Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online

Get access

(4,920 words)

Gārgī Vācaknavī is a woman philosopher from the early upanishadic era who participated in a tournament held at the court of King Janaka of Videha. Her story is known from an account in the Bṛhadāraṇyakopaniṣad, which is one of very few to highlight the lives of gifted women thinkers in ancient India. These stories undermine a traditional vision of women as silent and invisible bystanders to male dominance of vedic…

Cite this page
Findly, Ellison B., “Gārgī”, in: Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism Online, Editor-in-Chief Associate Editors Knut A. Jacobsen, Helene Basu, Angelika Malinar, Vasudha Narayanan. Consulted online on 29 January 2022 <>
First published online: 2018

▲   Back to top   ▲