Modern Tibetan Literature
This page lists resources for the study of modern Tibetan literature, defined here as beginning from the start of the 20th century. It is not a comprehensive list, but includes major works and collections in English language, as a starting point for research, in addition to bibliographic tips and strategies for locating English and Tibetan resources.
Although a page for classical Tibetan literature is not yet developed, an excellent overview for classical, religious and folk genres, see Tibetan Literature: Studies in Genre, edited by José Ignacio Cabezón and Roger R. Jackson. In addition, the THL Tibetan Literary Encyclopedia offers a portal to many useful resources.
Bhum, Pema. Six Stars with a Crooked Neck: Memoirs of the Cultural Revolution. Translated by Lauran Hartley. Dharamsala: Tibet Times, 2001.
Dickie, Tenzin, ed. Old Demons, New Deities: Twenty-one Short Stories from Tibet. New York: OR Books, 2017. CLIO Record
Dondrup Gyal (Don grub rgyal). “‘Waterfall of Youth’.” [Poem] Translated by Tsering Shakya. Manoa 12, no. 2 (2000): 9–13.
———. Thöndrupgyäl. L’artiste tibétain : petit roman. Translated by Francoise Robin. Paris: Bleu de Chines, 2007. CLIO Record
———. Thöndrupgyäl. La fleur vaincue par le gel : roman. Translated by Francoise Robin. Paris: Bleu de Chine, 2006. CLIO Record
Dorje Rinchen (Rdo-rje-rin-chen). “Roadside Journal.” Translated by Lauran Hartley. Exchanges (Journal of the Translation Laboratory at Iowa University), n.d.
Gendun Chopel (Dge ’dun chos ’phel). In the Forest of Faded Wisdom: 104 Poems by Gendun Chopel. Edited and translated by Donald S. Lopez. Chicago: Chicago University Press, 2009. CLIO Record
Jangbu (Ljang bu). Nine-Eyed Agate: Poems and Stories. Translated by Heather Stoddard. Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2010.
Ju Kalzang ('Ju Skal-bzang). “Tibet, Mother, Mani.” [Poem] Translated by Lauran Hartley. Lungta 12, no. 1999 Summer: 37.
Pema Tseden (Pad-ma-tshe-brtan). Tharlo. Edited and translated by Jessica Yeung. Hong Kong: University Museum and Art Gallery, Umiversity of Hong Kong, 2017. CLIO Record
Phuntsog Tashi (Phun tshogs bkra shis). “Guests of the Or Tog Bar.” Translated by Patricia Shiaffini-Vedani. World Literature Today 2004, no. Jan-April (2004): 57–61.
Sangye Gyatso. “’Khor Ba’i Snying Bo = The Essence of Samsara.” [Poem] Translated by Francoise Robin. Latse Library Newsletter 1 (2003): 16–25.
Tsering Dondrup (Tshe ring don grub). “A Show to Please the Masses.” Translated by Lauran Hartley. Persimmon: Asian Literature, Arts and Culture, 2, no. 2 (Fall 2000): 61–77.
Tshe-ring-dbyangs-skyid. Flowers of Lhasa: a Novel. Translated by Christopher Peacock. London: Balestier Press, 2022. CLIO Record
Yangtsokyi (G.yang-’tsho-skyid) “Journal of the Grassland.” Translated by Lauran Hartley. Beacons 4, (ATA Journal of Literary Translation) 4 (1998): 99–111.
Alai. Red Poppies. Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 2002. CLIO Record
Batt, Herbert J. Tales of Tibet: Sky Burials, Prayer Wheels, and Wind Horses. New York: Rowman and Littlefield, 2001.
Tashi Dawa. Soul in Bondage: Stories from Tibet. Beijing: Panda Books, 1992.
Woeser. Tibet’s True Heart: Selected Poems. Translated by A.E. Clark. Dobbs Ferry, NY: Ragged Banner Press, 2008. CLIO Record
Original English Language Works by Tibetan Authors
Bkras-gling-dbang-rdor (W. Tailing). The Secret Tale of Tesur House. Beijing: China Tibetology Publishing House, 1998. CLIO Record
Dhompa, Tsering Wangmo. In the Absent Everyday. Berkeley, Calif. : Apogee Press, 2005. CLIO Record
———. My Rice Tastes Like the Lake. Berkeley, Calif. : Apogee Press, 2011. CLIO Record
———. Rules of the House. Berkeley, Calif. : Apogee Press, 2002. CLIO Record
Lama, Tsering Yangzom. We Measure the Earth with our Bodies. New York: Bloomsbury, 2022. CLIO Record
Sonam, Bhuchung. Yak Horns : Note on Contemporary Tibetan Writing, Music, Film & Politics. Dharamsala: Tibet Writes, 2012. CLIO Record
Norbu, Jamyang. Sherlock Holmes: Missing Years. New York: Bloomsbury, 1999. CLIO Record
Pemba, Tsewang Y. White Crane, Lend Me Your Wings: a Tibetan Tale of Love and War. New Delhi: Niyogi Books, 2017. CLIO Record
Thubten Samphel. Falling through the Roof. New Delhi: Rupa & Co., 2008. CLIO Record
Writers: Biographical Resources
Deng rabs Bod kyi rtsom pa po'i lo rgyus dang brtsams chos dkar chag. Hor-gtsaṅ Klu-rgyal gyis bsgrigs. Lanzhou : Kan-suʼu mi rigs dpe skrun khaṅ, 2012. CLIO Record
Contains biographical entries for nearly 300 modern Tibetan writers arranged chronologically by year of birth; several entries include photographs and list the writer's prominent works.
Deng rabs Bod kyi rtsom pa po'i snyan rtsom phyogs bsgrigs. Hong Kong: Then-mā dpe skrun khaṅ, 1998. CLIO Record
This collection of poetry by 20th century Tibetan authors features biographical information for each contributor.
History and Criticism
High Peaks Pure Earth
A current and rich resource for following Tibetan literary and related cultural trends. Primarily English translations. Covers in Tibet and in exile.
Focus on writings by Tibetan writers in exile. Primarily works in English.
Link inoperable as of 9/2023
This Tibetan online forum frequently features original contemporary Tibetan writings by contributors.
Tibetan and Himalayan Library (THL) Audio-Video Collections
Video clips, including "Participant Interviews from the First Young Tibetan Women's Literature Training"; and lectures at the First Young Tibetan Women's Literature Training by Dulhagyal ('Brug-lha-rgyal), Pematso (Padma 'tsho), Dongrub Tsering (Don grub tshe ring), and Pema Wangchen (Padma dbang chen). Use "First young Tibetan women's literature training" as search term.