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Tibet, Tibet: A Personal History of a Lost Land (Vintage Departures)

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Tibet, Tibet: A Personal History of a Lost Land (Vintage Departures) Cover

ISBN13: 9781400034178
ISBN10: 1400034175
Condition: Student Owned
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Staff Pick

Far from a Hollywood interpretation, French's research on Tibet is enlightening, analytical, and passionate. This historical travel memoir may be the best of its kind.
Recommended by Malia, Powells.com

Synopses & Reviews

Please note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.

Publisher Comments:

When Patrick French was a teenager, the Dalai Lama visited his school in northern England. Fascinated by this exotic apparition, French began what was to become a lifelong quest to understand Tibet, the myth and the fact. He would immerse himself in the history, travel as the guest of ordinary Tibetans — nuns, nomads, and exiles — and organize Free Tibet activists from an office in London. Now he gives us a kaleidoscopic account of that journey.

Part memoir, part travel book, part history, Tibet, Tibet ventures beyond our world-weary fantasies to discover the truth behind a culture's struggle for survival. In French's narrative, a land adored for peaceful spirituality reveals its surprising early history of fierce war-making. Here as well are the centuries-old legends of how Tibetan diplomats maneuvered deftly at the Chinese court, legends that inform to this day each people's view of the other. A perennial vassal state, Tibet nevertheless managed to preserve its distinctive culture for centuries — until the twentieth, when everything was destroyed with devastating speed by Mao's overwhelming forces.

Today, as Chinese tourists take snapshots and buy kitsch at Tibetan monasteries, young nuns quietly continue the underground fight against Communist rule. In Dharamsala, over cappuccino, exiled monks pitch their cause to Western pilgrims decked out in gaudy robes. Tibetans recall the terrible days of the Great Leap Forward and eagerly ask French for news of the Dalai Lama. In the presence of this internationally revered spiritual and political leader, French retains a measure of his youthful amazement, but finally, inescapably, he comes to disturbing conclusions about His Holiness's role in his people's collective tragedy.

With immense learning and a clear but compassionate eye, Patrick French gives us a sober new understanding of a culture's senseless catastrophe and allows us to see what realistically can — and cannot — be done to alleviate it.

Review:

"First-rate reporting, sometimes alarming and always informative, from a writer whose heart instructs his mind and animates his pen." Kirkus Reviews

Review:

"Colorful stories about previous incarnations of the Dalai Lama and examples of badly written signs throughout the country...provide momentary relief from the brutality, without diminishing the impact of this starkly realistic portrait of a land that has become a shadow of its former self." Publishers Weekly

Review:

"[A] perceptive book that goes a step further than Hollywood celebrities putting protest bumper stickers on their cars." Library Journal

Review:

"Unflinching...French has a decided gift for inspired and heartfelt research. Strikingly scrupulous and disciplined, he wins readers' trust...earns our admiration...[and] brilliantly dissects much that is fuzzy or wrong in the indiscriminate embrace of Tibet." Pico Iyer, Los Angeles Times Book Review

Review:

"I am deeply grateful to Patrick French for going [to Tibet] and emerging with an insightful and compassionate report that tells me what I need to know about the beleagured magic kingdom" Newsday

About the Author

Patrick French was born in England in 1966. He studied literature at the University of Edinburgh, and is the author of Younghusband: The Last Great Imperial Adventurer, which won the Somerset Maugham Award and the Royal Society of Literature W. H. Heinemann Prize, and Liberty or Death: India's Journey to Independence and Division, which won the London Sunday Times Young Writer of the Year Award.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

uscrigzin, May 27, 2008 (view all comments by uscrigzin)
This book stands out from the rest of books on Tibet in that it is very honest and as a result succeeds in unraveling the myth of Tibet. So if you want to see Tibet as it is, then this one deserves a place in your bookshelf.
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Product Details

ISBN:
9781400034178
Author:
French, Patrick
Publisher:
Vintage Departures
Author:
Patrick French
Subject:
Essays & Travelogues
Subject:
Asia - Tibet
Subject:
Travel : Essays & Travelogues
Subject:
History : General
Subject:
Travel-Asia - General
Subject:
Travel Writing-General
Subject:
World History-General
Subject:
| Travel | Asia
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
Vintage Departures
Publication Date:
20041131
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
3 MAPS
Pages:
348
Dimensions:
7.70x5.62x.77 in. .60 lbs.

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Related Subjects

History and Social Science » Asia » India » Ancient and General
History and Social Science » Asia » Tibet
History and Social Science » World History » India
History and Social Science » World History » Tibet and Nepal
Travel » Asia » General
Travel » Travel Writing » Asia
Travel » Travel Writing » General

Tibet, Tibet: A Personal History of a Lost Land (Vintage Departures) Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$10.00 In Stock
Product details 348 pages Vintage Departures - English 9781400034178 Reviews:
"Staff Pick" by ,

Far from a Hollywood interpretation, French's research on Tibet is enlightening, analytical, and passionate. This historical travel memoir may be the best of its kind.

"Review" by , "First-rate reporting, sometimes alarming and always informative, from a writer whose heart instructs his mind and animates his pen."
"Review" by , "Colorful stories about previous incarnations of the Dalai Lama and examples of badly written signs throughout the country...provide momentary relief from the brutality, without diminishing the impact of this starkly realistic portrait of a land that has become a shadow of its former self."
"Review" by , "[A] perceptive book that goes a step further than Hollywood celebrities putting protest bumper stickers on their cars."
"Review" by , "Unflinching...French has a decided gift for inspired and heartfelt research. Strikingly scrupulous and disciplined, he wins readers' trust...earns our admiration...[and] brilliantly dissects much that is fuzzy or wrong in the indiscriminate embrace of Tibet."
"Review" by , "I am deeply grateful to Patrick French for going [to Tibet] and emerging with an insightful and compassionate report that tells me what I need to know about the beleagured magic kingdom"
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