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ERIC Number: ED450428
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2001-Feb
Pages: 17
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: N/A
Multivalent Narratives and Indian Rhetoric: Insights from the "Bhagavad Gita."
Stroud, Scott R.
The "Bhagavad Gita" is a didactic dialogue inserted approximately in the middle of an immensely long Indian epic entitled the "Mahabharata." This paper examines the use of narrative in this ancient Hindu religious work, the "Bhagavad Gita"--specific attention is given to how the story in this didactic text uses dialogic events between the two main characters to establish a complicated and seemingly contradictory stance on ethical behavior, unethical behavior, war, etc. Noting that the complicated lineage of events in this work establishes a foundation from which criticism can proceed, the paper shows that the evaluative qualities of narrative "probability" and "fidelity" (as discussed by Fisher, 1987) are not clearly discernible in the text; the western audience can construct differing arguments from this text, as well as receive differing impressions of its coherence and logic. The paper states that, as a result of this analysis, the "Bhagavad Gita" can be considered to advance the narrative paradigm in that it provides a prime example of a "multivalent narrative" from the eastern world. It finds that this text is very deserving of study and that this inquiry has been a step toward constructing some theoretical insights into the practice of Indian rhetoric and narrative practice. Cites 42 works. (NKA)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A