Eat the Buddha | Granta

  • Published: 03/09/2020
  • ISBN: 9781783785704
  • Granta Books
  • 336 pages

Eat the Buddha

Barbara Demick


In 1950, China claimed sovereignty over Tibet, leading to decades of unrest and resistance, defining the country today. In Eat the Buddha, Barbara Demick chronicles the Tibetan tragedy from Ngaba, a defiant town on the eastern edge of the Tibetan plateau where dozens of Tibetans have shocked the world since 2009 by immolating themselves.

Following the stories of the last princess of the region, of Tibetans who experienced the struggle sessions of Mao’s Cultural Revolution, of the recent generations of monks and townsfolk experiencing renewed repression, Demick paints a riveting portrait of recent Tibetan history, opening a window onto Tibetan life today, and onto the challenges Tibetans face while locked in a struggle for identity against one of the most powerful countries in the world.

Powerful... a deeply textured, densely reported and compelling exploration of Ngaba... Demick brilliantly unpicks the connections between the self-immolations and Tibetans' past... The richness of this book lies in its nuance as much as its extraordinary detail


Barbara Demick is a reporter of impressive tenacity and thoroughness

Joan Bakewell, The Times

An illuminating and important book

Kapka Kassabova

The Author

Barbara Demick won the Samuel Johnson Prize for Nothing to Envy (Granta, 2010), her seminal book on North Korea. She is also the author of Besieged (Granta, 2012), her account of the war in Sarajevo, which won the George Polk Award, the Robert F Kennedy Award and was shortlisted for a Pulitzer Prize. She lives in New York.

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