naga_ganesan at HOTMAIL.COM
Wed Dec 2 13:55:17 UTC 1998
I think the answer to your question is partly to be found in
internal Indian politics. I have been digging around in the little
nationalisms that India produced at the turn of the century and that
partly are still there (particularly Dravidianism), and it would
seem that Indigenous Aryanism is a knee-jerk reaction to some of the
more Aryan-unfriendly ideas that turned up in the South. (I think
there are other reasons as well of a non-scholarly nature).
Indigenous Aryan schoolers point to Europeans wanting to
come out of their long hold from "Bible, Neareast, Semiticism"
etc., William Jones' discovery gave Europe a good avenue to
do that. So, Europeans all of a sudden became "Indo-Europeans".
It is natural that Anybody likes to dig for their roots.
Sanskrit professorships got endowed all over the West.
Hitler took the Aryan idea too far!
The writeup from Dr. Fosse shows that Dravidian culture
plays an important role in modern India. Others
say it did in ancient times as well.
To understand India, neglecting ancient
literatures from Dravidian side and focussing exclusively on
Sanskrit will be lopsided. For example, Sanskrit literary
theories and Dravidian literary theories (tolkAppiyam)
have not been compared so far. (Dhvany of Anandavardhana
is related to uLLuRai plus iRaicci of TolkAppiyam, predating
Anandavardhana by several centuries.)
To understand India, I am confidant that Dravidian
studies in the West will go a long way.
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