8th SSEASR Conference

South and Southeast Asian Association for the Study of Culture and Religion announces a Regional Conference of the International Association for the History of Religions (IAHR), Member of CIPSH under the auspices of the UNESCO, organized by Center for Archaeological Studies (CAS), ULAB and hosted by University of Liberal Arts Bangladesh (ULAB).

Rivers played a very crucial role in the development of world civilization. This is also true for South and Southeast Asia, where thousands of rivers are connecting culture and thought. The vast watercourse of the River Ganga in South Asia, and that of the Mekong River in Southeast Asia, along with other major rivers in the region, determined the culture, belief system and philosophical thoughts of the region for several millennia. The homogeneity of culture and religious practices therein is seen today largely due to the flow and sacredness of South and Southeast Asian rivers. The academic discourse on rivers and religion to understand cultural development of South and Southeast Asia is a very pertinent subject for achieving sustainable development goals of the 21st century. Purpose of the 8th SSEASR Conference is to encourage world academia to initiate the academic dialogue on the much relevant issues on the subject in order to better understand, compare, interpret and analyse countless beliefs, practices, traditions, communities and other related phenomena.

Strikingly, the history of Bangladesh is entwined in the history of its numerous and diverse rivers and water channels. Thus, Bangladesh is beautifully known as the “Land of Thousand Rivers” (“Hazar Nadir Desh” in Bangla language). These rivers – the life of the country – have nurtured Bangladesh through the ages and their banks also write the tales of the human civilization. Therefore, the University of Liberal Arts Bangladesh (ULAB) is proud to host the 8th SSEASR Conference at its campus in the capital city of Dhaka.

The SSEASR operates under the policies and principles of the parent body International Association for the History of Religions (IAHR), which seeks to promote the activities of all scholars and affiliates that contribute to the historical, social, and comparative study of religion. As such, the IAHR is the preeminent international forum for the critical, analytical and cross-cultural study of religion, past and present. The IAHR is not a forum for confessional, apologetic, or other similar concerns.

Important Dates
Early Registration Deadline: February 28,, 2019
Panel Submission closes: March 1, 2019
Last Submission of Abstract: April 15, 2019



8th SSEASR Conference Schedule



  1. Riverine Routes and Religious Links in South and Southeast Asia
  2. Sacredness of Rivers, Riverfronts and Races
  3. Major Rivers and their Valleys: The Lifeline of South and Southeast Asia
  4. Tirthas and Pilgrimages in South and Southeast Asia
  5. Culture and Eco-Tourism along the Rivers in South and Southeast Asia
  6. Iconography and Personification of River Related Deities and Celestial Beings
  7. Art, Architecture and Archaeology of South and Southeast Asia
  8. Language, Literature and Sacred Texts
  9. Religious Practices and Behaviours of Indigenous People
  10. Performing Arts, Fairs and Festivals
  11. South and Southeast Asian Diaspora in the World: Religiosity and Survival
  • Other papers related to the conference theme are also welcome.
  • Special Session: Culture and Religion in Bangladesh: Past and Present.
  • We also welcome panels on sub-themes.


Pre-Conference Tour – 2 days/1 night
World heritage Buddhist site Paharpur/Mahasthangarh/Mainamati/Sonargaon

Post-Conference Tour – 3 days/2 nights
World heritage Mosque City of Bagerhat and the world’s largest Mangrove Forest Sundarbans



Dr. Amarjiva Lochan                                                                                                               Prof. Shahnaj Husne Jahan
President                                                                                                                                      Chair
SSEASR Executive Committee                                                                                                   The 8th SSEASR Conference


The Universityof Liberal Arts Bangladesh and its curricula are accredited by the University Grants Commission (UGC) of Bangladesh, and approved by the Ministry of Education, Government of People's Republic of Bangladesh.