GREI is delighted to announce that the MANTRAMS project, in which Andrea Acri is « Lead Researcher » attached to EPHE-PSL, has been selected in the ERC Synergy Grant 2023 call for projects.

Exceptionally, another project linked to Indian and Tibetan studies, Intellexus (“Geology of Texts, Genealogy of Concepts, Intellectual Ecosystems: Mapping the Indic and Tibetan Buddhist Text Corpora”), led by Orna Almogi, Dorji Wangchuk and Harunaga Isaacson from the University of Hamburg, has also been selected.

MANTRAMS project description

The project ERC Synergy MANTRAMS (“Mantras in Religion, Media and Society in Global Southern Asia »), which involves four academic institutions and whose budget totals 9,651,263 euros, is a pioneering scientific endeavour dedicated to understanding mantras. Employing an interdisciplinary approach that combines methods from Indology, anthropology, sound studies, media studies, art history, and history of religions, the project will produce an unprecedented global history of mantras from both a synchronic and diachronic perspective. Bringing together leading scholars working across disciplines and cultural regions, this 6-year project will create sonic, visual and digital textual archives on the transcultural and multisensory lives of mantras, together with a wide array of academic deliverables and a museum exhibition. The project’s scientific consortium is formed by PIs Carola Lorea (University of Tübingen), Borayin Larios (University of Vienna), and Finnian Gerety (Brown University), in collaboration with Lead Researcher Andrea Acri (EPHE) and Senior Researcher Gudrun Bühnemann (University of Wisconsin-Madison).

The EPHE will be involved in the project as a Partner Organisation with a budget of 779,750 euros and will host one doctoral student and three postdoctoral scholars. Andrea Acri will collaborate with PI Finnian Gerety on the first of the three task-forces, ‘‘Roots and Branches: Emergence and Circulation of Mantras’’, which employs historical-philological methods to investigate where and when the major repertoires of mantra originated, how they changed over the centuries, how they circulated across the boundaries of languages, regions, time periods, and religions, as well as the connections between mantras and networks of patronage and power. Within this intellectual agenda, Acri will focus on Research Component 2, “Tantric mantras across boundaries” and, in collaboration with Gerety, on Research Component 3, “Mantras and Yoga”.