Note that Doniger is the Mircea Eliade Distinguished Service Professor of Religions at the University of Chicago and the author of many books. Note that alternative neatly defines her. Learned, fluent, and entertaining in spite of the complexity of this ambitious undertaking, Doniger is also controversial, a role she embraces, confident that fresh viewpoints are essential to understanding the worlds that shaped the Hindu tradition, and the ways Hindus shaped society. While Doniger delves deeply into the Vedas and the “two great poems,” Ramayana and Mahabharata, she searches other spheres for clues to the lives of women and the lower castes. She also analyzes depictions of animals, which are central to Hindu tales and the “cultural ideal” of nonviolence. As she energetically parses the relationships between gods and humans, karma and renunciation, asceticism and sensuality, priests and kings, men and women, she is also seeking glimpses into everyday Hindu life during each of India’s empires. Lavishly detailed, dynamic, and encompassing, Doniger’s multidimensional history celebrates Hindu wisdom, diversity, and pluralism with knowledge, insight, and passion. --Donna Seaman
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"This is history as great entertainment! Unlike the usual, arid accounts of dynasties, Wendy Doniger's double vision of Hinduism is about women, merchants, lower castes, animals, spirits and , of course, Dead Male Brahmins. This lively, earthy account explains why ancient India is the world's richest storytelling culture." --Gurcharan Das, author India Unbound
"Wendy Doniger's enthralling and encyclopaedic book reveals her vision of a Hindu culture that is plural, varied, generous, and inclusive. Hinduism, in her view, is an intricate weave of the diverse localities and communities of Indian culture. This is a rich text that will encourage dialogue and conversation among a wide range of scholars." --Homi K. Bhabha, Anne F. Rothenberg Professor of the Humanities, Harvard University
"With her vast erudition, insight, and graceful writing laced with gentle wit, there is no one better than Wendy Doniger to convey the richness, depth, and diversity of Hindu texts and traditions to international audiences. The Hindus is destined to become a classic that will be discussed and debated for many years to come." --Sudhir Kakar, author of Indian Identity