The classic Kashmir shawl is among the most exquisite textiles ever woven, the product of consummate skill and artistry applied to one of the world’s most delicate fibres. This authoritative study introduces the Kashmir shawl as a cultural artefact with a known history spanning four centuries. Lavishly illustrated and accessibly written, this book has much to offer textile scholars, and those interested in the history of Kashmir.
This updated edition documents a decade’s developments in the pashmina and cashmere industries. An important new feature is a chart tabulating the evolution of shawl design according to period.
Janet Rizvi, Monisha Ahmed
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About the Editors
Janet Rizvi, freelance writer and researcher, was brought up in Scotland and graduated with a Ph.D. in history from Cambridge. Married to an Indian Government officer, she spent many years in the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Her book Ladakh, Crossroads of High Asia (3rd edn. 2012) has been continuously in print for nearly 35 years. She is also author of the highly praised Trans-Himalayan Caravans: Merchant Princes and Peasant Traders in Ladakh (1999). As well as writing the chapter “Woven Textiles” in The Crafts of Jammu, Kashmir and Ladakh (1989), she has contributed articles on the Kashmir shawl to several authoritative reference works.
Monisha Ahmed is an independent researcher who has been visiting and writing about Ladakh since 1987. Many of those years have been spent among the nomadic herdspeople of Changthang, researching their life with special reference to their textiles and trade in pashmina. Her doctoral research for Oxford developed into the book Living Fabric – Weaving Among the Nomads of Ladakh Himalaya (2002), and received the Textile Society of America’s R.L. Shep award in 2003. Since then she has co-edited Ladakh: Culture at the Crossroads (Marg, 2005) and published articles on textile arts of Ladakh, as well as other parts of the Himalayan world. She has also written on textiles in other areas of India for The Arts and Interiors of Rashtrapati Bhavan – Lutyens and Beyond (2016) and the catalogue Woven Treasures – Textiles from the Jasleen Dhamija Collection (2016). Formerly Associate Editor of Marg, she is co-founder and Executive Director of the Ladakh Arts and Media Organisation (LAMO), Leh.
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