' als Kulturerbe? Erinnerung, Materialität, und Tourismus in Viengxay (Laotische Demokratische Volksrepublik)
Dr. Oliver Tappe, M.A. (Global South Studies Center, Köln)

July 24     Thinking About Religion, Media and the Question of ‘Social Change’ in Contemporary Bali (Dr. Richard Fox,  University of Heidelberg)

Program organised by DORISEA Network Fellows Prof Dr Andrea Lauser & Dr Karin Klenke.

For a PDF of the program, click here.



20 March 2014

Peter Jackson Ascendant Doctrine and Resurgent Magic in Capitalist Southeast Asia. Paradox and Polarisation as 21st Century Cultural Logic

In contemporary Southeast Asia the fields of religious practice and adherence present the apparent paradox of a parallel efflorescence of radically opposing trends. Click here to read more...


Michael Kleinod  Enchanting frontiers - a sacred sorest and symbolic-material complexities in Laos

Frontiers are odd, “wild” places that trouble the well-established, institutionalised classifications of Western scholarship. Far away, geographically as well as socially, from the arrived centres of the world economy, the frontiers of capitalism urge scholars to transcend disciplinary boundaries. Click here to read more...


Click here to see all DORISEA Working Papers...


DORISEA - CETREN Summer School 2014

The Summer School “Cityscapes and New Religiosities in Asia” brings the contexts of ‘religion’ and ‘urbanity’ in Asia to the centre stage. It will engage with urban spaces and religiosities through case studies especially in India, China, Vietnam, Korea, Thailand, Singapore, Cambodia and the Philippines. 

Dates: 10-17 August, 2014

Venue: Tagungszentrum an der Sternwarte, Göttingen (Germany)

Application Deadline EXTENDED: 15 March, 2014

Click here for more information

Click here for a downloadable pdf


22 January 2014
DORISEA Photo Competition WINNERS Announced

Click here to see the ten winners and the fifteen runner-up entries of the DORISEA Photo Competition 2013! There were over 500 entries to the competition, and over 1000 people voted on facebook. 


6 January 2014
Tod im Kulturvergleich. Süd- und Südostasiatische Perspektiven

Benjamin Baumann, Stefan Hoffmann, Maren Wilger (Hrsg.)

Das Working Paper ist eine Sammlung von fünf studentischen Essays, die im Rahmen des 2011 von S. Hoffman und DORISEA Assoziert B. Baumann gegebenen BA-Seminars "Der Tod im Kulturvergleich" entstanden sind. Das Paper kann hier heruntergeladen werden, oder direkt über als Print (10€/5€-Student_Innen) bestellt werden.


5 January 2013
DORISEA Photo Competition: Voting Closed

Winners announced January 10.

Click hereto see the finalists on facebook.


November 2013
New DORISEA Working Paper from Network Fellow Vincent Houben

The New Area Studies and Southeast Asian History

There has been an ongoing debate on the nature and function of area studies from its inception in the 1950s but especially since the end of the Cold War...

Click here to read the complete paper...


November 2013

Tamnan Krasue – Constructing a Khmer Ghost for a Thai Film

Article by DORISEA Associate Benjamin Baumann for the Kyoto Review

Click here.....


Winter 2013-14
Open Lectures: “Dynamics of Religion in Southeast Asia”

Wednesdays at the HU Berlin, 5 PM. For more information click here.


October 2013
Dorisea at EuroSEAS 2013

DORISEA researchers and associates are presenting at EuroSEAS on the following panels.
Click here...


September 2013
Pattana Kitiarsa: Tribute and Final Paper

Click here for the article on the ANU's New Mandala Blog...

For a review of Dr Kitiarsa's book Mediums, Monks, and Amulets: Thai Popular Buddhism Today. Click here...


August 2013
DORISEA Workshop: Religious transformations in modern Southeast Asia

A workshop by DORISEA and VICAS (Vietnamese Institute of Culture and Arts Studies)

The entire Southeast Asian region is engaged in an accelerated change in the political, economic, social, medial and ultimately religious spheres. As such, the region is marked by transformations in the concept of religion and in religions themselves. During the workshop key areas of these transformations will be identified and theorized.

Date & time: October 3-5, 2013

Location: Hanoi, Viet Nam

For more information, click here...


August 2013
Im Gespräch mit DORISEA Mitarbeiter Peter Bräunlein

Christliche Körper in Ost und West. Eine Religionsgeschichte des Schmerzes

Klicken Sie hier.


May 2013
Review:  DORISEA mid-term conference 2013 

A review of the DORISEA mid-term conference held in Göttingen from 26-29 June 2013 by Mary Somers Heidhues - to be published in Archipel 86 (2013, in press).

Click here to read...

To see photos of the conference, click here...


April 2013
DORISEA Conference: "Dynamics of Religion in Southeast Asia"

June 26 to 29, 2013. University of Goettingen, Germany

In global comparison, Southeast Asia stands out as a region marked by a particularly diverse religious landscape. Various “ethnic religions” interact with so-called “world religions”, all of the latter – with the exception of Judaism – being represented in the region. While religion has oftentimes been viewed as an antithesis to modernity, scholarship has shown that religion shapes and is intertwined with modernization processes in crucial ways and that its role in contemporary Southeast Asian societies is intensifying. The mid-term conference “Dynamics of Religion in Southeast Asia” will explore this link between "religion" and "modernity" by focusing on three dimensions of religious dynamics, namely mediality, politics and mobility. In the spirit of Southeast Asian studies as a holistic, i.e. trans-disciplinary approach, the conference brings together scholars from diverse disciplinary fields who investigate the peculiar dynamics of religion in times of globalization, and the ways in which these dynamics mediate change and continuity in Southeast Asia.Hosted by: BMBF competence network "Dynamics of Religion in Southeast Asia" (DORISEA)

Please access the conference website here...


April 2013
Global Processes and Local Agency in Queer Asian History: Observations from Thailand

Tuesday, June 25th, 2013: 2.00 – 5.00 pm, University of Goettingen.

A DORISEA Graduate Student Seminar by Peter Jackson, Professor of Thai history and cultural studies in the ANU’s College of Asia and the Pacific at the Australian National University. Invited are graduate students from the fields of anthropology, gender studies, Southeast Asian history, Thai studies and other disciplines whose research is related to the workshop topic. In the presentation, you are expected to discuss the ideas in the reading material from the perspective of your own research. All participants are required to thoroughly work through the reading material cited below.

For more information click here...


BMBF Förderkennzeichen: 01UC1102A