Encountering Kali: In the Margins, at the Center, in the West Paperback – 16 May 2003
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"The editors take us from the margin, through the center, to the West, "through the shifting lenses of scriptural history, temple architecture, political violence, feminist and psychoanalytic criticism, autobiographical reflection, and the goddess's recent guises on the Internet," a round tour of an obscure, dense, powerful subject."--News India Times
From the Inside Flap
"The editors have assembled a South Asian/History of Religions dream team, and the result is a book that captures the sexy, gory power of the dark goddess who is the most exciting of all Hindu deities-and perhaps the most controversial and notorious of all deities. Academically profound and theoretically subtle, these essays are also vivid and juicy."Wendy Doniger, author of "The Bedtrick: Tales of Sex and Masquerade"
"If any subject ever called for a book of many parts, it is Kali. These original and provocative essays, well chosen and thoughtfully organized, point to all sides of the Goddess's character. The result is a sharp and challenging book-the essential starting point for a new century of encountering Kali."John Stratton Hawley, Ann Whitney Olin Professor of Religion, Columbia University and co-editor of "Devi: Goddesses of India""
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Top Customer Reviews
The only thing I'd criticise in the book is Jeffrey J. Kripal's psychoanalytic interpretation of Kali--his Freudian, sex-obsessed interpretations of Kali and her worshippers are a century out of date, which is especially jarring in what is an otherwise balanced and well-researched volume. This is the only reason why I'm not giving the book the five stars it'd deserve otherwise.
However, one chapter is easily skipped, and the readers can immerse themselves in such varying studies as the Kali-worship of heartbroken, war-ravaged Ceylon Tamils, in-depth and intriguing information on the daily worship at Kalighat and the role of Kali in Caribbean Hindus' daily lives, and last but not least, the modern guises of Kali in the West and on the Internet. Highly recommended.
This all sounds negative, but despite these 2 flaws the book is engaging and informative, and should give anyone a great and thorough grounding in approaching Kali, and the sheer variety therein. Very good for a knowledge base.