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RISA-L Subscriptions & Instructions


*For current subscribers only


Description, Purpose, & Eligibility

The Religion in South Asia Section (RISA) is a special-interest group within the American Academy of Religion (AAR). Its purpose is to further the academic study of the religious traditions of South Asia, both classical and modern. The purpose of RISA-L, the email list of RISA, is to provide a forum in which the professional scholars active in RISA may exchange ideas and information on matters pertaining to their research and teaching.

Although RISA-L postings are archived publicly (see below), subscriptions are not open to the general Internet public. Subscriptions are normally available only to AAR members with terminal degrees in related academic disciplines researching and/or teaching in the area of religion in South Asia. Guest subscriptions are available to other active scholars with such qualifications, or to graduate students currently doing work in these fields. It is assumed that subscribers are familiar with current methodologies and assumptions in academic religious studies. These eligibility criteria are enforced strictly to help ensure that the discussion remains as much as possible on an informed, professional, and academic level.

Undergraduate students in related disciplines may obtain subscriptions to RISA-L if they are sponsored by a faculty mentor who is an AAR member and a RISA-L subscriber. This faculty member should write to the list manager, recommending that the student be subscribed.

IMPORTANT NOTICE: Subscribers and potential subscribers should be aware that email lists are inherently public means of communication, and that all postings to RISA-L are archived publicly on this site. See the RISA-L Index Archives page.

EQUALLY IMPORTANT: All subscribers to RISA-L are expected to read and abide by the list rules stated below.  Subscribers are also expected to read and follow the RISA-L list courtesy guidelines.Smile

Potential subscribers should also be aware that a proportion of the discussion on RISA-L has to do with the internal business of RISA: program planning, organizing panels, announcements, and so on.

The RISA-L email list is supervised by the RISA-L Advisory Committee, and by the RISA Steering Committee.

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List Rules

Participants in RISA-L are expected to be familiar with, and abide by, the following rules, which are designed to maintain the focus, professional tone, and collegiality of the list.  Any subscribers who repeatedly violate any of these rules, in letter or spirit, will have their subscriptions placed on approval status, which means that any postings they make will be held for approval by the list administrator before being posted. If they persist after this warning period, they will be removed from the list entirely.

  1. Absolutely no discussions that are acrimonious or vituperative in tone, and no personal attacks or flaming, will be tolerated on this list.
  2. There should be no extended back and forth discussions on single topics between two individuals or a limited number of individuals.  Such discussions should be taken off-list.
  3. No single individual should post an extended series of repeated messages on a single issue, nor multiple messages on a single or similar issue(s) on a single day, unless h/she is replying to legitimate queries or responses.  Participants in any such extended discussion should scrupulously avoid violating rule one.
  4. new.gif (1126 bytes)In any event, subscribers are limited to posting a maximum of 3 messages per day, totaling no more than 5 messages per week.  This and the previous measure are designed to mitigate the kind of obsessive, single-issue ranting that defeats the purpose of the list.new.gif (1126 bytes)
  5. Subscribers should not post on RISA-L verbatim copies of material, especially full newspaper articles, that are already available elsewhere on the Web.  If you want to refer RISA-L subscribers to such material, give a short summary and the full web address/URL, including the prefix "http://".  Occasional exceptions to this rule will be tolerated in special circumstances, but in no case should newspaper articles or similar material be posted without the exact URL of the original source.
  6. Absolutely no newspaper articles, unattributed quotations, or similar material should be re-posted to RISA-L from secondary sources such as newsgroups or other listservs.
  7. The RISA-L archives are open as an information resource for non-subscribers to browse and search.  As a matter of policy, however, RISA-L will not honor requests by non-subscribers to post corrections, rebuttals, or other responses to RISA-L discussions.

Any suggestions (or complaints!) about the above rules should be mailed to the list manager Andrea Pinkney or to the RISA-L Advisory Committee.

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List Courtesy

RISA-L subscribers are urged to observe the following guidelines out of courtesy to fellow subscribers.

  1. Keep in mind that whenever you post to the list, you are in effect asking for time and attention from each of the more than 800 busy scholars world-wide who are subscribed. Keep your messages short, to the point, and make sure they are of some general professional interest. All messages over 15K in size will automatically be referred to the list manager for approval before posting.
  2. Because this is a large list and not all subscribers know each other,  please be sure that any postings to RISA-L contain a (brief) signature with your full name and institutional affiliation.  This will also help to maintain the professional tone of the discussions.  (Note: Long signatures are not particularly helpful because they tend to use up bandwidth.)
  3. When replying to a message, please do not include the full text of the original message in your reply.  It should normally be sufficient to retain the original subject heading.  If quoting some part of the original message seems appropriate, please take the time to edit out the unnecessary portions.
  4. Subscribers who post bibliographic inquiries on RISA-L are urged to assemble and edit the resulting references (with complete details as to publication, page numbers, etc., if at all possible) and post this list on RISA-L for everyone's use.  As time permits, the list manager will make these lists available in the RISA Bibliography Archive on this site.
  5. Please, please avoid posting messages to RISA-L with HTML or other formatting codes for specific fonts, italics, boldface, etc.  Many subscribers do not have software capable of displaying such messages properly, so they appear with all kinds of strange codes and are exceedingly difficult to read.  (In the tools, preferences, options, or setup menu of your email program, set message formatting to "plain text."). Please also turn off any setting that causes your email software to send two versions of your messages, one in plain text and one with HTML formatting. Messages with extensive html formatting may be referred to the list manager for approval, since this happens automatically with any message that exceeds 15K in size.

Any suggestions regarding the above guidelines should be mailed to the list manager Andrea Pinkney or to the RISA-L Advisory Committee.

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New Subscriptions

As indicated above, RISA-L is a private list designed for RISA participants and guest scholars of religion in South Asia. To subscribe to RISA-L, send a message to the list manager Andrea Pinkney containing the information in the form below.

Please do not apply for a subscription if you do not meet the criteria stated above.

Please mention "RISA-L Subscription" in the subject line and include as much of the following information as may apply:

Full Name:
Highest degree (please specify institution & discipline):
Institutional affiliation:
Title, academic rank, or student year (students specify degree being pursued and academic advisor; if not at an academic institution, please indicate place of employment ):
Professional societies to which you belong:
AAR membership #:
E-mail address:
Office telephone:
Mailing address:
Zip/Postal Code:
Research interests  (brief):
Recent publications (brief):

Note: If you find it easier, the categories above may be selected in your web browser, copied, and then pasted into your e-mail software to create a form.

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If you have unsubscribed from RISA-L, or suspect that your subscription has for some reason been canceled by RISA-L's software,* and you would like to be resubscribed, please send a message so requesting to the list manager Andrea Pinkney .

*RISA-L's listprocessing software at the University of San Diego sometimes cancels subscriptions, without notification, if the subscriber's home computer is having technical problems and the RISA-L listprocessor receives repeated error messages when attempting to deliver mail to the subscriber's account. If you notice that you have not received mail from RISA-L for some time, please check with the list manager Andrea Pinkney to determine whether you need to be resubscribed.

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Managing Your Subscriptionnew.gif (1126 bytes)

To manage your subscription, please visit the following URL:


mailman.jpg (3734 bytes)This will give you access to a web page that will allow you to set options like digest and delivery modes, to disable delivery for a limited period (such as a vacation or research trip), to get a reminder of your password, or to unsubscribe from RISA-L.

NOTE: The system will not allow you to change your address. This is a security measure to prevent illegitimate subscriptions.

If you need to change your address, or are having difficulties making other desired change(s), please contact the list administrator, Andrea Pinkney .

Revised: March 12, 2013


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