The Pancatantra

The Pancatantra : The Book of India's Folk Wisdom

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The Pancatantra is the most famous collection of fables in India and was one of the earliest Indian books to be translated into Western languages. No other Indian work has had a greater influence on world literature, and no other collection of stories has become as popular in India itself. A significant influence on the Arabian Nights and the Fables of La Fontaine, the Pancatantra teaches the principles of good government and public policy through the medium of animal stories. Its positive attitude towards life and its advocacy of ambition, enterprise, and drive counters any preconception of passivity and other-worldliness in ancient Indian society. Patrick Olivelle presents the Pancatantra in all its complexity and rich ambivalence, examining central elements of political and moral philosophy alongside the many controversial issues surrounding its history, including its numerous versions and translations, and the reconstruction of the original text by Franklin Edgerton. This new translation vividly reveals the story-telling powers of the original author, while detailed notes illuminate aspects of ancient Indian society and religion to the non-specialist reader.
This book is intended for courses on folklore; World/Asian literature; Cultural Studies; Courses on Indian culture and society; the general reader. Translated and edited by: Olivelle, Patrick (Chair, Department of Asian Studies; Director, Center for Asian Studies; Professor of Sanskrit and Indian Religions, University of Texas at Austin);
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Product details

  • Paperback | 247 pages
  • 116.84 x 180.34 x 15.24mm | 113.4g
  • Oxford University Press
  • Oxford Paperbacks
  • Oxford, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • 0192832999
  • 9780192832993

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1,408 ratings
4.27 out of 5 stars
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3 13% (188)
2 3% (46)
1 1% (21)
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