The Mahabharat is my all-time favourite book. Passion, Romance, Friendship, Courage, Chivalry, Envy, Arrogance, Cowardice, Sacrifice, Suffering…: It contains the kernels of all the literary plots of the world. However, most translations don’t do justice to this Sanskrit epic, turning the charcaters one-dimensional and presenting the story as a simplistic one of the victory of good over evil.
Kamala Subramaniam’s translation is a notable exception that presents the grandeur of the epic in its varied hues and brings out the inherent tragedy of this magnum-opus. I still remember the thrill when I picked it up from the shelf of my school library and the nights spent narrating the text to my (sleepy!) sister.