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This Is No Lotus, It Is A Face: Poetics As Grammar In Daṇḍin's Investigation Of The Simile

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Chapter Summary

In this chapter, the author intends to explore by closely examining a single passage from alaṃ kāraśāstraʾs long history, Daṇḍ inʾs investigation of the simile (upamā). The middle portion of Daṇḍ inʾs discussion of the simile deals with factors that may obstruct its aesthetic effect. Daṇḍ inʾs examples of the simile's faults suffice to suggest that his analysis of poetic tongue has its roots in grammar, and is based on a grammatically-trained attention to categories such as number and gender. Daṇḍ inʾs meditation on the simile is by no means limited to purely structural factors. Many of his thirty-two subtypes convey similitude quite differently. The assertion "This is no lotus; it is a face indeed," possibly refers to some logical reasoning in the intertext, such as the syllogism supplied by the nirṇaya example ("The luster of the lotus simply cannot shame the moon").

Keywords: Daṇḍ in's investigation; intertextual grammar; simile; similitude



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