Dancing the Self: Personhood and Performance in the Pandav Lila of Garhwal

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Oxford University Press, Feb 28, 2002 - Religion - 240 pages
For ten years, William Sax studied the inhabitants of the former kingdom of Garhwal in northern India. Sax attended and participated in performances of the pandav lila (a ritual reenactment of scenes from the Mahabharata in a dance) and observed its context in village life. Combining ethnographic fieldwork with sophisticated reflection on the larger meanings of these rituals and practices, this volume presents the information in a style accessible to the uninitiated reader. Sax opens a window on a fascinating (and threatened) aspect of rural Indian life and on Hinduism as a living religion, while providing an accessible introduction to the Mahabharata itself.
 

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Contents

The Performative Construction of the Self
3
The Mah257bh257rata Story
16
1 The Sutol P257ndav L299l257
20
P257ndav L299l257 as a Regional Tradition
39
P257ndav L299l257 as a Mans Sport
64
P257ndav L299l257 as a Rajput Tradition
93
Draupadi and Kunti in the P257ndav L299l257
134
6 A Divine King in the Western Himalayas
157
Orientalism Anthropology and the Other
186
Bibliography
201
Index
221
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