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The Power of Gender and the Gender of Power: Explorations in Early Indian History

by Kumkum Roy

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Is it possible to recover the histories of gender for early India? How can gender analyses enrich our understanding of early India today? Drawing upon a range of textual traditions, this unique collection examines the significance of gender in the reconstruction of India’s past. It goes beyond the simple binaries of a ‘high’ or ‘low’ status for women to explore the diversities and complexities of gender relations in early India.

Table of Contents:

  • Introduction
  • Towards histories of gender relations
    • The Theras and Theris: visions of liberation in the early Buddhist tradition
    • Women and men donors at Sanchi: a study of the inscriptional evidence
    • The other Ksetra: some aspects of procreation and peasantization in North India (c. 2nd century BC-2nd century AD)
    • Defining the household: some aspects of prescription and practice in early India
    • Engendering the urban world: an investigation early Indian textual traditions
    • Re-presenting the courtesanal tradition: an exploration of early historical texts
    • Representations of gender relations in early India: exploring the plays of Kalidasa
    • Turbulent waves: constructions of gender relations in the Rajatarangini of Kalhana
    • The politics of reproduction in early India: controlling and contesting conceptions
    • Gender relations during the first millennium: an overview.
  • Interrogating textual traditions
    • Marriage as communication: an exploration of norms and narratives in early India
    • Legitimation and the Brahmanical tradition: the Upanayana and the Brahmacarya in the Dharma Sutras
    • Invoking authority: investigating the Sastras
    • The king's household: structure/space in the Sastric tradition
    • Justice in the Jatakas
    • Domesticating the king: the royal household in early North India
    • Unravelling the Kamasutra
    • The making of a Mandala: Fuzzy frontiers of Kalhana's Kashmir
    • The artful biographer: Sandhyakaranandin's Ramacaritam
  • Index.

About the Author:

Kumkum Roy is Professor, Centre for Historical Studies, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University, and New Delhi. Her works include The Emergence of Monarchy in North India (OUP 1994). She has also been actively involved with the writing of history textbooks for the Delhi State Council of Educational Research and Training (SCERT) and the National Council of Education Research and Training (NCERT).





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Title: The Power of Gender and the Gender of Power: Explorations in Early Indian History
Author(s): Kumkum Roy
Language: English
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