Authors are listed in English alphabetical order.


Some English translations (and transcreations)


Ahmed Ali, Ghalib: Selected Poems, translated and with an introduction. Rome: Is. M. E. O., 1969: [on this site]

Ahmad, Aijaz, ed. Ghazals of Ghalib. New York: Columbia University Press, 1971. Contains translations by: W. S. Merwin, Adrienne Rich, William Stafford, David Ray, Thomas Fitzsimmons, Mark Strand, William Hunt. 

Ahmed Ali, The Golden Tradition: An Anthology of Urdu Poetry; selected, translated, and with an introduction by Ahmed Ali. New York: Columbia University Press, 1973.

Bandhopadhyay, Pranab. Hundred Ghazals of Mirza Ghalib. Calcutta: United Writers, 1975. [Actually it contains translations of a hundred verses, not ghazals.]

Bly, Robert, and Sunil Dutta, trans. and eds. The Lightning Should Have Fallen on Ghalib. Hopewell, NJ: The Ecco Press, 1999.

Chufla, Roashan. Mirza Ghalib in English Verse. Mumbai: Classic Printers, 2004. On the rekhta.org site.

Ghalib Institute, Whispers of the Angel; Selections from Fourteen English Translations of Ghalib. New Delhi: Ghalib Academy, 1969.

Husain, Yusuf, trans., Urdu Ghazals of Ghalib. New Delhi: Ghalib Institute, 1977.

Johari, Prema. Renderings from Ghalib. New Delhi: Ghalib Institute, 1996.

Joshi, Umesh. Ashaar of Gaalib and 25 Masters. New Delhi: Rupa & Co., 1995.

Kanda, K. C. Masterpieces of Urdu Ghazal From the 17th to the 20th Century. New Delhi: Sterling Publishers Private Limited, 1990.

Kaul, J. L. Interpretations of Ghalib. Delhi: Atma Ram & Sons, 1957.

Kejariwal, O. P. Ghalib in Translation. New Delhi: UBSPD, 2002.

Lal, P. Ghalib’s Love Poems Transcreated from Urdu by P. Lal. Calcutta: Writer’s Workshop, 1971. (2nd ed. 1971)

Mahmood, Khwaja Tariq. Ghalib: Rhymed Translations of Selected Ghazals. Lahore: Author, 1995.

Mirza, Yaqub. Translation of the Selected Verses of Ghalib's Urdu Ghazals. New Delhi: Ghalib Institute, 1992.

Misra, Satya Deo. Ghalib’s Passion Flower: Consuming, Flower-Fresh, Heady; in the Poet’s own view, and S. D. Misra's. [No information about date or place of publication.]

Rahman, Sarvat. An Introduction to the Poetry of Ghalib. New Delhi: Ghalib Institute, 2003.

Rahman, Sarvat. Diwan-e-Ghalib: Complete Translation Into English, Including All the Ghazals, Qasidas, Masnavis, Qitas & Quatrains of the published Divan and a selection from the unpublished Diwan. New Delhi: Ghalib Institute, 2003.

Russell, Ralph. The Seeing Eye: Selections from the Urdu and Persian Ghazals of Ghalib. Islamabad: Alhamra, 2003.

Russell, Ralph. The Famous Ghalib. New Delhi: Roli Books, 2000.

Russell, Ralph. Hidden in the Lute: An Anthology of Two Centuries of Urdu Literature. London: Carcanet, 1995.

Schimmel, Annemarie. A Dance of Sparks: Images of Fire in Ghalib's Poetry. New Delhi: Ghalib Academy, 1979 [reprint 1997]: [on this site].

Yusuf Husain Khan. Persian Ghazals of Ghalib. New Delhi: Ghalib Institute, 1980: on the rekhta.org site.


General Ghalibian studies in English


Abdul Qadir, Sir, Famous Urdu Poets and Writers. Lahore: New Book Society, 1947. ‘Ghalib as a Poet’ and ‘Ghalib as a Master of Urdu Prose’: [on this site]

Bausani, Alessandro, “The Position of Ġālib (1796-1869) in the History of Urdu and Indo-Persian Poetry”. Der Islam XXXIV (1959): 99-127: [on this site] [Dr. Jan Marek speaks of this article as the “first article on Ghalib ever published by a European scholar” (Khan p. 43).]

