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Śukasaptati

Śukasaptati, or Seventy tales of the parrot, is a collection of stories written in Sanskrit. The stories are supposed to be narrated to a woman by her pet parrot, at the rate of one story every night, in order to dissuade her from going out to meet her paramour when her husband is away; the stories deal with illicit liaisons, the problems that flow from them and the way to escape those crises by using one's wits. Though the actual purpose of the parrot is to prevent its mistress from leaving, it does so without moralising. At the end of the seventy days, the woman's husband returns from his trip abroad and all is forgiven. Most of the stories are uninhibited, with some verging on the pornographic; the situations depicted in the stories not only test the bounds of marriage, some stray into taboo areas of incest and, in one case, zoophilia. The collection is part of the Katha tradition of Sanskrit literature; some of the tales are repeated from earlier well-known collections in Sanskrit literature.

In the tradition of Sanskrit literature, the tales are interspersed with verse, many original, some repeated from earlier works. Though it is not known when it was written, current scholarship accepts that the collection was in its current form by the 12th century CE, though the oldest known manuscript dates back to the 15th century CE; the collection has been translated to many languages, including Persian in the 14th century, in Malay, Hikayat Bayan Budiman, by a certain Kadi Hassan in 773 AH. It was last translated to English in 2000 CE; the collection, following the story within a story format to maintain continuity contains 72 stories, of which one story acts as the main narrative. The remaining 71 stories are narrated by the parrot; the main story is that of Madana Vinoda, the wayward son of a merchant, his wife Padmavati. The merchant's Brahmin friend tries to bring Madana to the path of righteousness by giving him a pet talking parrot; this attempt is successful. Having learnt his lesson, he sets off on a voyage on a business venture, leaving his wife alone.

Padmavati, though dejected by her husband's departure, soon falls into the company of wanton women who suggest that she take on a lover. She agrees, every night for the next seventy nights, she gets ready to meet him, but she is thwarted in her attempt every single night by the parrot, which adopts the stratagem of telling her a story. The parrot expresses approval of its mistress' intention by agreeing that the goal of life was to seek pleasure and acknowledges the strength of sexual desire, it excites her interest by asking whether she had the wits to escape if any troublesome situation were to arise, as the protagonist of her next story had. Padmavati wants to know the details of the story and the parrot proceeds to narrate it. At the end of the story, Padmavati decides not to go for her rendezvous that night. On the seventieth night, Padmavati has learnt the errors of her ways. Prompted by the parrot, she makes a full confession to her husband, thanking the parrot for keeping her from physical infidelity.

The parrot's seventieth story is in fact a plea for forgiveness on the grounds that Padmavati was not responsible for her fault, having been led astray by bad company. The typical story involves a wife being surprised by her husband while she is in the act of committing adultery, she has to use her wits to get out of her predicament. In one story, she has to pass between the legs of a Yaksha, a feat impossible to achieve unless one has told the truth; the wife manages it by having her lover dress up as a lunatic and grab her — as a result, she is able to truthfully swear that no one except her husband and the lunatic has touched her in her life. The stories test the limits of taboo. In one case, the wife introduces her lover as a cousin to enable his entry into the house; when the lover refuses to have sex with her on the ground that he is now her brother, she threatens to accuse him of rape and gains his acquiescence. In another story, the wife has both father and son as lovers, she has to deal with the problem of what to do when her husband stumbles upon the scene.

The stories are blunt, verging on pornography. In one case, the cuckolded husband has managed to grab his rival's penis while the lover was having sex with the wife behind the husband's back; the wife has the unenviable task of devising a way to extricate her lover. The cuckolds are unaware of the situation though some times they are portrayed as simpleminded, the wives take advantage of their ignorance and superstitious nature. However, in one case, the husband, a king, is impressed by the lover's wit and lets his wife go with him, reasoning that while poets like the lover are rare, women like his wife are not; the less typical story involves men being in similar situations, though in this case the trouble still comes in the form of the woman's husband rather than the man's wife. Other common stories revolve around men using the threat of embarrassment to regain gifts they showered on their lovers harlots. Dalliances involving unmarried women having illicit sex are rare — with the obvious exception of prostitutes.

One story manages to stray into zoophilia and poke fun at a divinity. It involves a woman; the mischievous idol wouldn't let go. The husband has to make the idol laugh by simulating sex with a donkey to rescue his wife; the stories form an "absorbing social document" of those times. It po

California's 31st congressional district

California's 31st congressional district is a congressional district in San Bernardino County, in the U. S. state of California. The district is located in the Inland Empire region, including the city of San Bernardino and portions of Rancho Cucamonga; the district is represented by Democrat Pete Aguilar, first elected in 2014. District created January 3, 1963 As of September 2019, there are three former members of the U. S. House of Representatives from California's 31st congressional district that are living; the most recent representative to die was Mervyn M. Dymally on October 7, 2012; the most serving representative to die was Matthew G. Martinez on October 15, 2011. From 2003 to 2013, the district was located in Los Angeles County, it was the only congressional district based within the City of Los Angeles, included Hollywood and some predominantly Hispanic/Latino sections of central and northeast Los Angeles. List of United States congressional districts GovTrack.us: California's 31st congressional district RAND California Election Returns: District Definitions California Voter Foundation map - CD31