Listen to the Heron's Words: Reimagining Gender and Kinship in North India
University of California Press, Apr 29, 1994 - Social Science - 234 pages
In many South Asian oral traditions, herons are viewed as duplicitous and conniving. These traditions tend also to view women as fragmented identities, dangerously split between virtue and virtuosity, between loyalties to their own families and those of their husbands. In women's songs, however, symbolic herons speak, telling of alternative moral perspectives shaped by women. The heron's words—and women's expressive genres more generally—criticize pervasive North Indian ideologies of gender and kinship that place women in subordinate positions. By inviting readers to "listen to the heron's words," the authors convey this shift in moral perspective and suggest that these spoken truths are compelling and consequential for the women in North India.
The songs and narratives bear witness to a provocative cultural dissonance embedded in women's speech. This book reveals the power of these critical commentaries and the fluid and permeable boundaries between spoken words and the lives of ordinary village women.
What people are saying - Write a review
We haven't found any reviews in the usual places.
Other editions - View all
ammā Asikaur auspicious bhakti bhāt birth Brahman bride Bridegroom-prince brother châlu chapter cloth conjugal village context courtyard cultural dān dancing songs discourse dominant erotic expressive genres female sexuality festival Gāli Ganeshji gender Ghatiyali ghunghat girl given goddess groom Gujar Hindi Hindu Holi husband husband's sister ideology images inauspiciousness Indar Raja comes indar rājābāgoń jungli rani Kakar kešyā king lives lover Mahita male marriage married meri maiyyä rejāi moral mother mujhe natal home natal kin natal village North Indian North Indian kinship northern India one's oral traditions Pahansu and Hathchoya patrilineal performed perspective pihar prestations purdah queen rahe ji Raheja rājā rājābāgoń men jhuk Rajasthan Rajput Ramayana rani's relations relationship resistance ritual Saharanpur district Sãs Shobhag Kanvar sing Singh Sita social South Asian speaking split story subaltern Subaltern Studies sung tions Uttar Pradesh Vatuk veil verses voices wedding wives woman women's songs words worship wrap