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Female Patronage of Jain Temples under Colonial Rule in Gujarat

  • Journal of Humanities, Seoul National University
  • 2021, 78(2), pp.15-48
  • DOI : 10.17326/jhsnu.78.2.202105.15
  • Publisher : Institute of Humanities, Seoul National University
  • Research Area : Humanities > Other Humanities
  • Received : April 5, 2021
  • Accepted : May 10, 2021
  • Published : May 31, 2021

Hawon Ku 1

1서울대학교

Accredited

ABSTRACT

This paper examines two Jain women and their patronage of temples during the 19th century, and how such patronage embodied a “non-confrontational resistance and contestatory behavior”. Ujambai, a wealthy Jain woman from Ahmedabad, built the Nandīśvaradvīpa Temple at Śatruñjaya (1840), one of the most sacred pilgrimage sites for Śvetāmbara Mūrtipujak Jains, and Harkunvarbai built the Hathi Singh Temple in Ahmedabad (1848), after the death of her husband. I suggest that in comparison to Ujambai’s temple, which aimed to differentiate her faith from the worldly approach of the Jain merchants while simultaneously challenging the symbolic limits set by traditional patriarchy, Harkunvarbai’s temple appropriated the temple architecture of male patrons to proclaim her status as householder. In addition, I argue that Harkunvarbai’s shift from religious patronage to civic duties also displayed the facility with which she replicated the patterns of contemporary male patronage.

Citation status

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