Topic outline

    • The Making of Regional Cultures

      Q18. What was name of the text that was illustrated in the miniature paintings of Himachal Pradesh?

      Ans. The text that was illustrated in the miniature paintings of Himachal Pradesh was Bhanudatta’s Rasamanjari.


      Q19. What is called rasa lila?

      Ans. The legends of Radha-Krishna were enacted in folk plays called rasa lila, which combined folk dance with the basic gestures of the kathak story-tellers.


      Q20. How did regional cultures evolve?

      Ans. Regional cultures today are often the product of complex processes of intermixing of local traditions with ideas from other parts of the subcontinent.

      Q21. What is Manipravalam? Name a book written in that language.

      Ans. Manipravalam was a literally style referring to the two languages, Sanskrit and the regional language. The Lilatilakam, dealing with grammar and poetics, was composed in Manipravalam.


      Q22. Why did conquerors try to control the temple of Jagannatha at Puri?

      Ans. As the temple gained in importance as a centre of pilgrimage, its authority in social and political matters also increased. Thus, all those who conquered Orissa attempted to gain control over the temple. They felt that this would make their rule acceptable to the local people.


      Q23. How did the Cheras draw upon Sanskritic traditions?

      Ans. At the same time, the Cheras also drew upon Sanskritic traditions. The temple theatre of Kerala, which is traced to this period, borrowed stories from the Sanskrit epics. The first literary works in Malayalam, dated to about the twelfth century, are directly indebted to Sanskrit.


      Q24. Why do we know much more about the cultural practices of rulers than about those of ordinary people?

      Ans.  Ordinary women and men painted as well – on pots, walls, floors, cloth – works of art that have occasionally survived, unlike the miniatures that were carefully preserved in palaces for centuries. Thus, we know much more about the cultural practices of rulers than about those of ordinary people.

      Q25. How did Kathak reach its present form?

      Ans. Under the Mughal emperors and their nobles, Kathak was performed in the court, where it acquired its present features and developed into a form of dance with a distinctive style. Subsequently, it developed in two traditions or gharanas: one in the courts of Rajasthan (Jaipur) and the other in Lucknow.


      Q26. How are women depicted in the stories about Rajput heroes?

      Ans. Sometimes, they figure as the “cause” for conflicts, as men fought with one another to either “win” or “protect” women. Women are also depicted as following their heroic husbands in both life and death – there are stories about the practice of sati or the immolation of widows on the funeral pyre of their husbands.


      Q27. Why were the Bengal Brahmanas allowed to eat fish?

      Ans. Brahmanas were not allowed to eat nonvegetarian food, but the popularity of fish in the local diet made the Brahmanical authorities relax this prohibition for the Bengal Brahmanas. The Brihaddharma Purana, a thirteenth-century Sanskrit text from Bengal, permitted the local Brahmanas to eat certain varieties of fish.

      Q28. Write a short note on Kangra School of painting.

      Ans. Nadir Shah’s invasion and the conquest of Delhi in 1739 resulted in the migration of Mughal artists to the hills to escape the uncertainties of the plains. Here they found ready patrons which led to the founding of the Kangra School of painting. By the mid eighteenth century the Kangra artists developed a style which breathed a new spirit into miniature painting.


      Q29. Why did minstrels proclaim the achievements of heroes?

      Ans. Stories about Rajput heroes were recorded in poems and songs, which were recited by specially trained minstrels. These preserved the memories of heroes and were expected to inspire others to follow their example. Ordinary people were also attracted by these stories – which often depicted dramatic situations, and a range of strong emotions – loyalty, friendship, love, valour, anger, etc.


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