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The Broken Tusk
Stories of the Hindu God Ganesha
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The Broken Tusk
Stories of the Hindu God Ganesha

Retold by Uma Krishnaswami
Illustrated by Maniam Selven
1996, 100 pages, hardback.
Book Description from the Front Cover Flap
Comments from Back Cover
About the Author and Illustrator

The Author's Website

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Book Description from the Front Cover Flap

What better a character to introduce children to Hindu mythology than Ganesha, the god of new beginnings? Often impulsive, forever generous, the elephant-headed god with the fat belly and (sometimes) four arms makes mistakes, but learns from them. He fills the world around him with laughter.

This collection of seventeen Ganesha stories delivers up a pantheon of Hindu deities for children. Shiva and Parvati, Vishnu, Brahma, and Ganga are here, along with assorted rishi (wise men) and royalty. Stories tell how Ganesha got his elephant head; the origins of rivers; why Ganesha isn't married; and more. Most of the tales support definite pedagogical points such as nonviolence, respect for life, and the folly of vanity, but all are also pure entertainment in their own right.

An introduction explains Ganesha's place in the Hindu faith and gives guidance to this rich and complex tradition. Glossaries of words and characters, and a pronunciation guide for Sanskrit, are here too.

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Comments from Back Cover

"Makes an elegant and eminently readable volume that's a vital addition to any multicultural shelf. . . . Opens perceptual doors to a great and still vital Eastern tradition-a gift indeed."
-Kirkus Reviews

"Anyone who has cast eyes on the rotund Ganesha must have felt curious to know more of this cheerful fellow. . . . The author deftly transports these tales across cultural boundaries and pres-ents them still dancing with liveliness."
-Margaret Read MacDonald, author, storyteller, librarian

"We haven't recommended many collections of Hindu stories to parents for one central reason: violence. . . . Krishnaswami has skillfully managed to minimize the ferocity and present 17 traditional stories ... in a sweet and kindly manner sure to delight your children, and the child within you too."
-Hinduism Today

"With sensitive and respectful language, Uma Krishnaswami has created a welcome invitation for young readers into the rich tradition of Hindu folklore."
-Susan L. Roth, author

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Background on the Author and Illustrator

Uma Krishnaswami was born in New Delhi, but has lived in many different parts of India. She came to the United States in 1979. Ms. Krishna-swami holds masters' degrees in social work and rehabilitation coun-seling, and now coordinates a teacher training grant with the department of special education at the University of Maryland. She is married and the mother of a young son.

Maniam Selven is a designer and illustrator in Madras, India. He currently does both book illustration and advertising art for magazines.

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