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The age of Kali: Travels and Encounters in India

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William Dalrymple, who wrote so magically about India in ‘City of Djinns’, returns to the country in a series of remarkable essays.

Featured in its pages are 15-year-old guerrilla girls and dowager Maharanis; flashy Bombay drinks parties and violent village blood feuds; a group of vegetarian terrorists intent on destroying India’s first Kentucky Fried Chicken outlet; and a palace where port and cigars are still carried to guests on a miniature silver steam train.

Dalrymple meets such figures as Imran Khan and Benazir Bhutto; he witnesses the macabre nightly offering to the bloodthirsty goddess Parashakti – She Who Is Seated on a Throne of Five Corpses; he experiences caste massacres in the badlands of Bihar and dines with a drug baron on the North-West Frontier; he discovers such oddities as the terrorist apes of Jaipur and the shrine where Lord Krishna is said to make love every night to his 16,108 wives and 64,732 milkmaids.

‘The Age of Kali’ is the fourth fascinating volume from the author of ‘In Xanadu’, ‘City of Djinns’ and ‘From the Holy Mountain’.

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Review:

William Dalrymple has proved himself to be one of the most perceptive and enjoyable travel writers of the 1990s. His first book In Xanadu became an instant back-packer's classic, winning a stream of literary prizes. City of Djinns and From the Holy Mountain soon followed, to universal critical praise. Yet it is to India where Dalrymple continues to return in his travels, and his fourth book The Age of Kali is his most reflective book to date.

The result of 10 year's living and travelling throughout the Indian subcontinent, The Age of Kali emerges from Dalrymple's uneasy sense that the region is slipping into the most fearsome of all epochs in ancient Hindu cosmology: "the Kali Yug, the Age of Kali, the lowest possible throw, an epoch of strife, corruption, darkness and disintegration". The brilliance of this book lies in its refusal to slip into the cultural pessimism of books such as V.S. Naipaul's Beyond Belief. Dalrymple's love for the subcontinent, and his feel for its diverse cultural identity, comes across in every page, which makes its chronicles of political corruption, ethnic violence and social disintegration all the more poignant. The scope of the book is particularly impressive, from the vivid opening chapters portraying the lawless caste violence of Bihar, to interviews with the drug barons on the North-West Frontier, and Dalrymple's extraordinary encounter with the Tamil Tigers in Sri Lanka. Some of the most fascinating sections of the book are Dalrymple's interviews with Imran Khan and Benazir Bhutto in Pakistan, which read like non-fictional companion pieces to Salman Rushdie's bitterly satirical Shame. The Age of Kali is a dark, disturbing book which takes the pulse of a continent facing some tough questions. --Jerry Brotton

Review:

‘Dalrymple is probably the best travel writer of his generation’ Daily Mail

‘The future of travel writing lies in the hands of gifted authors like Dalrymple’ Sara Wheeler, Independent

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9780002555104: The Age of Kali Indian Travels and Encounters

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ISBN 10: 0002555107 ISBN 13: 9780002555104
Publisher: HarperCollins, 1998
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9781864501728: Lonely Planet: Journeys: Age of Kali: Indian Travels and Encounters

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9789385936548: The Age of Kali [Paperback] [Jan 01, 2017] Books Wagon

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Book Description Trade Paperback. Condition: New. Flamingo, June 1999. Trade Paperback. New. Not damaged. No remainder mark. xxii + 385 pages. As he searched for evidence of Kali Yug, the "age of darkness" predicted by an ancient Hindu cosmology in a final epoch of strife and corruption, Dalrymple encountered a region that thrilled and surprised him. Venturing to places rarely visited by foreigners, he presents compelling portraits of a diverse range of figures. His love for the subcontinent comes across in every page, which makes its chronicles of political corruption, ethnic violence and social disintegration all the more poignant. The result is a dark yet vibrant travelogue, and a unique look at a region that continues to be marked by rapid change and unlimited possibilities as it struggles to reconcile the forces of modernity and tradition. Contents: Introduction -- The North. The age of Kali ; In the kingdom of Avadh ; The city of widows ; Warrior queen: the Rajmata of Gwalior ; East of Eton -- In Rajasthan. The sad tale of Bahveri Devi ; Caste wars ; Sati Mata -- The new India. Two Bombay portraits ; Finger-lickin' bad: Bangalore and the fast-food invaders -- The South. At the court of the fish-eyed goddess ; Under the Char Minar ; Parashakti -- On the Indian Ocean. At Donna Georgina's ; Up the tiger path ; The sorcerer's grave -- Pakistan. Imran Khan: out for a duck ; On the frontier ; Blood on the tracks ; Benazir Bhutto: Mills & Boon in Karachi. Seller Inventory # RWARE0000000665

