This very recently released book is a compilation of nearly 50 articles on Telugu language by various scholars as well as a few by the compiler, ABK Prasad, a veteran editor of repute in the Telugu realm of journalism. Each piece is a pearl in itself and speaks of a unique aspect of the language providing not just information but in-depth knowledge into certain territories in Telugu, unknown to common mind.
Among the bulk of these essays, we are bound to be drawn magnetically to some by sheer glance at the list of ‘contents’ itself. And here we find to our surprise, that Telugu has been proved by sheer mathematics, to be the fastest written language among world languages (Telugu vegavathi)! Unbelievable? Well, we have none than the reputed mathematician Dr. B.S. Ramakrishna’s researched and published article on the subject in Science Today magazine (Aug. 1973 issue) which has been edited and penned by ABK. And the mind-boggling numerals to prove the point leaves us dazed and proud that our language is indeed distinguished. The origin of the term ‘Telugu’ has been analytically traced by Acharya Kasturi Vishwanadam in one of the essays which provides us with an insightful study of the etymology of the word. The dignity and strength of this rich language impressed the original sultans, the Qutb Shahis who ruled the Telugu region for decades from Golkonda (Hyderabad), that they made it the official language! While there are some traditional articles that deal with the historical antiquity of Telugu (4, 12, 13, 14, 27 chapters ) and satirical literary works like Kanyasulkam (33 chapter) that reflected the vagaries of its time which is relevant even to this day (great works are classics only on this account), there are some topical issues that deal with the state of spoken (written too) Telugu as it is mouthed by our television newscasters.
And there are three such articles (19, 21 and 22 chapters) which are worth a read. These tongue-in-the-cheek observations are naked facts that need to be exposed if some rectification is to be effected. A few are aimed at straight questioning like the one by Mudigonda Shivaprasad ( Telugu pai nyunatha dekini?) and Prajalalo chaitanyam ravali ’ (Mandali Buddhaprasad). The culminating Anubandhalu has a series of writings that can stir a reader’s interest like the short-stories.
The beauty of dialectical variations in the regions of northern, southern Andhra, Telangana, Rayalaseema and Pravasandhra (NRIs) with a touch of the native folk elements are the real treat of this book. They serve us like quaint, delicious desserts that we have forgotten on our metro platter quite some time ago. This part makes for a refreshing reading and the reader can’t but resist a smile as he runs his eye through these pages. A word about the very thoughtful cover page which sports a 3rd -4th century rock inscription in ancient Telugu Brahmi script, unearthed at Keesaragutta. The off-white background with light green rays behind the title make for the aesthetic look.
The book is priced at Rs. 200 and is available at all centres of Visalandhra Book House.
TELUGADELA YANNA …
Articles compiled by ABK Prasad
Sri KRKM Memorial Academy of Fine Arts
Price: Rs. 200