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Gender, Sainthood, & Everyday Practice in South Asian Shi'ism

Gender, Sainthood, & Everyday Practice in South Asian Shi

Karen G. Ruffle

Summary: In this study of devotional hagiographical texts And contemporary ritual performances of the Shi'a of Hyderabad, India, Karen Ruffle demonstrates how traditions of sainthood and localized cultural values shape gender roles.

Description: Ruffle argues that hagiography, an important textual tradition in Islam, plays a dynamic role in constructing the memory, piety, and social sensibilities of a Shi'i community.

Articles:
The Recitation of the Vedas

Author: Pierre-Sylvain Filliozat. Translated from the French by T.K. Gopalan.

The earliest Vedic hymns testify already to a high degree of linguistic awareness of its authors. It appears for example in the play on the etymology of words. Thereafter, while the language seems to evolve relatively little, the knowledge of its structures develops considerably. Conservatism and linguistic awareness seem to go hand in hand. That could only have increased the distance between the ‘popular’ language of the non-specialists and the language of the experts in religion, since the former is always capable of a spontaneous evolution. In this situation it is important, for following the evolution of Vedic, to describe the preservationist measures which have influenced its destiny, to determine its environment that consisted of other forms of speech, to uncover the diverse and fluctuating influence of these forms of speech whose own evolution was probably much faster.... More

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