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Comics and Sacred TextsReimagining Religion and Graphic Narratives$
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Assaf Gamzou and Ken Koltun-Fromm

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9781496819215

Published to University Press of Mississippi: September 2019

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781496819215.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM Mississippi SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.mississippi.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University Press of Mississippi, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in MSSO for personal use.date: 17 September 2021

Many Comic Book Ramayanas

Many Comic Book Ramayanas

Idealizing and Opposing Rama as the Righteous God-King

Chapter:
(p.77) Chapter Five Many Comic Book Ramayanas
Source:
Comics and Sacred Texts
Author(s):

Karline McLain

Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781496819215.003.0005

This chapter focuses on the multivocal nature of the Ramayana epic in Indian graphic narratives from the 1970s to the present. There are two dominant narrative trends that arise in these graphic retellings. The first trend is to uphold Rama as the ideal god-king by presenting Rama as the clear hero of the epic story both textually and visually. The second trend is to critique Rama as the ideal god-king by focusing the textual and visual narrative on other protagonists within the epic storyline, and thereby engage in a critical examination of Rama through feminist and/or subaltern perspectives. This essay sheds light on the contested interpretation of the god Rama within contemporary Hinduism and South Asian culture more broadly. These comics that idealize Rama and those that question his idealism, when taken together, are valuable for their ongoing contributions to the multivocal nature of the Ramayana story.

Keywords:   Ramayana, Indian comics, Rama, Amar Chitra Katha, Indian epics

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