000 a
999 _c31989
008 230419b xxu||||| |||| 00| 0 eng d
020 _a9788178246604
082 _a039.94811
100 _aVenkaṭachalapathy, A. R.
245 _aBrief history of a very big book : the making of the Tamil encyclopaedia
260 _bPermanent Black in association with Ashoka University,
_aRanikhet :
300 _axvii, 149 p. ;
_bill., (b & w),
_c21 cm
365 _b595.00
504 _aIncludes bibliographical references and index.
520 _aIn the age of Wikipedia, it has been forgotten how important the Encyclopaedia Britannica once was in the mind of the English-reading Indian. Seen as the supreme repository of knowledge, it was also a status symbol sought as bookshelf adornment. What most people do not know at all is how an intrepid band of Tamil intellectuals, inspired seventy-five years ago by the Britannica, decided to create an encyclopaedia in their own language. They felt a linguistic system as advanced as theirs, with a literary history stretching two millennia, needed to showcase its civilisational achievement: it was imperative that Tamil boast its own encyclopaedia. The odds against realising this ideal were impossible. And yet the project of compiling the Kalaikkalanjiyam – the Tamil Encyclopaedia – began and was soon unstoppable. This intriguing episode of Indian intellectual life is as forgotten as its narration here is compelling. Book history comes brilliantly alive in A.R. Venkatachalapathy’s vibrant chronicling – from the conception of an extravagant idea to its execution as a printed work. This story of lofty ideals and financial scandals, bruised egos and ideological conflicts reveals a fascinating world of cultural enterprise, political struggle, and regional nationalism. This is a book for every reader of history.
650 _aEncyclopedias and dictionaries
650 _aTamil India History
650 _aAvinashilingam
650 _aBrahmin-Non Brahmin conflict
650 _aChildren's encyclopaedia
650 _aDravidian movement
650 _a"Kalki" R. Krishnamurthy
650 _aLanguage development
650 _a Meenakshisundaram,T.P.
650 _aSambasivam Pillai
650 _aTamil academy
650 _aKalaikkalanjiyam
942 _2ddc