The Cause of Seamless Integration: Revisiting the Dual Authorship of the Kāvyaprakāśa

Yigal Bronner*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This paper revisits the longstanding tradition concerning the dual authorship of the Light on Literature (Kāvyaprakāśa), the dominant treatise on Sanskrit poetics in the second millennium ce. The discussion focuses on one case study, a brief comment dismissing the ornament “cause” (hetu), found in the latter part of chapter 10 in the portion traditionally attributed to Mammata’s successor Allata (aka Alaka). This passage is analyzed in the broader context of the Light’s discussion of semantic capacities (chapter 2), suggestion (chapter 4), and other ornaments (chapter 10). The essay also looks at the way generations of commentators have dealt with this topic and the potential inconsistencies in its treatment in the Light. The paper thus throws light on the question of the work’s overall integration, seamless or not so seamless, both in its genetic and receptive histories.

Original languageAmerican English
Pages (from-to)271-287
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of the American Oriental Society
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Author’s note: I would like to thank Naresh Keerthi, Lawrence McCrea, Andrew Ollett, and David Shulman for comments and suggestions based on earlier drafts of this paper. I am also grateful to all the members of the Mammaṭa reading group for many pleasurable and stimulating hours. This research was supported by the Israel Science Foundation (grant No. 1176/19). 1.(퀀Sukthankar 1912. I return to this argument in section 2 below.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 American Oriental Society. All rights reserved.


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