Re-figuring the Ramayana as Theology: A History of Reception in Premodern India

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  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Hardcover
  • Copyright: 10/29/2014
  • Publisher: Routledge
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The Ramayana of Valmiki is considered by many contemporary Hindus to be a foundational religious text. But this conception is in part the result of a transformation of the epic'"s receptive history, a hermeneutic project which challenged one characterization of the genre of the text, as a work of literary culture, or and replaced it with another, as a work of remembered tradition. This book examines Ramayana commentaries, poetic retellings, and praise-poems produced by intellectuals within the Srivaishnava order of South India from 1250 to 1600 and shows how Rama'"s story was reconceptualised as a religious text. As an archive of traditional hermeneutics in South Asia, this book will be of interest not only to Ramayana specialists, but also to those working in other areas of South Asian intellectual history, as well as to comparativists in literary studies and the History of religions.

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