Institute for Indology and Comparative Religion

Curriculum Vitae Prof. Dr. Heike Oberlin


1989 - 1995: studied the South Indian classical dance Bharatanatyam in Stuttgart (Tanzschule Lotus) and in Chennai

1990 - 1999: higher studies in Indology and Cultural Anthropology at the Eberhard Karls University in Tübingen

1995 - 1997: joint DAAD and ICCR scholarship for studying the Sanskrit theatre Kutiyattam at the Deemed University Kerala Kalamandalam, India

1995: stage debut as the first foreigner in Kutiyattam, numerable workshops and shows thereafter

since winter 1998/99: regular teaching assignments at the Department of Indology in Tübingen for Malayalam, the culture of Kerala, manuscriptology (palm leaves), and the performing arts of India

1999: acquired the degree of Magistra Artium (Master's Degree) in Indology and Cultural Anthropology at the Eberhard Karls University, Tübingen

since 1999: numerable publications and lectures at different universities and conferences in and out of Germany

2000/2001: awarded a graduate scholarship given by the state of Baden-Württemberg to pursue a PhD at the Eberhard Karls University, Tübingen

2001 - 2005: working in different academic research and teaching positions: Research Associate at the Chair of Indology Würzburg ("Multimediale Datenbank"), at the "Orissa Project" of the Department of Indology in Tübingen, and at the SFB 626 of the Department of Theatre Studies, FU Berlin; teaching of Sanskrit in Tübingen

since 2003: Honorary Chairperson of the Indo-German Cultural Society in Tübingen (Deutsch-Indische Kulturgesellschaft Tübingen e.V.)

2004: PhD in Indology at the Bayerische Julius Maximillians University, Würzburg (summa cum laude)

2005 - 2008: Assistant Professor at the Department of Indology, University of Tübingen

since 2006: elected in the faculty council

2007: awarded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) for the theatre project "Humanistische Tradition und altindisches Schauspiel - ein Schultheaterprojekt" (humanist traditions and ancient Indian drama - a school theatre project)

2008: recipient of the Ernst-Waldschmidt-Preis 2008 awarded by the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation for outstanding academic performance in the field of Indology; managing the start up of the project B14 "Religion on Stage – Traditional Performances in New Public Spheres and Media" at the University of Heidelberg under the Excellence Cluster Program "Asia and Europe in a Global Context - Shifting Asymmetries in Cultural Flows"; elected into the governing body of the newly established "Asien-Orient-Institut" (AOI, Institute for Asian and Oriental Studies) at the University of Tübingen

since November 2008: Academic Coordinator of the AOI as well as Assistant Professor at its Department of Indology on a permanent position

2008 - 2011: External Research Fellow in Project B14 "Religion in Stage - Traditional Performances in New Public Spheres and Media" at the University of Heidelberg under the Excellence Cluster Program "Asia and Europe"

since August 2010: annual workshops of 3-4 weeks duration together with Prof. David Shulman (Hebrew University) and students from Israel and Tübingen on the topic of Sanskrit theatre in Kerala, India

since October 2010: elected in the council of the Faculty of Humanities at the University of Tübingen, as board member of the Department of Asian and Oriental Studies (AOI), and as member of the Structural Commission of the Senate

October 2011: appointment as "Akademische Rätin" at the University of Tübingen

2013 - 2016: PI (together with David Shulman, Hebrew University, Jerusalem) of the project "Kudiyattam: Living Sanskrit Theater in the Kerala Tradition", funded by the German-Israeli Foundation for Scientific Research and Development (GIF) for 4 years

May 2013: habilitation (postdoctoral qualification) and conferment of the "venia legendi" for Indology by the Faculty of Humanities, University of Tübingen (Associate Professor, permanent position)

August 2014: appointment by the Deutsch-Indische Gesellschaft e.V. (German Indian Society) as jury member for the awarding of the Rabindranath Tagore Kulturpreis

since November 2014: appointed as Equality Officer, Faculty of Humanities, University of Tübingen (Gleichstellungsbeauftragten der Philosophischen Fakultät)

June 2015: appointment as member of the advisory board of the Indian Theatre Journal (ITJ)

2015 - 2017: co-applicant of the project "Farbpräferenzen - ein interdisziplinäres Forschungsvorhaben zum Verhältnis von Farbwahrnehmung und visueller Kultur", funded for 2 years by the Exploration Fund of the University of Tübingen (DFG ZUK 63)

October 2015: establishment of the "Gundert Chair" for Malayalam at Tübingen University in cooperation with the Thunchath Ezhuthachan Malayalam University, Tirur

June 2016: DFG grant for 2 years for the project "Das Hermann-Gundert-Portal: Digitalisierung und Erschließung des Nachlasses von Hermann Gundert (Handschriften und Drucke) sowie ergänzender Werke aus seinem Umfeld an der Universitätsbibliothek Tübingen" ["The Hermann-Gundert-Portal: digitization and indexing of the legacy of Hermann Gundert (manuscripts and prints) as well as supplementary works from his surroundings at the University Library of Tübingen"] at the University Library Tübingen (co-applicant)

December 2016: appointed as adjunct / extraordinary professor ("außerplanmäßige Professorin") for Indology at the University of Tübingen

January 2018: "Scholar in Residence" at Kerala Kalamandalam, Deemed University of Art and Culture, under the "Erudite Scheme" of the Kerala State Higher Education Council (flyer of the programme)

2019: „Gisela-Bonn-Preis“ by the Indian Council for Cultural Relations and the Deutsch-Indische Gesellschaft (prize-giving ceremonies at Halle 26/11/2019 and the JNU at New Delhi 9/12/2019).