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Maithil Women's TalesStorytelling on the Nepal-India Border$
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Coralynn V. Davis

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780252038426

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: April 2017

DOI: 10.5406/illinois/9780252038426.001.0001

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Virtue, Truth, and the Motherline of Morality

Virtue, Truth, and the Motherline of Morality

Chapter 3 Virtue, Truth, and the Motherline of Morality
Maithil Women's Tales

Coralynn V. Davis

University of Illinois Press

This chapter examines the universe of virtue as it is displayed in Maithil women's taleworlds—such virtues as devoutness, compassion, and generosity. One striking characteristic of Maithil women's narratives is that they generally portray very little gendering in regard to basic tenets of virtue. In other words, the same virtuous qualities are appreciated in men and women; virtues are gender specific only in the particulars of their enactment. The chapter also shows that, in Maithil women's narrative hands, differences in fortune are correlated with the measure of women's virtuousness, and, further, such virtue in women is portrayed as a heritable trait passed on to offspring through maternal substance.

Keywords:   virtue, Maithil women, women's narratives, gender, women's virtuousness

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