‘The Nayika in her different moods animates ancient and medieval art, poetry and drama… Her desire for physical union with the lover is as strong as her anguish due to separation from him. Her passion is both generous and intense; she knows how to give pleasure, and she knows how to take it.’
In this lovely book, a celebrated scholar of Indian art, aesthetics and pre-modern sexuality presents a selection of images that show the Nayika—the ideal romantic heroine of classical Indian literature—in varied states of sexual pleasure. There are images from the Khajuraho and Hampi temple complexes, from illustrated Kamasutra manuscripts with miniature paintings from the Punjab hills, Rajasthan and the Deccan, and from popular erotic pamphlets of the 19th century.
With a brilliant introduction providing the context, Alka Pande gives us beautiful and often surprising visual evidence of the desiring, sensual woman of ancient and pre-modern India.