Narasinha Mehta of Gujarat: A Legacy of Bhakti in Songs and Stories

Shukla-Bhatt, Neelima

Published by Oxford University Press
ISBN 10: 0199976422 / ISBN 13: 9780199976423
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Num Pages: 352 pages, 33 illus. BIC Classification: AVGD; HRGP. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 235 x 168 x 21. Weight in Grams: 460. . 2014. 1st Edition. Paperback. . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory #

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Synopsis: Exploring medieval manuscripts, Gandhi's writings, and performances in multiple religious and non-religious contexts, Narasinha Mehta of Gujarat demonstrates how over five centuries, performers and audiences of devotional songs and hagiographic narratives associated with the saint-poet Narasinha Mehta have sculpted them into popular sources of moral inspiration. Taking Gandhi's use of these works in his social reconstruction programs as an example, the book suggests that when religious forms such as songs and hagiographies of saint-poets of South Asia acquire dimensions of popular culture, they offer a platform for communication among diverse groups.

An illuminating study that provides a vivid picture of the Narasinha tradition, Narasinha Mehta of Gujarat will be a crucial resource for anyone seeking to understand the power of religious performative traditions in popular media.

About the Author:
Neelima Shukla-Bhatt is Associate Professor of South Asia Studies at Wellesley College.

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Title: Narasinha Mehta of Gujarat: A Legacy of ...
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Book Condition: New

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Book Description Oxford University Press Inc, United States, 2014. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Neelima Shukla-Bhatt offers an illuminating study of Narsinha Mehta, one of the most renowned saint-poets of medieval India and the most celebrated bhakti (devotion) poet from Gujarat, whose songs and sacred biography formed a vital source of moral inspiration for Gandhi. Exploring manuscripts, medieval texts, Gandhi s more obscure writings, and performances in multiple religious and non-religious contexts, including modern popular media, Shukla-Bhatt shows that the songs and sacred narratives associated with the saint-poet have been sculpted by performers and audiences into a popular source of moral inspiration. Drawing on the Indian concept of bhakti-rasa (devotion as nectar), Narasinha Mehta of Gujarat reveals that the sustained popularity of the songs and narratives over five centuries, often across religious boundaries and now beyond devotional contexts in modern media, is the result of their combination of inclusive religious messages and aesthetic appeal in performance.Taking as an example Gandhi s perception of the songs and stories as vital cultural resources for social reconstruction, the book suggests that when religion acquires the form of popular culture, it becomes a widely accessible platform for communication among diverse groups. Shukla-Bhatt expands upon the scholarship on the embodied and public dimension of bhakti through detailed analysis of multiple public venues of performance and commentary, including YouTube videos. This study provides a vivid picture of the Narasinha tradition, and will be a crucial resource for anyone seeking to understand the power of religious performative traditions in popular media. Bookseller Inventory # AOP9780199976423

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Book Description Oxford University Press Inc, United States, 2014. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Neelima Shukla-Bhatt offers an illuminating study of Narsinha Mehta, one of the most renowned saint-poets of medieval India and the most celebrated bhakti (devotion) poet from Gujarat, whose songs and sacred biography formed a vital source of moral inspiration for Gandhi. Exploring manuscripts, medieval texts, Gandhi s more obscure writings, and performances in multiple religious and non-religious contexts, including modern popular media, Shukla-Bhatt shows that the songs and sacred narratives associated with the saint-poet have been sculpted by performers and audiences into a popular source of moral inspiration. Drawing on the Indian concept of bhakti-rasa (devotion as nectar), Narasinha Mehta of Gujarat reveals that the sustained popularity of the songs and narratives over five centuries, often across religious boundaries and now beyond devotional contexts in modern media, is the result of their combination of inclusive religious messages and aesthetic appeal in performance. Taking as an example Gandhi s perception of the songs and stories as vital cultural resources for social reconstruction, the book suggests that when religion acquires the form of popular culture, it becomes a widely accessible platform for communication among diverse groups. Shukla-Bhatt expands upon the scholarship on the embodied and public dimension of bhakti through detailed analysis of multiple public venues of performance and commentary, including YouTube videos. This study provides a vivid picture of the Narasinha tradition, and will be a crucial resource for anyone seeking to understand the power of religious performative traditions in popular media. Bookseller Inventory # AOP9780199976423

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