Bhubaneswar :Prelude, in association with MyCityLinks, Bakul Foundation and IBI organised a book reading session with historian and writer William Dalrymple on April 5, 2019, 6:30 PM at Bocca Café.
The chief guest of the event Vishal Dev, Principal Secretary of Sports and Tourism, IAS graced the occasion and was introduced by the host Diksha Tiwari. Both Dalrymple and Vishal Dev were presented with a sapling upon their introduction.
The audience present at the event listened with rapt attention to the readings of a few sections of his works which included In Xanadu: A Quest, City of Djinns, From the Holy Mountain and Nine Lives: In Search of the Sacred in Modern India. Dalrymple interacted with the audience on different aspects of the book, including his take on travel writing and it’s influence on the much popular genre of the times – the novel. The Scottish writer has been living in India on and off for the past two decades. He was quick to point out about some of the anecdotes from his experience talking to and interacting with the myriad sects and sub-sects of India which, in turn, influenced his narrative.
An advocate of research, he admitted he found History easier though he is quite particular about researching his topics well. “Travel writing is more like stumbling in the dark for me. I read less than I used to earlier. But I must say, after I tried my hand in fiction, it’s not easy at all. All those who are looking at the release of their first work of fiction should be glad they made it.”
On being asked if there’s any way to bring the other side of the colonial era to mainstream history, Dalrymple said, “Britain has not been as accepting of its colonizing past as Germany. I think one way of bringing the other aspect of the British Raj is through books on the subject, documentaries, TV shows, etc.”
On the occasion, My City Links launched the April issue of its new monthly magazine which covers the best of what’s happening in the city. The magazine was unveiled by William Dalrymple, Vishal Dev, Sanu Ratho, Director, PNV and My City Links and Sameer Hans, Publisher, My City Links.
The floor was then opened to book signings for the fans who arrived in large numbers with their copies of William Dalrymple’s works.
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