BASAVANAGUDI: A novel about the Harappan civilisation is just out in two languages.
Dr Shankar Kashyap’s Dasharajna---Battle of Ten Kings and its Kannada transation Kalpataru Soma were released on Sunday at the Indian Institute of World Culture.
The book is the third in a four-part series. Shankar takes readers through the third millennia using archaeological findings and literary texts. His characters come from a reading of the Vedas.
The just-released book is based on the seventh book of the Rig Veda. It deals with the battle between King Puru and Cayamana.
Author Dr Shankar Kashyap told City Express from Delhi, “Nobody knows who wrote the Vedas. I tried to study the roots, but found nothing substantial. I took people from the Vedic period, and created situatons in the Harappan civilization.”
Well-known historian Dr H S Gopal Rao, who launched the book, said, “The aim of the book is to acquaint readers wit the rich culture and history of the civilization. Historical fiction is a popular genre and brings a renewed vigour to our reading of the past.”
The biggest challenge for fiction, he believes, not to misread history. "A novelist enjoys freedom to imagine the circumstances leading to historical events. But the roles of a novelist and a historian are different. History can only be interpreted with the help of written documents. Much of the Vedic period came from the smritis, or what is memorised and remembered," he told City Express.
Shantala, a Kannada novel by KV Iyer, is an example of a book based on the Hoysala empire in Karnataka. "It piqued people to study that aspect of history further and this new book serves a similar purpose,” he said.
The book release was also attended by well-known academics Dr S Shettar and Dr Narahalli Balasubramanya and film maker P Seshadri.
The books are published by Indus, and will be available from October 27 at Sapna, Ankita and Navakarnataka book stores. It is also available online on Amazon for Rs 449.