The Ramayana

9 Mar, 2023 290 Other religions

Melvyn Bragg and guests discuss the Ramayana, the ancient Hindu epic which is regarded as one of the greatest works of world literature. Its importance in Indian culture has been compared to that of the Iliad and Odyssey in the West, and it’s still seen as a sacred text by Hindus today. Written in Sanskrit, it tells the story of the legendary prince and princess Rama and Sita, and the many challenges, misfortunes and choices that they face. About 24,000 verses long, the Ramayana is also one of the longest ancient epics. It’s a text that’s been hugely influential and it continues to be popular in India and elsewhere in Asia.

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  • Jessica Frazier 8 episodes
    Lecturer in the Study of Religion at the University of Oxford and a Fellow of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies
  • Chakravarthi Ram-Prasad 5 episodes
    Distinguished Professor of Comparative Religion and Philosophy at Lancaster University
  • Naomi Appleton 2 episodes
    Senior Lecturer in Asian Religions at the University of Edinburgh

Reading list

  • The Ramayana of Valmiki: The Complete English Translation
    Robert P. Goldman and Sally J. Sutherland Goldman (ed and trans.) (Princeton University Press, 2022) Google Books →
  • Hanuman's Tale: The Messages of a Divine Monkey
    Philip Lutgendorf (Oxford University Press, 2007) Google Books →
  • Many Ramayanas: The Diversity of A Narrative Tradition in South Asia
    Paula Richman (ed.) (University of California Press, 1991) Google Books →
  • Kamban Ramayana
    P.S. Sundaram, translation of the Tamil version (Penguin India, 2002) Google Books →

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Hello (First sentence from this episode) Hello. The ancient Hindu epic, the Ramayana, is one of the greatest works of world literature.