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The Navel of the DemonessTibetan Buddhism and Civil Religion in Highland Nepal$
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Charles Ramble

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195154146

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2008

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195154146.001.0001

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 Inside the Shöyul

 Inside the Shöyul

(p.43) 2 Inside the Shöyul
The Navel of the Demoness

Charles Ramble (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

The five settlements that constitute the Shöyul are different from the other 14 communities of Baragaon inasmuch as they are a cultural “island” that partly resisted the Tibetanisation of the region following the 16th century. The territory on which they stand was once the site of over 20 settlements, most of which were abandoned after the 17th century owing to both political and environmental factors. The solidarity of the five Shöyul was not merely cultural and linguistic but also political. Archival evidence reveals the secret strategies whereby the group furthered its common interests within the enclave of Baragaon, and also the operation of the alliance that enabled it to shed its long‐standing quasi‐feudal obligations to the King of Mustang.

Keywords:   Shöyul, Baragaon, Tibetanisation, politics, environment, archives, King of Mustang

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