About the Book
The Mahabharata is one of the greatest stories ever told. Though the basic plot is widely known, there is much more to the epic than the dispute between the Kouravas and the Panda vas that led to the battle in Kurukshetra. Every conceivable human emotion figures in the Mahabharata, one of the reasons why the epic continues to enthral us.
This selection from the classic contains two fascinating sub- plots-how Droupadi came to be the wife of the five Pandavas and the heart-rending love story of Nala and Damayanti.
About the Author
Bibek Debroy is an economist and is Research Professor (Centre of Policy Research) and Contributing Editor (Indian Express group). He has worked in universities, research institutes, industry and for the government. He has published books, papers and popular articles in economics. But he has also published in Indology and translated (into English) the Vedas, the Puranas, the Upanishads and the Gita (Penguin India, 2005). His book Sarama and her Children: The Dog in Indian Myth (Penguin India, 2008) splices his interest in Hinduism with his love for dogs. He is currently translating an unabridged edition of the Mahabharata, the first two volumes of which were published by Penguin India in 2010.
The Mahabharata is one of the greatest stories ever told. It has plots and subplots and meandering and digressions. It is much more then the core story of a war between the Kouravas and the Pandavas, which everyone is familiar with, the culmination of which was the battle in Kurukshetra.
There are many different version and recensation of the Mahabharata. However, between 1919 and 1966, the Bhandarkar Oriental Research Institute (BORI) in Pune produced what has come to be known as the critical edition. This is an authenticated text produced by a board of scholars and seeks to eliminate later interpolations, unifying the text across the various regional versions. This is the text followed in the translation.
How is the Mahabharata classified? The core component is the coupler of shloka. Several such shloka from a chapter or adhyaya. Several adhyayas from a parva. Most people probably think that the Mahabharata has eighteen parvas. This is true, but there is another 100 parvaa classification that is indicated in the text itself. That is, the adhyayas can be classified either according to eighteen parvas or according to 100 parvas
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