Beyond East and West: A Story of Civilization through the Great Epics

1st Edition

Suchethana Swaroop

Routledge India
Published April 17, 2019
Reference - 294 Pages
ISBN 9780815392576 - CAT# K343116

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Summary

This volume is a cross-cultural study of the evolution of civilisation. Drawing its material and inspiration from literature and culture, it looks at the achievements of humankind as a single imaginative experience. The book examines how traditions of poetry and literature have shaped cultures, societies and civilisations, and their inter-relatedness. Analysing stereotypes in Asia and Europe, the author raises questions fundamental to our perceptions of culture, democracy, and language. He throws light on dominant languages and languages cast aside by the tides of history, and attributes the status of English as a 'world language' to ideas propagated in the great epics of the West — particularly Roman — and the poetic heritage shaped by them.

Discussing the fallout of that dream on other cultures and ‘non-technical’ languages of the world, this book investigates questions of legitimacy and desirability of a single language or culture becoming universal.

A sensitive and nuanced work, it promises a good read for general readers as well as researchers interested in world literature, comparative literature, sociology and cultural studies, in the interaction between science and art, and in the forces that shape the world order.

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