Two years later came the James Laine controversy. You have to emphasise the fact that there were variants, or people tend to assume that there was only one version of the story or that that was the definitive version. Their notion from hearsay of what the Valmiki Ramayana perhaps expresses. In a course like that, where you’re dealing broadly with culture, you need to have a different perspective every now and again. Ramanujan’s celebrated essay on the Ramayana from the B. The motivation evidently was not academic, but political. Sunday 27 November

Suvendhu Patra marked it as to-read Mar 19, In both cases academic considerations seem to have given way to expediency. Five Examples and Three Thoughts His free thinking context and his individuality which he attributes to Euro-American culture gives rise to the “universal testaments of law”. Gaurav Kumar marked it as to-read Mar 12,

Obviously, those who speak in the name of upholding Indian read Hindu culture lack the legacy of that which they are claiming to uphold—respect for diversity, dialogue and interpretation. Oxford University Press, The exclusion of the essay was the culmination of their campaign thereafter, which was a combination of communal propaganda, ideological persuasion and physical threat.

Their demand was that this hurt the sentiments of the Hindu community and therefore it should be withdrawn. Amit Rana marked it as to-read Nov 15, Ramanujan calls for a Ship of Theseus style philosophy and open mindedness to rejoice the similarities, and cherish the differences. Not to mention the exponential number of variants hosted by Indian vernacular languages in classical and folk traditions.

ramanujans essay three hundred ramayanas

You have to emphasise the fact that there were variants, or people tend to assume that there was only one version of the story or that that was the definitive version. You once spoke of that danger regarding Doordarshan’s Ramayana serial A history department prescribes it.


The richness of the Ramayana, the poverty of a University

It only tries to highlight important versions as they exist and practised in different cultural settings. In this well researched scholarly article, AK Ramanujan takes readers through the influence of Ramayana in particular, on Indian diaspora and the various tellings of the same basic story structure in South East, Peninsular and Central Asia over past essy five hundred years.

He agrees that what he has published can cause religious offence, and that by publishing Ramanujan he has caused it. In a way, ewsay. The Collected Essays of A.

Ramayana: An ‘epic’ controversy – BBC News

Sedhu M rated it it was ok Nov 11, It is often argued that these are matters related to the freedom of expression, which in a democracy should remain unbridled. And what this initial action and ramxnujans reaction of the University raise are the question whether courses and syllabi can be changed by groups beating up faculty and vandalising departments.

ramanujans essay three hundred ramayanas

And I think this is a very fundamental question which academia has to face and answer and take a position on. The issue ended up in the Supreme Court which wanted the opinion of an academic expert committee.

The decision of the majority of eminent members of the academic council to support a patently unacademic demand about an essay which most of them reportedly had not read and an expert committee appointed by the Council had near unanimously approved, can only be due to the atmosphere of political intimidation.

So at what point do we draw the line on when it would be appropriate?


We don’t go back to reading texts. The intolerance of communal forces ramanhjans plural cultural tradition has been expressed very many times in the past.

Three Hundred Ramayanas: Five Examples and Three Thoughts on Translation

Nisha marked it as to-read Mar 29, In both cases academic considerations seem to have given way to expediency. This article of Ramanujan has been censored by the Delhi University.

But it is one thing to be a little publisher in a garage beset by the mob; it is quite another to be a corporation with offices in every continent and equipped with a whole legal department experienced in dealing with hurlers of footwear. Are such reactions by a major publisher acceptable?

Do you think that this can be dismissed as an isolated thres, an aberration, or does it have serious implications? It comes partly out of the tradition of giving greater precedence to Sanskrit literature, because it ramanujas, in fact, the main cultural tradition over a long period, but it’s also partly that this was reinforced by colonial scholarship mentioning these as definitive texts.

There’s a feeling that you don’t need to be an expert; this is all common sense.

Read More, Spend Less. The South-East Asian versions of the Ramayana appear to bring more nuanced readings of all the primary protagonists. The authorities, eager to avoid confrontation, provide silent support.