Life in a Dead Language

Modern Sanskrit as an Ultraminor Literature

in Journal of World Literature
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Literature written in Sanskrit after the onset of British colonialism is sorely neglected. Modern Sanskrit, as it is often called, suffers from the bad image of being written in a dead language. Many of its writers would disagree with that image, but they would know that they are disagreeing. That defensiveness has come to shape their writing, a fact which I argue arises in response to the status of their work as an ultraminor literature, a status which was born with the formation of the “world literature” field and its elevation/absorption of classical Sanskrit at the expense of the latter’s perceived potential for contemporaneity.

Life in a Dead Language

Modern Sanskrit as an Ultraminor Literature

in Journal of World Literature

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Rapson had already made the point by 1904.

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