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Love in Ancient India; Kama, the God of Desire and Eroticism

Hosted by the Consul of the London India Group
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Took place 2 months ago
Wed 26 Jun 19:00 - 21:30

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Love in Ancient India. A Comparison with Dante, Cavalcanti and Andrew the Chaplain
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The theme of love in the literary works of Ancient India: from the holy texts to epic poems, dramas and satires. Fabrizia Baldissera gives a lecture on Kama, the god of desire and eroticism who, like Cupid, carries lethal bow and arrows and is always portrayed as beautiful. The talk will move across the Indian literary tradition of love that, according to Baldissera, can be compared to the European conventions of “L’Amor Cortese” (Courtly Love) and troubadour poetry, then developed by Dante, Cavalcanti and Andrew the Chaplain. At the same time, ancient Indian love poetry can also be detected in the personality of Catullus and in the lyrical Latin tradition. To top it all, the figures of courtesans and old Ganymede-like characters are analyzed and compared to their Eastern counterparts.

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Fabrizia Baldissera was born in Trieste. She specialized in Indian studies, with academic experiences in Milan, Paris, Oxford, Pune and Ahmedabad. She is Professor of Sanskrit Language and Literature in Florence University since Protected content . Among her last works, “L’Universo di Kama” (“The Universe of Kama”) published by Einaudi is a volume of translations of epic and Indian love poetry.