Swinging Before Śiva: Renunciation, Colonialism and a Bengali Ritual.

De, Aniket.


  • Tisch Library Undergraduate Research Award Winner, 2014.  This paper studies the ritual of Gājan or “hook-swinging”, a common practice in colonial Bengal. The ritual was a show of magical power gained by undertaking asceticism and worshipping the god Śiva; devotees showed the ability to swing unsupported from high poles. The British were disturbed by the ritual in the nineteenth century, and ... read more
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