Wikipedia:Peer review/Ahalya/archive1

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Ahalya[edit]

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This peer review discussion has been closed.
Ahalya is a GA since June. I plan to nominate it to FAC. Ahalya is a paradoxical figure in Hindu myth, both venerated and condemned and who has become famous in story due to her sexual behaviour. Suggestions pertaining to WP:FA? are required, especially about clarity of text, jargon and flow of ideas. Thanks a lot, Redtigerxyz Talk 11:30, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

Comments from Casliber[edit]

I can honestly say I have never heard of Ahalya and am not that familiar with the stories. Anyway, I'll jot notes below: Casliber (talk · contribs) 13:21, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

...to accept his sexual offer. - a more conversational way of saying it would be, "to accept his advances."
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 15:31, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
I'd link "atone" - an unusual word for many.
It means "To make amends, as for a sin or fault". The atonement article about the Christian concept and is unrelated to the Hindu concept. --Redtigerxyz Talk 15:31, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
It is very frustrating when there is no appropriate article to link to. I have been in this situation many times. Options are - expanding target article, or looking at wiktionary definition and linking there. Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:08, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Linked. --Redtigerxyz Talk 09:36, 11 December 2011 (UTC)
As per the literal meaning of her name "unploughed", Nobel laureate Rabindranath Tagore (1861–1941) literally Ahalya as a symbol of stone-like, infertile land that was made cultivable by Rama. - sentence missing a verb?
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 15:31, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Ahalya is examined in new light by "several" modern renditions in various Indian languages -why the quotation marks around "several"?
ditto "widespread attention" in the next sentence
Words taken from the sources. Removed quotes. --Redtigerxyz Talk 15:31, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
They are pretty mundane words so not needing quotation marks. Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:08, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
link or explain "Subrahmanya"
[1] says "Subrahmanya is a loud invocation at the soma sacrifice" Feller p. 131 defines "Subrahmanya formula" (a newly coined word in scholarly circles) is "a chant which the Subrahmanya priest sings while the soma is conveyed on the soma-cart to the sacrificial enclosure".--Redtigerxyz Talk 15:31, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
Hmmm, a link to a stub maybe? Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:08, 10 December 2011 (UTC)
I have simplified the definition of the Subrahmanya formula. Please check. --Redtigerxyz Talk 09:36, 11 December 2011 (UTC)
Another thing - is there any other commentary you can find about the evolution of the story, or any other famous film interpretations in Indian cinema? I suspect that might be worth mentioning. I am not sure there is any data in either category but something to think of for comprehensiveness.
Evolution is covered in "Name and development". I will check about films. There must some films in 1920s-30s, when mythological films were popular.--Redtigerxyz Talk 09:36, 11 December 2011 (UTC)
While non-scriptural books are discussed while discussing Ahalya by references, I could not trace any Ahalya-centric articles which discuss names of particular films. "Filming the Gods: Religion and Indian Cinema" in an article discussing mythological films in nature notes only 1 film on Ahalya, which is included. --Redtigerxyz Talk 18:21, 14 December 2011 (UTC)

Overall, looking pretty good on prose grounds. Casliber (talk · contribs) 21:08, 10 December 2011 (UTC)

Comments from AroundTheGlobe[edit]

Like Casliber, Im not an expert on this topic either, just giving my comments as below:

  • Shouldnt [2], [3] have an Indian PD license?
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:41, 12 December 2011 (UTC)
  • In the section 'Name and development', 'mahabhaga' IAST has been included. Iv not seen the IAST being used in the middle of an article, though its commonly mentioned in the lede. Im not sure on this, just bringing it to your notice.
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:41, 12 December 2011 (UTC)
  • In the section 'Non-scriptural Sanskrit works', a redlinked word 'Mahaviracharita'.
A start class article can be created. --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:41, 12 December 2011 (UTC)
  • In the section 'Modern renditions: curse, redemption and thereafter', 2 more redlinks - 'P. V. Ramavarier' and 'M. Parvati Amma'
Can create stubs or remove the links. --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:41, 12 December 2011 (UTC)
Would be good to do either before the FAR. Around The Globeसत्यमेव जयते 10:04, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

On the whole, its a good FA candidate. Around The Globeसत्यमेव जयते 13:20, 12 December 2011 (UTC)

Comments from TheMandarin[edit]

"Bala Kanda book of the Ramayana – an 5th to 4th century BCE epic which narrates Rama's life – is the first to explicitly mention her extra-marital affair."

