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Sufi Lyrics

Sufi Lyrics

Bullhe Shah

Edited and translated by Christopher Shackle

ISBN 9780674427747

Publication date: 01/06/2015

A modern translation of verses by Bullhe Shah, the iconic eighteenth-century Sufi poet, treasured by readers worldwide to this day.

The poetry of Bullhe Shah (d. 1758) is considered one of the glories of premodern Panjabi literature. Born in Uch, Panjab, in present-day Pakistan, Bullhe Shah drew profoundly upon Sufi mysticism in his writings. His lyrics, famous for their vivid style and outspoken denunciation of artificial religious divisions, have long been held in affection by Hindus, Muslims, and Sikhs, and they continue to win audiences today across national boundaries and in the global Panjabi diaspora. Indeed, many young people in South Asia are already acquainted—albeit unknowingly at times—with the iconic eighteenth-century Panjabi poet’s words through popular musical genres of the twenty-first century.

The striking new translation in English is presented alongside the Panjabi text, in the Gurmukhi script, re-edited on the basis of the best modern Pakistani and Indian editions. Bullhe Shah’s Sufi Lyrics thus offers at once the most complete and most approachable version of this great poet’s works yet available.

Praise

  • The lucid and informative introduction by the volume’s editor and translator, Christopher Shackle, takes readers through the trajectory of Sufism from Persia to India and the several orders within the movement in India. But most useful is a short essay on the themes of the lyrics. The poems that follow open up in all their appeal, universal and timeless in their great subject of love, endearing in their simplicity of expressiveness.

    —Neel Mukherjee, New Statesman

Author

  • Christopher Shackle is Emeritus Professor of the Modern Languages of South Asia, School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.

Book Details

  • 496 pages
  • 5-1/4 x 8 inches
  • Harvard University Press

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