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Jadoowallahs, Jugglers and Jinns: A Magical History of India

John Zubrzycki (Author)

'An amazing, brilliant, and incredibly erudite book' Lee Siegel

India’s association with magic goes back thousands of years – from the seals of Mohenjodaro that depicted sorcerers and yogis, to the jugglers, mountebanks and acrobats that dazzled audiences at the courts of Hindu maharajas and Mughal emperors. Tales were told of ropes being thrown up in the air, strong enough for a boy to climb and disappear; of fakirs being buried alive for months and brought back to life; and of sanperas charming deadly cobras with their flutes. In the early nineteenth century, touring Indian magicians mesmerized audiences abroad, prompting generations of Western illusionists to emulate their Eastern peers.

Jadoowallahs, Jugglers and Jinns: A Magical History of India tells us how Indian magic descended from the domain of the gods to become part of daily ritual and popular entertainment, and its transformation from the street to the stage culminating with the rise of the great P. C. Sorcar Sr.

Drawing on ancient religious texts, colonial records, newspaper reports, journals and the memoirs, diaries and testimonies of Western and Indian magicians, John Zubrzycki offers us a vibrant narrative on Indian magic from ancient times to the present day.

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About the author

John Zubrzycki

John Zubrzycki is an award-winning journalist who has travelled and worked in India over the past 30 years. He is currently a senior writer for The Australian and lives in Sydney.

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Bibliographic information

Title Jadoowallahs, Jugglers and Jinns: A Magical History of India
Format Hardcover
Date published: 10.11.2018
Edition 1st ed.
Publisher Picador India
Language: English
isbn 9789386215352
length x+457p., 16 Unnumbered Pages of Plates; Illustrations Black and White and colour; 23cm.