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Your search for 'South Asia' in subject found 59 book(s).
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21. cover
Title: Friends, brothers, and informants: fieldwork memoirs of Banaras online access is available to everyone
Author: Kumar, Nita 1951-
Published: University of California Press,  1992
Subjects: Anthropology | Cultural Anthropology | South  Asia
Publisher's Description: "Why was Banaras such a mystery to me when I arrived in 1981? Was it ironically because I was an Indian and expected to have a privileged insight into it?"In this unusually personal, evocative account of her fieldwork experiences, Kumar tackles the dilemma of how a Western-trained Indian intellectual adapts to the field and builds deeply affecting relationships with strangers. She discloses what it is like to be a native researching her own culture, offering her fieldwork memoirs in all their spontaneity and candor.We see Banaras through her eyes when she first arrives: throngs of people, cramped and dark lodgings, unappetizing food, mischievous monkeys, and almost overwhelming filth. But as she establishes friendships, we are treated to her discoveries not only about the city and its people, but also about her place in this society.The familiar problems that face most anthropologists conducting fieldwork - of Self versus Other, objectivity versus bias, familiar circumstances versus new and dismaying ones - are given a surprising and complex dimension. Through a narration of her own experiences, the author demonstrates how personal locations - habits, preferences, expectations deriving from childhood memories, and areas of ignorance - impose themselves on the process of selection, observation, and interpretation in research.   [brief]
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22. cover
Title: Gender and salvation: Jaina debates on the spiritual liberation of women online access is available to everyone
Author: Jaini, Padmanabh S
Published: University of California Press,  1991
Subjects: Religion | Buddhism | South  Asia | Women's Studies
Publisher's Description: Is a total renunciation of clothing a prerequisite to attaining salvation? In Gender and Salvation , P. S. Jaini brings to light heretofore untranslated texts centering on a centuries-old debate between the two principal Jaina sects, the Digambaras and the Svetambaras. At the core of the debate is the question: should gender-based differences of biology and life experience condition or limit an individual's ability to accomplish the ultimate religious goal?For the Digambaras, the example of total nudity set by Mahavira (599-527 B.C.), the central spiritual figure of Jainism, mandates an identical practice for all who aspire to the highest levels of religious attainment. For the Svetambaras, the renunciation necessary occurs purely on an internal level and is neither affected nor confirmed by the absence of clothes. Both sects agree, however, that nudity is not permitted for women under any circumstances. The Digambaras, therefore, believe that a woman cannot attain salvation, while the Svetambaras believe they can. Through their analysis of this dilemma, the Jaina thinkers whose texts are translated here demonstrate a level of insight into the material and spiritual constraints on women that transcends the particular question of salvation and relates directly to current debates on the effects of gender in our own society.   [brief]
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23. cover
Title: The gender of the gift: problems with women and problems with society in Melanesia
Author: Strathern, Marilyn
Published: University of California Press,  1988
Subjects: Anthropology | South  Asia | Women's Studies | Pacific Rim Studies
Publisher's Description: In the most original and ambitious synthesis yet undertaken in Melanesian scholarship, Marilyn Strathern argues that gender relations have been a particular casualty of unexamined assumptions held by Western anthropologists and feminist scholars alike. The book treats with equal seriousness - and with equal good humor - the insights of Western social science, feminist politics, and ethnographic reporting, in order to rethink the representation of Melanesian social and cultural life. This makes The Gender of the Gift one of the most sustained critiques of cross-cultural comparison that anthropology has seen, and one of its most spirited vindications.   [brief]
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24. cover
Title: Grounds for play: the Nauṭaṅkī theatre of North India online access is available to everyone
Author: Hansen, Kathryn
Published: University of California Press,  1991
Subjects: Literature | Cultural Anthropology | South  Asia
Publisher's Description: The nautanki performances of northern India entertain their audiences with often ribald and profane stories. Rooted in the peasant society of pre-modern India, this theater vibrates with lively dancing, pulsating drumbeats, and full-throated singing. In Grounds for Play , Kathryn Hansen draws on field research to describe the different elements of nautanki performance: music, dance, poetry, popular story lines, and written texts. She traces the social history of the form and explores the play of meanings within nautanki narratives, focusing on the ways important social issues such as political authority, community identity, and gender differences are represented in these narratives.Unlike other styles of Indian theater, the nautanki does not draw on the pan-Indian religious epics such as the Ramayana or the Mahabharata for its subjects. Indeed, their storylines tend to center on the vicissitudes of stranded heroines in the throes of melodramatic romance. Whereas nautanki performers were once much in demand, live performances now are rare and nautanki increasingly reaches its audiences through electronic media - records, cassettes, films, television. In spite of this change, the theater form still functions as an effective conduit in the cultural flow that connects urban centers and the hinterland in an ongoing process of exchange.   [brief]
