Raj Balkaran

May 10, 2021

Pandemic Perspectives: Working Remotely

A Discussion with Raj Balkaran

New Books Network 2021

Welcome to The Academic Life. You are smart and capable, but you aren’t an island, and neither are we. So we reached across our mentor network to bring you podcasts on everything from how to finish that project, to how to take care of your beautiful mind. Wish we’d bring in an expert about something? Email us at cgessler@gmail.com or dr.danamalone@gmail.com. Find us on Twitter: The Academic Life @AcademicLifeNBN.

In this episode you’ll hear about: the benefits and challenges of working remotely, being alt-ac, Hindu Studies, founding an online school, and the pandemic shutdowns in Canada.

Our guest is: Dr. Raj Balkaran is a prolific independent scholar of Sanskrit narrative texts. He is the author of The Goddess and the King in Indian Myth (Routledge 2018), The Goddess and the Sun in Indian Myth (Routledge 2020) along with a number of articles and book chapters. Having taught comparative religion and mythology at the University of Toronto School of Continuing Studies for a decade, he now Tutors at the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies where he also serves on the Centre’s Curriculum Development Board. Alongside his academic training, he has received extensive spiritual training as part of an oral tradition dedicated to the transmission of Indian wisdom teachings. Integrating his academic and spiritual training, he has founded the online School of Indian Wisdom where he designs and delivers original online courses centered on the practical life wisdom to be found in the philosophical, mythological and spiritual traditions of ancient India. Beyond teaching and research, Dr. Balkaran runs a thriving life consulting practice and hosts the New Books in Indian Religions podcast.

Our host is: Dr. Christina Gessler, a historian of women and gender. Christina recently met Raj at a Zoom meeting for New Books Network channel hosts, and invited him to come on the Academic Life to share his pandemic perspective.


Listeners to this episode might be interested in:

  • School of Indian Wisdom
  • Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies
  • The New Books in Indian Religion podcast
  • The Rāmāyaṇa of Vālmīki: An Epic of Ancient India, Volume I: Balakāṇḍa
  • The Rāmāyaṇa of Vālmīki: An Epic of Ancient India, Volume II: Ayodhyakāṇḍa
  • The Mahabharata, Volume 1: Book 1: The Book of the Beginning
  • The Mahabharata, Volume 2: Book 2: The Book of Assembly
  • In Praise of the Goddess: The Devimahatmya and Its Meaning

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Christina Gessler

Dr. Christina Gessler is a historian of women, gender, and sexuality.

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