The stories in this collection span almost one thousand years of story-telling in India., Most originate in North India and all were written by Jain Monks for the edification and amusement of the faithful. Jain literature is both rich and varied. Stories were told in verse and prose, in Sanskrit and in vernacular languages. Some resemble simple folk tales while others are as sophisticated as courtly romances. The stories in Jain literature are about holy men and holy places, famous kings and courtiers and those not often heard in ancient and medieval India - women and toiling villagers. The treasures of India's heritage of story-telling are known to us today mainly from these Jain stories which have been carefully pre-served through the ages. The stories in The Clever Adulteress have been translated by a renowned group of scholars from India, North America and Europe. Each translator has chosen his or her favourites from the vast treasures of Jain literature.
Dr Phyllis Granoff is currently the Lex Hixon Professor of World Religions at Yale University and one of the most renowned scholars of Indian philosophy and literature. After graduating from Radcliffe College she earned her Ph.D. in Sanskrit, Indian Studies and Fine Arts from Harvard University. She is fluent in numerous Indian languages, including Sanskrit, Prakrit, Pali, Ardha Magadhi, Bengalo, Hindi, Assamese, Gujarati and Oriya. She has published twelve books, some seventy articles, and now is the editor of the Journal of Indian Philosophy.