Probably the part "extra-marital affair" can be reworded as "sexual encounter with Indira" or simply "encounter with Indira". "extra-marital" indicates concious decision on Ahalya's part, and few versions say that Ahalya was tricked.
Yes. That's what I want to convey - concious decision on Ahalya's part. In Bala Kanda, it is a concious decision. The most later versions replace the theme with trickery. Also, the purpose is remove repetition of "encounter".--Redtigerxyz Talk 17:27, 12 December 2011 (UTC)

"In contrast, Ahalya's adventure is purely erotic, not resulting to procreation and thus Ahalya faces the ire of the scriptures.[28][29] "

Probably needs POV attribution; This part reads a bit like WP:EDITORIALIZING. Also "adventure" might not give a accurate meaning, since in several versions, it is a "misadventure". (probably "encounter" captures the essence?). Rewording as "Ahalya's encounter is regarded as erotic, not resulting..." reads a bit neutral.
"regarded" is needed. Adventure is used in sense of a "risky or unexpected undertaking". So I thought it is appropriate. The purpose is remove repetition of "encounter". --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:27, 12 December 2011 (UTC)

"...places her in the care of the sage Gautama until she reaches puberty."

Does "womanhood" instead of "puberty" reads better.
puberty is "The stage of adolescence in which an individual becomes physiologically capable of sexual reproduction." Womanhood after adolescence. May change meaning. --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:27, 12 December 2011 (UTC)

Looks good for FA candidate, good, extensive work.

--TheMandarin (talk) 14:52, 12 December 2011 (UTC)

Comments[edit]

The article is very neatly compiled with necesary cavets. Some sections like children are well researched. A few points

  • Valmiki Ramayana is the first source - all derived versions were actually based on the Valmiki's, akin to the period they were written. In some places, Ramabadracharya's or other' seems to overshadow the original(esp in Name and development).
The Brahmanas are the first source hinting, while Valmiki Ramayana crystallizes the story. It may be noted that the "popular" retelling digresses considerably from the original Ramayana, where Ahalya is not innocent, does not turn to stone and Rama does not touch her with his foot, but touches her feet giving obeisance.--Redtigerxyz Talk 17:56, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
  • The context of "unploughed" can be removed. By most sources, she had an intercourse and I feel it doesn't apply to have it. The comparison of fertile land after the touch of Rama, though looks very apt.
Different scholars as well as writers have interpreted the "unploughed" meaning. All of which are notable. --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:56, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Comparison with Greek mythology - It was a promised episode by Zeus and the tricksome part is rather minimal. Also definition of chastity in Indian context is totally different. So i am not sure the analogy is a right fit here. Example is in Kamba Ramayana, where Rama doesn't even touch her.
The analogy with Alcmene is the thoughts of scholars Renate and Wendy. --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:56, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
  • I would suggest adding this source - Rajaji's Chakravarthi Thirumagan, a Sahitya academy winner - translated here - [4]. It has lot of practical explanation.
Chakravathi Thirumangan is different from Ramayana (C. Rajagopalachari). After the abridged translation of the Valmiki Ramayana (which is already covered), Rajaji digresses to the topic of Devas and Rakshasas.--Redtigerxyz Talk 18:27, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
  • I tried getting the location, but couldn't get. But from originals, till the point of Bala Kanda, there is hardly any mention of Rama travelling south. The Godavari location is practically questionable.
As the article says, "Valmiki Ramayana"/Ramayana says it happened in the forest near Mithila. However, Puranas which are also regarded as scriptures give different locations. Note in the Godavari version, Rama is not the cause of redemption, the river is. --Redtigerxyz Talk 17:56, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
  • The overall story from original mentions Vishwamitra explaining the history to Rama to explain a cause-effect theory. Rama applies it in many future instances like when he was set to exile, tested by Sugriva etc. This is explicitly given in Kamba Ramayana.
It will be original research to include this. --Redtigerxyz Talk 18:27, 16 December 2011 (UTC)
  • One more comparative review here p. 213 - [5]
The Zvelebil reference, found by you was added. The analysis of Kamba Ramayana backs the Ramanujan analysis already in the article.--Redtigerxyz Talk 17:56, 16 December 2011 (UTC)

