Dangaura Tharu Narratives: A Textual Analysis
Krishna Prasad Paudyal
Dangaura Tharu Narratives: A Textual Analysis is, as the title suggests, a collection of three Dangaura Tharu narratives which have been analyzed linguistically and translated into English. The narratives of this Indo-Aryan language analyzed here represent two different themes: adventure and social reformation. The stories “Phuljokhni Rani (A queen who weighs herself with flower)”, and “Kiranchandra and Gulbagwali” are the narratives of adventure, whereas “The King and the Carpenter’s Sons” depict a social problem in a patriarchal society.
The first two stories reflect the worldview of the Tharu people. As presented in these stories, this ethnic group has great faith in supernatural power and believes that a person with his knowledge and wisdom can achieve this power. The protagonists in both stories, who perform different activities which are beyond the imagination of common people, can be taken as examples. It is still believed that the Tharu ‘gurau’, the priests, used to possess supernatural power. They could perform any activity that is required for benevolent purposes. The protagonist of “Fuljokhni Rani” represents the gurau of this community.
The next story “The King and the Carpenter’s Sons” represents a patriarchal society with the theme of gender discrimination. The younger wife of the king is kicked out of the palace only because she gave birth to a baby girl. However, the denouement demonstrating the king’s acceptance of his daughter and wife indicates a possibility of reformation. Thus this analysis can have multiple uses. As it is a natural text collection and is abundant with linguistic information, a linguist can use it as an authentic source for comparative as well as typological studies. Besides, a sociologist or a student of literature can take it as a representation of Tharu community and their world view.
ISBN 9783862888627. Languages of the World/Text Collections 43. 160pp. 2018.