From Swallowing to Kissing

Posted on: Tuesday, June 1, 2010 - 10:00am

Reading Series

From Swallowing to Kissing:  How a Merchant and a King Met the Goddess

Presented by Dr. David Curley, Professor and Chair, Department of Liberal Studies.

Wednesday, January 14th, 4pm-5:30pm, Wilson Library skybridge.

Dr. Curley will show examples of scrolls made by a Muslim community in Bengal who have sung traditional stories and displayed their pictures at Hindu festival days at least since the 19th century. He will show how one remarkable story has changed over time, through altered images of both the merchant and the goddess.

Facing new economic pressures, women in the community recently have taken on new artistic roles, and their repertory has changed to include new stories which comment on current events and social problems. Curley argues that performing ‘traditional’ and ‘religious’ stories once had a similar purpose.

Curley’s lecture will draw on research which recently has been published in Poetry and History: Bengali Mangal-kābya and Social Change in Precolonial Bengal (New Delhi: Chronicle Books, 2008).

All are invited. Refreshments will be served.


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