The FT column: Present, please

On over-gifting, under-gifting, and finding the right present – my column for the Financial Times this week:

“Perhaps you should give only what establishes trust, or creates welcome surprise, though this is utopian — much of gift-giving is driven by the impulse to flatter, to bribe or to appease a guilty conscience. Old manuscripts — Indian, Chinese and medieval Italian — are a reminder that gift-giving has always been a complicated business, pocked with cultural pitfalls, often trapping givers into an endless cycle of reciprocity. A classic dilemma: what to give the man or woman who already had an empire at their disposal?”

A dodo, gifted to the Emperor Jahangir, painted by Mansur




3 responses to “The FT column: Present, please”

  1. I am bad with selecting gifts and hope I can read the column at a later stage for to read apparently asking one to pay for subscription. The dodo is a beautiful present to give.

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