Madelyn Carol Dervos joined the Kama Sutra Company in 1972 to 2003 as general manager and energized the company with a clear vision of how high-quality herbal potions and ancient Indian love-making traditions could meld into a cohesive product line that would delight their customers. But it is her singular vision to bring the Kama Sutra, that classic of ancient Indian literature, to a broader audience that makes possible The Kama Sutra: The Ancient Art of Making Love for the New Millennium.
Unfortunately, the original Victorian-era translation of the Kama Sutra by Sir Richard Burton was nearly impenetrable to the modern-day reader. Madelyn set out to find another translation that remained true to the feeling of Vatsyayana’s original work. Her search took her to India.
On her first trip in 1988, she explored several versions of the text and deliberated over many illustrations of the Kama Sutra sexual positions. Nothing fit her dream of bringing a true and modern version of this ancient text to the Kama Sutra Company’s discerning customers. However, it was during that visit that inspiration struck. Bumping along in the back seat of a tiny, three-wheeled taxi on the road back to New Delhi, she realized that the only way to get her ideal version was to do it herself.
She then traveled repeatedly to India in search of exceptional art, the kind that would invite her readers to paint themselves into the rich atmosphere, loving embraces and depth of feeling portrayed in the Kama Sutra. “Some visits I would find only one or two paintings so it took quite a few trips for the collection to become complete,” she recalls. In fact, it took Madelyn ten long years to gather the 21, hand-painted, original illustrations you will find in The Kama Sutra: The Ancient Art of Making Love for the New Millennium.
Next, she assembled a team of writers, each bringing a unique set of talents to the project. Rob Love, a writer, editor, book designer and professional photographer shared Madelyn’s commitment to produce a vivid and enticing edition true to Vatsyayana’s work. Evelyn Vuko, a syndicated columnist, author and former English teacher with a special interest in Victorian writing, brought Burton’s 1883 translation into the modern vernacular. Their collaboration resulted in an inviting and accessible version of the Kama Sutra that retains the raw flavor, mystique and unabashed eroticism of the original manuscript. And Madelyn is thrilled.
“It’s enjoyable to read and easy to understand. We re-wrote it and designed it and it is the most beautiful Kama Sutra book available today!”
We know that you will find that in every sense, The Kama Sutra: The Ancient Art of Making Love for the New Millennium is truly a labor of love. Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy.