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By Staff Reports
Arizona Daily Wildcat
April 3, 1997

UA senior finds 'Kama Sutra' aesthetically appealing


Tanith L. Balaban
Arizona Daily Wildcat

Satish Pillai, ecology and evolutionary biology major and minor love deity

W.C.: How did you like the movie?

Satish Pillai: I liked all the sights and sounds; my senses were very pleased. I thought all the people in the movie were very aesthetically appealing. I thought that they all had beautiful sculpted features and nice skin tone and it was just enjoy able to look at them. I liked the soundtrack to the movie a lot. The story though - I guess the story didn't do so much for me.

W.C.: Remind me, what is your background?

Pillai: My parents are Hindu. I've never really lived there (in India), I've gone back six times, a few of those times I've been there for two to three month periods, but I've never really lived there though.

W.C.: And what languages do you speak?

Pillai: Tamil and Kannada, which are both south Indian languages.

W.C: What is the Kama Sutra?

Pillai:Well, Kama means "pleasure" and Sutra means "lesson." In India there is supposedly a series of ancient documents called sutras that instruct you on various parts of you life. Some tell you how to behave in your married life, some tell you ho w to be more successful in your career, stuff like that. So the Kama Sutra was a document that told you how to be a better lover in the interest of strengthening the bond between you and your partner.

W.C.:Are sexual attitudes different in India compared to here?

Pillai: Very much so. People really repress their sexuality in a huge way there. Especially in the villages. It is completely unacceptable for people, especially women, to have intercourse before marriage.

W.C.: And so the Kama Sutra, does it only pertain to the upper echelons of the ruling class then?

Pillai: As far as the movie is concerned, kings always had huge harems. So it was natural that they would have several women to please their sexual desires. But even in that context, the king, or any member of the court, would never marry anyone wh o was not a virgin. Did you catch that comment by the way, when the King's wife was refusing his sexual advances. He said that he would bite her breast and say that those were the teeth marks of another man in order to ruin her reputation.

W.C.: Has the Kama Sutra influenced you at all?

Pillai: Oh God. Um, no. I wouldn't tell you if it had. Yeah, the book's my secret. No. You know how they kept referring to love-making as an art? I've never been able to learn an art in any sort of book-oriented method. It would have to be somethin g that would just evolve out of the groove ... So anyways, about the movie ... !

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