Devotional Fanscapes: Bollywood Star Deities, Devotee-Fans, and Cultural Politics in India and Beyond examines how fans worship film stars as deities. Focusing on temples dedicated to Bollywood (Hindi cinema) stars and the artifacts produced by Hindi and Tamil cinema fans, Shalini Kakar illustrates how the fan constructs their identity as a devotee and that of the star as a deity. Extending her research from India to the US, Kakar highlights the transnational dimensions of this phenomenon to demonstrate the degree to which devotional fan practices (fan-bhakti) and fan artifacts can help us rethink art, religion, and politics. With its interdisciplinary approach, this book addresses how fan-bhakti is performed in the global landscape, in the process augmenting new religious models and identities based on the idea of the “cinematic sacred.”
For more information, check out www.sacredfandom.com.
Shalini Kakar is an independent scholar and art historian.
PART I. Constructing Identity: Star as a Deity and Fan as a Bhakt
CHAPTER 1: “Sorry God, We Worship Amitabh More than You”: Bollywood Deities and the ‘Publics of Fan-bhakti’
CHAPTER 2: Star Murtis: Film Posters as Ritual Objects
PART II. Materiality and Spatial Constructs: Devotee-Fan Art
CHAPTER 3: “Starring” Madhuri as Durga: The Madhuri Dixit Temple and the Performative Fan-bhakti of Pappu Sardar
CHAPTER 4: Transforming the Object of Art: M. F. Husain and Devotional Fandom
PART III. Crossing Borders: Devotee-Fans and their Transnational Socio-Political Trajectories
CHAPTER 5: Get Rajinified: India to USA, the “God of Style” and his Devotee-fans
A fascinating study of film fandom in the context of Hindu bhakti. This book will engage students of religion, cinema and politics of South Asia and beyond. An excellent debut from a scholar to watch.
Devotional Fanscapes gives the unique phenomenon of Bollywood fandom the scholarly attention it deserves, putting it in the context of everyday Hindu religiosity and the transnational cultural networks of which it forms an important part.