Allegory and Metaphor in the Legend of Bagger Vance for the Bhagavad Gita

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The film The Legend of Bagger Vance, based on the novel of the same name by Steven Pressfield, is a movie that transports the philosophical Hindu text, the Bhagavad Gita, from a celebrated battlefield, approximately during the 4th century BCE, in India to a fictional southern golf course in Savannah, Georgia during the Great Depression. The predominant theme of dharma (or duty) is a major point that both these works focus on.

The Legend of Bagger Vance is told from the point of view of Harvey Greaves, an old man reminiscing about a legendary golf tournament that was held in Savannah during his youth. The story begins with Greaves as an old man having his fifth heart attack while he is on a golf course. He goes onto explain his unconditional love for the game of golf, which arose when he was a child in Savannah, when he had the opportunity to caddy in one of the greatest golf tournaments of the century. The scenes flash back with Hardy telling the history of protagonist of the story, Rannulph Junuh. Junuh was a golfer born and bred in Savannah, gaining great fame during his teens and early adult hood, adorned by all, and courting the most eligible bachelorette in town, Adele Invergordon. Junuh, however, is soon after forced to fight in WWI, which traumatizes him, as he witnesses his entire regiment killed in battle, of which he is the only survivor. He returns to Savannah to live a reclusive life, attempting to drink away his memories of war. His former lover, Adele, is recovering from her father’s suicide, caused by the opening of his new golf resort during the inopportune time of the Great Depression, on which he spent his entire fortune. Adele is trying to recover the lost fortune by making her family’s golf resort the premier resort in the south, and she attempts to do so by holding one of the greatest golf tournaments of the south. She recruits the two greatest golfers of the nation, Bobby Jones and Walter Hagen, to play in her tournament. Due to the...
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