Languages and Nations
The Dravidian Proof in Colonial Madras
By (author) Thomas R. Trautmann
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Languages and Nations by Thomas R. Trautmann
Book DescriptionBritish rule of India brought together two very different traditions of scholarship about language, whose conjuncture led to several intellectual breakthroughs of lasting value. Two of these were especially important: the conceptualization of the Indo-European language family by Sir William Jones at Calcutta in 1786 - proposing that Sanskrit is related to Persian and languages of Europe - and the conceptualization of the Dravidian language family of South India by F.W. Ellis at Madras in 1816 - the 'Dravidian proof', showing that the languages of South India are related to one another but are not derived from Sanskrit. These concepts are valid still today, centuries later. This book continues the examination Thomas R. Trautmann began in "Aryans and British India" (1997). While the previous book focused on Calcutta and Jones, the current volume examines these developments from the vantage of Madras, focusing on Ellis, Collector of Madras, and the Indian scholars with whom he worked at the College of Fort St. George, making use of the rich colonial record. Trautmann concludes by showing how elements of the Indian analysis of language have been folded into historical linguistics and continue in the present as unseen but nevertheless living elements of the modern.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780520244559
(229mm x 152mm x 28mm)
Imprint: University of California Press
Publisher: University of California Press
Publish Date: 17-Oct-2006
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Thomas R. Trautmann
Elephants and Kings, Paperback (July 2015)
Because of their enormous size, elephants have long been irresistible for kings as symbols of their eminence. The author traces the history of the war elephant in India and the spread of the institution to the West, where elephants took part in some of the greatest wars of antiquity.
Lewis Henry Morgan and the Invention of Kinship, Paperback (July 2008)View all books by Thomas R. Trautmann
Offers a different interpretation of the genesis of "kinship" and of the role it played in late nineteenth-century intellectual history.
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Author Biography - Thomas R. Trautmann
Thomas R. Trautmann is Marshall D. Sahlins Collegiate Professor of History and Anthropology at the University of Michigan. Among his books are Aryans and British India (UC Press, 1997), Lewis Henry Morgan and the Invention of Kinship (UC Press, 1987), and Dravidian Kinship (1981).
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