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Ramayana by William Buck


by William Buck

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321450,867 (4.11)8
  1. 10
    Ramayana by C. Rajagopalachari (marq)
    marq: Chakravarti Rajagopalachari's retelling of the ancient Hindu epic Ramayana is beautiful and moving. It is interesting to compare William Buck's version to Rajagopalachari's. Buck's has the timeless gravity of an epic struggle. Rajagopalachari's is a story of love, friendship and devotion. They are both superb.… (more)

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Showing 4 of 4
First piece of Hindu/Indian literature I've ever read, very interesting.
  chronoceros | Jul 15, 2016 |
William Buck has retold the story of the Ramayana, weaving in storylines from different versions of the epic. In the beginning, the origin of the demons (Rakshasas) and of the interaction between indulgent Gods and boon-seeking demons, and the worst of them Ravana who terrorizes Gods and men alike, is told. The story of King Dasaratha, and his four sons, the eldest Rama being the hero of the eponymous epic, follows. The main plot is that Rama, banished to the forest, retires there with wife and brother. Sita, his wife, is abducted by Ravana, and his ire aroused, Rama proceeds to wage war with the help of a monkey army, kills Ravana and retrieves his wife. The stories are illustrated with sketches of monkey warriors, kings, and men, which add allure to the text. (Ill: Shirley Triet). The narrative captures the flavor of the Indian epic very well, without making the story skeletal. The characters are well established, and some narrative conventions well preserved, as well as the magical nature of mythical beings are well conveyed. All in all, a unique and worthwhile rendering (if not translation) of the epic. ( )
1 vote sthitha_pragjna | Apr 13, 2009 |
A reasonably complete copy of the Sanskrit epic. Not exactly flavorful, but I have yet to find a better one. I find Buck to be pretty dry, which makes this feel like a scholarly read, not a fun read. But he's the defacto translator for Indian epics. ( )
  bethlakshmi | Oct 3, 2006 |
An excellent rendition which can be read to or by children as well as adults. ( )
  bobcity | Jul 23, 2006 |
Showing 4 of 4
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0520227034, Paperback)

Few works in world literature have inspired so vast an audience, in nations with radically different languages and cultures, as the Ramayana and Mahabharata, two Sanskrit verse epics written some 2,000 years ago.
In Ramayana (written by a poet known to us as Valmiki), William Buck has retold the story of Prince Rama--with all its nobility of spirit, courtly intrigue, heroic renunciation, fierce battles, and triumph of good over evil--in a length and manner that will make the great Indian epics accessible to the contemporary reader.
The same is true for the Mahabharata--in its original Sanskrit, probably the longest Indian epic ever composed. It is the story of a dynastic struggle, between the Kurus and Pandavas, for land. In his introduction, Sanskritist B. A. van Nooten notes, "Apart from William Buck's rendition [no other English version has] been able to capture the blend of religion and martial spirit that pervades the original epic."
Presented accessibly for the general reader without compromising the spirit and lyricism of the originals, William Buck's Ramayana and Mahabharata capture the essence of the Indian cultural heritage.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:23:54 -0400)

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