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Harman to address sacrificial violence by women of South Asia

"The Suicide Bomber Becomes a Goddess: Women, Theosis, and Sacrificial Violence in South Asia" will be presented by Dr. William Harman, Department of Philosophy and Religion Wednesday, October 18,Holt 124 at 3 p.m.

“Tamil Hindus of Sri Lanka were probably the first organized group in the world to use suicide bombing as a strategic weapon,” Harman said. “Among Sri Lankan suicide bombers, nearly half the perpetrators are women. In part, this is because self sacrifice by Tamil women is considered a basic virtue and a religious calling. Several Hindu religious narratives purvey this message. This talk will isolate religious narratives focusing on how two specific goddesses achieved status as deities because, as women, they endured remarkable injustice and oppression. These divine narratives, then, provide the model for how Tamil women today should face institutional injustice perceived to be administered by the Sinhala Sri Lankan majority.”

October 12, 2006

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