In which I attempt, with no fixed deadline or time-frame in mind, to (re-)read the great Indian epic, The Mahabharata, from beginning to end, and write about it as I go along. I plan to read the Kisari Mohan Ganguli translation, available at Sacred Texts: http://www.sacred-texts.com/hin/maha/index.htm
Here is the sequence of posts:
11 responses to “The Mahabharata Project”
projects are good. I read Zola’s Rougon-Macquart series (took a few years) and am now working my way through Balzac…
Which translation are you reading? There is no translation of the complete text as far as I know (except one from the 19th century by Kishori Mohun Ganguly, which, from what I’ve seen, hasn’t dated well), although there is a work in progress by P. Lal; and a single-volume abridgement in Penguin Classics.translated by John Smith, which has been staring accusingly down at me from my shelves for a few years now.
Kishori Mohun Ganguly, yes. I’ve been skimming over various sections on sacred-texts.com. I’m not quite too sure about it, but as you say, it’s the only complete translation.
Keep an eye out for the various characters and their quirks. The Mahabharat has some very powerful characters who may not always be the most obvious catalyst of an outcome yet they were the most powerful.
There is a new translation in ten volumes of the full text bu Bibek Denroy. It is based on the authoritative Bhandarkar Institute version of the Mahabharata, which was not available when Ganguli made his translation.
Sorry mistyped name is Bibek Debroy and the publisher is Penguin.
Yes, I saw. Unfortunately, out of my price range at the moment. Maybe in a couple of years. 🙂
Hi, don’t think the link is working!
The Mahabharata tr. Kamala Subramaniam; Bharatiya Vidya Bhawan is also a good translation. It is available on Amazon.
It will be interesting to see how you fare. I endeavored to read the very same translation years ago but found it cumbersome, not to mention devoid of color and mood, owing in no small part to the archaic prose and the relentless, almost clinical adherence to *translation* (as opposed to, say, interpretation). the last I looked for English translations, J A B van Buitenen’s came well recommended – though, as far as I know, the dude died before he could complete the whole thing. also, the link to the first post seems to be broken.
May I invite you to sample a snippet from the Mahabharata as a Dastangoi presentation…Dastan-e Karn az Mahabharata from multiple sources