Amitav Ghosh: 'River of Smoke'

Amitav Ghosh: 'River of Smoke'

Amitav Ghosh
Amitav Ghosh, author of River of Smoke and other works. (www.amitavghosh.com)

On the grand scale of an historical epic, River of Smoke follows its storm-tossed characters to the crowded harbors of China. There, despite efforts of the emperor to stop them, ships from Europe and India exchange their cargoes of opium for boxes tea, silk, porcelain and silver. Merchants and adventure-seekers from Europe and every place in between cope with their losses — and for some, unimaginable freedoms — in the alleys and crowded waterways of 19th century Canton.

Amitav Ghosh was born in Calcutta in 1956 and raised and educated in Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Iran, Egypt, India, and the United Kingdom, where he received his Ph.D. in social anthropology from Oxford. Acclaimed for fiction, travel writing, and journalism, his books include The Circle of Reason, The Shadow Lines, In an Antique Land, and Dancing in Cambodia. His previous novel, The Glass Palace, was an international bestseller that sold more than a half-million copies in Britain. Recently published there, The Hungry Tide has been sold for translation in 12 foreign countries and is also a bestseller abroad.

Ghosh has won France's Prix Medici Etranger, India's prestigious Sahitya Akademi Award, the Arthur C. Clarke Award, and the Pushcart Prize. He now divides his time between Harvard University, where he is a visiting professor, and his homes in India and Brooklyn, New York.

Video: Amitav Ghosh at Asia Society New York

Co-sponsored by the Mechanics' Institute Library

Event Details

19 October 2011
6:00pm - 8:00pm

57 Post Street, San Francisco, CA

Asia Society and Mechanics' Institute members: FREE. Non-members: $12. To register, please email [email protected] or call 415-393-0100.