Dr Karma Phuntsho, the Founding Director of Loden launched his book, ‘History of Bhutan’
A scholar, social worker and Founding Director of the Loden Foundation, Phuntsho has been digitally storing traditional Bhuddhist archives that have been lying in remote temples of Bhutan for ages, making them
accessible to scholars and the general public. To take notes on history of this tradition, he had to do an extensive homework on Bhutan, its rich history.
“I compiled the general information which turned into the book,” confessed Phuntsho, author of The History of Bhutan. The book, published by Random House, tells the story of Bhutan in a narrative style, interspersed with analytical and topical discussions, along with numerous citations and translations from earlier writings. It is a historical account featuring discussions about Bhutan’s geography, culture and society, to give readers an incisive introduction to the country. “Currently there is a gap in the market. No English book gives a comprehensive history of modern historiographical approach with traditional narratives.
Most Bhutanese scholars wrote in a Bhutanese language-Dzongkha, providing Buddhist perspective. “Thus with modern historiographical methodologies didn’t have access to traditional sources. I was well placed, had access to them an also exposure to modern historiographical. I could combine the two paths – content from sources. I was photographing in libraries and methods from modern historians,” said the author who finished his full monastic training before going to Oxford University. Since the history of Bhutan has hardly been explored, Phuntsho divided it into three parts; ancient, medieval and modern.
Dr Karma Phuntsho is highly regarded and looked up to as a source of inspiration and wisdom for many young Bhutanese, said Dorji Tashi who have been working with Phuntsho for last six years.