Against their Will: Sexual Assault and the Uttarakāṇḍa

Against their Will: Sexual Assault and the Uttarakāṇḍa A close reading of the Uttarakāṇḍa of Vālmīki’s Rāmāyaṇa demonstrates that its author has composed a carefully and logically structured work, one that is haunted by themes of sexual transgression. Not only is the first half of the kāṇḍa occupied with the history and genealogy of Rāvaṇa, who is no less than the sexual predator par excellence, but its latter half tells of Rāma’s seemingly heart-wrenching decision to banish Sītā based on rumours of her own supposed infidelity. Similar themes are reflected in a number of the kāṇḍa’s sub-stories—both those that are understood to be part of the main narrative and those that belong to the so-called ‘purāṇic’ narratives—and highlight sexual aggression against women. This article examines a specific and unusual subset of such narratives that permeate the kāṇḍa, those that deal with explicit rape, with an eye towards further understanding why, uniquely in this kāṇḍa, such stories appear, and what lies behind their popularity and longevity. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Studies in History SAGE

Against their Will: Sexual Assault and the Uttarakāṇḍa

Loading next page...
 
/lp/sage/against-their-will-sexual-assault-and-the-uttarak-a-8myYDoa7ZE
Publisher
SAGE Publications
Copyright
© 2018 SAGE Publications
ISSN
0257-6430
eISSN
0973-080X
D.O.I.
10.1177/0257643018772405
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

A close reading of the Uttarakāṇḍa of Vālmīki’s Rāmāyaṇa demonstrates that its author has composed a carefully and logically structured work, one that is haunted by themes of sexual transgression. Not only is the first half of the kāṇḍa occupied with the history and genealogy of Rāvaṇa, who is no less than the sexual predator par excellence, but its latter half tells of Rāma’s seemingly heart-wrenching decision to banish Sītā based on rumours of her own supposed infidelity. Similar themes are reflected in a number of the kāṇḍa’s sub-stories—both those that are understood to be part of the main narrative and those that belong to the so-called ‘purāṇic’ narratives—and highlight sexual aggression against women. This article examines a specific and unusual subset of such narratives that permeate the kāṇḍa, those that deal with explicit rape, with an eye towards further understanding why, uniquely in this kāṇḍa, such stories appear, and what lies behind their popularity and longevity.

Journal

Studies in HistorySAGE

Published: Aug 1, 2018

There are no references for this article.

You’re reading a free preview. Subscribe to read the entire article.


DeepDyve is your
personal research library

It’s your single place to instantly
discover and read the research
that matters to you.

Enjoy affordable access to
over 18 million articles from more than
15,000 peer-reviewed journals.

All for just $49/month

Explore the DeepDyve Library

Search

Query the DeepDyve database, plus search all of PubMed and Google Scholar seamlessly

Organize

Save any article or search result from DeepDyve, PubMed, and Google Scholar... all in one place.

Access

Get unlimited, online access to over 18 million full-text articles from more than 15,000 scientific journals.

Your journals are on DeepDyve

Read from thousands of the leading scholarly journals from SpringerNature, Elsevier, Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford University Press and more.

All the latest content is available, no embargo periods.

See the journals in your area

DeepDyve

Freelancer

DeepDyve

Pro

Price

FREE

$49/month
$360/year

Save searches from
Google Scholar,
PubMed

Create lists to
organize your research

Export lists, citations

Read DeepDyve articles

Abstract access only

Unlimited access to over
18 million full-text articles

Print

20 pages / month

PDF Discount

20% off