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Amarushataka

A Centennial of Love Songs by: Harsha V. Dehejia , Subhash Behelke , Prakriti Kashyap , Uday Indurkar , Narmada Prasad Upadhyaya

This volume, based on the paintings at Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sanghralaya, formerly Prince of Wales Museum, Mumbai, makes us travel through the bright and radiant world of the many splendours of Malwa painting and its silent pages are alive with the whispers of romantic love.

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ISBN: 9788124608906
Year Of Publication: 2017
Edition: 1st Edition
Pages : 216
Language : English
Binding : Hardcover
Publisher: D.K. Printworld Pvt. Ltd.
Size: 29
Weight: 1250

Overview

Amarushataka is considered to be one of the finest poetic creations in Sanskrit in ancient India and is a watershed development in the genre of Shringara Rasa. We do not know who the poet Amaru was, but a number of legends abound and it is believed that he lived in the seventh century. In Amaru’s poetic gems love is not measured but experienced, it is not evaluated socially but felt in the deepest recesses of the mind and heart. He paints the varied moods and nuances of love with words that evoke vivid colours and rhythms that are sonorous with music. Amarushataka basks in a sunlit space, fragrant with the aroma of love, brilliant with the hues of a throbbing heart and within the minute compass of the few lines of a verse we are privy to a whole universe of romance. Amaru’s lovers inhabit a non-descript space, so that our attention is entirely on them and not on the surroundings. Amaru’s lovers are driven by desire, devoid of guilt, finding their fulfilment in a passionate embrace or a loving gaze. Using traditional Prakrit romantic idioms Amaru prepares us for the feast both for the eyes and the ears that is to follow, for the muktakas of Amaru create an emotionally charged world, where every nuance of romantic love is explored, where the pangs and pleasures, pathos and poignancy, of amorous dalliances are sensitively portrayed, where neither the restraint of dharma nor the restriction of samsara is allowed to interfere with a glorious celebration of love. Whatever its origins, for 1,300 years this work has retained its reputation in India as one of the foundational collections of poetry. Poets and critics still use its verses as a template against which to consider other poems. Such was the impact of Amarushataka, especially in Malwa of the seventeenth century, that it was transformed into miniature paintings in the evocative Malwa style. The one room chamber with strong monochromatic colours and robust figures marks the painting. The book also traces the history of Malwa painting. An interesting side light of the book is an attempt to demonstrate that the verses of Amaru were also perhaps responsible for amorous sculptures in Khajuraho and other temples. The book is richly illustrated, has the verses of Amaru in Sanskrit and English and is a source book of Shringara Rasa for scholars and students alike.

Meet the Author
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Harsha V. Dehejia has a double doctorate, one in medicine and the other in Ancient Indian Culture, both from Mumbai University. He is a practising Physician and Professor of Indian Studies at Carleton University in Ottawa, ON., Canada. His main interest is in Indian Aesthetics. His publications include: 1.The Advaita of Art. (Motilal Banarasidass, Delhi, 1996) 2. Parvatidarpana (The Mirror of Parvati), (Motilal Banarasidass. Delhi,.1998) 3. Parvati, Goddess of Love (Mapin, Ahmedabad, 1999) 4. Despair and Modernity, Reflections on Modern Indian Paintings. (Motilal Banarasidass, 2000) 5. The Lotus and the Flute: Romantic Moments in Indian Poetry and Painting. (Mapin, Ahmedabad, 2002) 6. A Celebration of Love: The Romantic Heroine in the Indian Arts (Roli Books, 2004) 7. Saundarya: The Theory and Praxis of Beauty (Samvad 2004) 7. Celebrating Krishna: Sensuous Images and Sacred Words (Mapin, 2005) 8. Leaves of the Pipal Tree: Aesthetic Reflections on Some Hindu Myths and Symbols (Motilal Banarasidass, 2005) 9. Gods Beyond Temples (Motilal Banarasidass, 2006) 10. A Festival of Krishna (Roli, 2008) 11. Mumbai Footpaths: Paths of Courage, Journeys of Hope (Vira Books, 2009) 12. Akriti to Sanskriti, The Journey of Indian Forms (Niyogi Books 2009) 13. Krishna’s Forgotten Poets (Roli).
Books of Harsha V. Dehejia
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Varsha 2019
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Radhayan 2017
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Narmada Prasad Upadhyaya is a noted scholar of Hindi literature and Indian painting. Among his books on Indian painting are, Bharatiya Chitrankan Prampara (Hindi), Paar Roop Ke (Hindi), Jain Chitrankan Parampara (Hindi), Kanheri Geet Govinda Paintings in Kanheri Style, The Concept of Portrait in the Context of Indian Miniature Paintings, The Color’s Fragrance, Paintings of Bundelkhand: Some Remembered, Some Forgotten, Some Not Yet Discovered (with Dr Harsha V. Dehejia) and Amarushatak: A Centennial of Love Songs (with Dr. Harsha V. Dehejia). He was awarded the Kala Bhushan in 2003 and the Sharad Joshi Award for Lalit Nibandha.
Books of Narmada Prasad Upadhyaya
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