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eBook Secret Tibet (Panther) ePub

by Fosco Maraini

eBook Secret Tibet (Panther) ePub
Author: Fosco Maraini
Language: English
ISBN: 186046873X
ISBN13: 978-1860468735
Publisher: Random House UK; First Edition edition (January 1, 2002)
Pages: 425
Category: Writing Research & Publishing Guides
Subcategory: Reference
Rating: 4.4
Votes: 908
Formats: txt mobi mbr docx
ePub file: 1421 kb
Fb2 file: 1264 kb

In this book, Fosco Maraini recounts his travels to Tibet in 1939 and 1948, before it fell to China. He brings back to life a world which will never be seen again. In the tradition of Italian travellers from the days of Marco Polo, Maraini went to Tibet to learn, to understand, to give, and to receive.

FREE shipping on qualifying offers. Fosco Maraini travelled Tibet as a wanderer in the late 1940s. He talked to people of all backgrounds and classes. His book is very graphic.

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There is something about traveling in Tibet that makes Westerners reach for their pens. But of the literally dozens of travelers who have described their Tibetan adventures, few have possessed Fosco Maraini’s talent for writing.

Maraini describes Tibet as a kingdom of the sky and the su. glorious symbol of the most . glorious symbol of the most crystalline rationality, of serene and harmonious thought. And, he ponders, will not the interior life of the inhabitants of such a country resemble the nature that surrounds them? Not entirely. Writing to Maraini about Secret Tibet, the American art historian Bernard Berenson noted: I was there with you when you talked to Tibetans, lay and ecclesiastical, mystics, scholars, theologians, minstrels, shopkeepers, beggars, artisans and artists, proletarian priests and monks, peasants and shepherds. Indeed, Maraini had a truly democratic eye.

Fosco Maraini (Italian: ; 15 November 1912 – 8 June 2004) was an Italian photographer, anthropologist, ethnologist, writer, mountaineer and academic. As a photographer, Fosco Maraini is perhaps best known for his work in Tibet and Japan

Find nearly any book by Fosco Maraini. Fosco Maraini (Maraini, Fosco). used books, rare books and new books. Secret Tibet (Panther): ISBN 9781860468735 (978-1-86046-873-5) Softcover, Random House UK, 2002.

Find nearly any book by Fosco Maraini. Get the best deal by comparing prices from over 100,000 booksellers. Find all books by 'Fosco Maraini' and compare prices Find signed collectible books by 'Fosco Maraini'. Il primo libro di Fosco Maraini e i ricordi dei suoi amici. ISBN 9781135103965 (978-1-135-10396-5) Hardcover, -, 1952. Find signed collectible books: 'Tibet Secret.

Italian explorer and travel writer who brought his understanding of the east to the west. He taught Italian literature at Kyoto University and Japanese literature at the University of Florence, the city where he was born and to which he always returned. From 1959 to 1964, he held a fellowship at the department of far eastern studies at St Antony's College, Oxford.

In this book, Fosco Maraini recounts his travels to Tibet in 1939 and 1948, before it fell to China. He brings back to life a world which will never be seen again. In the tradition of Italian travellers from the days of Marco Polo, Maraini went to Tibet to learn, to understand, to give, and to receive. His encounter with the people of Tibet, from princesses to peasants, aided as he was by a good knowledge of the language, is a true meeting of minds. The text, which attests to the disciplines of the scholar allied to the sensitivity of the poet, is enriched by the narrative value of the author's photographs, including many Buddhist temple artifacts now forever lost.
I first learned of Fosco Maraini's travels to Tibet (though he was denied official permission to enter Lhasa), from his daughter, Dacia, at a literary evening. Though I realize I am reading this book nearly six decades after it first came to print, it is as fresh and alive for me today as it would have been then. Fosco Maraini is a masterful writer who can capture the most delicate nuance as commonplace, so everyone can see it. The writing is breathtakingly beautiful.

I will give a small example here, towards the end of the book. It is his last evening at Gangtok, the southernmost gateway to Tibet just north of Sikkim, India, where their travels are coming to an end. After a day of rain, the moon appears through the clouds:

"A faint, ethereal --I should like to call it silent-- curve of light emerges imperceptibly from the dark abysses of the forest and stretches across the sky to fade equally imperceptibly into the patches of light reflected from the roofs above the temple and the palace, where Pema Choki lies asleep with her black hair on a white pillow. It is only the ghost, the memory of a rainbow, the faintest suggestion of pink and blue tones, to be guessed at rather than seen, suspended between one nothing and another in the darkness of the night."

