Ghalib

Selected Poems and Letters

Ghalib. Translated by Frances W. Pritchett and Owen T. A. Cornwall

CUP

Ghalib

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Pub Date: March 2017

ISBN: 9780231182065

224 Pages

Format: Hardcover

List Price:

Pub Date: March 2017

ISBN: 9780231544009

224 Pages

Format: E-book

List Price:

Ghalib

Selected Poems and Letters

Ghalib. Translated by Frances W. Pritchett and Owen T. A. Cornwall

CUP

This selection of poetry and prose by Ghalib provides an accessible and wide-ranging introduction to the preeminent Urdu poet of the nineteenth century. Ghalib's poems, especially his ghazals, remain beloved throughout South Asia for their arresting intelligence and lively wit. His letters—informal, humorous, and deeply personal—reveal the vigor of his prose style and the warmth of his friendships. These careful translations allow readers with little or no knowledge of Urdu to appreciate the wide range of Ghalib's poetry, from his gift for extreme simplicity to his taste for unresolvable complexities of structure.

Beginning with a critical introduction for nonspecialists and specialists alike, Frances Pritchett and Owen Cornwall present a selection of Ghalib's works, carefully annotating details of poetic form. Their translation maintains line-for-line accuracy and thereby preserves complex poetic devices that play upon the tension between the two lines of each verse. The book includes whole ghazals, selected individual verses from other ghazals, poems in other genres, and letters. The book also includes a glossary, the Urdu text of the original poetry, and an appendix containing Ghalib's comments on his own verses.

Acknowledgments
Introduction: Ghalib's Life and Times
Part One: Ghazals
Part Two: Ghazal Verses
Part Three: Other Genres
1. Poems
2. Letters
3. Prose
Notes
Appendix 1. Ghalib's Comments on His Own Verses
Appendix 2. Ghalib Concordance, with Standard Divan Numbers
Glossary of Technical Terms and Proper Names
Bibliography
Index
Urdu Text

About the Author

Ghalib (the pen name of Mirza Asadullah Khan) lived from 1797 to 1869. Primarily famous for his Urdu ghazals, he is also known for his letters, which paint a vivid picture of life in nineteenth-century Delhi.

Frances W. Pritchett is professor emerita of modern Indic languages at Columbia University. Her books include Nets of Awareness: Urdu Poetry and Its Critics (1994), The Romance Tradition in Urdu: Adventures from the Dastan of Amir Hamzah (1991), and Ab-e Hayat: Shaping the Canon of Urdu Poetry (2001), translated, edited, and introduced in association with S. R. Faruqi.

Owen Cornwall is a visiting lecturer at Columbia University in the Department of Middle Eastern, South Asian, and African Studies. He is currently working on a book manuscript about Alexander the Great in the premodern Persian literary tradition.