TABLE OF CONTENTS

Robert Kushner

I MODI: THE SIXTEEN PLEASURES, AN EROTIC ALBUM OF THE ITALIAN RENAISSANCE

Edited, translated front the Italian, and with a commentary by Lynne Lawner, Evanston, Ill.: Northwestern University Press, 1989, 132 pp., 47 black and white illustrations.

Let’s face it: some people like sex; some don’t. It’s always been this way, and, one imagines, will always remain so. But all too often the sex-haters win out.

Consider this scenario. We are in Rome in 1524. Probably in the Vatican itself. A well-placed artist decides to make a catalogue of 16 positions of sexual intercourse—beautiful, profoundly earthy drawings of stately, statuesque women making it with beefy hunks in luxurious surroundings. These lovers are not pictured as celestial gods or historical heroes cavorting with goddesses and wenches. They are real people doing “it.” The text refers to some of them by name, from which we know them to

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