Wedding of the Goddess (2 Parts)
Year Released: 1976
Length: 76 minutes
This documentary provides the historical background for the annual Chittirai festival in the South Indian city of Madurai. With tales from medieval Tamil poems and paintings and sculptures from local temples, the film illustrates how the city, the main temple, the goddess Minakshi and the god Sundareshvara have evolved, and how the reenactment of the marriage of the god and goddess has become the most important annual festival of Madurai. The program shows the basic process of exchange between the temple deities and their worshippers and the importance of festivals in reestablishing cosmic order. The videotape also illustrates the ways in which kings, priests, and lay people contribute to the definitions and redefinitions of the festival's many layers of meaning. Contempory South Asia Documentary Series.