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Positioning Kali in Thuggee Tradition

Rasheda Parveen1 & Akshaya K. Rath2  

1Doctoral Scholar, Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, National Institute of Technology Rourkela. Email: butan_rozy@yahoo.co.in. 

2Assistant Professor of English at the Department of Humanities and Social Sciences, National Institute of Technology Rourkela. Email: akrath2001@gmail.com.

 Volume 10, Number 2, 2018 I Full Text PDF

DOI: 10.21659/rupkatha.v10n2.16

Received December 09, 2017; Revised March 31, 2018; Accepted April 05, 2018; Published May 07, 2018.

Abstract:

In British India, positioning Kali within the thuggee cult and rationalizing human sacrifice ran parallel and witnessed a paradigmatic shift by the end of the nineteenth century. The cult provided a basis for high romanticization and assisted in the mission of projecting a disgraced religious practice. This paper explores how the mother-figure was idealized for rationalizing human sacrifice and the religious symbols were overused. Central to the discussion is the role of the earthly and celestial body of the goddess that codified the practice in its extremity. In addition, controlling the body and subjugating the Orient remained operative within the discourse of mother-worship.

Key Words: Kali Worship; Human Sacrifice; Thuggee; Colonialism; Criminal Tribe

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