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The King`s Three Bodies: Essays on Kingship and Ritual

Burkhard Schnepel (Author)

This collection of essays deals with the rituals of kingship and royalty in India, Africa and Europe from the social anthropological and ethno­historical points of view. It discusses the dialectical entanglements of rituals conducted for and by kings (including, ‘little kings’ and ‘jungle kings’) with the wider social, political, cultural, historical, religious and economic contexts in which they were embedded. Part I begins with a triangular comparison of kingship among the Shilluks of East Africa, the Gajapatis of eastern India and kings in Renaissance France. The essay entitled the ‘King’s Three Bodies’ makes use of Ernst H. Kantorowicz’s classical study, The King’s Two Bodies in medieval political theology and extends it, not only in terms of the numbers of bodies that are found to be significant, but also theo­retically. Another significant essay in this part looks at the unexpected but significant theoretical impact of social anthropological studies of acephalous, segmentary lineage societies in Africa on Indian historiography. The second part of this volume consists of three chapters dealing with the royal patronage of tribal and Hindu goddesses in Eastern India, while the third part presents studies on sleeping (and dreaming) kings and on the power of dead kings, a discussion of A.M. Hocart’s dictum that the first kings must have been dead kings.

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Bibliographic information

Title The King`s Three Bodies: Essays on Kingship and Ritual
Format Hardcover
Date published: 02.02.2021
Edition 1st ed.
Language: English
isbn 9788194991250
length 336p.
Subjects History