Art and Performance in the Buddhist Visual Narratives at Bhārhut

Journal of Indian Philosophy 50 (4):671-688 (2022)
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The reliefs carved on the _vedikā_ of the Bharhut _stūpa_ in the Satna District of Madhya Pradesh are some of the earliest artworks extant in India to articulate the Buddha’s life stories and the essence of his teaching in a complex visual form. This article proposes that the reliefs from Bharhut depicting episodes from Śākyamuni’s life and _jātakas_ were informed by narrative practices established in the traditions of Buddhist recitation and performance. The inscriptions engraved on the Bharhut _vedikā_ that function as labels for scenes, characters, and places, point to the use of specific storytelling strategies attested in oral recitation and picture scrolls that likely existed as aide-memoire.



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The Play of Formulas in the Early Buddhist Discourses.Eviatar Shulman - 2022 - Journal of Indian Philosophy 50 (4):557-580.
The Chinese Version of the Dantabhūmi Sutta.Ven Anālayo - 2007 - Buddhist Studies Review 23 (1):5-19.
Once Upon a Present Time.Tim Lenz - 2004 - Buddhist Studies Review 21 (2):197-215.

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