Essay on Sita as the Hidden Hero of Ramayana

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Sita as the Hidden Hero of Ramayana Valmiki's Ramayana was written around 300 B.C.E. (Carrier 207). Typically, the character of Rama is seen as the hero and the character of Sita is seen as the hero's wife. In this essay, I will compare Sita's journey of capture and inner growth with the "save the kingdom" journey of Rama, show how the two correlate, and eventually connect in the influential chastity scene. I will also prove that Sita is the "hidden hero" of this epic even though she is seen as taking a secondary role to Rama and show how this reflects women's secondary roles in society today. To begin our comparisons, we must first look at each character and recognize their separate journeys. Through summarization of the…show more content…
The archetypal "initiation" has three phases"1. Separation, 2. Transformation, 3. Return (Guerin et.al.154). With her encapturement and separation, she begins her journey of self-growth. While Sita is held captive, Rama frantically makes plans to save her and spends the better part of the story trying to find her and kill asuras, demons. The Ramayana vividly describes these plans and Rama's actions, but only vaguely hints at what Sita is going through. The reader knows Ravana wants to seduce her and there are brief descriptions of Sita being tortured by Ravana's rakshasa, or demon, women. In one particular scene, the reader is particularly aware of Sita's plight and can see she is changing, entering the "transformation" phase of her journey. In this scene, Hanuman, an dally of Rama, goes to Ravana's palace to give Sita a token form Rama. Hanumen finds Sita surrounded by sleeping, armed rakshasa women. Sita is "unkept, undecorated, with only one piece of yellow sari covering her body, and with the dust of many days on her" (Narayan 132). Hanumen watches as the women wake up and harass Sita. He also observes Ravana approach her and appeal to her to become his prime mistress, but throughout the whole ordeal, Sita remains true to Rama (Narayan 132). Sita's transformation is evident. Sita was a beautiful, well kept princess who relied on Rama for

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