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25. cover
Title: Himalayan voices: an introduction to modern Nepali literature online access is available to everyone
Author: Hutt, Michael
Published: University of California Press,  1991
Subjects: Literature | Literature in Translation | South  Asia
Publisher's Description: While the natural splendor of Nepal has been celebrated in many books, very little of the substantial body of Nepali literature has appeared in English translation. Himalayan Voices provides admirers of Nepal and lovers of literature with their first glimpse of the vibrant literary scene in Nepal today.An introduction to the two most developed genres of modern Nepali literature - poetry and the short story - this work profiles eleven of Nepal's most distinguished poets and offers translations of more than eighty poems written from 1916 to 1986. Twenty of the most interesting and best-known examples of the Nepali short story are translated into English for the first time by Michael Hutt. All provide vivid descriptions of life in twentieth-century Nepal.Although the days when Nepali poets were regularly jailed for their writings have passed, until 1990 the strictures of various laws governing public security and partisan political activity still required writers and publishers to exercise a certain caution. In spite of these conditions, poetry in Nepal remained the most vital and innovative genre, in which sentiments and opinions on contemporary social and political issues were frequently expressed.While the Nepali short story adapted its present form only during the early 1930s, it has rapidly developed a surprisingly high degree of sophistication. These stories offer insights into the workings of Nepali society: into caste, agrarian relations, social change, the status of women, and so on. Such insights are more immediate than those offered by scholarly works and are conveyed by implication and assumption rather than analysis and exposition.This book should appeal not only to admirers of Nepal, but to all readers with an interest in non-Western literatures. Himalayan Voices establishes for the first time the existence of a sophisticated literary tradition in Nepal and the eastern Himalaya.   [brief]
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26. cover
Title: Hindu places of pilgrimage in India ; a study in cultural geography
Author: Bhardwaj, Surinder Mohan
Published: University of California Press,  1983
Subjects: Asian Studies | Hinduism | South  Asia | Geography
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27. cover
Title: India
Author: Wolpert, Stanley A 1927-
Published: University of California Press,  1990
Subjects: History | South  Asia | Asian History
Publisher's Description: The history of India is the engrossing story of an ancient civilization, reborn as a modern nation. More a continent than a single nation, India is home to over one-fifth of humanity, yet it remains a mystery to most non-Indians, barely appreciated and poorly understood. Stanley Wolpert's India provides a much-needed, concise overview of Indian history and culture. His new preface brings the book up to date, discussing national elections, the economic effects of the new globalization, and the consequences of joining the nuclear arms race.   [brief]
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28. cover
Title: Indian traffic: identities in question in colonial and postcolonial India online access is available to everyone
Author: Roy, Parama
Published: University of California Press,  1998
Subjects: Postcolonial Studies | Literary Theory and Criticism | South  Asia | Gender Studies
Publisher's Description: The continual, unpredictable, and often violent "traffic" between identities in colonial and postcolonial India is the focus of Parama Roy's stimulating and original book. Mimicry has been commonly recognized as an important colonial model of bourgeois/elite subject formation, and Roy examines its place in the exchanges between South Asian and British, Hindu and Muslim, female and male, and subaltern and elite actors. Roy draws on a variety of sources - religious texts, novels, travelogues, colonial archival documents, and films - making her book genuinely interdisciplinary. She explores the ways in which questions of originality and impersonation function, not just for "western" or "westernized" subjects, but across a range of identities. For example, Roy considers the Englishman's fascination with "going native," an Irishwoman's assumption of Hindu feminine celibacy, Gandhi's impersonation of femininity, and a Muslim actress's emulation of a Hindu/Indian mother goddess. Familiar works by Richard Burton and Kipling are given fresh treatment, as are topics such as the "muscular Hinduism" of Swami Vivekananda. Indian Traffic demonstrates that questions of originality and impersonation are in the forefront of both the colonial and the nationalist discourses of South Asia and are central to the conceptual identity of South Asian postcolonial theory itself.   [brief]
