Narayana (Tr. Haskar, A. N. D.)

Kama Sutra
  • Kama Sutra

  • The word 'kama' means the desire for sensual pleasure in Sanskrit, and was considered an essential part of the well-rounded education of a young, urbane gentleman. Treating pleasure as an art, Kama Sutra is a handbook covering every aspect of love and relationships. Its seven sections are devoted to the social life, courtship and marriage, extra-marital relations, the conduct of courtesans and prescriptions for enhancing attractiveness, as well as systematic, detailed instruction on sex.

    This modern translation of Kama Sutra takes it away from the well-worn image of an erotic, Oriental curiosity. This clear, accurate translation conveys all the original flavour and feel of this elegant, intimate and hugely enjoyable work; a masterpiece of pithy description and a wry account of human desires and foibles.

Aditya Narayan Dhairyasheel Haksar was born in central India and educated at the universities of Allahabad and Oxford. A well-known translator of Sanskrit classics, he has also had a distinguished career as a diplomat, serving as Indian high commissioner to Kenya and the Seychelles, minister to the United States and ambassador to Portugal and Yugoslavia. His translations from the Sanskrit include The Shattered Thigh and Other Plays, Hitopadesa, Tales of the Ten Princes, Simhasana Dvatrimsika and Subhashitavali, all published as Penguin Classics. He has also compiled A Treasury of Sanskrit Poetry. Hanif Kureishi is the author of novels (including Something to Tell You, The Buddha of Suburbia, The Black Album and Intimacy), story collections, plays, screenplays, essays and a memoir, My Ear at his Heart.