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Of beggars and Buddhas : the politics of humor in the Vessantara Jataka in Thailand

Author: Katherine Ann Bowie
Publisher: Madison, Wisconsin : The University of Wisconsin Press, [2017] ©2017
Series: New perspectives in Southeast Asian studies.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
The 547 Buddhist jatakas, or verse parables, recount the Buddha's lives in previous incarnations. In his penultimate and most famous incarnation, he appears as the Prince Vessantara, perfecting the virtue of generosity by giving away all his possessions, his wife, and his children to the beggar Jujaka. Taking an anthropological approach to this two-thousand-year-old morality tale, Katherine A. Bowie highlights  Read more...
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Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Katherine Ann Bowie
ISBN: 9780299309503 0299309509
OCLC Number: 947104961
Description: xvi, 357 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm
Contents: Introduction : of monarchs, monks, and peasant masses --
Part I. Diversity in humor. Central Thailand : humor defeated --
Northeastern Thailand : humor diverted --
Northern Thailand : humor delighted --
Part II. The politics of diversity. Jujaka as trickster : the peasant imaginaire --
Jujaka as threat : consolidating control --
Jujaka as deity : rebirths under global capitalism --
Conclusion : the journey's end.
Series Title: New perspectives in Southeast Asian studies.
Responsibility: Katherine A. Bowie.

Abstract:

An exploration of subversive, ribald variations of the most important story in Theravada Buddhism.  Read more...

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"Provides historical justification for a new reading of the Vessantara Jataka and offers delightful ethnographic descriptions of its varied performance in several regions of Thailand. An excellent Read more...

 
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