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Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Where to publish "Indological" staff?

Shall we have our contributions published by Indian publishers or by Western ones? Within "Indological" journals or discipline-specific ones?

I am very  much convinced of the benefit of publishing on journals which are read by a wider audience, so that you are read by people specializing on your discipline, but within different scenarios. This has the advantage for you of receiving impartial criticisms and for them to get aquainted with South Asian materials (which becomes, in the long run, a benefit for you, too, since it enhances the chances of South Asian topics being taught, and, consequently, of South Asian positions opening).

However, the risk is big. Writing about sphoṭa on a journal on linguistics means that no one of the people you are usually in touch with will probably even know about your article. In addition, you will have to explain obvious points (e.g.: who was Bhartṛhari, what is the impact of Grammar in India, and so on). Thus, my usual solution is a compromise and I try to publish on both sides.

The problem is amplified in the case of books, since the choice becomes even more complex there, as Indian publishers come decisively into the picture. They offer at least two advantages: lower prices (and, hence, more accessibility) and the possibility of being read also in India. The alternatives are publishing in the West within an "Indological" series or within a "discipline-specific" one. To these two cases, my comments above apply.

What do you choose to do? And why?

For my doubts about the label "Indology" and about areal boundaries in general, see this post and this one (with many interesting comments).

1 comment:

elisa freschi said...

Robert Leach kindly made me aware of the following article (on Open Access):

http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2012/apr/22/academic-publishing-monopoly-challenged

On the topic of Open Access, very interesting comments and links can be found also in this post:
http://elisafreschi.blogspot.co.at/2012/01/open-access-in-south-asian-studies.html

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