Singing to the Jinas: Jain Laywomen, Mandal Singing, and the Negotiations of Jain Devotion

Hardcover | July 15, 2001

byM. Whitney KeltingAs told byM. Whitney Kelting

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While Western Jain scholarship has focused on those texts and practices favoring male participation, the Jain community itself relies heavily on lay women's participation for religious education, the performance of key rituals, and the locus of religious knowledge. In this fieldwork-basedstudy, Whitney Kelting attempts to reconcile these women's understanding of Jainism with the religion as presented in the existing scholarship. Jain women, she shows, both accept and rewrite the idealized roles received from religious texts, practices, and social expectation, according to whichfemale religiosity is a symbol of Jain perfection. This volume describes these women's interpretations of their religion, not as folklore or popular religion, but as a theology that recreates Jainism in a form which honors their own participation.

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While Western Jain scholarship has focused on those texts and practices favoring male participation, the Jain community itself relies heavily on lay women's participation for religious education, the performance of key rituals, and the locus of religious knowledge. In this fieldwork-basedstudy, Whitney Kelting attempts to reconcile th...

M. Whitney Kelting is at St. Lawrence University.

other books by M. Whitney Kelting

Format:HardcoverPublished:July 15, 2001Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0195140117

ISBN - 13:9780195140118

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"Kelting has written an exhilarating book that represents a model for any type of research involving both texts and field observation. The vividness of her descriptions, enhanced with photographs and English versions of stavans whose effectiveness is in no way diminished by translation, issuch that on occasion I felt myself to be participating in an actual mandal performance. . . . This fine book should appeal to a wide scholarly constituency: Those interested in ritual and the relationship between women and religion in South Asia in particular will find much to engagethem."--Journal of the American Academy of Religion