Art and Aesthetics of Modern Mythopoeia: Literatures, Myths and Revisionism

deadline for submissions: 
May 31, 2020
full name / name of organization: 
Vishvanatha Kaviraja Institute
contact email: 

Concept Note

Parallel to the growing interest in cultural studies, a robust wave of Revisionist literary texts has surfaced in the recent times. Mythopoeia has always been a steady proponent in the construct of any civilization, and it is a fact that Indian Culture is deeply associated with a plethora of mythological narratives. In the contemporary period, the trend of Revisionist texts not only displays an inclination towards retelling of the traditional narratives, but also invites alternative and novel approaches of analytical discourses.

Revisionist literature not only encourages alternative retellings of traditionally accepted cultural and literary texts but further contributes towards giving a voice to the marginal voiceless 'other'. For instance, in Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni's novel The Palace of Illusions, the character of Draupadi from Mahabharata is not only presented in a different light but the work has also empowered her character with a bold and individualistic voice, the absence of which has been marked in the original work.

Although Devdutt Pattnaik is considered to be the most popular writers of Indian Revisionist school for his illustrious works such as Jaya, My Gita and several others, there are authors like Raja Rao, RK Narayan, Shashi Tharoor, Amish Tripathi, Kavita Kane, Mahasweta Devi and Sara Joseph etc. whose renditions of sacrosanct mythical literature have become equally popular. Across genres, dramatists like Girish Karnad and Adya Rangacharya, also known as Sriranga have also used the revisionist technique to appropriate olden texts and given them newer dimensions. A closer inquiry into the texts reveal a dominant inclination towards the Indian epics—Ramayana and Mahabharata and others writings as Vedas, Puranas and Upnishads but in the treatment of the narrative, the differences are evident.

Modern myth making allows plurality and alternative readings since it's onset which has further initiated an oeuvre of critical inquiries. This anthology intends to explore the various trends of Indian Revisionist literature, the politics involved in its crux and also, it’s influence on the larger body of literature.

The book intends to focus on the following themes, but by no means restrict other relevant and related critical writings. The overarching theme is Indian Revisionist Literature.

The sub-themes are:

  • Trends in Revisionist and Revivalist Literature
  • Retelling of Hindu Myths and their effects on Indian Nationalism
  • Politics of Narration in Revisionist Literature
  • Modern Mythopoeia and Revisionist Literature
  • Religion and Revisionist literature
  • Feminist Revisionist Mythology
  • Revisionist Mythmaking
  • Mythology and Environment
  • Modern retelling of myths
  • Myth representation in literature
  • Girish Karnad and his Implications and Recreations of Myths
  • Devdutt Pattnaik and his Interpretation and Reinterpretation of Myths
  • Mythical Characters and their Modern Interpretations
  • Religious texts and Mythology
  • Mythology and Human Culture
  • Myth, Culture and Claude Levi Strauss’ Structural Anthropology
  • Revision, Reinterpretation, Subversion and Recontextualization of Myths in Literature
  • Myth versus Rationality
  • Mythical Marginalised and Oppressed Characters

Full papers (in 4,000-6,000 words with abstract and keywords) should be submitted to Ashish Gupta (keyts2020@gmail.com) and Ritushree Sengupta (sengupta1992@gmail.com) by 31 May 2020. The book will be published with ISBN.