Calvino’s King Listens In Golconda

In Italo Calvino’s Under The Jaguar Sun, a collection of 5 stories each based on one of the 5 senses, is “A King Listens”, a story about a king whose movements become increasingly constrained by the extent of his own power. Unable to move from his throne, at the centre of power, he can only know about his kingdom through what he hears. From reports of his officials and spies to the whispers he hears echoing throughout the castle his world becomes increasingly paranoid and claustrophobic. Could Calvino’s story be derived from Golconda Fort in Hyderabad? Golconda Fort was built in the 16th Century and housed markets for the rich diamond mines nearby. Included in it’s strategic defences against theft and invasion was a sophisticated acoustic design which amplified the sound of the softest footstep throughout the fort.

By NmkuttiadyOwn work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link
By SajjusajuuOwn work, CC BY-SA 4.0, Link
By Sanyam BahgaOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link