In 1992, Mishra moved to Mashobra, a Himalayan village, where he began to contribute literary essays and reviews to The Indian Review of Books, The India Magazine, and the newspaper The Pioneer. His first book, Butter Chicken in Ludhiana: Travels in Small Town India (1995), was a travelogue that described the social and cultural changes in India in the context of globalization. His novel The Romantics (2000), an ironic tale of people longing for fulfillment in cultures other than their own, was published in 11 European languages and won the Los Angeles Times Art Seidenbaum award for first fiction. His book An End to Suffering: The Buddha in the World (2004) mixes memoir, history, and philosophy while attempting to explore the Buddha's relevance to contemporary times. Temptations of the West: How to be Modern in India, Pakistan and Beyond (2006), describes Mishra's travels through Kashmir, Bollywood, Afghanistan, Tibet, Nepal, and other parts of South and Central Asia. According to Mishra, his most recent work, From the Ruins of Empire (2012), examines the question of "how to find a place of dignity for oneself in this world created by the West, in which the West and its allies in the non-West had reserved the best positions for themselves."
In 2005, Mishra published an anthology of writing on India, India in Mind. His writings have been anthologized in The Picador Book of Journeys (2000), The Vintage Book of Modern Indian Literature (2004), and Away: The Indian Writer as Expatriate and other books.
Mishra writes literary and political essays for The New York Times, the New York Review of Books, the Guardian, and the New Statesman, among other American, British, and Indian publications. His work has also appeared in Bloomberg, The Boston Globe, Common Knowledge, the Financial Times, Granta, The Independent, the London Review of Books, n+1, The Nation, Outlook, Poetry, Time, the Times Literary Supplement, Travel + Leisure, and The Washington Post. He divides his time between London and India, and is presently working on a novel.
He was the Visiting Fellow for 2007-2008 at the Department of English, University College London, UK. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Literature in 2008. In November 2012, Foreign Policy magazine named him one of the top 100 Global thinkers. Nominating From the Ruins of Empire (2012) as one of the books of the year, the Economist described him as 'the heir to Edward Said'.  The book has been shortlisted for the Lionel Gelber Prize, a literary award for the world’s best non-fiction book in English on foreign affairs, and shortlisted for the Orwell Prize, Britain's most prestigious prize for political writing. In 2011, when Mishra criticised Niall Ferguson's book Civilisation: The West and the Rest in the London Review of Books, Ferguson threatened to sue for libel. Mishra's latest work is a travelogue on China, A Great Clamour, published by Penguin in 2013.
Awards and honours
List of works
- A Great Clamour: Encounters with China and Its Neighbours (2013)
- From the Ruins of Empire:The Intellectuals Who Remade Asia (2012)
- Temptations of the West: How to Be Modern in India, Pakistan, Tibet, and Beyond (2006)
- India in Mind, edited by Pankaj Mishra (2005)
- An End to Suffering: the Buddha in the World (2004)
- The Romantics (1999)
- Butter Chicken in Ludhiana: Travels in Small Town India (1995)
- * "Writer's website".
- Hirsh Sawhney (December 10, 2012), In Conversation, The Brooklyn Rail, retrieved 2013-08-2
- "Writer's website".
- "Royal Society of Literature All Fellows". Royal Society of Literature. Retrieved 10 August 2010.
- "Foreign Policy website".
- "The Economist website".
- Harris, Paul (4 May 2013). "Niall Ferguson apologises for anti-gay remarks towards John Maynard Keynes". The Observer. Retrieved 4 May 2013.
- Mishra, Pankaj (3 November 2011). "Watch this man". Retrieved 3 November 2011.
- "'Popular choice' ruled at book awards". Times of India. December 7, 2013. Retrieved December 7, 2013.
- Writer's website
- Pankaj Mishra, resource website at Columbia University
- Pankaj Mishra interview at The Guardian
- Philosopher King by Adam Goodheart - book review in The New York Times
- "Pankaj Mishra, Intellectual and Spiritual Vagrant" - interview by Wendy Cheng at Loggernaut
- "Pankaj Mishra in conversation with Hirsh Sawhney" - interview by Hirsh Sawhney at the Brooklyn Rail
- Pankaj Mishra - interview with Pankaj Mishra by Sarah Fay for "The Believer", 2007
- Podcast of Pankaj Mishra and Arundhati Roy discussing "India in the World" at the Shanghai International Literary Festival
- "Turning the Mirror: A View From the East - A conversation with Pankaj Mishra", Ideas Roadshow, 2013
- Pankaj Mishra in Conversation with Hirsh Sawhney (December 2012)
- Reviews & articles
- Pankaj Mishra at The New York Review of Books
- Pankaj Mishra at The Guardian
- Pankaj Mishra at The New Yorker
- Pankaj Mishra at Outlook (magazine)
- Pankaj Mishra at Bloomberg L.P.