Swarming ants and their kin in the Old Javanese kakawin literature

Jakl, Jiri (2012) Swarming ants and their kin in the Old Javanese kakawin literature. Pandanus '12: Nature in Literature, Art, Myth and Ritual, 6 1: 47-63.

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Author Jakl, Jiri
Title Swarming ants and their kin in the Old Javanese kakawin literature
Journal name Pandanus '12: Nature in Literature, Art, Myth and Ritual
ISSN 1802-7997
Publication date 2012
Year available 2013
Sub-type Article (original research)
Volume 6
Issue 1
Start page 47
End page 63
Total pages 17
Place of publication Prague
Publisher Institute of South and Central Asian Studies, Seminar of Indian Studies Philosophical Faculty, Charles University
Collection year 2013
Language eng
Formatted abstract
!e paper discusses insect imagery pertaining to two kinds of ants, the laru-laru
and the kararangga, in the Old Javanese kakawin court poetry. Laru-laru denotes a winged form of male ants, airborne for a short mating period when males aggregate in huge, cloud like swarms. Kararangga designates several species of red tree ants. A common literary image of swarming ants, flying headlong into the fames of fire or lamp, is attested in several kakawin, while the image of  fighting kararangga red tree ants seems to be exclusive to one passage of the anonymous, possibly 13th century, Bhomantaka. Swarming laru-laru ants, dying in the flames of fire, reminded poets of desperate amok attacks, a strategy regularly ascribed to diverse forms of demonic rakasas and warriors fighting for them. Both images are found predominantly in the war passages, and I argue that Javanese and Balinese poets used this ant imagery in an allegorical way in order to ridicule political enemies of their patrons.
Keyword Ants
Literary culture
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2013 Collection
School of Languages and Cultures Publications
 
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Created: Thu, 14 Mar 2013, 10:47:26 EST by Ms Katrina Hume on behalf of School of Languages and Cultures