In the popular imagination of rest of the world. Nepal is a marvelous vista,
rising impressively from the northern Gangetic plain just a notch above sea
level, to the majestic heights of snowcapped Himalayas. No less fascinating than
its geographical diversity, but less visible to outsiders, is its long history,
its complex sociocultural composition, and its tortuous political development.
Still tightly chained to its past, Nepal has been staggering with difficulty
along the path of modernization for more than four decades. In recent years,
this tiny nation of some 21 million has seen the dawn of democracy which,
however, recurrently gets mired in the undercurrent of feudal politics.
The Historical Dictionary of Nepal offers a concise account of Nepalís
history and political evolution, focusing on the period since the rise of
Prithvi Narayan Shah in 1743, and especially on the developments of the past
fifty years. In an easy-to-refer A-to-Z format, the dictionaryís packed coverage
spans Nepalís history, politics, economy, society, its rich cultural and
religious traditions, and the countryís important people in a straightforward
and balanced manner.
The rich mine of information is placed in context by an over-arching
introduction by the authors as well as a detailed chronology. An extensive
bibliography offers plenty of guidance for those seeking more information on
different aspects of Nepal.
This book is a compact but highly informative ready-reference resource for
scholars and students, political scientists and political commentators,
journalists, diplomats and regional analysts, and the enquiring travellers to
the region offering them a solid background and perspective for a better
understanding of this turbulent company framed by a picture postcard landscape.
Nanda R. Shrestha
Nanda R. Shrestha was born and raised in Nepal. He went to the United States
in early 1972, and earned his M.A. from Temple University (Pennsylvania). He
then attended Indiana University where he obtained his Ph.D. in 1982. He is
currently professor of resource and cultural management in the School of
Business & Industry at Florida A&M University (FAMU). Prior to joining the FAMU
faculty he was an associate professor of geography at the University of
Wisconsin-Whitewater (1985-1994) and lecturer at Georgia State University
(1982-1985). In addition to his personal knowledge and experience, Professor
Shrestha has conducted extensive field research in Nepal on several occasions as
part of his two research grants from the National Science Foundation, as well as
from the Ford and Rockefeller Foundations. He has published numerous articles in
professional journals in the fields of geography and economic development. In
addition, he has published several books: The Political Economy of Land,
Landlessness, and Migration in Nepal (2001), In the Name of
Development: A Reflection on Nepal (1997 and 1999), and Nepal and
Bangladesh: A Global Studies Handbook (2002).