Mobilizing Krishna's World
The Writings of Prince Sāvant Singh of Kishangarh
Global South Asia
Published by: University of Washington Press
280 pages, 152.00 x 229.00 mm, 27 b&w illus.
- ISBN: 9780295742236
- Published: November 2017
Savant Singh (1694–1764), the Rajput prince of Kishangarh-Rupnagar, is famous for commissioning beautiful works of miniature painting and composing devotional (bhakti) poetry to Krishna under the nom de plume Nagaridas. After his throne was usurped by his younger brother, while Savant Singh was on the road seeking military alliances to regain his kingdom, he composed an autobiographical pilgrimage account, “The Pilgrim’s Bliss” (Tirthananda); a hagiographic anthology, “Garland of Anecdotes about Songs” (Pad-Prasang-mala); and a reworking of the story of Rama, “Garland of Rama’s Story” (Ram-Carit-Mala).
Through an examination of Savant Singh’s life and works, Heidi Pauwels explores the circulation of ideas and culture in the sixteenth through eighteenth centuries in north India, revealing how Singh mobilized soldiers but also used myths, songs, and stories about saints in order to cope with his personal and political crisis. Mobilizing Krishna’s World allows us a peek behind the dreamlike paintings and refined poetry to glimpse a world of intrigue involving political and religious reform movements.
Notes on Texts, Transliterations, and Dates
Introduction: Rādhā-Krishna Devotion in Kishangarh
1. Soldiers Marching: Kishangarh at the Crossroads
2. Gods and Saints Relocated: Sectarian Rivalries and Hinduism in the Making
3. Devotees on the Move: The Pilgrim’s Bliss
4. Legends Mobilized: Garland of Stories and Songs
5. Myth Retold: Garland of Rāma’s Romance
Conclusion: Pilgrimage, Hagiography, and Scripture
List of Illustrations
Those interested in Indian religions, bhakti and the formation of mod-ern Hinduism, the history of literatures and languages in South Asia, the emergence of a public sphere and early modernity, and the relationship of images to literature willﬁnd this volume particularly rewarding.~History of Religions