Tibet books

This category contains 7 posts

Kaushik Barua on Windhorse

Kaushik Barua’s first novel Windhorse is a fictional account of the Tibetan armed struggle against China. Through the lives of two Tibetans – one born in Tibet and witness to Chinese atrocities, and another, born in exile – he tells a modern tale of identity crisis that many young exile Tibetans face today, and of … Continue reading

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Favourite books on Tibet and Dharamshala

A huge number of books has been published on Tibet, ranging across travel memoir, history, biography, polemics and philosophy. Some, without doubt, are more readable than others. The following is very much a personal selection, favouring books that I have enjoyed because of their profundity, their clarity in telling a complex story, or the moving … Continue reading

Cracking open the world

“I felt so fortunate that this story fell into my lap. As a writer, how often does that happen?” says Thomas K. Shor. In Sikkim, Shor was introduced to an elderly Bhutanese woman whose story would, he was told, make him question his sense of reality. In 1962 she had left her land and everything … Continue reading

Tibet: Culture on the Edge – Phil Borges

In the epilogue to Culture on the Edge, Phil Borges turns his lens inward. ‘I didn’t want to point an accusing finger. After a year and a half traveling across the Tibetan plateau and seeing the issues the Tibetans face, my finger ultimately came around to point at me.’ He is talking about climate change, … Continue reading

Tibet: A History – Sam van Schaik

HISTORY DEMYSTIFIED The book starts with a dramatic moment. In the eighth century a brand new Tibetan empire burst out of the plateau, taking everyone by surprise when it captured the Chinese capital in 763. The Tibetans have never forgotten, and it’s unlikely the Chinese have either. The story of Tibet had actually begun a … Continue reading

Tragedy in Crimson – Tim Johnson

EARTH TREMORS AHEAD Pay no attention to the subtitle of this book, ‘How the Dalai Lama Conquered the World but Lost the Battle with China’. The author says relatively little about His Holiness, possibly because so much has already been written. As for losing the battle with China, if one thing emerges it is that … Continue reading

To a Mountain in Tibet – Colin Thubron

THE HEART OF THE MATTER This is an unusual book from Colin Thubron, regarded by many as the world’s greatest travel writer. It’s short – just 218 pages – and less dense than his other books, which often involve rambling journeys through the world’s forgotten places. Think Russia, Siberia, Central Asia or 1980s China, their … Continue reading