Rāma Stories and Puppet Plays

Stuart Blackburn

in Inside the Drama-House

Published by University of California Press

Published in print May 1996 | ISBN: 9780520202054
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780520916807 | DOI:
Rāma Stories and Puppet Plays

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This chapter introduces the Kampan text, placing it within the history of Palghat and the shadow puppet play, and highlights four important points about the Kerala puppeteers' adaptation of the Kampan epic. The senior puppeteers have intimate knowledge about Kampan but do not memorize or sing all of the ten thousand to twelve thousand verses in the epic. They chant Kampan's verse verbatim with their printed sources, and the basic adaptation in the puppet play is additive.

Keywords: Kampan text; Palghat; shadow puppet play; Kerala puppeteers; verse

Chapter.  7135 words. 

Subjects: Anthropology

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