This is poetry. Such sublime imagery is throughout the near three hundred pages (hardback), which makes it an absolute delight to read. One learns that Fosco was rather fond of Princess Pema, her picture is in the book too, and that their spirited talks and laughter bordered on flirtation. But she was a princes respected, intelligent, and certainly lovely. His friendship was genuine. But he also as an anthropologist and photographer, and masterful writer, displays the subtleties of material and spiritual Tibet, which he brings to the forefront with finely composed imagery that enlighten us almost as if being there. His many personages he writes about become real for the reader, the tall well formed Tibetans from their vast valleys, the eccentric artists or officials or recluses, village friends and their yak butter tea, sacred ceremonies and dance, quiet little Nepalis busy as industrious bees, the mysterious Hindus, and proud almost arrogant Moslems, all contrast with the stiffly dressed administrative, rational Europeans carrying on business of state. But that condition was about to change, as India broke away from the British Empire, and China was barreling headlong (unbeknown to Maraini then) towards Communism... which in the end extinguished a whole way of life, a Tibet of Feudalism and monasteries, of free nomads and monks and lamas, that may never be again. In that, this book is a valuable 'archeological' treasure of a people and a culture that lasted over a thousand years, and now except for remnants in exile, has largely vanished. Maraini captured it like a artist's black and white still-shot with all the elements of a well composed, masterful photograph that draws you in into its hidden mysteries. I feel rewarded inside, and though I had never been to Tibet (Nepal was closest) I will now scheme to get there, whether in person or in spirit, to taste that Tibet Maraini and his mentor, Prof. Giuseppe Tucci, felt in their soul. It was the end of an era, an ancient, mysterious, dramatic, sacred and profane, all too human free way of life. Secret Tibet brings it back for us.

Truly well done, Signor Maraini. It is one of the few books where upon finishing it I wanted to stand up and applaud. Bravo!

Ivan (& Cinzia)
I have read a lot of books about the old days in Tibet, and this is the best, despite the fact that Maraini never went to Lhasa, the holy grail of most adventurers in those days. But Mariani made no attempt to accompany his employer, the famous Tibetologist Giuseppi Tucci. Tucci claimed to be a Buddhist in order to be allowed to visit Lhasa, and Maraini wasn't a Buddhist (and suggests that Tucci wasn't either) and so chose not to try to trick or bully his way in to the capital. That alone makes him more admirable, in my book, than most of the arrogant Europeans who took it for granted that it was their God-given right to poke their noses into other people's cultures any way they could.

Maraini actually travelled in Tibet on two different occasions, 1939 and 1948, and telescopes both visits in this book, although most of it is based in the 1948 trip. As an Italian, and a highly cultured European, he has a somewhat more sympathetic view of Tibet than English and American writers. He compares Tibet not to Nebraska but to Florence, the Italian Alps, Italian Catholicism, and the Vatican. While Tibet was medieval, in many ways Catholicism in the 30s and 40s could also be called medieval. Maraini thinks like a man of science, but he knows the mind of Italian peasants as well, and an old woman repeating a mantra is not so different from an old woman in Italy saying her own rosary. So there is a lot of sympathy in his view.

He is also clear-sighted. He does not like dirt and smells, for example, and when he describes the Tibetans, he doesn't pretend not to notice the level of filth. He admires Buddhism, but not so much that he loses objectivity. Underground chapels which contain animal carcasses stuffed with straw and rotting away and artwork filled with skulls, human bones and bloody images horrify him, and he says so.

He also conveys a wonderful sense of the beauty, the air, the silence, the scale and scope of the Tibetan land. His book is about people and events, which he describes with piercing insight and analysis. He describes faces and bodies in terms of the character they reveal. He doesn't fill pages with descriptions of ornery porters and bad trails. Instead he takes the hardships of travel for granted and describes the personality and character of every person, mountain, monastery, dance, and meal. The fact that he was not hell-bent for Lhasa allows him to be present in each place that he visits.

Because he is along on the trip as a photographer, he observes the art intensely. His writing is vivid, poetic but not pretentious, and the translation from the Italian is flawless, at least as English style goes. You would never imagine that you are reading a translation.

Maraini also had another advantage that makes him the perfect travel companion--he lived and taught in Japan in the years between his first and second trips to Tibet (because WW2 had broken out and he got stranded there) so he can see Tibet not only as it appears to a European but also in the greater context of Asia.

The updates that contrast the Tibet he saw and the Tibet of 1998 are saddening but give even richer context to the story. He intersperses these at the end of each chapter, so you don't have to try remember which monastery or city he is talking about. The book is skillfully edited so that the three time periods involved flow smoothly into one fascinating narrative.

I am eager to read Maraini's other works, because he is a man of great insight, an open heart and a clear mind.
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