Prof. Dr. Martin Fuchs

Fellow / Holder of the Professorship for Indian Religious History (Max Weber Centre for Advanced Cultural and Social Studies)


Weltbeziehungen / C19.02.28

+49 361 737-2809

Office hours

on appointment

Visiting address

Max-Weber-Kolleg für kultur- und sozialwissenschaftliche Studien
Nordhäuser Str. 63
99089 Erfurt

Mailing address

University of Erfurt
Max-Weber-Kolleg für kultur- und sozialwissenschaftliche Studien
Postfach 90 02 21
99105 Erfurt

Project leader SFB 294 "Strukturwandel des Eigentums", Sub project B01 (Max Weber Centre for Advanced Cultural and Social Studies)


Weltbeziehungen / C19.02.28

Prof. Dr. Martin Fuchs

Personal Information

Curriculum Vitae

Martin Fuchs studied Anthropology, Sociology und Modern South Asian Languages and Literatures at the Universities Marburg, Heidelberg and Frankfurt/Main, and received his PhD in 1985 from the University Frankfurt/Main. This was followed by teaching appointments at the Universities of Zürich, Heidelberg and the Free University in Berlin. At the Free University he also did his Habilitation (postdoctoral qualification) in 1997. In the following years Martin Fuchs held teaching and research positions at the Universities of Paderborn; Heidelberg (South Asia Institute); Free University Berlin; Central European University, Budapest; and the University of Canterbury, Christchurch (New Zealand). Martin Fuchs was Founding Director of the New Zealand South Asia Centre (2008-2009). Since 2009 Martin Fuchs holds the Professorship of Indian Religious History at the Max Weber Centre for Advanced Cultural and Social Studies of the University of Erfurt. Martin Fuchs was one of the initiators of the M.S. Merian - R. Tagore International Centre of Advanced Studies "Metamorphoses of the Political" (ICAS-MP) in New Delhi, whose base consists of a network of six Indian and German research institutes and universities. He represents the University of Erfurt in the consortium and periodically acts as the German Co-Director of ICAS-MP.


In teaching, Martin Fuchs offers courses on the history of religion in India, on the theory and method of ethnography and on the sociology of religion.


Research Project

The research interests of Martin Fuchs lie in Cultural and Social Theory; the Anthropology, Sociology and Religious Studies of South Asia; social and religious movements; Dalits; Urban Anthropology and Human Rights issues.


Selected Publications

  • 2022: World Religions, World Attitudes, and Civilizations: Max Weber’s Comparative Sociology of Religion and the Analysis of Indian Religiosity, in: Alan Sica (ed.), The Routledge International Handbook on Max Weber, Abingdon: Routledge, 248-260.
  • 2022: Interpretative und Reflexive Anthropologie: Ethnographie und Repräsentation, in: Angelika Poferl and Norbert Schröer (eds.), Handbuch Soziologische Ethnographie, Wiesbaden: Springer VS, 169-210.
  • 2022: Sociological entanglements: Max Weber’s comparative engagement with India, in: Hans Harder and Dhruv Raina (eds.), Disciplines and Movements between India and the German-Speaking World. Critical Essays, Delhi: Orient Longman, 15-44.
  • 2021: Ambedkar's Theory of the Social: The Universal Condition of Recognitionin: Aakash Singh Rathore (ed.), B.R. Ambedkar: The Quest for Justice (5 volumes), Vol. II, Social Justice, New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 1-25.
  • 2021: Precarious Belonging: Religious Options and Engagements with the World in a Metropolitan Context. The case of Dalits in Dharavi (Mumbai), in: Religion and Urbanity Online, Berlin: de Gruyter. DOI:
  • 2020: Weltreligionen, Welteinstellungen, Zivilisationen: Max Webers vergleichende Religionssoziologie und die Analytik indischer Religiosität, in: Volkhard Krech and Hartmann Tyrell (eds.), Religionssoziologie um 1900. Eine Fortsetzung (Religion in der Gesellschaft, Bd. 48), Baden-Baden: Ergon, 595-629.
  • 2019: Religious Individualisation: Historical Dimensions and Comparative Perspectives, 2 vols., edited together with Antje Linkenbach, Martin Mulsow, Bernd-Christian Otto, Rahul Parson and Jörg Rüpke, Berlin: de Gruyter.
  • 2019: Religious Interactions in Modern India, edited together with Vasudha Dalmia, New Delhi: Oxford University Press.
  • 2019: Dhamma and the Common Good: Religion as Problem and Answer - Ambedkar’s Critical Theory of Social Relationality, in: Martin Fuchs and Vasudha Dalmia (eds.), Religious Interactions in Modern India, New Delhi: Oxford University Press, 364-413.
  • 2018: Indian Imbroglios: Bhakti Neglected, Or: the Missed Opportunities for a New Approach to a Comparative Analysis of Civilizational Diversity, in: Arnason, Johann and Chris Hann (eds.), Anthropology and Civilizational Analysis. Eurasian Explorations, Albany (NY), SUNY Press, 121-154.
  • 2017: Recognition across difference: Conceptual considerations against an Indian background, in: Dieter Gosewinkel and Dieter Rucht (eds.), Transnational Struggles for Recognition. New Perspectives on Civil Society since the 20th Century, New York and Oxford: Berghahn, 252-276.
  • 2015: Processes of Religious Individualisation: Stocktaking and Issues for the Future, in: Religion, vol. 45 (3), 330-343.
  • 2009: Reaching out; or, Nobody exists in one context only: Society as translation. Translation Studies 2 (1), 21-40.
  • 2004: Konfigurationen der Moderne. Diskurse zu Indien, edited together with Antje Linkenbach and Shalini Randeria, Nomos Verlag.
  • 1999: Kampf um Differenz. Repräsentation, Subjektivität und soziale Bewegungen. Das Beispiel Indien, Suhrkamp Verlag.
  • 1993 (4th ed. 2016): Kultur, soziale Praxis, Text. Die Krise der ethnographischen Repräsentation, edited together with Eberhard Berg, Suhrkamp Verlag.
  • 1988: Theorie und Verfremdung. Max Weber, Louis Dumont und die Analyse der indischen Gesellschaft, Lang Verlag.

List of publications(pdf)

Further Information

Recent Projects

Kooperationsprojekt: "Die lokale Politisierung globaler Normen"

"ICAS-MP Metamorphoses of the Political"(darin MWK-Teilprojekt: "Normative Conflicts and Transformation")

Closed Projects

Kolleg-Forschergruppe "Religiöse Individualisierung in historischer Perspektive"