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Re: various versions of the Ramayana

From: Shrikanth, J (shrikant_at_math.jhu.edu)
Date: Fri Jan 31 1997 - 05:22:10 PST

On Fri, 31 Jan 1997, Sri. Mohan Sagar wrote:

> 
> There are a number of different interpretations of Adi Kavi Valmiki's
> rendering of Our Lord's Avathara that can be found throughout India and the
> rest of Asia.  While much of the differences among them can be attributed to
> the fact that they were written in different kalpas, it should also be noted
> that each rendering is intended to reflect or invoke different moods, in
> accordance with the moods of the particular author.  

 For an interesting survey of many versions of the Ramayana available
 please see the book 
     Many Ramayanas : the diversity of a narrative tradition in South Asia
       published by University of California Press, Berkeley.

 Though from a slightly academic viewpoint, it is very interesting.
 Along with excellent articles about the usual well known versions, it
 also looks at some not so famous ones. For example there is a discussion
 of a Jaina Ramayana. And that the Thai Ramayana may have been influenced
 by Buddhism. On the modern side, there is even an essay about Periyar's
 "version".

 The initial essay by A K Ramanujan is very good.

Yours,

Shrikanth