Tibetan Folktales
by Haiwang Yuan, Awang Kunga, and Bo Li
November 2014, 202pp, 7x10
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Hardcover: 978-1-61069-470-4
$60, £47, 53€, A83
eBook Available: 978-1-61069-471-1
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

This book of folktales opens a window into Tibetan culture, providing a unique resource that will be appreciated by everyone from general readers to world folklorists and students of world folklore.

This collection of folktales provides readers with an extensive overview of the breadth of Tibetan culture, revealing the character of the region and its people as well as their traditional customs and values.

Most Westerners are unlikely to travel to the mountainous region of East Asia and experience the Tibetan people and their culture directly. This book provides a way to experience and learn about this remote nation through carefully selected Tibetan folktales that provide readers with a unique glimpse into Tibet’s culture, its people, and the land itself through the window of folklore.

Providing a unique resource that can serve both as a storytime aid for educators who work with primary school students and a valuable reference for Eastern folklorists, Tibetan Folktales contains more than 30 traditional Tibetan stories that give readers a taste of the land, people, culture, history, religion, and psyche of this remote country. The tales are gathered from contemporary Tibetan storytellers and translated from written sources to represent the rich oral and written literary tradition of Tibet’s culture. In addition, the book supplies tutorials for Tibetan crafts and games, a sample of recipes, and photographs and illustrations that create a multidimensional experience of Tibetan culture.


  • Offers more than 30 folktales—some of which have never before been published in English—that introduce readers to Tibetan cultural traditions and represent a full array of different folktale types
  • Includes nine recipes for Tibetan dishes specifying alternative ingredients that can be substituted for hard-to-find original ingredients
  • Supplies craft and game instructions that will enliven a grade school classroom and entertain young audiences as they learn about Tibetan culture and folklore
  • Includes color images that enable readers to better appreciate the richness of Tibetan culture
Haiwang Yuan is professor of Library Public Services at Western Kentucky University, Bowling Green, KY. His published works include The Magic Lotus Lantern and Other Tales of the Han Chinese and Princess Peacock: Tales from the Other Peoples of China, both Libraries Unlimited titles, as well as This Is China: the First 5,000 Years and Celebrate Chinese New Year. Yuan holds master's degrees in history as well as library and information science from Indiana University at Bloomington, IN.

Awang Kunga is a Tibetan storyteller and assistant to the Lama at the Yonge Tibetan Buddhist Temple in Beijing, China.

Bo Li is with the North China Electric Power University in Beijing, China. Her primary interest is in Chinese culture, Tibetan Buddhism in particular, and she is devoted to international cultural exchanges.


2016 Storytelling World Awards Honorable Mention—Storytelling World, March 17, 2016


". . .Tibetan Folktales is the latest addition to Libraries Unlimited's outstanding World Folklore Series. . . . As entertaining as it is informed and informative, Tibetan Folktales is very highly recommended for both community and academic library collections."—Midwest Book Review, January 1, 2015

“Readers from middle school through adulthood will gain a tantalizing glimpse into the layered, complex cultures of a Tibet that is radically changing from its historical roots. . . . [T]his is a collection that can be read and reread. It will be useful for teachers to use in the classroom to introduce students to the rich heritage of Tibet.”—Bowling Green Daily News, April 12, 2015
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