En/gendering Language: The Poetics of Tamil Identity

  title={En/gendering Language: The Poetics of Tamil Identity},
  author={Sumathi Ramaswamy},
  journal={Comparative Studies in Society and History},
  pages={683 - 725}
  • S. Ramaswamy
  • Published 1 October 1993
  • Sociology
  • Comparative Studies in Society and History
Since the publication of Benedict Anderson's Imagined Communities almost a decade ago, historians and anthropologists have become accustomed to think of the nation—that bedrock of our existence as moderns—as an imagined entity.1 Yet it is problematic, at least to this author, that while the spotlight is (once again) on the nation, the other key actor in Anderson's formulation, the language through which a specific nation is subjectively conceived and imagined, appears to have been relegated to… 
Once were warriors: the militarized state in narrating the past
Military memoirs often seek to reproduce an authoritative understanding of warfare that delineate important strategies of the frontline. The soldier-narrator invokes a shared sympathy between the
Knowing One's Place: National Language and the Idea of the Local in Eastern Indonesia
If "identity" is not a given but an ongoing construction, under historically specific circumstances, then "local identity" is likewise not to be taken for granted. Local identity is not established
The poetics of nationalism: Cultural resistance and poetry in East Pakistan/Bangladesh, 1952–71
This article aims to unsettle the now accepted correlation of novel/nation within postcolonial studies by demonstrating that poetry can be a “national” form in societies with limited literacy such as
Resounding Rhetoric, Retreating Rebels: The use and impact of militant
Oratory is an important aspect of Tamil culture and people delight in the poetic flourishes of podium speakers. It is no surprise, therefore, that the leader of the largest Dalit movement in
When Interculturality faces a Diaspora. The Transnational Tamil Identity
The Sri Lankan Tamils of the diaspora are a model of a transnational identity. From the theoretical point of view, Tamil identity challenges our mental habits and intercultural theory. If the Tamil
The unemployed hero in Indian Tamil cinema: Perspectives on youth, gender and aspiration
In this article, I explore the portrayal of the information technology (IT) boom in Indian Tamil cinema to think through representations of unemployed youth. Three main questions anchor this article:
Revolution and Rank in Tamil Nationalism
From the 1920s to the late 1960s, Tamil nationalism in India was characterized by elements of radical innovation which made the Dravidian movement a mobilization for cultural revolution, in Tamil
Resounding rhetoric, retreating rebels: the use and impact of militant speeches in Tamil Dalit movements
Oratory is an important aspect of Tamil culture, and people delight in the poetic flourishes of podium speakers. It is no surprise, therefore, that the leader of the largest Dalit movement in
In ‘‘Universalism in Translation Studies’’, Andrew Chesterman speaks from a definite and defined location of formal, institutionalized and professionalized translation. I speak from a landscape
Tamil identity and diasporic desire in a Kollywoood comedy: Nala Damayanti (2003)
The aim of this paper is to explore how ethnic and linguistic identities intersect with national identity in Indian cinema through a ‘diasporic’ reading of the film Nala Damayanti (2003) produced by


Selections from Cultural Writings
Though he died as Benito Mussolini's prisoner, leaving only newspaper articles and fragmentary notes, Antonio Gramsci is now seen as the most significant Marxist thinker since Lenin. This volume is
Notes on love in a Tamil family
Love, as a force in human affairs, is still not given much attention or credency by social scientists. With Notes on Love in a Tamil Family, Margaret Trawick places the notion of love prominently in
Daughters of Tamil: Language and Poetics of Womanhood in Tamilnad
On Gendered Symbols and Gendered Users In their recent collection of essays on the ’recasting of women’ in colonial India, Sangari and Vaid have pointed out that perhaps the greatest challenge to an
Tamil Temple Myths: Sacrifice and Divine Marriage in the South Indian Saiva Tradition
South India is a land of many temples and shrines, each of which has preserved a local tradition of myth, folklore, and ritual. As one of the first Western scholars to explore this tradition in
Language History and Class
Introduction, Penelope J.Corfield estates, degrees and sorts - changing perceptions of society in Tudor and Stuart England, Keigh Wrightson "hidalgo" and "pechero" - the language of "estates" and
Theory in Anthropology: Center and Periphery
  • A. Appadurai
  • Art
    Comparative Studies in Society and History
  • 1986
Sherry Ortner's account of the development of anthropological theory is admirable both because of the complexity of her argument and because it opens up a series of interesting possibilities for
The Madras Anti-Hindi Agitation, 1965: Political Protest and its Effects on Language Policy in India
ANUARY 26, i965, the fifteenth anniversary of the coming into force of the .J Constitution of India, marked the end of the period in which English rather than Hindi could, according to the terms of
The Inner World: A Psychoanalytic Study of Childhood and Society in India
  • S. Kakar
  • Psychology
    The Journal of Asian Studies
  • 1979
Ethnic Groups in Conflict
here, but often with some revealing new insight; and only an exceptionally eclectic and voracious reader would fail to find new material. Even so familiar a subject as the Indian railways produces