S Sriram(talk - my page - contribs) 23:59, 15 December 2011 (UTC)ssriram_mt

Comments from Binksternet[edit]

  • You cannot put an en dash in a range and say something falls between the range: "dated between 5th–13th century". It falls between two dates, so you say both dates separately: "dated between the 5th and the 13th century". Or you get rid of the word between: "written during 400–1300". There are a bunch of these in the article, and all should be corrected.
Fixed. --Redtigerxyz Talk 07:03, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
  • This sentence needs the en dashes spaced, not unspaced: "Ahalya requests Indra–her "lover" and "best of gods"–to flee and protect both of them..." Same here: "the Ramopakhyana– the condensed narrative of the Ramayana in the Mahabharata–does not mention..." Same here: "servants–who were deceived by Indra's disguise–as witnesses..."
Fixed. --Redtigerxyz Talk 07:03, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
  • The formatting following this announcement is strange: "A well-known verse cited about Ahalya runs..." It should not be followed with an en dash and then a parenthetical statement prior to the foreign language verse. The statement in the parentheses should be explained after giving the example. The foreign verse does not have to appear in the article since the encyclopedia is English. However, if it is to stay for some reason, it should share formatting style with the English translation. Perhaps both should be in two lines of text. Binksternet (talk) 01:17, 17 December 2011 (UTC)
I didn't want to add the note to the start of the para "Orthodox Hindus..." as it breaks the flow. So I had added it as parenthetical statement. Changed the formatting. The verse is needed as I say "this daily morning prayer" in the next sentence. --Redtigerxyz Talk 07:03, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Finetooth comments[edit]

The article is quite well-written and generally clear to me, though I am a complete outsider. I note a few style issues below, but I see that you've already addressed some of them.

Infobox

  • "Raja Ravi Varma (1848–1906)'s Ahalya" - Rather than making the date range a possessive, maybe: Ahalya by Raja Ravi Varma (1848–1906)
Done. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Lead

  • Should any mention of the children appear in the lead since a section is devoted to "Children"? Maybe just a sentence or a half-sentence.
Children do not form an important facet of her life, nor do the scriptures on names or number of her children or foster-children. IMO, "She had children" would be absurd in the lead, while naming all the children would be too much detail. --Redtigerxyz Talk 16:10, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
  • "but still takes the conscious decision to accept his advances" - Tighten to "but still accepts his advances"?
Done. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
  • "describe Rama as the eventual cause of her liberation" " - Would "agent" be better than "cause"?
Done. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
  • "and is purified by offering Rama hospitality" - Maybe "and how she is purified by offering Rama hospitality"?
Done. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
  • "Her story has been retold numerous times in the scriptures and lives on in modern age poetry and short stories as well as is presented in dance and drama" - Tighten to "Her story has been retold numerous times in the scriptures and lives on in modern age poetry and short stories as well as in dance and drama"?
Done. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Name and development

Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 16:10, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
  • "While the Bala Kanda mentions Ahalya's conscious decision to have sex... " - Tighten by deleting "conscious"?

