This collection of large, vibrant photographs of Tibetan refugees in Dharamsala, India, effectively promotes awareness of their plight. In the introduction, the Dalai Lama asserts Tibet’s rightful independence, suggesting that the country be transformed to a “peace sanctuary” for people of all nations. British journalist Perkins offers a dry, condensed history of Tibet that becomes absorbing in its discussion of the hardships suffered by the 100,000 Tibetans who followed the Dalai Lama and fled in 1959 after the Chinese took over their country, and of their adaptation to a new life in India. Indian photojournalist Rai’s vivid pictures include panoramic views of pilgrimage sites in the Himalayan foothills and dynamic scenes of daily life in Dharamsala; Buddhist ceremonies and brightly hued robes attest to the importance of spirituality and tradition while emotionally-charged political demonstrations against China reflect unabated frustration and the Tibetans’ fervor for their homeland’s liberation. -Excerpt from Publishers Weekly
Photographs: Raghu Rai
Text: Jane Perkins
ISBN: 9788185113210, 8185113211
About The Photographer
Raghu Rai (born in December 1942) qualified as civil engineer, started photography at the age of 23 in 1965. He joined The Statesman newspaper as their chief photographer (1966 to 1976), and was then Picture Editor with Sunday—a weekly news magazine published from Calcutta (1977 to 1980). In 1971, impressed by Rai’s exhibition at Gallery Delpire, Paris, the legendary photographer Henri Cartier Bresson nominated him to Magnum Photos, the world’s most prestigious photographer’s cooperative which Rai could start only in 1977.
Rai took over as Picture Editor-Visualiser-Photographer of India Today, India’s leading news magazine in its formative years. He worked on special issues and designs, contributing trailblazing picture essays on social, political and cultural themes of the decade (1982 to 1991) which became the talking point of the magazine.
He was awarded the ‘Padmashree’ in 1972, one of India’s important civilian awards ever given to a photographer for the body of works he produced on Bangladesh refugees, the war and the surrender. In 1992 he was awarded “Photographer of the Year” in the United States for the story “Human Management of Wildlife in India” published in National Geographic. In 2009 he was conferred Officier des Arts et des Lettres by French Govt.