The Metaphor of Boundary Crossing in Classical Sanskrit Literature
Keywords:kāvya, mahākāvya, sargabandha, metaphor, boundary, maryādā, ocean
The paper deals with the metaphor the non-physical boundaries are physical boundaries in Classical Sanskrit literature (kāvya), especially in the mahākāvya (sargabandha) or the court epic genre. Several selected instances of the usage of this metaphor are analysed here in detail in their various contexts. In the stanzas discussed in the paper, the metaphor is skillfully elaborated by the authors: a man staying within/breaking/crossing the boundaries of law and/or propriety (maryādā) is most frequently metaphorically conceptualized as the ocean, normally staying within the boundaries of its shoreline (maryādā/velā) but violently overflowing them during universal destruction (pralaya).
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