Davis, Dick, “On Not Translating Hafez,” The New England Review 35,1-2 (2004): [site]; very relevant for Urdu ghazal too.

Faruqi, Shamsur Rahman. A NUMBER OF REVELANT ARTICLES: [on this site]; see especially those from The Secret Mirror, 1981

Jafri, Sardar, and Qurratulain Hyder. Ghalib And His Poetry. Bombay: Popular Prakashan, 1970.

Joshi, Umesh. Galib: the Man and his Couplets. New Delhi: Author, 1998.

Kamal, Daud. Ghalib: Reverberations. Karachi: Author, 1970.

Khan, Yusuf Husain, ed. International Ghalib Seminar. New Delhi: All India Ghalib Centenary Committee, 1969-70. Because this was a notably international volume, I’d like to put its complete contents on record. The volume can be found on the rekhta.org site.

Annemarie Schimmel, “Ghalib’s Ghazal with the Radif Be-Raqs”, pp. 3-14
Ralph Russell, “Ghalib and the Revolt of 1857”, pp. 15-22
Daud Rahbar, “The Place of Ghalib in the Religious Traditions of Man”, pp. 23-39
Jan Marek, “Some Notes on Ghalib’s Persian Poetry”, pp. 40-46
Melina Hubschm Annova, “Ghalib and Modern Times”, pp. 47-53
B. Ghafurov, “Ghalib in the Soviet Union”, pp. 54-62
Alessandro Bausani, “Ghalib and Bedil's Style”, pp. 63-74
A. Sukhochov, “Some Problems of Studying Ghalib's Writings”, pp. 76-83
Asloob Ahmed Ansari, “Some Recurrent Images in Ghalib's Poetry”, pp. 84-96
N. H. Ansari, “Some Persian Mathnawis of Ghalib”, pp. 97-102
B. S. Upadhyaya, “Ghalib and His Times”, pp. 103-109
Sajjad Zaheer, “Ghalib and Progressive Urdu Literature”, pp. 110-120
Ahmed Ali, “Ghalib’s Style and Poetic System”, pp. 121-138
Ali Jawad Zaidi, “Research on Ghalib”, pp, 139-146.

Lal, Inder Jit. A Short Biography of Mirza Ghalib. Delhi: Saluja Prakashan, 1969.

Latif, Sayyid Abdul. Ghalib: a Critical Appreciation of his Life & Urdu Poetry. Hyderabad: Chandrakanth Press, 1929.

Lakhanpal, P. L. Ghalib: the Man and his Verse. Delhi: International Books, 1960.

Liboiron, Paul. The Transformation of Plot in the Couplet of the Urdu Ghazal: An Examination of Narrative. Unpublished master’s thesis, University of British Columbia, 1989. Available through the generous permission of the author: [on this site]

Mahmud, Sayyid Fayyaz. Ghalib: A Critical Introduction. Lahore: Punjab University, 1969.

Malik Ram. Mirza Ghalib. New Delhi: National Book Trust, 1968.

Meisami, Julie Scott. Structure and Meaning in Medieval Arabic and Persian Poetry: Orient Pearls. London: RoutledgeCurzon, 2003. A great deal of relevant material on poetics and terminology is thoughtfully analyzed, with examples.

Memon, Muhammad Umar. Studies in the Urdu Gazal and Prose Fiction. Madison: South Asian Studies Publication Series, 1979. Relevant contents:

