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Visigalli, Paolo (2016): The Buddha's Wordplays: The Rhetorical Function and Efficacy of Puns and Etymologizing in the Pali Canon. In: Journal of indian Philosophy, Vol. 44, No. 4: pp. 809-832
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Abstract

This essay explores selected examples of puns and etymologizing in the Pali canon. It argues that they do not solely serve a satirical intent, but are sophisticated rhetorical devices, skilfully employed by the Buddha to induce a reflective awareness in the listeners and persuade them into accepting his view. Their rhetorical function and efficacy is investigated, while foregrounding a new interpretation of the Aggaasutta.