FOOD FROM THE MOUTH OF KRISHNA
Feasts and Festivities in a North Indian Pilgrimage Centre
PAUL M. TOOMEY
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This research, which is based on fieldwork at Mount Govardhan (District Mathura, U.P.), fully documents gastronomic ideas and practices of several large Hindu sects, thereby adding to previous anthropological accounts of culinary habits in diverse regional, caste and village settings. In addition, Food from the Mouth of Krishna sheds new light on several classic problems of Indian sociology most notably, on the distinction, in matters of ritual form, between sects that are monastic in orientation and those which are householder-centred, and on the dynamic interdependence in pilgrimage settings of sectarian and non-sectarian patterns of worship. The book will prove useful to readers who seek a broader understanding of practical religion in India and a better appreciation of bhakti's social and religious diversity. Autlior's innovative approach and richly detailed case studies chart the fascinating course of one of the most vibrant and active sources that feed India's religious mainstream.
PAUL M. TOOMEY (Ph.D., 1984, University of Virginia) was a research analyst for the U.S. Government, specialising in Indian security policy and South Asian defence systems. He had taught at Cornell and Tufts universities and at the University of Virginia. He was the author of several articles on food, pilgrimage, women's rituals, and aesthetics in India.