Language, Culture and Power: English–Tamil in Modern India, 1900 to Present Day

1st Edition

C. T. Indra, R. Rajagopalan

Routledge India
Published November 13, 2017
Reference - 238 Pages
ISBN 9781138289222 - CAT# Y317514

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Summary

This volume examines the relationship between language and power across cultural boundaries. It evaluates the vital role of translation in redefining culture and ethnic identity. During the first phase of colonialism, mid-18th to late-19th century, the English-speaking missionaries and East India Company functionaries in South India were impelled to master Tamil, the local language, in order to transact their business. Tamil also comprised ancient classical literary works, especially ethical and moral literature, which were found especially suited to the preferences of Christian missionaries.

This interface between English and Tamil acted as a conduit for cultural transmission among different groups. The essays in this volume explore the symbiotic relation between English and Tamil during the late colonial and postcolonial as also the modernist and the postmodernist periods. The book showcases the modernity of contemporary Tamil culture as reflected in its literary and artistic productions — poetry, fiction, short fiction and drama — and outlines the aesthetics, philosophy and methodology of these translations.

This volume and its companion (which looks at the period between 1750 to 1900 CE) cover the late colonial and postcolonial era and will be of interest to students, scholars and researchers of translation studies, literature, linguistics, sociology and social anthropology, South Asian studies, colonial and postcolonial studies, literary and critical theory as well as culture studies.

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