Austin, Sara: "Sita, Surpanakha and Kaikeyi as political bodies. Representations of female sexuality in idealised culture." In: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics 5.2 (2014), S. 125–136.
Added by: joachim (2014-06-22 15:56)
|Resource type: Journal Article
BibTeX citation key: Austin2014
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Keywords: "Amar Chithra Katha", Gender, India, Myth, Pai. Anant
Collection: Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics
For 40 years, Amar Chitra Katha (ACK) comics have been synonymous with the Indian comic book industry, and as such have garnered critical attention, including three books and numerous articles. In contrast, other English comics, especially those published since ACK stopped releasing new books in 1990, are the subjects of significantly less discussion. New publishers are now continuing and expanding the ACK tradition in significant ways. One major contribution to the industry is new comics based on the Ramayana, which has spawned six series/graphic novels in the last 5 years. In this essay, I will focus on Liquid (previously Virgin) Comic’s series, Ramayan 3392 AD, as one of the heirs to the ACK tradition, specifically one which maintains a perspective sympathetic to Rama. I will discuss how 3392 AD perpetuates ACK’s use of the feminine Vedic ideal while expanding into diasporic and non-Indian audiences. This expansion allows the series to capitalise on the fear of cultural loss to proscribe gendered normative behaviour. 3392 AD creates a new female archetype, the prodigal woman, and uses this category along with existing archetypes to embody a strict feminine social code and to proscribe bodily consequences for women who reject or transgress this code.
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