Asian Review

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The story of Rama, known as Ramayana in the Indian subcontinent where it originated, has migrated and spread to nearly every culture and society in Asia. In each place the story has been introduced, it has been adopted, adapted and absorbed into the local culture. Given the universal themes in the tale, the basic outline of the story has shown a remarkable flexibility to be able to sustain change and adaption, both in interpretation and interpolation. This article examines and compares the presence of the Rama story in various cultures and societies of Southeast Asia, showing how the tradition has moved and been shared from one locality to another and, therefore, has the ability to serve as a cultural peace ambassador promoting mutual understanding among the people of this region.



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