Three Hundred Ramayanas: Five Examples and Three. Thoughts on Translation. A. K. Ramanujan. How many Ramayanas? Three hundred? Three thousand?. When I studied history as an undergraduate in Delhi University in the mids, A.K. Ramanujan’s essay, “Three Hundred Ramayanas”. The scholarly essay by A. K. Ramanujan. “Three Hundred Ramayanas: Five Examples and Three Thoughts on Translation.’ appeared in The.

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Three hundred Ramayanas – Delhi University and the purging of Ramanujan

When I studied history as an undergraduate in Delhi University in the mids, A. The essay is a marvellous account of the hundreds of ways in which the Ramayana has been told, complete with examples of this narrative diversity.

They did this by trashing the department of history and physically assaulting the head of the department. This happened during the tenure of the previous vice-chancellor, but no holder of this office could possibly wish to further the work of thugs who seek to violently limit the intellectual freedom of a university.

Nor could it be expert opinion.

Then, if they so choose, they become teachers themselves and pass that knowledge on to others. I teach history at Jamia Millia Islamia.

Ramanujan’s Three Hundred Ramayanas: Transmission, Interpretation And Dialogue In Indian Traditions

My department had many distinguished historians who happened to be Muslim, but not one of them was crass ramahanas to suggest that my being non-Muslim rendered me unfit to teach that course. Besides, why would they attend to the views of one expert and ignore three others?


This leaves just the one reasonable possibility: Why would they conclude that? We can rule out one possibility: His translations of Tamil poetry from the Sangam period set new critical standards in the field of literary translation.

In case anyone has missed the point, the essay in question is not a pamphlet written by a provocateur: Especially when doing so would suggest, whether the academic council intended this or not, that the university had caved in to violent intimidation.

To return to our original question: It contains abusive and libelous language used for Divine Hindu deities. It contains false stories quoted under one pretext or oral and other sic without any authenticity.

That it is a matter of concern that popular beliefs and prevailing traditions of Hindu Culture are projected in distorted manner. An attempt is made to create differences in communities. Almost every sentence of this complaint is objectively, as old-school lefties used to say, untrue. Ramanujan, far from being malicious about the texts damayanas discusses, obviously loves them.

Three hundred Ramayanas – Delhi University and the purging of Ramanujan

His language is neither abusive nor libellous. He does not distort, by scholarly consensus, the texts that he translates and the charge that in writing this essay he is trying to create communal differences is, in fact, the only part of this story that is truly libellous.


The reason Hindutva militants attacked this essay is ramayajas difficult to understand.

Hindutva seeks to re-make the diversity of Hindu narratives and practices into a uniform faith based on standardized texts. They are ramanuuan, after all, aware of the significance of primary texts.

Nor can the vice-chancellor be trying to turn the clock back to his time in college when the essay was blissfully unwritten: Instead of pandering to unreason, the university should be true to itself, stand its ground and reinstate Ramanujan.

Modi renames Ross, Havelock and Neil islands in the Andamans. Yuvi auctioned for Rs 1 crore, but his work is priceless.

Ramayana: An ‘epic’ controversy – BBC News

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