'Bauls' have achieved fame as wandering minstrels and mystics in India and Bangladesh. They are recruited from both Hindu and Muslim communities and are renowned for their beautiful and often enigmatic songs. Despite their iconic status as representatives of the spiritual East, and although they have been the subject of a number of studies, systematic research with Bauls themselves has been neglected. Jeanne Openshaw's book is fresh, not only in analysing the rise of the Bauls to their present revered status, but in the depth of its ethnographic research and its reference to the lives of composers and singers as a context for their songs. The author uses her fieldwork, and oral and manuscript materials, to lead the reader from the conventional historical and textual approaches towards a world defined by people called 'Baul', where the human body and love are primary and where women may be extolled above men.
Buy Seeking Bauls of Bengal book by Jeanne Openshaw from Australia's Online Bookstore, Boomerang Books.
(228mm x 152mm x 21mm)
Cambridge University Press
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
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Author Biography - Jeanne Openshaw
Jeanne Openshaw is lecturer in Religious Studies at the University of Edinburgh.