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Spring 2023: Asian and European Exploration

David Haberman

Indiana University

Dr. David L. Haberman is Professor and former Chair in the Department of Religious Studies at Indiana University-Bloomington. He holds a Ph.D. in History of Religions from the University of Chicago. Although he has studied and taught a great variety of religious traditions, he specializes in Hinduism and has spent about eight years conducting ethnographic and textual research in India. He also teaches courses on religion and environmentalism. Much of Dr. Haberman’s work has centered on the culture of Braj, an active pilgrimage site in northern India long associated with Krishna and known for its lively temple festivals, performative traditions, and literary creations. His present research interest is the study of the relationship between religion, ecology, and nature, with a focus on Hindu attitudes and practices.

His publications include Acting as a Way of Salvation: A Study of Raganuga Bhakti Sadhana (New York: Oxford University Press, 1984), Journey Through the Twelve Forests: An Encounter with Krishna (New York: Oxford University Press, 1994), The Bhaktirasamritasindhu of Rupa Gosvamin (New Delhi: Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts, 2003), River of Love in an Age of Pollution: The Yamuna River of Northern India (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2006), and People Trees: Worship of Trees in Northern India (New York: Oxford University Press, 2013).  He is currently working on a new book tentatively titled “Loving Stones: Making the Impossible Possible in the Worship of Mount Govardhan.”

Dr. Haberman first became acquainted with the Semester at Sea program while an undergraduate at the University of Colorado-Boulder, where he received a B.A. in Religious Studies. He sailed with the program the spring semester of 1973, and his experience on the ship contributed significantly to his decision to make the study of world religions his life-long career. Dr. Haberman returned to the program as faculty on the Spring 2002 and Spring 2017 voyages. He is eager for yet another voyage.