Light on the Mahabharata

A Guide to India's Great Epic

Written By: Nicholas Sutton
This item is a pre-order, and will ship after 11/5/2024. You will be notified when the item ships. Shipping dates are subject to change, and you will be notified via email if your order will be delayed.
The Mahabharata is a truly vast work of early Sanskrit literature that reflects on a wide range of issues which have concerned people throughout different epochs. Within the context of Indian culture, the significance of the Mahabharata cannot be overstated, as its themes, characters, narratives, and preoccupations have reverberated across the region for centuries.

It is well-known that the whole of the epic is structured around a central narrative that tells of an ancient conflict between two branches of the same royal house, the Pandavas and Kauravas. Yet it is also a clearly didactic work that addresses the fundamental meaning of human existence. In Light on the Mahabharata: A Guide to India’s Great Epic, Nicholas Sutton examines the multi-faceted manner in which the Mahabharata does this, elucidating the diverse and multi-layered answers the text offers to the many questions it raises. Sutton’s book explores why the main characters behave in the manner that they do, the vision of life that motivates them, and the extent to which they are able to prioritise enlightened wisdom over narrow self-interest.

Unravelling the Sanskrit epic’s myriad lines of reflection, Light on the Mahabharata demonstrates that the questions the work poses and the range of answers it suggests are as relevant in the present day as they were in remote antiquity.

OXFORD CENTRE SERIES: Light on the Mahabharata is part of The Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies Mandala Publishing Series. The book joins other accessible texts on Hindu Studies authored by expert scholars, including The Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation and Study Guide; The Hindu Temple and Its Sacred Landscape; and Women in the Hindu World.

EXPERT AUTHOR: Nicholas Sutton has spent the four decades studying, teaching, and writing on the Mahabharata. Sutton is the Director of the Continuing Education Department of the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies, an academy for the study of Hindu cultures, societies, philosophies, religions, and languages. He received his PhD from Lancaster University, writing his doctoral dissertation on the Mahabharata, and currently writes and tutors online courses on Hindu religious traditions.

EDUCATION AID: This book serves as a comprehensive resource for both classwork and independent study of Hinduism. With the integration of discussion questions, suggested further readings, and glossary of Sanskrit terms, Light on the Mahabharata offers an accessible introduction to this enduring Sanskrit epic.
Format: Hardbound
Publication Date: 11/5/2024
ISBN: 9798887620770
Pages: 352
Trim Size: 6 x 9

  • About the Author 
  • Press
Nicholas Sutton, Author: Dr. Nicholas Sutton is a Professor and Director at the Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies (OCHS). The Oxford Centre for Hindu Studies is a Recognized Independent Centre of Oxford University. OCHS, founded in 1997, is an academy for the study of Hindu cultures, societies, philosophies, religions, and languages, in all periods and in all parts of the world.