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29. cover
Title: Inside the drama-house: Rama stories and shadow puppets in South India online access is available to everyone
Author: Blackburn, Stuart H
Published: University of California Press,  1996
Subjects: Anthropology | Asian Studies | South  Asia | Cinema and Performance Arts | Hinduism
Publisher's Description: Stuart Blackburn takes the reader inside a little-known form of shadow puppetry in this captivating work about performing the Tamil version of the Ramayana epic. Blackburn describes the skill and physical stamina of the puppeteers in Kerala state in South India as they perform all night for as many as ten weeks during the festival season. The fact that these performances often take place without an audience forms the starting point for Blackburn's discussion - one which explores not only this important epic tale and its performance, but also the broader theoretical issues of text, interpretation, and audience.Blackburn demonstrates how the performers adapt the narrative and add their own commentary to re-create the story from a folk perspective. At a time when the Rama story is used to mobilize political movements in India, the puppeteers' elaborate recitation and commentary presents this controversial tale from another ethical perspective, one that advocates moral reciprocity and balance.While the study of folk narrative has until now focused on tales, tellers, and tellings, this work explores the importance of audience - absent or otherwise. Blackburn's elegant translations of the most dramatic and pivotal sequences of the story enhance our appreciation of this unique example of performance art.   [brief]
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30. cover
Title: Leveling crowds: ethnonationalist conflicts and collective violence in South Asia
Author: Tambiah, Stanley Jeyaraja 1929-
Published: University of California Press,  1997
Subjects: Anthropology | South  Asia | Politics | Asian History | Religion
Publisher's Description: Ethno-nationalist conflicts are rampant today, causing immense human loss. Stanley J. Tambiah is concerned with the nature of the ethno-nationalist explosions that have disfigured so many regions of the world in recent years. He focuses primarily on collective violence in the form of civilian "riots" in South Asia, using selected instances in Sri Lanka, Pakistan, and India. He situates these riots in the larger political, economic, and religious contexts in which they took place and also examines the strategic actions and motivations of their principal agents. In applying a wide range of social theory to the problems of ethnic and religious violence, Tambiah pays close attention to the history and culture of the region.On one level this provocative book is a scrupulously detailed anthropological and historical study, but on another it is an attempt to understand the social and political changes needed for a more humane order, not just in South Asia, but throughout the world.   [brief]
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31. cover
Title: The life of a text: performing the Rāmcaritmānas of Tulsidas online access is available to everyone
Author: Lutgendorf, Philip
Published: University of California Press,  1991
Subjects: Religion | Hinduism | South  Asia | Cultural Anthropology
Publisher's Description: The Life of a Text offers a vivid portrait of one community's interaction with its favorite text - the epic Ramcaritmanas - and the way in which performances of the epic function as a flexible and evolving medium for cultural expression. Anthropologists, historians of religion, and readers interested in the culture of North India and the performance arts will find breadth of subject, careful scholarship, and engaging presentation in this unique and beautifully illustrated examination of Hindi culture.The most popular and influential text of Hindi-speaking North India, the epic Ramcaritmanas is a sixteenth century retelling of the Ramayana story by the poet Tulsidas. This masterpiece of pre-modern Hindi literature has always reached its largely illiterate audiences primarily through oral performance including ceremonial recitation, folksinging, oral exegesis, and theatrical representation. Drawing on fieldwork in Banaras, Lutgendorf breaks new ground by capturing the range of performance techniques in vivid detail and tracing the impact of the epic in its contemporary cultural context.   [brief]
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32. cover
Title: Listen to the heron's words: reimagining gender and kinship in North India online access is available to everyone
Author: Raheja, Gloria Goodwin 1950-
Published: University of California Press,  1994
Subjects: Anthropology | Cultural Anthropology | Folklore and Mythology | Women's Studies | South  Asia
Publisher's Description: 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.   [brief]
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33. cover
Title: The magic mountains: hill stations and the British raj online access is available to everyone
Author: Kennedy, Dane Keith
Published: University of California Press,  1996
Subjects: History | Asian History | European History | South  Asia
