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Hali and Collected Stories - G.V. Desani

Hali and Collected Stories

Hardcover Published: 1st November 1991
ISBN: 9780929701127
Number Of Pages: 208

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G.V. Desani broke his silence forty years after the appearance of his classic novel, All About H. Hatterr, with this volume of twenty-three stories and one long prose poem, only the second full-length book of his fiction ever to be published. Many of the stories appeared first in literary anthologies and magazines over the past thirty years, including The Noble Savage (edited by Saul Bellow), Illustrated Weekly of India, Transatlantic Review, and Boston University Journal. The stories are mostly written in the humorous mode of his novel, relying upon comic timing and his keen sense of the incongruities in contemporary life. They often captivate in the same way as Indres Shah's Sufi learning tales, and the titles alone convey a sense of the interpenetration of India's cultures: "Suta Abandoned," "Mephisto's Daughter," "The Second Mrs. Was Wed in a Nightmare," "Gypsy Jim Brazil to Kumari Kinshino," "Country Life, Country Folk, Cobras, Thok," ..".Since Nation Must Export, Smithers," "The Lama Arupa." Whether send-ups of colonialism or lampoons of conventionality, there is a seriousness to Desani's comedy that crosses cultural boundaries and racial identification.

The long prose-poem, "Hali," was originally issued in 1950, adapted for the stage in London, broadcast several times over BBC radio, and then, after being pirated three times, was suppressed by the author for twenty years until this publication. "Hali" is a complementary opposite to All About H. Hatterr: it is the writer's vision of cosmic creation and human destiny, marrying Hindu, Buddhist, Islamic and other Indian religious traditions into a cathartic drama. E.M. Forster said of it: "Private mythologies are dangerous devices. You have succeeded wonderfully... It keeps evoking heights above the summit of normal achievement where the highest aspirations reach." The Times Literary Supplement termed it "haunting," and The Librarian declared it "as near a work of genius as one can judge." This is the definitive fourth edition, and also the first authorized U.S. publication of this work.

Industry Reviews

The long prose-poem, "Hali," was originally issued in 1950, adapted for the stage in London, broadcast several times over BBC radio, and then, after being pirated three times, was suppressed by the author for twenty years until this publication. "Hali" is a complementary opposite to All About H. Hatterr: it is the writer's vision of cosmic creation and human destiny, marrying Hindu, Buddhist, Islamic and other Indian religious traditions into a cathartic drama. E.M. Forster said of it: "Private mythologies are dangerous devices. You have succeeded wonderfully... It keeps evoking heights above the summit of normal achievement where the highest aspirations reach." The Times Literary Supplement termed it "haunting," and The Librarian declared it "as near a work of genius as one can judge." This is the definitive fourth edition, and also the first authorized U.S. publication of this work. "Desani's speculations remind one of Borges; his intensity recalls Kafka; his literary inventiveness recalls Joyce. ...These stories are as delightful as they are deep." -- Austin American-Statesman "A master of subtle metaphysical comedies, a fabulist, fantasist, moralist and keen satirist of life's follies, absurdities and ego trips." -- Publishers Weekly [Hali and Collected Stories is] "impressive in its use of religious and personal mythology -- and lushly descriptive of a sensibility and a culture that is part English, part Indian, and uniquely Desani's own." -- Kirkus Reviews

ISBN: 9780929701127
ISBN-10: 0929701127
Audience: General
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 208
Published: 1st November 1991
Publisher: McPherson & Co Publishers,U.S.
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.23 x 14.61  x 2.54
Weight (kg): 0.43

Earn 84 Qantas Points
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