City Improbable: Writings on Delhi Kindle Edition
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City Improbable is an anthology that brings together writings on Delhi by residents, refugees,travellers and invaders who have engaged with the city at various moments in itslong history. Amir Khusrau, Ibn Battura, Samsam-ud-Daula and Niccolao Manuccirecord the glories and follies of prominent kings and emperors, from AnangpalTomar to Shah Jahan. Timur Lane tells the story of his own bloody invasion ofthe city, Khushwant Singh of an untouchable in the time of Aurangzeb, WilliamDalrymple of the first intrepid Englishmen in Delhi, and Ghalib and Hodson ofthe war of 1857. There are also vignettes of everyday life - a Jat household inthe nineteenth century; vendors and housewives in Ballimaran during the SecondWorld War; lovers and joggers in Lodi Garden; happy parties at the discos. Thecontemporary pieces, most of them specially commissioned for the collection,constitute a bitter-sweet ode to modern Delhi. The book is acollection as varied and lively - sometimes serious, sometimes richly humorous -as Delhi itself.
Khushwant Singh is Indias best known writer and columnist. He has been founder editor of Yojana and editor of the Illustrated Weekly of India, the National Herald and the Hindustan Times. He is the author of classics such as Train to Pakistan, I Shall Not Hear the Nightingale and Delhi. His latest novel, The Sunset Club, written when he was 95, was published by Penguin Books in 2010. His nonfiction includes the classic two volume A History of the Sikhs, a number of translations and works on Sikh religion and culture, Delhi, nature, current affairs and Urdu poetry. His autobiography, Truth, Love and a Little Malice, was published by Penguin Books in 2002.
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