Historical Dictionary of the Tamils
The cultural heritage of the Tamils dates back two thousand years. As a language, Tamil has existed since the pre-Christian era, around the same time as the early classical languages Hebrew and Sankrit. The first book on Tamil grammar, the Tolkappiyam, was written around the fifth century BCE. Today, Tamil cuisine has captured the imagination of the vegetarian world, and Tamil cinema, with its heavy political allegories and opera style music, is popular across the globe. Not confined to their homeland of Tamil Nadu, the Tamils constitute a powerful diaspora in Sri Lanka (where they are fighting for their political rights), Singapore (where Tamil is one of the national languages), and Malaysia. The diaspora extends to places as far flung as the U.K., the U.S., and Australia. Tamil temples and cultural centers can be found everywhere from Pittsburgh to San Francisco and from Texas to Toronto. The Historical Dictionary of the Tamils presents a vivid picture of the Tamils' cultural and literary traditions, both the historic past and the vibrant present. This is done through a list of acronyms and abbreviations, a chronology, an introductory essay, a bibliography, black and white photos, maps, and over 500 cross-referenced dictionary entries covering Tamil history from the megalithic age to present day and Tamil personalities, economics, literature, music, politics, and cinema. This one-volume reference is an excellent entry point into a deeper understanding of the cultural milieu of the Tamils.
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Ramaswamy (Divinity and Deviance) presents the fundamental terms, figures, events, and places of a population defined not by politics or religion but by culture and language. Tamils, whose recognized ... Read full review
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agricultural AIADMK Alvar Ammaiyar ancient Anna Dravida Munnetra Annamalai Arcot Auvaiyar became began Bharatanatyam Bharati born Brahmin British called Carnatic music caste celebrated century Chennai Chera Chetti Chettiar Chidambaram chief minister Chola dynasty Christian Coimbatore colonial Congress dance deity district Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam Dravidian dynasty E. V. Ramaswamy Naicker early elections film founded freedom struggle Hindu India Anna Dravida Iyakkam Iyengar Iyer Jayalalitha Justice Party Kamaraj Kanchipuram Karunanidhi Kaveri known Krishna Madras present-day Chennai Madurai major MANDALAM medieval Munnetra Kazhagam DMK Murugan Muslim Nanuru Nayak Nayanar NON-BRAHMIN MOVEMENT Pallava Pandya period Periyar Pillai poet Pondicherry region religion Sabha saint Sangam age Sangam literature Sanskrit Shastri Shiva Silappadikaram social South India Sri Lanka Srinivasa STRUGGLE IN TAMIL Subramanya TAMIL CINEMA Tamil country Tamil culture Tamil language Tamil Nadu Tamil politics Tamizh Tanjavur temple Thyagaraja TINAI Tiruchirapalli Tirunelveli tradition University Vaishnavite Vanniyar Veenai Vijayanagar women