Eat the Buddha

Barbara Demick

$34.99 Paperback
In Stock

A gripping portrait of contemporary Tibet, from the bestselling author of Nothing to Envy.

In the 1930s Mao's Red Army fled to the Tibetan plateau to escape their adversaries in the Chinese Civil War. By the time the soldiers reached remote Ngaba, they were so hungry that they looted monasteries and ate religious statues made of flour and butter--to Tibetans, it was as if they were eating the Buddha. These experiences would make the town a hotbed of Tibetan resistance for decades to come, culminating in shocking acts of self-immolation in recent years.

Eat the Buddhachronicles the tragic history of modern Tibet through the lives of award-winning journalist Barbara Demick's subjects. Among them are a princess whose family is wiped out during the Cultural Revolution, a young nomad who becomes radicalised in a monastery, and a schoolgirl forced to choose between her family and the lure of Chinese money.

Illuminating a society long romanticised as deeply spiritual, Demick reveals what it is like to be Tibetan today, trying to preserve one's culture, faith and language against the depredations of a seemingly unstoppable, all-seeing superpower.


Barbara Demickis the author of Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea, a finalist for the National Book Award and the National Book Critics Circle Award, and Logavina Street: Life and Death in a Sarajevo Neighborhood. She was a reporter with the Los Angeles Timesand headed the paper's bureaus in Beijing and Seoul. Her work has won many awards, including the Samuel Johnson Prize (now the Baillie Gifford Prize) in the United Kingdom. She lives in New York City.

'Deeply and meticulously researched, Eat the Buddhatells the story of the beautiful area of eastern Tibet, land of the fabled Mei kingdom, where the Tibetan people have thrived in a majestic environment for several millennia, only to suffer horrifically in the last seventy years with the invasion and colonization by the Communist Chinese. Demick is to be given highest honors for her unflinching account, and her readers will be rewarded with a transformative encounter with the real lives of some extraordinary people.' Robert A. F. Thurman, Jey Tsong Khapa Professor Emeritus, Columbia University

ISBN: 9781925498783
Publication Date: 18-Aug-2020
Publisher: Text Publishing Company