Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Riven by LustIncest and Schism in Indian Buddhist Legend and Historiography$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Jonathan A. Silk

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780824830908

Published to Hawaii Scholarship Online: November 2016

DOI: 10.21313/hawaii/9780824830908.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM HAWAII SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.hawaii.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Hawaii University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in HSO for personal use.date: 25 July 2021

Why Incest Taboos?

Why Incest Taboos?

(p.202) 19 Why Incest Taboos?
Riven by Lust

Jonathan A. Silk

University of Hawai'i Press

This chapter considers the question of what may have inspired its authors to deploy the Oedipal tale of Mahādeva. It asks: if the significance of incest is thoroughly contextual, how and why does the portrayal of Mahādeva—not merely as a patricide and matricide but equally if not more powerfully as a practitioner of incest—so very forcefully serve to stigmatize him and by extension facilitate dismissal of the views he is reputed to have propounded? The chapter examines the hold that incest has on human mentality and attempts to trace the social and biological bases of that fascination. Modern scientific thinking sees the roots of incest abhorrence in both biological and psychological causes. An understanding of these factors shows how ancient Indian attitudes, Buddhist and non-Buddhist alike, fit into larger human concerns.

Keywords:   incest, Oedipal, Indian Buddhism, ancient Indians, Buddhists, Mahādeva

Hawaii Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.