Dr. Ehud Halperin

Department of East Asian Studies
לימודי מזרח אסיה סגל אקדמי בכיר
Dr. Ehud Halperin
Phone: 03-6407814
Office: Gilman-humanities, 273

General Information

Dr. Udi Halperin is a scholar of Hinduism who teaches in the Department of East Asian Studies at Tel Aviv University. His research focuses on lived religion in modern India, with a particular focus on the Western Indian Himalaya. His book, The Many Faces of a Himalayan Goddess: Hadimba, her Devotees, and Religion in Rapid Change (Oxford University Press, 2019), is based on several years of fieldwork in the Kullu Valley (Himachal Pradesh, North India) and examines the multiple ways in which the local goddess Hadimba is embedded in the lives of her devotees

Dr. Halperin's current research explores the phenomenon of divine presence in Hinduism, as it manifests itself primarily in its material and performative aspects. This includes investigating the variety of forms that divine presence can take, the ritual mechanisms that are used to construct it, and its effects on the everyday lives of people in North India. Dr. Halperin's articles have been published in leading journals, such as the Journal of the American Academy of Religion (a leading journal in the field of religious studies) and the International Journal of Hindu Studies (a leading journal for research on Hinduism)

Dr. Halperin has twice been awarded four-year research grants from the Israel Science Foundation (ISF) (in 2015 and 2022). He was also a central member of the team that drafted a proposal that won a 7-year grant from the Rothschild Foundation to develop the Department of East Asian Studies. Dr. Halperin served as one of the two directors of the management of this project for 5 years, and he has held various other positions in the department (such as Chair of the Teaching Committee, and Advisor to the BA and MA programs) and in the The Zvi Yavetz School of Historical Studies (member of the School's Scholarship Committee)

Dr. Halperin teaches courses on Indian Civilization, Hindu Goddesses, Pilgrimage and sacred geography in India, Hindu rituals, Divine presence in Hinduism, and Hinduism and ecology. He was elected to the University's 100 Club (outstanding teachers) and was awarded the Dean's Award for Outstanding Teaching for several years. He was also twice awarded the Rector's Award for Outstanding Teaching (in 2015 and 2023)


Ph.D. Columbia University, Department of Religion 2012

M.A. Columbia University, Department of Religion 2004-2006

B.A. (Cum Laude) Tel Aviv University (Israel), East Asian Studies & Philosophy 1997-2001


Indian goddesses, Divine presence, Hindu ritual and sacrifice, Religion and ecology, Himalayan religion, lived Hinduism.



The Many Faces of a Himalayan Goddess: Haḍimbā, Her Devotees, and Religion in Rapid Change.  New York: Oxford University Press, 2019.



Articles & Reviews

"Is the Goddess Haḍimbā Tantric? Negotiating Power in a Western Himalayan Sacrificial Arena." International Journal of Hindu Studies 23, no. 2 (2019): 195-212


"Winds of Change: Religion and Climate in the Western Himalayas." Journal of the American Academy of Religion 85, no. 1 (2017): 64-111


Palanquins of the Gods: Indigenous Theologies, Ritual Practice, and Complex Agency in the Western Indian Himalayas." Religions of South Asia 10, no. 3 (2016): 300-23


"A Vehicle for Agency: Rath Rituals and the Construction of Himalayan Devtas as Complex Agents.". European Bulletin of Himalayan Research 48 (2016): 5-42


"The Age of Kālī: Contemporary Iterations of the Kaliyug in the Kullu Valley of the Western Himalayas." Nidan: International Journal for the Study of Hinduism 26, no. 1 (2014): 42-64


‘Making Faces: Self and Image Creation in a Himalayan Valley by Halka Hingorani.’ Review for the European Bulletin of Himalayan Research 44 (2014): 106-10.


India@ 21st.Century: Socio-Economic and Political Transformation in Contemporary India. Catalog Essay for the exhibition: “Critical Mass: Contemporary Art from India,” 31.5.2012 - 16.12.2012, Herta and Paul Amir Building, Tel Aviv Museum of Art (co-authored with Rotem Geva, published in May 2012).

Tel Aviv University makes every effort to respect copyright. If you own copyright to the content contained
here and / or the use of such content is in your opinion infringing, Contact us as soon as possible >>