Publisher's Description: Perched among peaks that loom over heat-shimmering plains, hill stations remain among the most curious monuments to the British colonial presence in India. In this engaging and meticulously researched study, Dane Kennedy explores the development and history of the hill stations of the raj. He shows that these cloud-enshrouded havens were sites of both refuge and surveillance for British expatriates: sanctuaries from the harsh climate as well as an alien culture; artificial environments where colonial rulers could nurture, educate, and reproduce themselves; commanding heights from which orders could be issued with an Olympian authority.Kennedy charts the symbolic and sociopolitical functions of the hill stations over the course of the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, arguing that these highland communities became much more significant to the British colonial government than mere places for rest and play. Particularly after the revolt of 1857, they became headquarters for colonial political and military authorities. In addition, the hill stations provided employment to countless Indians who worked as porters, merchants, government clerks, domestics, and carpenters.The isolation of British authorities at the hill stations reflected the paradoxical character of the British raj itself, Kennedy argues. While attempting to control its subjects, it remained aloof from Indian society. Ironically, as more Indians were drawn to these mountain areas for work, and later for vacation, the carefully guarded boundaries between the British and their subjects eroded. Kennedy argues that after the turn of the century, the hill stations were increasingly incorporated into the landscape of Indian social and cultural life.   [brief]
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34. cover
Title: Many Rāmāyaṇas: the diversity of a narrative tradition in South Asia online access is available to everyone
Author: Richman, Paula
Published: University of California Press,  1991
Subjects: Religion | Hinduism | Cultural Anthropology | South  Asia
Publisher's Description: Throughout Indian history, many authors and performers have produced, and many patrons have supported, diverse tellings of the story of the exiled prince Rama, who rescues his abducted wife by battling the demon king who has imprisoned her. The contributors to this volume focus on these "many" Ramayanas .While most scholars continue to rely on Valmiki's Sanskrit Ramayana as the authoritative version of the tale, the contributors to this volume do not. Their essays demonstrate the multivocal nature of the Ramayana by highlighting its variations according to historical period, political context, regional literary tradition, religious affiliation, intended audience, and genre. Socially marginal groups in Indian society - Telugu women, for example, or Untouchables from Madhya Pradesh - have recast the Rama story to reflect their own views of the world, while in other hands the epic has become the basis for teachings about spiritual liberation or the demand for political separatism. Historians of religion, scholars of South Asia, folklorists, cultural anthropologists - all will find here refreshing perspectives on this tale.   [brief]
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35. cover
Title: Nets of awareness: Urdu poetry and its critics online access is available to everyone
Author: Pritchett, Frances W 1947-
Published: University of California Press,  1994
Subjects: Literature | Literary Theory and Criticism | South  Asia | Asian History
Publisher's Description: Frances Pritchett's lively, compassionate book joins literary criticism with history to explain how Urdu poetry - long the pride of Indo-Muslim culture - became devalued in the second half of the nineteenth century.This abrupt shift, Pritchett argues, was part of the backlash following the violent Indian Mutiny of 1857. She uses the lives and writings of the distinguished poets and critics Azad and Hali to show the disastrous consequences - culturally and politically - of British rule. The British had science, urban planning - and Wordsworth. Azad and Hali had a discredited culture and a metaphysical, sexually ambiguous poetry that differed radically from English lyric forms.Pritchett's beautiful reconstruction of the classical Urdu poetic vision allows us to understand one of the world's richest literary traditions and also highlights the damaging potential of colonialism.   [brief]
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36. cover
Title: The new Cold War?: religious nationalism confronts the secular state
Author: Juergensmeyer, Mark
Published: University of California Press,  1993
Subjects: Politics | Asian Studies | Religion | Social Problems | Middle Eastern Studies | South  Asia
