Bookless in Baghdad: Reflections on Writing and Writers

Front Cover
Arcade Publishing, 2005 - Literary Collections - 277 pages
19 Reviews
'A fluid and powerful writer, one of the best in a generation of Indian authors' (New York Times Book Review), Shashi Tharoor, the acclaimed author of six books, all published by Arcade, is once again at his provocative best. Supremely personal, yet always probing and analytical, this brilliant collection is part memoir, part essay and literary criticism. In the title piece, we learn what Iraqis go through in their beleaguered land merely to get hold of a book, and how selling books from their own libraries on the street helps some put bread on the table. Tharoor reminisces about growing up with books in India and discusses the importance of the Mahabharata in Indian life and history. There is also a poignant homage to Chilean poet Pablo Neruda, whose home was raided by the oppressive military regime while he lay on his deathbed, and who famously said: 'There is only one thing of danger for you here-my poetry!' Pondering world affairs, Tharoor declares that 'the defining features of today's world are the relentless forces of globalization-the same forces used by the terrorists in their macabre dance of death and destruction.' Tharoor's astute views on Salman Rushdie, India's love for P. G. Wodehouse, Kipling, Pushkin, le Carr, V. S. Naipaul, and Winston Churchill make for fascinating reading. His insightful takes on Hollywood and Bollywood will intrigue even the most demanding cinephile. Together, these 39 pieces reveal the inner workings of one of today's most eclectic writers.
  

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Review: Bookless in Baghdad: Reflections on Writing and Writers

User Review  - Sarinkumar Ps - Goodreads

He is a man of contradictions all the time... even these days his name is in the headlines, this book showed me how Shashi Tharoor is molded with his wast reading and literary life. Also answered my question how a good book can influence one persons thoughts.. Read full review

Review: Bookless in Baghdad: Reflections on Writing and Writers

User Review  - Bindu Manoj - Goodreads

A 3.5 would be more like it. Absolutely loved it in some parts, couldn't get through a couple of chapters. Enjoyed it overall :) Read full review

Contents

INSPIRATIONS 1 Growing Up with Books in India
3
Revenging Rudyard Subverting Scarlett
11
Whose Culture Is It Anyway?
16
In Defense of the Bollywood Novel
37
A Novel of Collisions
42
Art for Hearts Sake
47
RECONSIDERATIONS 7 Right Ho Sahib Wodehouse and India
53
Malcolm Muggeridge
62
Literature S II Vous Plait
150
Bharatiya Sanskriti in the Big Apple
155
The Poets of Protocol
160
The Critic as Cosmetologist
165
The Cultural Geography of Criticism
169
How Not to Deal with a Bad Review
174
Elegy for a Literary Monument
179
Why the Yeti Brings Hope to a Land without Snow
183

Winston Churchill
67
The Spy Who Stayed Out in the Cold
72
Remembering Pushkin
80
The Committed Poet
84
Nirad Chaudhuri
90
R K Narayans Comedies of Suffering
95
The Enigma of Being V S Naipaul
101
The Ground beneath His Feet
107
THE LITERARY LIFE
131
Rushdies Reappearance
133
Books and Botox
137
Illiteracy in America
142
The Great American Literary Illusion
146
How Riot Nearly Caused a Riot
187
APPROPRIATIONS 30 With Friends Like These
193
From the Bathtub to Bollywood
198
For Whom the Bill Tolls
207
The Rise of the Political Litterateur
211
Homage in Huesca
215
Is There a St Stephens School of Literature?
218
Quotes of Many Colors
229
The Pornography of Poverty?
234
INTERROGATIONS 38 Bookless in Baghdad
241
Globalization and the Human Imagination
247
The Anxiety of Audience
267
Copyright

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