Assistant Professor, Faculty of Liberal Arts, Sophia University
Kiyokazu Okita is currently an assistant professor at Faculty of Liberal Arts, Sophia University. He is also a research follow at the OCHS as well as a visiting faculty at the Center for the Study of Hindu Traditions, University of Florida. He obtained his D.Phil. from the Faculty of Theology and Religion, University of Oxford in 2011. His doctoral thesis focuses on Vaiṣṇava Vedānta in Early Modern North India. Based on his thesis, he published a monograph titled Hindu Theology in Early Modern South Asia (Oxford University Press, 2014).
After teaching at the Department of Religion, University of Florida (2010-2011), he was a JSPS postdoctoral research fellow at the Department of Indological Studies, Kyoto University (2011-2013) as well as a visiting research fellow at the Department of Indian and Tibetan Studies, University of Hamburg (2012-2013). Subsequently, he won a competitive research position at the Hakubi Center for Advanced Research, Kyoto University (2013-2017).
In his current project God as Paramour: Ethic and Aesthetic in Early Modern South Asia, Kiyokazu examines a complex relation between devotion (bhakti), aesthetic delight (rasa) and ethics (dharma) in the Bengal Vaiṣṇava tradition.
Together with Dr Rembert Lutjeharms at the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, Dr Kiyokazu also leads an international collaborative research project The Gosvāmī Era: The Founding of Gauḍīya Vaiṣṇavism in Early Modern South Asia.