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The Waterless Sea : A Curious History of Mirages, Hardback Book

The Waterless Sea : A Curious History of Mirages Hardback


Mirages have long astonished travellers and beguiled thirsty desert voyagers.

Chinese and Japanese poetry and images depicted mirages as the exhalations of clam-monsters.

Indian sources related them to the `thirst of gazelles', a metaphor for the futility of desire.

From the late eighteenth century to the present, mirages became a symbol of `Oriental despotism', a malign, but also enchanted, emblem.

But the mirage motif is rarely simply condemnatory. More commonly it conveys a sense of escape, of fascination, of a desire to be deceived. The Waterless Sea is the first book devoted to the theories and history of mirages.

Christopher Pinney navigates a sinuous pathway through a mysterious and evanescent terrain, showing how mirages have impacted politics, culture, science, and religion, and how we can continue to learn from their sublimity.


  • Format: Hardback
  • Pages: 184 pages, 40 illustrations, 14 in colour
  • Publisher: Reaktion Books
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Humamities
  • ISBN: 9781780239323



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