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Report of the Association for Comparative Studies 2004-2005

The most unforgettable event in the year under report is the sad demise of Dr. A.P.Andrewskutty, our beloved Guru. Dr. A.P.Andrewskutty was the leading light of the ACS all through these years. He conveyed knowledge, wisdom and love through every intervention he made in the meetings of the Association. He died on 1st November 2004 in Tamil University, Thanjavoor. Dr. A.P.Andrewskutty was a great teacher and he died as a teacher. He met with sudden death while he was lecturing to a group of teachers in the University. We, members of the Association recall with gratitude all that has done for us.

Report of the ACS Conference held on 8-10 October 2004
The 9th annual conference the Association for Comparative Studies was held in Sameeksha, Kalady. Deviating from the tradition of conducting the annual conference in the second week of November ACS had to prepone the conference to October to suite the convenience of post graduate students. Dr.M.V.Pylee, former vice chancellor of Cochin University and president of the Association for Comparative Studies, inaugurated the conference on Friday at 2 pm. Dr.Sunny P Orathel, vice president of the association presided over the meeting. Both of them suggested that the ACS should expand its activities to other major disciplines like Economics, Medicine and Law. About 100 delegates participated in the conference. The participants included eminent scholars like Dr.MGS Narayanan, Mr. P.Govindapilla, Dr.Raghavan Payyanadu, Dr. T.B.Venugopala Panikker, and Dr. A.P.Andrewskutty. About 25 young teachers and 75 post graduate students also participated .10 research students participated in the competition for Professor Elamkulam Kunjan Pilla Birth Centenary Prize. They presented research papers dealing with Kerala Studies. We are happy to report that the research papers by the young scholars in general impressed everybody with the variety of topics, fields of enquiry and research methodologies. The paper entitled ‘Religion and Non-Mappila Element in Malabar Revolt’ presented by Aneesudheen Ahamed.V won the prestigious Elamkulam Kunjan Pilla Prize comprising a merit certificate and a cash award of Rs.1001/- . Mr. C.V.Sudheer was awarded Professor L.V.Ramaswamy Aiyyar Prize for the best paper in Malayalam Linguistics.

On the first day of the conference Dr. MGS Narayanan delivered Professor Elamkulam Kunjan Pilla commemoration lecture on ‘Keralolpathy- A New Reading’. Mr. R.Nandakumar, the art critic, delivered Dr.Hermann Gundert commemoration lecture on ‘Reception of Music in Kerala’.

In preparation of the Birth Centenary of L.V.Ramaswamy Aiyyar, the famous Malayalam Linguist there was five presentations on LVR’s contributions to Malayalam Studies. Dr. T.B.Venugopala Panikkar presented a paper on LVR’s contributions to Malayalam Studies. Mr. C.V.Sudheer spoke on Malayalam Phonetics. Ms. Soumya Baby presented an annotated bibliography of LVR’s papers. Dr.P.Pavithran (Contemporary Historiography), Mr.Sunil P Elayidom (Revisiting Krishnagatha), Dr.K.V.Dileepkumar (Commercial Places in Literature), Ms.Sajitha .K.R (Historical Understandings of Pulaya Community) and Ms. Sumi Joy Oliyappuram (Language and Advertisement) presented papers in various sessions.

There was a special session on ‘Payyannur Pattu’. Mr.Y.V.Kannan and Dr.T.Pavithran presented two research papers explaining the folkloristic nature of ‘Payyannur Pattu’.Dr. Scaria Zacharia explained the significance of the new developments in the study of ‘Payyannur Pattu’.

There was a series of presentations on Contemporary Popular Culture of Kerala. Dr.Raghavan Payyanadu in his presentation explained the interface of folk lore and popular culture.Mr.K.M.Narendran spoke on ‘Problems of defining Popular Culture’. Dr.Shaji Jacob dealt with the definitions of popular culture. Dr.P.S.Radhakrishnan presented a paper on the superstar status of Mammootti.
On the last day of the conference there was a session to commemorate Jacques Derrida. Mr. Hudaifa Rahman, a post graduate student of Sree Sankaracharya University (Tirur Centre) gave a short presentation on Derrida. He described the intellectual and political dimensions of Derrida’s life and works.
Dr.MGS.Narayanan distributed cash awards and certificates to the winners of Elamkulam Kunjan Pilla Birth Centenary Prize and L.V Ramaswamy Aiyyar Prize.
The managing committee of the Association met several times to plan and execute the activities. Three books are ready for publication and they are to be released in July 2005. The Association has decided to launch a quarterly journal for Kerala Studies – TAPASAM. This is envisaged as an international research journal incorporating articles in Malayalam and English. The first issue is to be released in July 2005.

