Life and Art of Andhra Region is a most comprehensive work on this subject to this date. Methodologically it is not merely archaeological, nor even generally historical; the author in her approach combines both, to corelate the picture of politico-socio-economic, religious and cultural life of early Andhradeśa with the content, form and technique of the art that this life had brought forth. Such an enquiry, besides affording a deeper understanding and a better perspective of the art of this region, has a wider significance in the history of Indian art and culture in general. This monograph is expected to throw important light on the relationship between a given social and ideational pattern of life and the creative activities of the forms generated and fostered by it. In other words, the author has introduced here a broadly sociological approach to the study of art and art-history, integrating it with consi derations of aesthetic, ideological, archaeological and historical approaches. This is a welcome addition to the growing library of literature on Indian art and archaeology. An annotated description of plates, a comprehensive bibliography and two maps-one showing cultural interaction between Krishna-Godavari region and other parts of India and the other indicating Buddhist sites in Andhradeśa-enhance the merit of this volume.
Dr. Amita Ray. presently Head of the Department of Archaeology. Calcutta University, possesses a wide teaching and research experience in the field of Indian art and archaeology. She has received training in field archaeology under the Archaeological Survey of India (1957-58). She was a Netherlands Government Scholar (1958-60) and was associated with Amsterdam University, Amsterdam, and Rijks Museum Voor Volekenkunde, Leiden, where she took specialised training in Field Archaeology and Museology. Since 1960 she has been on the staff of the Departments of Archaeology and Ancient Indian History and Culture, Calcutta University. In 1962-64 she taught History of Art in the Department of Fine Arts and Design in Punjab University, Chandigarh. In 1966-68 she was Professor of Ancient History, Culture and Archaeology in Tribhuvan University, Nepal. She was a visiting Lecturer in Germany and delivered lectures on Indian Art and Archaeology in Frei Berlin University and University of Bonn (1977). As a Senior U.G.C. Fellow (1981) she studied the various of Archaeological investigations as practised in France by the French Archaeological Institutes and Universities. She participated in excavations both in Europe and in India.
Her major publications include villages, Towns, and Secular Buildings of Ancient India (1957), Aurangabad Sculptures (1966) and Art of Nepal. She has contributed several original papers on art, archaeology, religion and craft to a number of research journals of international repute. At present she is working on various aspects of the archaeo-historical and cultural situations of West Bengal.
Ever since the discovery of the large Buddhist monastic establishments at Bhattiprolu, Jaggayyapeta, Amaravati, Goli and Nagarjunakonda during the last quarter of the 19th century, and the publication of the well known volume on Amaravati by James Burgess in 1887, the history, art and archaeology of this sprawling region have been engaging the increasing attention of serious students and scholars. This attention interest have been widened, deepened and sharpened further by later discoveries at places like Nagarjunakonda, Salihundam, Yelleswaram, and more than two dozens of other major and minor sites. It is no wonder therefore that recent years have been witnessing a number of important publications on a variety of aspects of early Andhra life, history and culture. Among the attempts in this direction the earlier ones like those of Foucher, Coomaraswamy, Vogel, Dubreuil were based essentially on the thematic contents. Later Bachhofer, Rene Grousset, T.N. Ramachandran and D. Barrett also followed this tract and identified a number of scenes in the sculptures. It was Sivarama murti who for the first time, sought to find the key to the culture, art and life of the Satavahanas represented on the bas reliefs of Amaravati sculptures, with the help of available texts. Sivaramamurti working in this direction claims to have followed the footsteps of the earlier scholars. Since then a number of competent scholars have done important work on this subject. Despite the increasing richness of publications of several volumes, no full length attempt seems to have been made at finding out the inter-relationship among the facts and objects to view this art in the wider framework of the total life process. Indeed, conceptually and methodologically all these studies belong more or less to the same class: they are factually dependable, descriptively objective and chronologically linear.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
Art & Culture (777)
Emperor & Queen (486)
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