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Love Letters from GolokA Tantric Couple in Modern Tibet$
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Holly Gayley

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780231180528

Published to Columbia Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.7312/columbia/9780231180528.001.0001

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Local Heroine

Local Heroine

The Hagiography of Cultural Trauma

(p.75) Two Local Heroine
Love Letters from Golok

Holly Gayley

Columbia University Press

Chapter 2 examines the hagiographic portrait of Tāre Lhamo as a local heroine during the years leading up to and including the Cultural Revolution. The representation of this period in her hagiography, Spiraling Vine of Faith, elides the specter of state and her own personal losses and instead narrates the period through a series of miracle tales that portray Tāre Lhamo as a tantric heroine, addressing the immediate needs of her local community. In this way, I argue that Spiraling Vine of Faith constructs a redemptive narrative amid the devastation of the Maoist period and provides a poignant means for restoring a sense of Tibetan agency in the wake of cultural trauma.

Keywords:   cultural trauma, miracles, self-censorship, Cultural Revolution, scar literature, agency

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