Bhaktamal: Redefining The Sacred In Premodern India

4:30 pm on Wednesday, April 2, 2014
6:00 pm on Wednesday, April 2, 2014
STH, Room 625, 745 Commonwealth Avenue
Professor Abhisheka’s talk on redefining the sacred in Pre-modern India. Bhaktmal (Garland of Devotees) is a text in vernacular premodern Hindi composed by Nabhadas sometime during the last decade of 16th and first two decades of seventeenth century. You know how challenging it is in India to place the text in historical time. What we know about the author is his religious affiliation and hundreds of legends. The book details the sacred biography of some 800 saints from all parts of India. This book also set a tradition of writing sacred biographies and inspired many many religious orders to commission their own hagiographies or commentaries on the original text.The tradition continues even today. The text is known for its brevity and catholic approach towards other religious orders and was not merely read but also performed(dramatized) before the people. The talk will focus the the tradition of hagiography from 16th Century to our times While doing so the speaker will also try to argue that these legends are more than 'fantastic stories' and are indispensable source in shaping the religious landscape of India , even today. Department of Modern Languages and Comparative Literature. Co-sponsored by the Comparative Premodern Studies Group and BU Center for the Humanities. Contact Yuri Corrigan,