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Formats
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2019
  • 978-1733293709 1733293701
  • 416 pages
  • $95
Dalvir Pannu
Author
The Sikh Heritage

Adult; History & Military; (Market)

"The Sikh Heritage: Beyond Borders" dedicates one chapter each to the 84 sites that it documents, transporting readers to the past by narrating the detailed history of each marvel that the author and his team photographed throughout Pakistan. This book is the culmination of decade-long fieldwork of finding and exploring the heritage sites, alongside analyzing multiple Janamsakhis (hagiography accounts). The author's process of doing extensive analysis and cross-referencing with other sources enables readers to comprehend Sikh history, by posing inquiries, applying critical thinking, and investigating hundreds of sources. He includes a multitude of primary sources and Gurmukhi inscriptions, translated into English, to increase local and international heritage-lovers' under­standing of these sites and to help preserve their beauty and histories through his writing.
Reviews
In this painstaking heritage guide, Pannu displays the fruits of long research about Sikh history and religion. In 1947, two days after India’s independence was declared from Britain, a decree ordered the creation of Pakistan as a country separate from India. All non-Muslim people living in what was now a Muslim country, including the author’s great-grandparents, had to immediately vacate their home region, while all Muslims in India likewise had to march to the other side of the border. Due to partition, Sikhs were suddenly denied access to dozens of holy and historic sites related to their religion and its founder, Guru Nanak. This book is the culmination of a decade’s worth of research into those sites; it includes pages of beautiful photographs along with studies of religious texts put in historical context.

Pannu details 84 gurdwaras (sacred sites) in six different regions of Pakistan. Some of the shrines are well maintained, which he notes with approval, while others have been left to decay; one is now used as a cricket field. Telling the story of the shrines also means telling the story of Guru Nanak, connecting his miracles told in hagiographies to historical events and actual locations. While this is an admirable goal, it results in a choppy and somewhat disorganized structure.

This book is a labor of love, and Pannu’s passion shines through. It’s dedicated to a future time when peace between India and Pakistan will allow all Sikhs free access to their holy places. Though well-written and informative, this work is definitely targeted to audiences doing research about Sikh religion and cultural heritage rather than casual readers. This reference guide is well crafted, beautifully laid out, educational, and rewarding.

Takeaway: Scholars researching Sikh history and traditions will cherish this lavishly illustrated tour of dozens of sacred sites in Pakistan.

Great for fans of Amardeep Singh’s Lost Heritage: The Sikh Heritage in Pakistan, Ranjodh Singh’s Nankana Sahib and Sikh Shrines in Pakistan.

Production grades
Cover: A
Design and typography: A
Illustrations: A+
Editing: A
Marketing copy: B

Formats
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2019
  • 978-1733293709 1733293701
  • 416 pages
  • $95

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