This volume, like the epic it deals with, passed through several stages before assuming its present form. Originally some of these essays appeared in the Journal of South Asian Literature (XX: 1:1-168). I would like the take this opportunity to thank Professor Carlo Coppola for inviting me to edit the section of that issue devoted to the Mahabharata and for permitting me to incorporate in this volume.
Not everyone who wanted to write could do so in time for the issue, and so the idea of a book emerged. In due course the alchemy of patience (and repeated requests) gradually transformed promises into finished products. Thus, after several years of a merely notional existence the book is now in your hands. But then some things are worth waiting for -a sentiment I hope the appearance of this volume will confirm.
From the Jacket
This book is a classic study of a monumental work, the Mahabharata, perhaps the largest epic in world literature. It is an epic study of the epic on account of the voluminous size it has itself attained, the kaleidoscopic variety of the themes it covers, the great diversity of approaches it canvasses, the wide array of contributions it includes and the high standard of scholarship it achieves.
Readership: Students and specialists of Hinduism, comparative religion, comparative literature, comparative mythology and classics.
Arvind Sharma is the Birks Professor of Comparative Religion in the faculty of Religious Studies at McGill University; and was the first Infinity Foundation Visiting Professor of Indic Studies at Harvard University. His previous works on Advaita Vedanta include: The Experiential Dimension of Advaita Vedanta (1993); The Philosophy of Religion and Advaita Vedanta (1995); and The Rope and the Snake: A Metaphorical Exploration of Advaita Vedanta (1997).
He lives in Montreal, Canada.
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