Annual Report 2002-2003

thapasem-imageDuring the period of April 1st 2002 to March 31st 2003 the Association for Comparative Studies conducted its academic consultations, research seminars and annual conference under the leadership of the office bearers. About 100 researchers and post graduates participated in these programmes. Eminent Scholars from India and abroad presented papers as part of these academic programmes.

Office Bearers

President DR.M.V.PYLEE (former Vice-chancellor, Cochin University)
Vice Presidents DR.A.P.ANDREWSKUTTY (Professor and Head, Dept. Of Linguistics, University of Kerala), DR.SUNNY .P. ORATHEL MD
(Medical College, Kottayam)
Secretary DR.SCARIA ZACHARIA (Professor and Head, Dept. of Malayalam, S.S. University.)
Treasurer DR.N.VIJAYA MOHANAN PILLAI (Lecturer, Dept. of Sanskrit, S.S. University, Kalady)

Executive Committee

Stephen Mathews (Lecturer. in Commerce, S.B College, Changanachery) Biju. C.P (Sub Editor, Mathrubhoomi) Shamshad Hussain (Lecturer. in Malayalam, S.S. University, Thirur)
Dr Jaya Sukumaran (St Thomas HSS,Malayatoor) V.J.Varghese (Research Fellow,Hyderabad University) Ms Sumi Joy Oliyapuram(ResearchFellow,M.G. University)


ACS conducted a two day seminar on linguistics at Kalady Sameeksha on the 28th and 29th July 2002. Dr. A .P.Andrews Kutty and Dr. Scaria Zacharia were the chief resource persons in the seminar. Dr. A.P. Andrews Kutty delivered the key note address on Bio linguistics. Mr. K. Sreekumar (Research scholar, University of Kerala), Ms. Sumi Joy, Ms. Shamsad Hussain, Sr. Deepa, Ms. Jaya Sukumaran, Mr. K.V.Sasi, Dr. N. Ajayakumar, Dr. N. VijayaMohanan Pilai and Mr. Biju C.P. presented papers. It was a gathering of research scholars and teachers who are very active in ACS. On the 3rd of September there was a one-day seminar on Jewish Malayalam folk songs at SSUS Kalady, which was conducted in collaboration with the Malayalam Department of SSUS. Dr. K.N. Panikkar, the V.C, SSUS, was the chief guest. Ms. Ophira Gamliet from Israel and Albrecht Frenz from Germany took part in the seminar. Dr. N. Ajayakumar, Dr. P. Pavithran, Dr. K.V. DileepKumar, Dr. Shaji Jacob, Dr. N. Vijayamohanan Pillai, Mr. Sunil P. Elayidam, Mr. Sasi K.V., Dr. Aju Naryanan, Mr. Biju C.P., Ms. Sumi Joy, Ms. Sajitha K.R., Ms. Jaya Sukumaran and Ms. Bilu C. Narayanan presented papers. A very significant feature of this programme was the musical presentation of Jewish songs by Ms. Latha Mathew and Ms. Ophira Gamliel. Ms.Ophira who teaches Sanskrit in Hebrew University and works on a research project of Jewish Malayalam songs, has translated 50 Jewish Malayalam songs into modern Hebrew. She sings these songs in Hebrew translation but with original Malayalam tunes. Ms. Latha, a brilliant post graduate on Indian music has provided excellent examples of singing Jewish Malayalam songs with contemporary standardized Malayalam accent. ACS has prepared audio cassettes of this musical programme.

