Spoken by eighty million people, Tamil is one of the great world languages, and one of the few ancient languages that survives as a mother tongue. David Shulman presents a comprehensive cultural history of Tamil, emphasizing how its speakers and poets have understood the unique features of their language over its long history.
Author: Vijaya Ramaswamy, Jawaharlal Nehru University
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
The second edition of Historical Dictionary of the Tamils contains a chronology, an introduction, and an extensive bibliography. The dictionary section has over 600 cross-referenced entries on important personalities, politics, economy, foreign relations, religion, and culture.
This companion to A BIOGRAPHY OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE, 3rd Edition, supplements and enhances material presented in the main textbook. Chapter-by-chapter exercises help students master text material efficiently. Important Notice: Media content referenced within the product description or the product text may not be available in the ebook version.
The Musical Gift tells Sri Lanka's music history as a story of giving between humans and nonhumans, and between populations defined by difference. Author Jim Sykes argues that in the recent past, the genres we recognize today as Sri Lanka's esteemed traditional musics were not originally about ethnic or religious identity, but were gifts to gods and people intended to foster protection and/or healing. Noting that the currently assumed link between music and identity helped produce the narratives of ethnic difference that drove Sri Lanka's civil war (1983-2009), Sykes argues that the promotion of connected music histories has a role to play in post-war reconciliation. The Musical Gift includes a study of how NGOs used music to promote reconciliation in Sri Lanka, and it contains a theorization of the relations between musical gifts and commodities. Eschewing a binary between the gift and identity, Sykes claims the world's music history is largely a story of entanglement between both paradigms. Drawing on fieldwork conducted widely across Sri Lanka over a span of eleven years--including the first study of Sinhala Buddhist drumming in English and the first ethnography of music-making in the former warzones of the north and east--this book brings anthropology's canonic literature on "the gift" into music studies, while drawing on anthropology's recent "ontological turn" and "the new materialism" in religious studies.