In this volume, leading American, European, and Indian scholars including John E. Cort, Friedhelm Hardy, Padmanabh S. Jaini, Laurie L. Patton, A. K. Ramanujan, Velcheru Narayana Rao, and David Shulman discuss the subject of the Purāṇas, focusing particularly on the relationship between the "Great Puran'as" of the Sanskrit tradition and the many other sorts of Purāṇas. The Puran'as are essentially collections of stories dealing with all aspects of myth, ritual, science, and history, and the authors of these essays are all superb storytellers.
Wendy Doniger is Mircea Eliade Distinguished Service Professor of the History of Religions in the Divinity School, University of Chicago. She is the author of many books, including The Hindus: An Alternative History.
"I found all of the essays, regardless of focus, fascinating. Shulman's and Ramanujan's contributions are real jewels and will appeal to both specialists and general readers interested in South Asian religion. Jaini's essay is another excellent contribution, with wide-ranging insights into Jain-Hindu interactions in the course of dealing with the Jaina Puran'as. " -- C. Mackenzie Brown, Trinity University.
"Wendy Doniger's early work revealed both the intrinsic merit of these texts and their importance for understanding the whole of the Hindu tradition. This book represents the continuing fruition of Doniger's work, showing not only the degree to which it has influenced the current state and direction of Indological scholarship, but also just how rich the Puran'as are as a nexus for investigating and understanding the Hindu tradition in all its manifestations.
"The book is emblematic of both the most important current in Indological studies in the last twenty years, and of its fruition. " — Herman Tull, Rutgers University