Other Writings

G.V. Desani's Other Writings

The following is a mostly complete list of G.V. Desani's writings and transcribed lectures.

Short Stories

Desani's short stories initially appeared in The Illustrated Weekly of India in the 1960s. They were republished in Hali and Collected Stories, McPherson and Company, New York, 1991.

      • The Valley of Lions
      • This Shrub, This Child of God
      • Mephisto's Daughter
      • The Lama Arupa
      • A New Bridge of Plenty
      • Sutta Abandoned
      • The Fiend Screams "Kyā Chāhate Ho?"
      • With Malice Aforethought
      • The Last Long Letter
      • A Border Incident
      • The Barber of Sāhibsarāi
      • The Pansārī's Account of the Incident
      • In Memoriam
      • Correspondence with Sister Jay
      • Country Life, Country Folk, Cobras, Thok!
      • The Merchant of Kisingarh
      • The Second Mrs. was Wed in a Nightmare
      • Since a Nation Must Export, Smithers!
      • 'Abudullāh Haii
      • Gipsy Jim Brazil to Kumari Kishino


Papers, Essays and Comments, 1968-1979

  • Department of Philosophy, University of Texas at Austin:
      • "Rudyard Kipling's Evaluation of His Mother," 1968. Published in Hali and Collected Stories (McPherson Press).
      • "How is the Inexpressible to be Expressed?", 1970 (drawn from All About H. Hatterr and Hali) and reproduced on the desani.net blog.
      • "Down With Philosophy," 1970. Also published in Hali and Collected Stories (McPherson & Co.).
      • "The Mandatory Interview With the Dean," also published in Hali and Collected Stories (McPherson & Co.).
  • Indian Horizons, Mostly Concerning Kāmā and her Immortal Lord, Vol. xxii, No. 1, January, 1973, India Council of Cultural Relations, Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India, 1973, 42 pages, with illustrations, translated into Arabic, Spanish, and French.
  • The Yellow Text of Theravada Buddhism, a classroom anthology compiled by Prof. G.V. Desani, printed in Austin with permission of Buddhist Publication Society, Kandy, Sri Lanka, 1973. Includes several instructor's notes:
      • Excepts from the Class Prospectus (1937)
      • On the Doctrine of Anatta and the Bodhisattva Ideal
      • Introduction in Buddhist Techniques
      • Vinnana Kiccha (text and comments)
  • "Guru Paramparā," publication date and venue not known. Possibly previously unpublished.
  • The Nādi Shāstra," publication date and venue not known. Possibly previously unpublished.
  • "Māntra and Tāntra," publication date and venue not known. Possibly previously unpublished.
  • "A No-Image Image," paper read at the Symposium in Comparative World Humanities, Michigan State University, East Lansing, May, 1976, sponsored by the Honors College, College of Arts and Letters, the University College and the Asian Center under a grant from the Rockefeller Foundation.
  • "The Incredible Baba Visvanath," publication date and venue not known. Possibly previously unpublished.
  • "Certain Difficulties in Communicating an Oriental to a Western Audience," paper read to the Association of Commonwealth Literature and Language Studies, Fourth Triennial Conference, Jawaharlal University, New Delhi, January, 1977.
  • "Seminar on 'Mind'," jointly sponsored by the Ministry of Health and Planning, Government of India, Center for Theoretical Studies, Indian Institute of Science, National Institute of Health and NeuroScience and the Institute of Comparative Religion and Philosophy, Jammu, Kashmir, January, 1977.
  • "Problem of Medium in Bicultures," paper read at the Associations of Commonwealth Literature and Languages Studies, University of Malta, April, 1978.
  • "Theravada Buddhism," (outline with bibliography), Department of Religion, Boston University, 1979.
  • "Patanjali's Raja Yoga," (outline with bibliography), Department of Religion, Boston University, 1979.
  • "Peanuts Cum Sale," Department of Religion, Boston University, 1979.

Lectures & Interviews

  • "India Invites," New College, Oxford and Trinity College, Cambridge, 1941.
  • "Patanjala Yoga Philosophy," Rhodes House, Oxford.
  • Yoga and Vipassanā Meditation, Rangoon, Burma, Residence of the Ambassador of Israel, January, 1961. An updated, possibly previously unpublished version entitled "Vipassanā Bhāvāna, Yoga and Other Topics" is also provided.
  • First year lectures on Theravada Buddhism and yoga, University of Texas at Austin, 1968 (tape recorded and possibly transcribed).
  • Ethics, Nirvana & Sundry Items, KC (Kishinchand Chellaram) College, Mumbai (Bombay), 1968.
  • "Indian Occultism," University of Chicago, 1968.
  • "Technique in All About H. Hatterr," University of Sussex, 1970.
  • "Indian Cultural Values Versus Western Cultural Values," the Embassy of India, Moscow, U.S.S.R., 1970.
  • "How Does Crisis in Civilization Affect India?", Plan II, three lectures, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, 1971.
  • "Quality of Life," faculty-student discussion, University of Texas at Austin, Austin, 1971.
  • "Bhakti Yoga, Its Theory and Technique," Southwestern Conference on Asian Studies, University of Houston, Houston, Oct., 1975.
  • Lecture at the Mahabodhi Society of India, Calcutta, April 1, 1977.
  • "Banaras, City of God," XIII Annual Conference, Boston Institute of Religion and Philosophy, 1979.
  • "The Benares That Was," literary magazine ANON, 1970. Also, subsequently prepared for publication under the title "Banares Thrice Hallowed."
  • "Gandhi's Challenge to Authority," public lecture, sponsored by President John Silber, Boston University, 1981.
  • "Has India Anything to Teach to the United States?", announcement, public lecture, sponsored by President John Silber, Boston University, 1981.
  • A two-part taped interview, July, 1989, just days before Desani turned 80. Currently available on YouTube:


  • For decades Desani kept a journal which at his death comprised many documents. Some — or all — of these papers were donated to the University of Texas at Austin Ransom Center in 2007. Desani's last published piece, India for the Plain Hell of It, The New Yorker, June 23, 1997, utilized excerpts from his journals to provide an autobiographical narrative of his return to India in the early '50s.

Other Activities and Honors, 1969-1982

  • All About H. Hatterr was a textbook in courses taught at American University, Leeds University (1969), University of Sussex (1969), and University of Mysore.
  • British Council Library, inclusion in the exhibition of All About H. Hatterr (Penguin Modern Classics edition), Bombay, July, 1977.
  • Room dedicated to the convenience of Tibetan pilgrims to holy places, Calcutta, Mahabodhi Society, on behalf of the Theravada Philosophy class, University of Texas at Austin for a friend in the Theravada Buddhism class.
  • Original palm leaf manuscript in Tamilian script, entitled Naradanadi, donated to Boston University, 1981.
  • European Illustration, 1983, jury selection of the cover (in color) by Catherine Denvir for Penguin Books (King Penguin) of G.V. Desani's All About H. Hatterr.