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Sita Sings the Blues
September 24, 2006 10:34 AM   Subscribe

Sita Sings the Blues is a feature film (in progress) combining the ancient Indian epic Ramayana, the 1920's blues vocals of Annette Hanshaw, and classically informed but modern animation. The animator wanted to envision what the Ramayana would look like told through the eyes of its much loved and much maligned female character, Sita. This is not the first time the Ramayana has been retold from Sita's perspective, Sanctuary, a play by Hema Ramakrishna is a feminist reinterpretation that has garnered a lot of controversy. Retelling the Ramayana is part of the tradition.
posted by arcticwoman (7 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite

 
If you only watch one of the film clips from the first link, make it The Battle of Lanka. It takes awhile to load, but it's worth it*.

*Worthiness of it to you is not guaranteed.
posted by arcticwoman at 10:36 AM on September 24, 2006


double. But I still think that the film in progress looks pretty cool.
posted by MythMaker at 10:44 AM on September 24, 2006


Double, but good post. It has new stuff other than the original. Please keep it alive.
posted by SeizeTheDay at 10:49 AM on September 24, 2006


Shit. I checked too, they must have changed the web address. Sorry.
posted by arcticwoman at 11:41 AM on September 24, 2006


and much maligned female character, Sita

Huh? Who has maligned or is maligning Sita and in what sense?
posted by UrineSoakedRube at 12:52 PM on September 24, 2006


UrineSoakedRube:

from the Sita link: Even today, the people of Mithila consider it inauspicious to marry off their daughters in the month of Marg-Shish, which is the season when Sita and Rama tied the knot.

Which is odd, considering Sita is known for her fidelity and chastity, et cetera. I generally don't see her as maligned though. More like the perfect companion. [not necessarily mine, just in general that's how I sense she is viewed.]
posted by exlotuseater at 1:07 PM on September 24, 2006


Which is odd, considering Sita is known for her fidelity and chastity, et cetera. I generally don't see her as maligned though. More like the perfect companion. [not necessarily mine, just in general that's how I sense she is viewed.]
posted by exlotuseater at 1:07 PM PST on September 24 [+] [!]


Correct -- my problem with the phrase "much maligned female character" is that it doesn't clearly state that there really isn't anyone who isn't a fictional character who thinks this. The Ramayana makes it clear that the aspersions cast on Sita's chastity were unjust -- they are strawmen set up in order to have the crap beaten out of them. When these questions arise in the Ramayana, Sita (the linked site doesn't really make this clear, as far as I can tell by scanning it) appeals to the gods to take her into their bosom if she has been chaste and faithful, and they do.

Paley interpretation isn't that novel. Then again, you wouldn't know this from some of the criticisms launched against her (check out Rajeev Prasad's vile letter -- you'll have to scroll down to see it). My favorite letter is one that seems to have been deleted, in which someone else attacks Nina for not having read the Ramayana in Sanskrit, and also blames her for printing Rajeev Prasad's letter in order to make her opposition look bad.
posted by UrineSoakedRube at 2:49 PM on September 24, 2006


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