How to Carve a King: Janna’s Inscription in the Temple of Amṛteśvara

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The article provides a reading of a twelfth-century inscription composed by a courtly poet in Karnataka. At its most rudimentary level, the inscription praises the king and glorifies his commander. However, a closer reading demonstrates the poet playing with the conventions of his time. One of the techniques used to enhance the power of the ruler was to represent the commanders as replicas of their king. The author turns this mechanism into the inscription’s poetic motif. He uses the very dynamic of reduplication to subtly show the limits in the construction of power.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60–88
Number of pages19
JournalJournal of South Asian Intellectual History
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2021

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