Publisher's Description: Will the religious confrontations with secular authorities around the world lead to a new Cold War? Mark Juergensmeyer paints a provocative picture of the new religious revolutionaries altering the political landscape in the Middle East, South Asia, Central Asia, and Eastern Europe. Impassioned Muslim leaders in Egypt, Palestine, and Algeria, political rabbis in Israel, militant Sikhs in India, and triumphant Catholic clergy in Eastern Europe are all players in Juergensmeyer's study of the explosive growth of religious movements that decisively reject Western ideas of secular nationalism.Juergensmeyer revises our notions of religious revolutions. Instead of viewing religious nationalists as wild-eyed, anti-American fanatics, he reveals them as modern activists pursuing a legitimate form of politics. He explores the positive role religion can play in the political life of modern nations, even while acknowledging some religious nationalists' proclivity to violence and disregard of Western notions of human rights. Finally, he situates the growth of religious nationalism in the context of the political malaise of the modern West. Noting that the synthesis of traditional religion and secular nationalism yields a religious version of the modern nation-state, Juergensmeyer claims that such a political entity could conceivably embrace democratic values and human rights.   [brief]
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37. cover
Title: No aging in India: Alzheimer's, the bad family, and other modern things online access is available to everyone
Author: Cohen, Lawrence 1961-
Published: University of California Press,  1998
Subjects: Anthropology | Medical Anthropology | Aging | South  Asia
Publisher's Description: From the opening sequence, in which mid-nineteenth-century Indian fishermen hear the possibility of redemption in an old woman's madness, No Aging in India captures the reader with its interplay of story and analysis. Drawing on more than a decade of ethnographic work, Lawrence Cohen links a detailed investigation of mind and body in old age in four neighborhoods of the Indian city of Varanasi (Banaras) with events and processes around India and around the world. This compelling exploration of senility - encompassing not only the aging body but also larger cultural anxieties - combines insights from medical anthropology, psychoanalysis, and postcolonial studies. Bridging literary genres as well as geographic spaces, Cohen responds to what he sees as the impoverishment of both North American and Indian gerontologies - the one mired in ambivalence toward demented old bodies, the other insistent on a dubious morality tale of modern families breaking up and abandoning their elderly. He shifts our attention irresistibly toward how old age comes to matter in the constitution of societies and their narratives of identity and history.   [brief]
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38. cover
Title: Notes on love in a Tamil family
Author: Trawick, Margaret
Published: University of California Press,  1990
Subjects: Anthropology | South  Asia
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39. cover
Title: Of women, outcastes, peasants, and rebels: a selection of Bengali short stories
Author: Bardhan, Kalpana
Published: University of California Press,  1990
Subjects: Literature | Literature in Translation | Fiction | South  Asia
Publisher's Description: Until now the large body of socially focused Bengali literature has remained little known to Western readers. This collection includes some of the finest examples of Bengali short stories - stories that reflect the turmoil of a changing society traditionally characterized by rigid hierarchical structures of privilege and class differentiation.Written over a span of roughly ninety years from the early 1890s to the late 1970s, the twenty stories in this collection represent the work of five authors. Their characters, drawn from widely varying social groups, often find themselves caught up in tumultuous political and social upheaval.The reader encounters Rabindranath Thakur's extraordinarily spirited and bold heroines; Manik Bandyopadhyay's peasants, laborers, fisherfolk, and outcastes; and Tarashankar Bandyopadhyay's rural underclass of snake-charmers, corpse-handlers, stick-wielders, potters, witches, and Vaishnava minstrels. Mahasweta Devi gives voice to the semi-landless tribals and untouchables effectively denied the rights guaranteed them by the Constitution; Hasan Azizul Huq depicts the plight of the impoverished of Bangladesh.   [brief]
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40. cover
Title: Passions of the tongue: language devotion in Tamil India, 1891-1970 online access is available to everyone
Author: Ramaswamy, Sumathi
Published: University of California Press,  1997
Subjects: Asian Studies | History | South  Asia | Language and Linguistics | Asian History | Asian Literature
Publisher's Description: Why would love for their language lead several men in southern India to burn themselves alive in its name? Passions of the Tongue analyzes the discourses of love, labor, and life that transformed Tamil into an object of such passionate attachment, producing in the process one of modern India's most intense movements for linguistic revival and separatism. Sumathi Ramaswamy suggests that these discourses cannot be contained within a singular metanarrative of linguistic nationalism and instead proposes a new analytic, "language devotion." She uses this concept to track the many ways in which Tamil was imagined by its speakers and connects these multiple imaginings to their experience of colonial and post-colonial modernity. Focusing in particular on the transformation of the language into a goddess, mother, and maiden, Ramaswamy explores the pious, filial, and erotic aspects of Tamil devotion. She considers why, as its speakers sought political and social empowerment, metaphors of motherhood eventually came to dominate representations of the language.   [brief]
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