Dániel Balogh danbalogh at gmail.com
Tue Oct 17 20:48:49 UTC 2023

My heartfelt thanks to Asko Parpola and to those who have responded
off-list with suggestions. I'm already much further ahead than I was!
All the best,

On Tue, 17 Oct 2023 at 20:25, Asko Parpola <aparpola at gmail.com> wrote:

> Frembgen, Jürgen Wasim, and Paul Rollier 2014. Wrestlers, pigeon fanciers,
> and kite flyers: Traditional sports and pastimes in Lahore. New York:
> Oxford University Press. 192 pp., ill.
> In today's Pakistan the dominant conservative mindset tends to marginalize
> leisure activities. However, traditional sports and pastimes, games and
> play, entertainment and amusement are an expression of happiness and joy
> and an integral part of popular culture. They represent a cultural system
> and preserve cultural values.
> The dimension of playfulness inherent in traditional sports and pastimes
> is clearly articulated in the culture of the Punjab in general and of
> Lahore in particular, especially in the Walled City. The popular pastimes
> selected for this study, namely wrestling, flying pigeons and kite
> fighting, are almost emblematic of the Walled City, an urban space where
> wrestlers, pigeon fanciers and kite flyers appear to be the veritable
> custodians of Lahori culture.
> This is the first book that details these traditional sports and pastimes,
> which, the authors argue, form an integral part of social life in Pakistan
> and create important bonds between various communities.
> Best wishes, Asko
> On 17 Oct 2023, at 19.17, Dániel Balogh via INDOLOGY <
> indology at list.indology.info> wrote:
> Dear Colleagues,
> can anyone recommend (and perhaps share) any useful literature about kites
> in India? I mean the ones with a bamboo frame that you fly on a string, not
> the ones with feathers that fly themselves and eat rats. I'm mainly
> interested in general overviews, about the history of Indian kites and
> about kite flying, kite making and kite fighting in modern India, not so
> much in any narrowly specialised details, but anything is welcome. I've
> skimmed "A Kite Journey through India" by Tal Streeter and "A Different
> Freedom" by Nikita Desai, but the former is far more interested in anecdote
> than in checking and reporting any facts, while the latter, even while
> being a mine of interesting detail, seems to be by and large a haphazard
> and incoherent collection of poorly verified, often repetitive, usually
> incomplete, and sometimes contradictory factoids.
> In addition to generalities, I would be happy to learn if any of you have
> come across references (or possible references) to kites in Sanskrit, or in
> vernacular literature before the 16th century. For the former, I'm only
> aware of the Pañcatantra story about the wooden Garuḍa, which is more a
> flying machine than a kite. For the latter, I know about a verse by Nāmdev,
> but no others.
> Many thanks for any tips,
> Dan
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