I'm thrilled to have received in today's post my order for the latest seven volumes of the NCC (Madras, 2013). The indefatigable team at the U. of Madras, especially the editors Prof. Dr S. Revathty, Prof. Dr S. Padmanabhan, Assist. Prof. Dr P. Narasimhan, and Assist. Prof. Dr C. Murugan, under the dynamic directorship of Prof. Dr Siniruddha Dash, have now published volumes 26-32, covering Lakāra-Śaṅkarācāryotpatti. Volume 28 includes an updated bibliography of the catalogues extracted for the NCC and abbreviations for the wide range of secondary sources cited.
I consider the NCC to be amongst the most important projects of indology in the 20th and 21st centuries (so far), up there with the BORI Mahabharata and the Deccan College Dictionary. It is what might be called a Big Humanities project (like CERN is a big science project). International scholarship owes a great deal to Prof. Dash and his team, Prof. Dr R. Thandavan (VC of the U. of Madras, who strongly supports the project), the IGNCA, NAMAMI and the UGC. Prof. Dash in particular has managed to reinvigorate a project that had languished in the 1990s, and was in danger of collapsing altogether.
And now the end is in sight, at least for the printed product. Supporters of the project are exciting about the future plans at Madras after the printed volumes are completed. Revisions, suppletions, digital spin-offs, and other products from this astounding database of Indian scholars and literary history can be expected to open new vistas for 21st century scholarship on Indian culture.
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