Epic and Argument in Sanskrit Literary History celebrates the distinguished career of the American Indologist Robert P. Goldman. The essays on Sanskrit literary history, which range from the danastuti in the Rgveda (Romila Thapar) to the transformation of literary theory in ninth-century Kashmir (Sheldon Pollock) to the practice of philology in seventeenth-century Varanasi (Christopher Minkowski), reflect the wide range of interests of Professor Goldman
himself, and the wide influence he has exerted on the field. Eight of the essays (by such leading scholars as Greg Bailey, John Brockington, James Fitzgerald, Luis Gonzalez-Reimann, Phyllis Granoff, Alt Hiltebeitel, Adheesh Sathaye, and Sally Sutherland Goldman), concentrate on the epics and Puranas, and as an ensemble make for essential reading on the genre of Sanskrit literature to which Goldman, as editor-in-chief of the Ramayana Translation Project, has devoted the greater part of his career. The scholarly essays are bookended by the survey of Professor Goldman’s scholarly contributions (Deven Patel) and a lively personal reminiscence (Jeffrey Moussaieff Masson).
Sheldon Pollock is Ransford Professor of Sanskrit and Indian Studies at Columbia University. He is general editor of the Murty Classical Library of India (Harvard University Press), and author of, among other books, The Language of the Gods in the World of Men: Sanskrit, Culture, and Power in Premodern India (University of California Press). He is
currently working on Liberation Philology (Harvard University Press) and Reader on Rasa: An Historical Sourcebook in Indian Aesthetics, for a new series of sourcebooks in classical Indian thought that he is editing for Columbia University Press. In 2009 he received the President’s Award for Sanskrit from the Government of India.
I am very grateful to all the collaborators not only for their wonderful contributions in honor of a wonderful colleague, but for their patience in the face of the various delays accompanying the publication of this book.
Arthur Dudney, my research assistant at Columbia, did an extraordinary job helping with the editing and the production of the volume. I am also grateful to Ramesh Jain of Manohar Publishers and Distributors for his support and to my dear friend Shahid Amin of the University of Delhi for his good counsel.
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