Available in India at bookstores. Out of print outside India. Available online for UK £6
Publisher: The South India Saiva Siddhantha Works Publishing Society, Madras,1993
"It is a pleasure and honor to write the preface to the
English edition of Chantal Boulanger's splendid guide to Tamil
Nadu. Ms Boulanger brings to the work not only scholarly knowledge
acquired by more than 10 years of study of South Indian culture
but also a profound empathy with Hinduism, Dravidian culture,
and the Tamil people. She has immersed herself in the rich ceremonial
life of the great temples but knows as well the simple rites
practiced at small local shrines. She has traveled widely in
Tamil Nadu and probed deeply into the history and culture of
the region. Ms Boulanger has poured her knowledge and first-hand
experience into her book, transforming a guide for visitors to
Tamil Nadu into a fascinating, readable account of its history,
geography, and culture. However, she has not forgotten the practical
concerns of travelers, and the book abounds in information about
hotels, transport, and convenient day-long trips from the major
centers. She drops numerous tips on how to be a considerate visitor
and to realize delicate plans, such as entry into the deepest
recesses of temples. Moreover, she suggests ways to prepare mentally
for what can be a profound experience of self-discovery. Ms Boulanger
understands India and the West. No one can better lead you on
a voyage of discovery of an ancient civilization and also of
what it means to be human."
Dr. Stanley A. Freed
Curator, Department of Anthropology
American Museum of Natural History, New York
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Last updated in October 2004