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The Mahabharata: A Shortened Modern Prose Version of the Indian Epic [Format Kindle]

R. K. Narayan , Wendy Doniger

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Présentation de l'éditeur

The Mahabharata tells a story of such violence and tragedy that many people in India refuse to keep the full text in their homes, fearing that if they do, they will invite a disastrous fate upon their house. Covering everything from creation to destruction, this ancient poem remains an indelible part of Hindu culture and a landmark in ancient literature.

Centuries of listeners and readers have been drawn to The Mahabharata, which began as disparate oral ballads and grew into a sprawling epic. The modern version is famously long, and at more than 1.8 million words—seven times the combined lengths of the Iliad and Odyssey—it can be incredibly daunting.

Contemporary readers have a much more accessible entry point to this important work, thanks to R. K. Narayan’s masterful translation and abridgement of the poem. Now with a new foreword by Wendy Doniger, as well as a concise character and place guide and a family tree, The Mahabharata is ready for a new generation of readers. As Wendy Doniger explains in the foreword, “Narayan tells the stories so well because they’re all his stories.” He grew up hearing them, internalizing their mythology, which gave him an innate ability to choose the right passages and their best translations.

In this elegant translation, Narayan ably distills a tale that is both traditional and constantly changing. He draws from both scholarly analysis and creative interpretation and vividly fuses the spiritual with the secular. Through this balance he has produced a translation that is not only clear, but graceful, one that stands as its own story as much as an adaptation of a larger work.

Biographie de l'auteur

R. K. Narayan (1906–2001) was one of the most prominent Indian novelists of the twentieth century. His works include Mr. Sampath—The Printer of Malgudi, Swami and Friends, Waiting for Mahatma, and Gods, Demons, and Others, all published by the University of Chicago Press.

Détails sur le produit

  • Format : Format Kindle
  • Taille du fichier : 4862 KB
  • Nombre de pages de l'édition imprimée : 213 pages
  • Pagination - ISBN de l'édition imprimée de référence : 022605165X
  • Editeur : University of Chicago Press; Édition : Reprint (12 février 2016)
  • Vendu par : Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Langue : Anglais
  • Synthèse vocale : Activée
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  • Word Wise: Non activé
  • Composition améliorée: Activé
  • Classement des meilleures ventes d'Amazon: n°276.798 dans la Boutique Kindle (Voir le Top 100 dans la Boutique Kindle)