Shamsur Rahman Faruqi, “Expression of the Indo-Muslim Mind in the Urdu Ghazal,” pp. 1-23
Gilani Kamran, “The Urdu Ghazal as Material for the Study of Muslim Society in South Asia,” pp. 24-43
Frances Khan, “Ghalib’s Urdu Ghazal: From Religious Paradox to Double-Bind,” pp. 44-59
Bruce B. Lawrence, “Thematic Antecedents for the Urdu Ghazal in the Sufi Poetry of the Sultanate Period,” pp. 61-100
Peter L. Manuel, “The Relationship between Prosodic and Musical Rhythms in Ghazal-Singing,” pp. 101-119
C. M. Naim, “The Theme of Homosexual (Pederastic) Love in Pre-Modern Urdu Poetry,” pp. 120-142
Bruce R. Pray, “A Re-Examination of Structure and Continuity in the Urdu Ghazal,” pp. 143-167
Annemarie Schimmel, “The Emergence of the German Ghazal,” pp. 168-174
Moazzam Siddiqi, “The Persistence of Indo-Persian Poetic Trends in the Urdu Ghazal,” pp. 175-192

Mujeeb, M. Makers of Indian Literature: Ghalib. New Delhi: Sahitya Akademi, 1969.

Nabokov, Vladimir. A wonderful article about translation (1941).

Naim, C. M. “Ghazal and Taghazzul,” in The Literatures of India: An Introduction, by Edward C. Dimock, Jr., et al. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1974, pp. 181-197: [on this site]

Naim, C. M. “Ghalib: a Review of Translations” (1996): [on this site]

Naim, C. M. “Ghalib’s Delhi: A Shamelessly Revisionist Look at Two Popular Metaphors”, Annual of Urdu Studies 18 (2003): [site]

Naim, C. M. "Homosexual (Pederastic) Love in Pre-Modern Urdu Poetry." In Urdu Texts and Contexts: The Selected Essays of C. M. Naim. New Delhi: Permanent Black, 2004, pp. 19-41: [on this site]

Pakistan American Cultural Centre. Aspects of Ghalib: Five Essays. Karachi: Pakistan American Cultural Centre, 1970. Contributors: Ahmed Ali, “The Problem of Style and Technique in Ghalib” [on this site], B. A. Dar, “Ghalib and Iqbal” [on this site], Ainslie T. Embree, “The Use of Poetry for Historical Understanding: The Case of Ghalib” [on this site]; Hamid Ahmad Khan, “Ghalib: Man and Poet” [on this site]; Mumtaz Hasan, “Ghalib: An Individualist” [on this site].

Petievich, Carla. “Dakani’s Radha-Krishna Imagery and Canon Formation in Urdu.” In The Banyan Tree: Essays on Early Literature in New Indo-Aryan Languages, ed. by Mariola Offredi (New Delhi: Manohar, 2000), vol. 1, pp. 113-128.

Prigarina, Natalia. Mirza Ghalib: A Creative Biography. Karachi: Oxford University Press, 2000.

Russell, Ralph, ed. Ghalib: the Poet and his Age. Cambridge: George Allen & Unwin, 1972. Contains: Ralph Russell, "Ghalib: A Self-Portrait," pp. 9-35: [on this site], and “Ghalib’s Urdu Verse”, pp. 105-31: [on this site]; Percival Spear, “Ghalib’s Delhi,” pp. 36-53: [on this site]; P. Hardy, “Ghalib and the British,” pp. 54-69: [on this site]; A. Bausani. “Ghalib’s Persian Poetry,” pp. 70-104: [on this site].

Sadiq, Muhammad. A History of Urdu Literature. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1984 [first ed. 1964]. Discussion of Ghalib: pp. 241-77: [on this site]

Saran, Saraswati. Mirza Ghalib: the Poet of Poets. New Delhi: Munshiram Manoharlal, 1972.

Saxena, Ram Babu. A History of Urdu Literature. Allahabad, 1927. On Ghalib: pp. 158-68: [on this site]. (This was the first history of Urdu literature to be written in English.)

Sayyid Abdul Latif. Ghalib: A Critical Appreciation of his Life and Poetry. New Delhi: Ghalib Institute, 2002 [1928].

Schimmel, Annemarie. Pain and Grace: A Study of Two Mystical Writers of Eighteenth-Century Muslim India. Leiden: E. J. Brill, 1976. [A study of Mir Dard and Shah Abdul Latif.]

Varma, Pavan K. Ghalib: the Man, the Times. New Delhi: Viking, 1989.


Other helpful texts

Ali, A. Yusuf. The Holy Qur'an; Text, Translation and Commentary. Lahore, 1934.



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