A Thousand and One Narrators: Masterpieces of Story Literature from India and Beyond
"What is found here is to be found elsewhere too… but what is not found here is to be found nowhere."
--Adi Parva, The Mahabharata
This course covers masterpieces of story literature from India and surrounding regions, with focus on The Mahabharata, The Adventures of Amir Hamza, and The Arabian Nights. Each of these texts has had wide influence on Eastern and Western literatures and continues to inspire rich performance and literary traditions today. Class sessions will cover historical and cultural context, and discussion of major themes such as curiosity and fate. No prior knowledge is assumed, and all works will be read in English translation.