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Commentaires client les plus utiles sur Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.1 étoiles sur 5  19 commentaires
57 internautes sur 61 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Useful as first introduction only 20 janvier 2001
Par Walter O. Koenig - Publié sur Amazon.com
This book is only useful for those who want a very basic introduction to the Mahabharata, and only want to invest a minimum of time doing so. This book will give the reader the basic outline of the Plot, but does not dwelve into the many important Philosophical portions of the Epic, and the "outside stories". The book is well written. I like the style of R.K. Narayan. As an introduction this book is much better than that of Buck, not only because Narayan is a better writer, but because he had a better knowledge of the Epic, Hinduism and Sanskrit Literature.
If you must get an introduction, I recommend the one by C.V. Narasimhan, which based on selected verses, and brings the reader much closer to the Mahabharata.
29 internautes sur 30 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
5.0 étoiles sur 5 A Great Epic 11 novembre 2000
Par Zerzura - Publié sur Amazon.com
This shortened prose version of the Mahabarata by R. K. Narayan presents the engaging adventure of the five Pandava brothers' efforts to reclaim their empire. The story itself has nearly everything anyone could want in a good book: edge of your seat action and edge of your mind inspiration. In addition to celebrating the Pandavas' super-human strength and feats of daring, the book also catalogs many types of human relationships: mother-child, sybling-sybling, husband(s)-wife, king-courtier, mentor-apprentice, even writer-reader..... Long after you finish reading this book, you'll be realizing why Hindus recognize it as one of their two most sacred books---it's got everything! And yet it rarely stoops to the level of being preachy. (Narayan also has a shortened prose version of the other sacred Hindu book---The Ramayana.)
22 internautes sur 23 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 Good book for new readers 20 décembre 2000
Par rahul@cradle.com - Publié sur Amazon.com
This is a good book for those who do not know Mahabharat story. The reason it is good for the beginners is that it is concise and flows through the subject quickly. So it would be a good book for new readers who can quickly get a sort of overview of Mahabharat.
If you already know Mahabharat plot and story, try and get a little advanced book.
10 internautes sur 10 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 A little "too abridged"? 13 décembre 2009
Par C. E. Stevens - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Having just been mesmerized by my exposure to Indian literature through Ramesh Menon's outstanding version of the Ramayana, I looked to continue my journey through this corner of the literary world by reading the Mahabharata. Unlike the Ramayana and the Bhagavad Gita (which I intend to read next), no version of this tale jumped out at me on my perusal through Amazon reviews. I decided to give Narayan's version a shot due to name recognition and popularity. Having just finished the tale, I have mixed emotions. On the one hand, I found the story itself to be interesting and Narayan's prose to be quite readable; on the other, I felt like I just scratched the surface of this great tale. I typically avoid abridgments, and should've known better than to think that an epic could be reduced to a mere 190-some pages, but I was truly disappointed by the abbreviated nature of this version. After relishing the richness of Menon's Ramayana, I felt like this version captured neither the rich grandeur needed to appreciate the scale of the epic nor gave the attention necessary to allow the reader to dwell on the deeper philosophical points. Because unlike the Ramayana, which was truly an archetypal "good versus evil" struggle, the Mahabharata is full of interesting moral wrinkles because it keeps the battle in the family. Brother fights brother and protege fights mentor, as several generations of this family are involved. Although the Kauravas (and Duryodhana in particular) are cast as the instigator and oppressor, I cannot fully disagree when Duryodhana gives his side of the story or when Yudhistira has his misgivings both before and after the war. Most emotionally and philosophically poignant are the doubts of the stoic and brave Arjuna as the families are at the brink of war. More so than the battle itself it was these moral and philosophical issues that I found most interesting.

Fortunately, it is my understanding that the conversation between Arjuna and Krishna (which consists of only a paragraph or two in this version of the Mahabharata) comprises the bulk of the Bhagavad Gita, which I am immensely excited to read next. As for the Mahabharata itself, Narayan's version gave me a bare bones introduction ... but I will need to revisit this tale through a different version to truly feel well-versed in the epic. As other reviews state, read Narayan for a very basic introduction to the story. However, overall it felt a little "too abridged" to do either the story or the moral underpinnings of the story the justice they deserve.
7 internautes sur 8 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
3.0 étoiles sur 5 An impossible task made passible...(3.5 stars) 2 juin 2014
Par David Fowler - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Broché|Achat vérifié
Reducing the Mahabharata to a digestible narrative is VERY difficult (the poem being about 8 times longer than the Iliad and Odyssey combined). However, Narayan has done a nice job in his attempt, and a text that would otherwise be almost totally inaccessible due to its daunting size, is made thus accessible. So, job well done on that score. However, so much is left out, elided or smoothed over that it's hard to really make use of the text as a means of understanding the Mahabharata's epic style and points of interest. If you want to simply acquaint yourself with the overall basic (but still incomplete) narrative then this is a reasonable option, but if you want to enter the world of the Mahabharata on a level anywhere approaching its cognate Greek cousins - this is woefully incomplete. For that purpose I would begin looking at Narasimha's work and that of J.D. Smith. If you REALLY want to enter this world there is the still incomplete Chicago translation, the Clay Sanskrit Library rendering (also still incomplete and not based on the critical edition), or the, again still incomplete (but moving faster than the rest), rendering by Bibek Debroy.
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