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Poetry / Asian Studies / Comparative Literature




Hibiscus on the Lake
Twentieth-Century Telugu Poetry from India
Edited and translated by Velcheru Narayana Rao


A lyrical anthology of contemporary poetry from India

English speakers may read for the first time a previously hidden literature of great beauty and importance, compiled and translated by one of the foremost scholars of the literature of twentieth-century India.

Richly appealing, sensitively and masterfully translated, surprisingly accessible, and adeptly organized, these poems from the Telugu language of southern India will find in this groundbreaking anthology the wider international readership they deserve and a place in the worldwide emergence of India's vernacular literature.

Velcheru Narayana Rao is an ideal guide for the English-language reader's timely introduction to this long and vigorous literary tradition and to the generously varied poets whose accomplished, exotic, enigmatic voices speak to us here at last in the boundless tradition of all great poetry.

"A unique work. There is no similar or comparable anthology for any Indian literature, let alone Telugu. All of the translations are exquisite and learned, a rare combination indeed."—Phyllis Granoff, McMaster University

Velcheru Narayana Rao is the Krishnadevaraya Professor of Languages and Cultures of Asia at the University of Wisconsin–Madison. He is the coeditor, with David Shulman, of A Poem at the Right Moment: Remembered Verses from Premodern South India.


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June 2003
LC: 2001005496 PL
360 pp.   6 x 9  

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Paper $19.95 t
ISBN 978-0-299-17704-1
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Cloth $45.00 s
ISBN 978-0-299-17700-3
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Entirely original, ironic, sensuous but never sexist. A small masterpiece and a precious piece of the record of good writing on this planet."
—Wendy Doniger, University of Chicago Divinity School

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