John F. Richards Prize Recipients
The John F. Richards Prize in South Asian History recognizes the most distinguished work of scholarship on South Asian history published in English during the previous calendar year.
2013 Richards Prize
A. Azfar Moin, Southern Methodist Univ.
The Millennial Sovereign: Sacred Kingship and Sainthood in Islam (Columbia Univ. Press)
Like the Safavids in Iran, Mughal emperors from Babur to Aurangzeb embedded their sovereign authority in cosmic, messianic imaginings, linked to Sufism, astrology, genealogy, and millennialism. Using mainly Persian, Arabic, Turkish, and Urdu texts—and Mughal miniature painting—Moin shows how claims to authority were cast in a universalism transcending any single form of religion. His work will recast how we imagine the dynamics of sovereignty during the Mughal era.