Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures

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Representations: Poetry and Prose, Premodern: Urdu (and other relevant South Asian languages)
(3,532 words)

To speak of gender and sexuality in premodern Indo-Muslim literatures is to navigate shifts emerging over the course of time. The locus of composition moved from grassroots to Sufi khān-aqāh (monastery) and then to royal courts. On the surface this literature tells stories of heterosexual love, usually doomed, between humans, in genres mostly borrowed from Persian (mas̲navī, qiṣṣa, and ghazal), imported to India from Iran by Sufi mystics from the twelfth to fourteenth centuries. In…

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Petievich, Carla, “Representations: Poetry and Prose, Premodern: Urdu (and other relevant South Asian languages)”, in: Encyclopedia of Women & Islamic Cultures, General Editor Suad Joseph. Consulted online on 18 September 2019 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/1872-5309_ewic_EWICCOM_0633d>
First published online: 2009



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