Varanasi is the maddening, mysterious nerve center of India's spiritual life. It is also an intense paradigm of modern India's five thousand years of conflict with its fraught but splendid past. This book attempts an unusual exploration of Varanasi's ideas, events and places that make the city so remarkable. Specially, it focuses on its people —the Sanyasis, the priests, the young Banarasis — who sustain and perpetuate the concepts of life and death that animate their city.
Pramesh Ratnakar, 35, teaches English literature at Deen Dayal Upadhyay College, Delhi University and is currently working on a doctoral thesis on Nathaniel Hawthorne. He spent his early childhood in Banaras and wrote his first book on the city in 1986. "That was a straightforward look at the physical reality of Banaras", he says. "But, this one, worked out in four years of frequent visits, is essentially about the conflict between the old and new. For Varanasi, I realise, is more an idea than a place. It exists as much in the mind as in space."
Krishna Deo, 42, is a native Banarasi who took to photography in 1982. His work has been exhibited by UNESCO WHO, and in international photo competitions in Italy and India. For this book, Krishna Deo lived for a month with the Naga Sanyasis, dressed like them to walk in procession to the Kashi Vishwanath temple and relied heavily on the co-operation of his wife and children. "Thanks to their goodwill, I enjoyed photographing my city. In any case, I love Banaras, I live Banaras and when I die, I pray it will be here".
**Contents and Sample Pages**
Your email address will not be published *
Send as free online greeting card
Email a Friend