The Ramayana

The epic Ramayana has been performed throughout India and South East Asia for at least 2000 years. The earliest written text dates back to 400 AD, and was written by the poet Valmiki who brought together stories, songs and prayers connected to Rama and Sita. The epic's origins are in India and Hinduism, but over the centuries the story has crossed seas and mountains, languages and religions, performance styles and art forms. There are Muslim versions in Java, and Buddhist versions in Thailand. The story exists as shadow plays in Indonesia, temple carvings in Cambodia, dances, plays and ritual enactments throughout India. The text lives in books made of ola leaf in Sri Lanka and on painted boxes in North India. One of the phenomenons of this epic is its migration around the world, which has led to multiple versions and tellings, each storyteller re-composing the story for each audience. Ramayana is still a living performance tradition today.


Choose the following parts of the stories below:

Princess Sita's Kidnap

Hanuman's Leap to Lanka

Finding Sita at Ravana's Palace in Lanka

The Medicine Mountain

Sita's Fire Test