Creation and marriage

  • "(dated between 6th–10th century) and Harivamsa (dated between 1st–3rd century)" - Perhaps "(dated between the 6th and 10th centuries) and Harivamsa (dated between the 1st and 3rd centuries)"? Ditto for similar constructions later in this section.
Done. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
  • "The Uttara Kanda of the Ramayana – considered a later addition to the epic relates one version of the story... " - Punctuation? I think you need another spaced en dash after "epic".
Done. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
  • "It further tells the question of Ahalya's marriage was determined through an open contest." - Missing word, "that", after "tells"?
Done. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
  • "One day, as the sage carried out his puja, the cow gave birth to a calf... " - Present tense instead of past; i.e., "carries" and "gives" to match the other verbs in this paragraph?
While the story is in the present tense, Narada mentions an event happened in the past.--Redtigerxyz Talk 16:10, 19 December 2011 (UTC)
  • "Gautama went around the wish-bearing cow Surabhi at his hermitage" - I'm not sure if "went around" is meant literally or not. If it means that he walked around the cow in a circle as part of his ritual, perhaps you could say that directly.
Linked. Replaced with circumumbulated - the word generally used by scholars as a translation of pradakshina. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Brahmanas

  • "Dr. Söhnen-Thieme of the School of Oriental and African Studies feels that the Kaushika... " - First name rather than academic title, Dr., and then a brief description? Something like "Renate Söhnen-Thieme, professor of (whatever) at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London" might do.
She is a Research Associate, teaches some courses in the school and member of some committees pof the school.--Redtigerxyz Talk 16:10, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Puranas

  • "to carry his shame in the form of a thousand vulvae on his body" - Perhaps a link to vulva?
Done. Redtigerxyz Talk 15:43, 19 December 2011 (UTC)

Finetooth (talk) 21:57, 17 December 2011 (UTC)

Ruhrfisch comments[edit]

I agree that this looks pretty good. As requested, here are some nit-picky suggestions for improvement.

  • I would use "her unflinching acceptance" in Due to the unflinching acceptance of the curse and loyalty to her husband, Ahalya is extolled as the first of the panchakanya ("five virgins") ...
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 03:31, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
  • I would make this the second to last sentence of the third paragraph of the lead Her story has been retold numerous times in the scriptures and lives on in modern age poetry and short stories as well as in dance and drama. (and make the current second to last sentence the last - I prefer going from the general to the specific.
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 03:31, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Probably should have a reference Ahalya is purified by offering Rama hospitality.
There in a ref in the detailed "Ramayana" section. --Redtigerxyz Talk 03:31, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Also needs a ref - if nothing else a note identifiying some of these modern versions However, in modern Ramayana adaptations where Rama is the hero, the redemption of Ahalya is still just a supernatural incident in his life.
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 06:25, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Needs a ref - Dr. Pratibha Ray's Oriya novel Mahamoha (1998) deals with Ahalya's tale. also does the use of Dr. follow the MOS?
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 03:31, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Do not need both "sometimes" and "in some versions" in this Sometimes, a fourth child called Vellala is added in some versions.
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 03:31, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
  • I would mention the children in the lead somehow per WP:LEAD - perhaps the last few sentences of the third paragraph could be something like Her story has been retold numerous times in the scriptures and lives on in modern age poetry and short stories as well as in dance and drama. Other traditions deal with her children. While ancient stories are Rama-centred, modern writers tell the story from Ahalya's perspective.
Great suggestion. --Redtigerxyz Talk 03:31, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
  • et al. is usually italicized as it is a Latin abbreviation
Done. --Redtigerxyz Talk 03:31, 24 December 2011 (UTC)
  • Please make sure that the existing text includes no copyright violations, plagiarism, or close paraphrasing. For more information on this please see Wikipedia:Wikipedia_Signpost/2009-04-13/Dispatches. (This is a general warning given in all peer reviews, in view of previous problems that have risen over copyvios.)

Hope this helps. If my comments are useful, please consider peer reviewing an article, especially one at Wikipedia:Peer review/backlog (which is how I found this article). I do not watch peer reviews, so if you have questions or comments, please contact me on my talk page. Yours, Ruhrfisch ><>°° 17:13, 23 December 2011 (UTC)