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Shikhandi and Other Queer Stories They Don't Tell You

Written by: Devdutt Pattanaik
Narrated by: Rajiv Dadiya
Length: 1 hr and 51 mins
3.5 out of 5 stars (6 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Patriarchy asserts men are superior to women
Feminism clarifies women and men are equal
Queerness questions what constitutes male and female

Queerness isn’t only modern, Western, or sexual, says mythologist Devdutt Pattanaik. Take a close look at the vast written and oral traditions in Hinduism, some over 2,000 years old, and you will find tales of Shikhandi, who became a man to satisfy her wife, Mahadeva, who became a woman to deliver a devotee’s child, Chudala, who became a man to enlighten her husband, Samavan, who became the wife of his male friend, and many more....

Playful and touching - and sometimes disturbing - these stories, when compared with tales of the Mesopotamian Gilgamesh, the Greek Ganymede, the biblical Sodom, or the Chinese "cut sleeve" emperor, reveal the unique Indian way of making sense of queerness. Devdutt Pattanaik’s new book builds on profound ideas that our ancestors shared but that we have rarely inherited. 

This book has content for mature audiences. Discretion advised. 

©2015 Devdutt Pattanaik (P)2019 Random House Audio

Critic Reviews

"Pattanaik is a master storyteller.” (Bibek Debroy, translator of The Bhagavad Gita)  

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