Publication Announcement

Patrick Olivelle jpo at UTS.CC.UTEXAS.EDU
Tue Dec 11 15:29:27 EST 2012


Dear Csaba:

This is wonderful news. I have long being fascinated by this book and wondered why it has not been subject to a good translation. Is it possible to buy it via Amazon? Thanks.

Patrick




On Dec 11, 2012, at 2:02 PM, Csaba Dezso wrote:

> Dear colleagues, 
> since there are only about 12 shopping days till Christmas ;)
> you might be interested to know that the following publication has now appeared:
> 
> Csaba Dezső and Dominic Goodall (edd.), Dāmodaraguptaviracitaṃ Kuṭṭanīmatam. The Bawd's Counsel. Egbert Forsten, Groningen 2012.
> 
> http://www.forsten.nl/product.php?product_id=197
> 
> In this unique verse novel, The Bawd's Counsel, Dâmodaragupta paints a vivid tableau of eighth-century urban life in Northern India. Instead of the gods, sages and heroes of legend that people the Sanskrit literary epics, here gurus, princes and merchants jostle upon the streets of Benares, Patna and in the gardens of Mount Abu with bawds, prostitutes, rakes and rustics, and they are shown grappling with matters of life, death, love, lovelessness and livelihood. 
> 
> These mortal actors have been woven into tales that are narrated with considerable grace and wit. The author, a minister at the court of a Kashmirian king, evinces particular empathy with those who have drawn the shortest straws—the abandoned prostitute in love, for instance, or the married woman seduced into a socially ruinous adulterous relationship.  Caustically irreverent humour, meanwhile, is meted out to religious hypocrites, to the tiresomely self-important, and to men of rank with more money than sense.
> 
> In spite of the intrinsic interest of the work—both as a piece of literature and as a document of the social history of its time—it has not received much attention in recent years, either in India or elsewhere.  A German translation of an incomplete nineteenth-century edition was published in 1903, which was in turn rendered into French and the French then into English, and there have been translations into Hungarian and Japanese.
> 
> This volume, which contains not only a fresh edition that draws on a hitherto unconsulted Nepalese palm-leaf manuscript of the thirteenth century, but also a metrical English translation, aims to bring this novel to the wider audience it deserves.
> 
> Best regards,
> 
> Csaba Dezső
> 
> 
> 
> ------
> Csaba Dezső, PhD
> Senior Lecturer
> Department of Indo-European Studies
> Eötvös Loránd University
> H-1088 Budapest
> Múzeum krt. 6-8/A.
> Hungary
> tel.: +36-1-4116500 / ext. 5368
> e-mail: dezso.csaba at btk.elte.hu



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