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Beauty and the East : A Book of Oriental Body Care - Wendy Buonaventura

Beauty and the East

A Book of Oriental Body Care

By: Wendy Buonaventura, Isobel Eady (Illustrator)

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This fascinating story of body care and the creation of sensual ambiance focuses on customs practised in the Middle East, Africa and India and takes a humorous look at the often converse attitudes towards the body prevailing in the West.
Ancient books of the East are full of the language and lore of sensuality. They praise women's beauty and speak with a bawdy humour about the erotic arts, which included poetry, dance and rituals of beautification. In the Middle East a visit to the steam baths took the entire day and was used as an excuse for festivities, with female dancers and musicians brought in to entertain. From earliest times make-up had a magical, protective element, and many superstitions are still associated with cosmetics. The use of perfume was developed into a fine art, and there were countries which owed their rise and fall to the control of the trade in aromatic oils and spices. When Cleopatra invited Anthony to dine, the floors were strewn deep with rose petals.
Elaborate rituals of beauty and the creation of a sensual environment are by no means a thing of the past. Today, in the most modest homes, incense is still burned to create a soothing atmosphere and guests' hands are sprinkled with rose water as a sign of welcome. Other similar attentions continue to mark out the countries of the East for their legendary hospitality.
The book also includes anecdotes by Western women who were initiated into the secrets of the steam baths and descriptions by contemporary women of customs handed down by their mothers and grandmothers. Some of these customs are now known in the West, especially henna for the hair, kohl for the eyes, and the therapeutic use of essentialoils. Yet there are many other body care methods using natural substances which have great appeal today, when many women are abandoning synthetic and expensive products in favour of effective alternatives which do not harm the environment.
A pot pourri of practical information and delightful stories, the book includes extracts from poetry and literature and is illustrated throughout with original sketches and line drawings.

Introduction
A Day at the Baths A Brief History of the Steam Bath Western Attitudes to Bathing The Steam Baths and Islam Roses
Cleansing Lemons Face and Hand Treatments from Old Persia - The Mouth Persian and Arab Methods of Depilation Dead Sea Mud Olives Food for the Face Remedies for Minor Ailments
Fragrance A Short History of Fragrance Musk Essential Oils Some Essential Oils and Their Therapeutic Uses
Massage Baby Massage Giving and Receiving a Massage Sandalwood and Frankincense
The Protective Mask A Brief History of Cosmetics Oranges Old Cosmetics Still in Use Today Mirrors of the Soul Kohl The Eye and the Veil Body Designs Henna Painting
Hair Hair in Folklore and Mythology Hair in History no Cedar wood and Myrrh Perfuming and Dressing the Hair
Ambience and Celebration The Erotic Arts The Gardens of Paradise Persian New Year (Norouz) Marriage Rites Dance
Index Further Reading Picture Credits
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780863560811
ISBN-10: 0863560814
Audience: General
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 159
Published: 1st February 2001
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 25.4 x 19.05  x 1.27
Weight (kg): 0.52
Edition Number: 1