Sven Wortmann, using Brian Black's narratological approach (already discussed in this blog here), read a paper at the IIGRS2 conference in Cambridge on these themes. He maintains that through a narratological reading one can identify the cases where a norm is broken. Specifically, one could use as identification marks the following ones:
- 1. the text explicitly indicates the content as counter-normative
- 2. other texts indicate it as such
- 3. the content becomes a motif
- 4. the content is deleted in other parallel or later texts
A last interesting questions regard the context of this allegedly counter-normative motives: have they been composed by kṣatriyas? By urbanised (i.e., progressive) brahmins?