An entertaining account of how Eastern culture, especially Bollywood, is winning the culture wars globally. The book features exclusive interviews with the most popular actor in the world, Shah Rukh Khan, and other equally notable entertainment superstars.
“Fatima Bhutto has an unflinching eye and a unique voice.”
—Mohammed Hanif, author of A Case of Exploding Mangoes
“Bhutto’s talent is evident, exciting.”
—The New York Times Book Review
“Bhutto is a gifted and compelling writer.”
—Mail on Sunday
“Fatima Bhutto is one of the most stylish, thoughtful writers in the world today. This book will make you gurgle with cultural pleasure.”
—Johann Hari, bestselling author of Lost Connections
“Fatima Bhutto carefully dissects the guts of our popular culture to show that the insanity of today’s world is actually an invisible haemorrhage that has long been there. Essential to the soul of our times.”
—Ece Temelkuran, author of Deep Mountain: Across the Turkish-Armenian Divide
“A delight, a must-read. A hilarious and intelligent understanding of pop as primal need in contemporary life from Peshawar to Istanbul, Seoul to Lima—replete with characters, differences and common rip-tides—and of the global economy that creates, and manipulates, that need.”
—Ed Vulliamy, author of Amexica: War Along the Borderline
There is a vast cultural movement emerging from the Global South and sweeping all before it. India’s Shah Rukh Khan, after all, is the most popular actor in the world. Bollywood, Turkish soap operas called dizi, K-pop and other aspects of Eastern pop culture are international in their range and allure and the biggest challenger yet to America’s monopoly since the end of World War II. Bestselling author Fatima Bhutto’s new book is about these new kings of popular entertainment in the twenty-first century. Carefully packaging not always secular modernity with traditional values in urbanized settings, they have created a new global mass culture that can be easily consumed, especially by the many millions coming late to the modern world and still negotiating its overwhelming challenges. Though this is a book primarily focused on India, it also explores the cultural industries of two other countries at the forefront of the challenge to American soft power: Turkey and South Korea. Plummeting American prestige, the belated rediscovery that local cultures are valuable in and of themselves and the rise of classes with different tastes and backgrounds emerging out of the turbulence and migration of globalization have marginalized the old guard of “Westoxified” elites and created a vast new landscape of cultural power. Indian, Turkish and even Korean mass culture offer a much better fit for this majority’s self-image and aspirations of sovereignty and dignity. Fatima Bhutto brings her thesis alive through exclusive interviews with Shah Rukh Khan, a behind-the-scenes-account of Magnificent Century, Turkey’s biggest TV show, watched by upwards of 200 million people across 43 countries and her travels to South Korea to see how K-Pop transformed the world of popular music and “Gangnam Style” became the first YouTube video to be viewed one billion times. Edgy, insightful and entertaining, New Kings of the World is an eye-opening look at the rise and rise of Eastern pop culture.
KEY SELLING POINTS
- This is the latest book by Fatima Bhutto, bestselling author of five previous books of fiction and non-fiction.
- The book is an eye-opening account of the meteoric rise of Eastern pop culture in the twenty-first century.
- It covers the author’s exclusive interviews with Shah Rukh Khan, one of the most popular movie stars in the world; a behind-the-scenes-account of Magnificent Century, Turkey’s biggest TV show, and her travels across South Asia.
- The author presents a brilliant, entertaining account of the Eastern cultural industries and its global allure.
About the Author
Fatima Bhutto was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, and grew up between Syria and Pakistan. She is the author of five previous books of fiction and non-fiction. The memoir about her father’s life and assassination, Songs of Blood and Sword, was a bestseller. her debut novel, The Shadow of the Crescent Moon, was longlisted for the Bailey’s Women’s Prize for Fiction and won the Prix de la Romanciere in France. Her most recent book is The Runaways, a novel.
Follow her on Twitter and Instagram at @fbhutto.