As usual, the most important event during the period under report was three day annual (8-10 November) Conference in Sameeksha Kalady. Two equally important themes were selected for the annual conference.
I. Folklore, History and liteature and 2. Humour in Malayalam and Keralite life. The three day annual conference opened at 2 pm on Friday with the introductory speech of Dr. A. P. Andrews Kutty, vice president of ACS. There were 9 papers in the folklore session and 10 in the session on humour. The Seminar started with the presentation of Dr. M.R. Raghava Varier, eminent historian and literary critic. He spoke on Folklore: History and Literature. Dr. A.P. Andrews Kutty chaired the session. Dr. T. Pavithran, Dr. Aju Narayanan, Mr. K.M. Narendran, Ms. Sajitha K.R. and Ms. Sita Kakkoth presented papers on related subjects. Eminent scholar Dr. C. Rajendran professor, Dept. of Sanskrit Calicut University delivered Sanjayan commemoration lecture. Dr. K.V.Dileep Kumar, Dr. P.S. Radhakrishnan, Mr. Sunil P. Elayidam, Ms. Indu Idappally, and Ms. Shifa Rajan presented papers. There was a special session on the new trends in the study of the Malayalam Language. Dr. A. P. Andrews Kutty delivered the keynote address. Ms. Sumi Joy Olliappuam and Ms. Bilu C. Narayanan presented papers. Herman Gundert commemoration lecture session on new developments in the study of Bhasha Koutaliyam was delivered by Dr. M.G.S. Narayanan, eminent histoian and chairman of ICHR. Dr. N. Ajayakumar, Dr. C. Rajendran, Dr. T.B. Venugopalappanikar, and Mr. K.V. Sasi took part in the discussion on this paper. In the evening there was a performance of folk arts by Ezholikkal Natan Kala Sangam, Madappally under the leadership of Mr. A.K.Appukkuttan. On the 3rd day Mr. K.K. Mararar from Tellichery delivered a special lecture on the Tradition of humour in Tellichery. Dr. Raghavan Payyanad, Professor, Dept. of folk lore studies Calicut University delivered a special lecture on New Trends in Folk loristics. Dr. M. V. Pylee, president ACS presided over the valedictory session. Dr. A.P. Andrews Kutty, Dr. N. Vijayamohanan Pillai and Mr. V. J. Varghese spoke on the occasion.

We are grateful to authorities of Sameeksha, the Indian spirituality center at Kalady for providing us generous hospitality. Before concluding this report I express my gratitude to Dr. M.V. Pylee, the president of the Association and other colleagues who facilitated the smooth conduct of the ACS. Dr. N. Vijaya Mohanan Pillai, the treasurer, took care of the financial matters. My student friends and colleagues shared my duties as the secretary of the Association. I hope the Association will continue to receive the same kind of patronage for years to come.

Annual Report 2001 -2002

During the period April 1st 2001 to March 31st 2002, the Association for Comparative Studies Conducted its normal programmes including consultations, research seminars, and annual conference under the leadership of the office bearers.

As usual the most important event was the three day (9-11 November) annual conference in Sameeksha, Kalady. The theme of the conference was “Theories of Aryan and Dravidian-Claims, Challenges and Changes”. 25 papers were presented dealing with various aspects of the theme. Eminent historians, cultural critics and literary personalities participated in the conference. Dr. Kesavan Veluthattu, Professor of History, Mangalore university delivered the keynote address. Dr. Rajan Gurukkal, Dr. M.R. Raghava Varier, Sunil P. Elayidam, Bilu.C Narayanan, Dr. K.V Dileep Kumar, Dr. N. Rajasekharan (Annamala University), Dr.P.S.Radhakrishnan, Sumi Joy Oliyappuram and H.K.Santhosh presented papers on related themes. Dr. K.G.Poulose delivered a special lecture on the cultural evolution of Kerala highlighting the blend of Sanskrit and Dravidian elements. A special event of the three day conference was a folk music evening “Karinthalakkoottam”, a folk music group lead by the famous folklorist Dr.C.R.Rajagopal entertained and enthused the audience with this programme.

Mr.Zacharia, the eminent Malayalam novelist and short story writer delivered Basheer commemoration lecture. He spoke on typical Malayalam humour. Dr.Reinhard Wendt, Professor of Non European History, Fern University, Hagen, Germany delivered Dr. Hermann Gundert commemoration lecture on Gundert and Kittel. Dr.Sukumari Narendra Menon, the eminent artist and scholar through a demonstration lecture illustrated the convergence of Aryan and Dravidian elements in Kerala music. On the third day of the seminar there was a special session on the literary works of M.Mukundan. Dr.D.Benjamin, Dr.Shaji Jacob, E.P.Rajagopal, Johny.J.Plathottam, Dr.N.Ajayakumar, K.V.Sasi and Sajitha K.R presented papers.

Association for Comparative Studies conducted an Inter Collegiate Quiz Competition involving 8 college/university teams. This was a special programme to commemorate G.Sankara Kuruppu, the eminent Malayalam poet on the occasion of
his birth centenary.

During the year under review, the Association has published one book entitled “Adhunikatha Malayala Kavithayil” by Dr.N.Ajayakumar. This is a modified version of his
doctoral dissertation on Modernity in Malayalam Poetry. Dr.K.N.Panikkar , Vice-chancellor of Sree Sankaracharya university of Sanskrit released the book by handing over the first copy to Mr.K.V.Sasi in a special function held in the department of Malayalam, Sree Sankaracharya university of Sanskrit, Kalady on 2nd July 2001.

