In the 13th Century, Marco Polo described India as a land of wonders,” and his observation is no less true today. India is the world's largest democracy, a nuclear power, and a rising economic giant-but also the world's most ancient surviving civilization, with unbroken continuity stretching back into prehistory. It is a land of tremendous spirituality punctuated by terrible religious violence, of vast deserts and Himalayan peaks that disappear into the sky, of remote Mughal forts and jam-packed megacities, and of the world's most glorious architectural splendors: the Taj Mahal, the Red Fort, and Luyten's Delhi. An epicenter of trade and a land of extraordinary riches, India has played a prominent role in world history. At the beginning of the 21st century, India has once again become a leading player on the world stage. In India, Michael Wood leads his audience on six eye-opening journeys into the subcontinent, where he uncovers the fabulous sights and sounds, the dazzling achievements, and the dramatic history of the world's most influential civilization. This sumptuously illustrated book is a magical mix of history and travelogue, and an unforgettable portrait of India-past, present, and future.
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Michael Wood is an acclaimed author and TV presenter. A broadcaster and film-maker of extraordinary range, Wood has over eighty documentary films to his name, including In the Footsteps of Alexander the Great, In Search of the Trojan War, and In Search of Shakespeare. Educated at Oxford, Wood is a fellow of the Royal Historical Society.From Publishers Weekly:
In a style that blends encyclopedic knowledge with a travel narrative, Wood (In Search of the Trojan War) presents the history of a country which, he claims, is itself "a tale of incredible drama, of great inventions and phenomenal creativity, and of the biggest ideas." Combining ancient and recent history with archaeology, anthropology, religion and linguistic studies, Wood provides a thorough view of India's journey to the present. Woods has a long personal history with the country and he uses it to great effect, combining first person accounts (such as hunting down an original manuscript of the ancient Rig-Veda text in a Calcutta library and stopping for tea at the "bazaar of storytellers") with discursive accounts of Tamil literature, the analysis of Hindu legends and subtle historical interpretation. As in the past, India's greatest strength, Wood claims, will be to "adapt and change, to use the gifts of history and to accept its wounds, but somehow, magically, to always be India." Filled with photographs and artwork, this is an excellent primer for anyone wishing to know about the evolution of this growing world power.
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