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The Ismaili Ginan Literature - Its Structure and Love Symbolism

Publication Type  Thesis
Year of Publication  1977
Authors  Assani, Ali.
University  Harvard College
Key Words  English; Bibliography
Notes  

B.A. thesis ; DETAILS: "The Ismaili Ginan Literature - Its Structure and Love Symbolism," B.A. thesis, Harvard College, 1977.


The Ismaili "Ginan" Tradition from the Indian Subcontinent

Ginans are devotional songs rooted in the musical and poetic matrix of Indian culture. The term "ginan" carries a double significance: on the one hand, it means "religious knowledge" or "wisdom," analogous to the Sanskrit word jnana
(knowledge).2 On the other hand, it means "song" or "recitation," suggesting a link to the Arabic ghanna and the Urdu/Hindi ghana, both verbs meaning "to sing."3 For the past seven hundred years, Ismailis from the Indian subcontinent
(Satpanth Khoja Ismailis) have been reciting ginans as a part of their daily religious devotions at the congregational hall (Jamat Khana).

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