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Sandalwood and Carrion – Smell in Indian Religion and Culture - Oxford Scholarship Online
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Sandalwood and Carrion: Smell in Indian Religion and Culture

James McHugh


This book explores the topic of smell in pre-modern Indian religion and culture. The book provides a comprehensive study of all aspects of smell, covering a period from the turn of the Common Era to the early second millennium CE, and referring to a wide range of sources from poetry to medical texts. In pre-modern South Asia, smells mattered. The sophisticated arts of perfumery that developed in temples, monasteries and courts relied on exotic aromatics, connecting olfactory aesthetics to long-distance ocean trade. A sophisticated religious discourse on the goals of life emphasized that the pl ... More

Keywords: smell, India, South Asia, perfume, incense, sandalwood, Hinduism, Buddhism

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2012 Print ISBN-13: 9780199916306
Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2013 DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199916306.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

James McHugh, author
University of Southern California

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