Association has already prepared the proceedings of the annual conference 2000 in two volumes-Charithravum Sahithyavum (History and Literature), Anandinte
Rachanakalile Poruladayalangal (Studies on the Writings of Anand ). These books shall be released during the next year.

We are extremely grateful to eminent scholars, researchers, post graduate students and lovers of Kerala culture for their generous co-operation. As the secretary of the Association I am deeply indebted to Dr.M.V.Pylee, the president of the Association,
Dr.D.Vijaya Mohanan Pillai, the treasurer and all other members of executive committee for their co-operation.


Annual Report 2000 -2001

The most important event of the year under review was the three-day annual conference held on
10-12 November 2000 at Sameeksha, Kalady. The general theme of the conference was History and Literature. Dr. M.V. Pylee, president of the Association for Comparative Studies inaugurated the conference. He explained the working and relevance of the Association. He thanked the scholars who are contributing to the programme of the Association. He thanked Dr. M.G.S. Narayanan for his special care for the Association. Dr. M.G.S.Narayanan delivered the keynote address, in which he emphasized that History and literature are intersecting domains, which share many common theories and methodologies. Kerala studies which has developed very fast during the last fifty years bear testimony to the positive effects of such a collaboration.
Dr. Veluthattu Kesavan (Dept. of History, Mangalore University) presented a paper on Sukuntalam outlining the possibilities of historical and literary interpretations. Mr. V.J.Varghese (JRF, University of Hyderabad) spoke on history in literature. Mr. Pradeepan Pampirikkunnu (Lecturer, SSUS) pointed out the possibilities of hisoricising literature. The racial and gender determinations of cultural performances are easily discerned in such an analysis.
In the evening Dr. M.R.Raghava Variar delivered Prof. Elamkulam Kunjan Pillai commemoration speech on the Structure of Manipravalam. The lecture was followed by lively discussions.
On the second day of the annual conference two parallel sessions were held. In the first session of Folklore, History and Literature Dr. Scaria Zacharia (Secretary, ACS), Aju Narayanan ( Research Scholar, SSUS) Sr Deepa (Lecturer, St. Stephen’s College) and Suma Cyriac (Lecturer, Assumption College) presented papers. The second session included papers on Language, Literature and Philosophy. Dr. A.P. Andrewskutty (Professor of linguistics, University of Kerala), Dr. C.M. Neelakantan (Reader, SSUS), Dr. P.Geeta (Lecturer, Govt. College, Malappuram), Dr. Dharmaraj Adatt (Reader, SSUS), Dr. K.V.Dileepkumar (Lecturer, SSUS), Sumi Joy Oliappuram (JRF, S.B.College) and Indu Idappally(P.G.Student) presented papers in this session. In the afternoon Dr. Margrette Frenz (Berlin University) delivered Hermann Gundert Commemoration lecture on Tellicherry Records. She presented a copy of her doctoral desertation on Tellicherry Records to the secretary of the Association. In the same session Dr. Joseph Scaria presented a complimentary paper on the Discourse Analysis of Tellicherry Records. At 3 pm Dr. B. Rajeevan, well known Malayalam critic delivered Kuttipuzha Krishnapillai commemoration lecture on the Intellectual Traditions of Keralites. In the evening there was a special session for general discussions. On 12th November, the last day of conference, there was a symposium on History and Literature in the works of Anand. Dr. Rajan Gurukkal (Professor of History, M.G. University), Dr. D. Benjamin (Professor of Malayalam, Kerala University), Dr. N.Ajayakumar, Dr. Shaji Jacob, Dr. P.Pavithran, Sunil P.Ilayidam, Sajitha, K.R. (Lecturers, SSUS) and Sasi. K.V. (M.Phil student) presented papers on various aspects of Anand’s works. We are very happy to report that Anand was kind enough to sit through many of the sessions of the conference. He intervened in the discussions and responded to the points raised by the discussants. 52 registered delegates attended the conference. The hall mark of the conference was the active participation of delegates in discussions. We are grateful to senior scholars like M.G.S. Narayanan, Dr. M.R.Raghava Variar, and Dr. Veluthattu Kesavan for spending full three days with us.
We are grateful to authorities of Sameeksha, the Indian spirituality centre at Kalady for providing us generous hospitality. Before concluding this report I express my gratitude to Dr. M.V. Pylee, the president of the Association and other colleagues who facilitated the smooth conduct of the ACS. Dr. N. Vijaya Mohanan Pillai, the treasurer, took care of the financial matters. My student friends and colleagues shared my duties as the secretary of the Association. I hope the Association will continue to receive the same kind of the patronage for years to come.