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Book Description Paperback. Condition: New. UK ed. Language: English. Brand new Book. William Dalrymple, who wrote so magically about India in 'City of Djinns', returns to the country in a series of remarkable essays. Featured in its pages are 15-year-old guerrilla girls and dowager Maharanis; flashy Bombay drinks parties and violent village blood feuds; a group of vegetarian terrorists intent on destroying India's first Kentucky Fried Chicken outlet; and a palace where port and cigars are still carried to guests on a miniature silver steam train. Dalrymple meets such figures as Imran Khan and Benazir Bhutto; he witnesses the macabre nightly offering to the bloodthirsty goddess Parashakti - She Who Is Seated on a Throne of Five Corpses; he experiences caste massacres in the badlands of Bihar and dines with a drug baron on the North-West Frontier; he discovers such oddities as the terrorist apes of Jaipur and the shrine where Lord Krishna is said to make love every night to his 16,108 wives and 64,732 milkmaids. 'The Age of Kali' is the fourth fascinating volume from the author of 'In Xanadu', 'City of Djinns' and 'From the Holy Mountain'. Seller Inventory # AAZ9780006547754

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Book Description Paperback. Condition: new. Paperback. William Dalrymple, who wrote about India in "City of Djinns", returns to the country in a series of essays. Featured in the pages this work are 15-year-old guerrilla girls and dowager Maharanis; flashy Bombay drinks parties and violent village blood feuds; a group of vegetarian terrorists intent on destroying India's first Kentucky Fried Chicken outlet; and a palace where port and cigars are still carried to guests on a miniature silver steam train. In the course of his travels, Dalrymple meets such figures as Imran Khan, Ismail Merchant, Benazir Bhutto and Baba Sehgal, the Indian Gary Glitter; he witnesses the macabre nightly offering to the bloodthirsty goddess Parashakti - She Who is Seated on a Throne of Five Corpses; he experiences civil war in Kashmir and caste massacres in the badlands of Bihar, and dines with a drug baron on the North-West Frontier; he discovers such oddities as the terrorist apes of Jaipur (only brought to book when the municipality began impregnating their bananas with opium); and the shrine where Lord Krishna is said to make love every night to his 16,108 wives and 64,732 milkmaids. Travels and encounters in India. Shipping may be from multiple locations in the US or from the UK, depending on stock availability. Seller Inventory # 9780006547754

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Book Description Paperback. Condition: New. UK ed. Language: English. Brand new Book. William Dalrymple, who wrote so magically about India in 'City of Djinns', returns to the country in a series of remarkable essays. Featured in its pages are 15-year-old guerrilla girls and dowager Maharanis; flashy Bombay drinks parties and violent village blood feuds; a group of vegetarian terrorists intent on destroying India's first Kentucky Fried Chicken outlet; and a palace where port and cigars are still carried to guests on a miniature silver steam train. Dalrymple meets such figures as Imran Khan and Benazir Bhutto; he witnesses the macabre nightly offering to the bloodthirsty goddess Parashakti - She Who Is Seated on a Throne of Five Corpses; he experiences caste massacres in the badlands of Bihar and dines with a drug baron on the North-West Frontier; he discovers such oddities as the terrorist apes of Jaipur and the shrine where Lord Krishna is said to make love every night to his 16,108 wives and 64,732 milkmaids. 'The Age of Kali' is the fourth fascinating volume from the author of 'In Xanadu', 'City of Djinns' and 'From the Holy Mountain'. Seller Inventory # FOY9780006547754

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