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Religions 2014, 5(2), 334-360; doi:10.3390/rel5020334
Article

At Home with Durga: The Goddess in a Palace and Corporeal Identity in Rituparno Ghosh’s Utsab

Department of Art and Music Histories, Syracuse University, 308 Bowne Hall, Syracuse, NY 13244, USA
Received: 6 January 2014 / Revised: 4 February 2014 / Accepted: 7 February 2014 / Published: 31 March 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Body and Religion)
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Abstract

In this article, I examine the representational strategies used to visualize the pratima (deity) of the Hindu goddess, Durga, as a paradigm of time, memory, and corporeal identity, in Rituparno Ghosh’s 2000 Bengali film Utsab. I analyze the body as a dynamic site of memory-formation that shapes new histories in the sprawling colonial palace in which the film’s narrative unfolds with an ancestral Durga festival as its focal point. To this end, I look at how the body of the goddess produces and defines the transience of human experience, the fragility of material history, and the desire for historic relevance.
Keywords: Calcutta; colonial; body; Durga; goddess; jewelry; memory; palace; puja; Rituparno Ghosh Calcutta; colonial; body; Durga; goddess; jewelry; memory; palace; puja; Rituparno Ghosh
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Ray, R. At Home with Durga: The Goddess in a Palace and Corporeal Identity in Rituparno Ghosh’s Utsab. Religions 2014, 5, 334-360.

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