Department of South and Central Asia

The Seminar of Indian Studies is concerned with general linguistics (Indian language area, relationship between Dravidian and Altaic languages), natural symbolism in South Asian languages, literatures and rituals, and modern Indian and Indonesian societies.

Research of the Seminar of Mongolian and Tibetan Studies is based on field studies in Central Asia and covers the ethnography of communication among Mongolian nomads, the sociolinguistics of modern Mongolian, language data collection in Mongolian and Manchu-Tungusic languages, research into endangered religious traditions in the Tibet, and the grammar system of modern Lhasa Tibetan.

The Department has two major publication projects. The international peer-reviewed journal Pandanus: Nature in Literature, Art, Myth and Ritual specializes in Indian literatures with occasional comparative studies involving literatures of other cultural areas. The journal continues in the tradition of annual collected papers published in 1998–2006. The international peer-reviewed journal MONGOLO-TIBETICA PRAGENSIA: Linguistics. Ethnolinguistics, Religion and Culture (since 2008) is an interdisciplinary periodical specializing in Central Asia, following up on annual international collected papers published from 2002.

Other notable efforts of the Institute include electronic databases:

The Department maintains academic cooperation with universities in Milan, Krakow, Warsaw and Cagliari (the Pandanus Project, regular rotating conferences), Mongolian State University (study stays for our undergraduates), Inner Mongolia University in Hohhhot and Xorchin University in Tongliao. Other partner institutions include Tibetan Buddhist Resource Centre (TBRC, New York), University of Vienna and University of Szeged under the CEEPUS programme.

Our staff have received a number of academic and state awards for scholarly achievement and contribution to the cultural relations between the Czech Republic and the target countries.