Promoting ‘Yogi Art’

Yoga, Education and Nationalism in Post-revolutionary Mexico

Authors

  • Adrián Muñoz El Colegio de México

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.1558/rosa.20976

Keywords:

modern yoga studies, global yoga, Mexican Indology, José Vasconcelos, Estudios indostánicos

Abstract

Yoga studies have inaugurated a vast amount of possible research areas that transcend the regional and the disciplinary. This paper probes into the history and reception of yoga in Latin America. In particular, it discusses the ways in which a post-revolutionary Mexican intellectual, José Vasconcelos, understood yoga in the 1920s. This early understanding of yoga was a combination of both socio-political discourses worldwide and the nationalist enterprise of building a modern nation, where notions of race, identity, and cleanliness were paramount. Through different writings, Vasconcelos interpreted both South Asian religions and the Americas as beneficial influences for the betterment of humanity. By noting the influence of different ideologies popular in Latin America (such as nationalisms, Social Darwinism, or Theosophy), this paper analyses the cultural context against which Vasconcelos outlined his understanding of yoga, India, national culture and progress.

Author Biography

Adrián Muñoz, El Colegio de México

Adrián Muñoz is associate professor in the Centre for Asian and African Studies at El Colegio de México, where he lectures on South Asian religious movements. His interests range from religious studies to hagiography and comparative literature. He has written on both premodern and modern forms of yoga.

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Published

2022-01-27

How to Cite

Muñoz, A. . (2022). Promoting ‘Yogi Art’: Yoga, Education and Nationalism in Post-revolutionary Mexico. Religions of South Asia, 15(2), 178–203. https://doi.org/10.1558/rosa.20976

Issue

Section

Articles