Wives of the God-King: the rituals of the devadasis of Puri

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Oxford University Press, 1985 - Religion - 388 pages
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Among the 1,500 devotees of the Hindu temple and cult of Jagannatha at Puri are a handful of women known as "devadasis" or, literally, "female servants of the deity," who are associated with both chastity and concubinage and prostitution. This book focuses on the tension between the purity and impurity of the devadasis, and examines ideas about kingship, power, sexual purity, the role and status of women, and other central concerns of Hindu religious and cultural life that are associated with such rituals.

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Married Women and Devadasis

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About the author (1985)

Frederique Apffel-Marglin is Professor Emerita, Department of Anthropology, Smith College Northampton, Massachusetts

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