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William Dalrymple

William Dalrymple

William Dalrymple is the bestselling author of In Xanadu, City of Djinns, From the Holy Mountain, Age of Kali, White Mughals, The Last Mughal, Nine Lives, Return of a King and Kohinoor. He has won many awards, including the Wolfson Prize for History, the Hemingway, the Kapuscinski, the Thomas Cook, and the Duff Cooper Memorial Prize. He has also been awarded the Arthur Ross Bronze Medal of the US Council on Foreign Relations and the prestigious President's Medal by the British Academy. His most recent books are The Anarchy: The Relentless Rise of the East India Company and Forgotten Masters: Indian Painting for the East India Company. Dalrymple is one of the founders and a co-director of the Jaipur Literature Festival.

Session

Book Launch: The Light of Asia: The Poem that Defined the Buddha

Jairam Ramesh in conversation with William Dalrymple

The JLF First Edition is delighted to host the virtual launch of Jairam Ramesh's latest work, The Light of Asia: The Poem that Defined the Buddha, published by Penguin Random House India.
The epic poem 'The Light of Asia' by Sir Edwin Arnold first took the world by storm in 1879. Sir Arnold’s rendering of the Bhagavad Gita was one of Mahatma Gandhi's abiding favourites.

Rajya Sabha member and author Jairam Ramesh’s book, The Light of Asia: The Poem that Defined the Buddha, makes an attempt to understand this important narrative poem that has now become a milestone in Buddhist historiography. Weaving together literary, cultural, political and social history, the book not only helps us understand the Buddha but also explores the life of the multifaceted poet who himself was steeped in Sanskrit literature. Ramesh’s other books include A Chequered Brilliance: The Many Lives of VK Krishna Menon and Intertwined Lives: PN Haksar and Indira Gandhi. In conversation with author and festival co-Director William Dalrymple, Ramesh inspects the form and style of this iconic poem and its everlasting impact on world history.