This work by Ranganath introduces 38 representative authors from Karnataka belonging to Twentieth Century. They represent diverse generations of literary personalities in Sanskrit that have prominently flourished in the past century. Many of them, like S. Jagannath and R Ganesh just carved a niche for themselves in twentieth century and now they belong to the generation of most promising Sanskrit authors in this century.
In a journey through the pages of this monograph, we can feel the changing scenario of contemporary creative writing in Sanskrit. There are interesting works on the family history of Mysore kings, the cities of Karnataka as well as on the holy places and saints of this state. Visvagunadar sacamp uh of Venkatadhvarin, composed in seventeenth century AD, has been a trendsetter, which presented a critique of Indian milieu. Venkatadhvarin has encompassed the whole peninsula in its diversity and plurality. Many of the authors of our age in Sanskrit envisage this broad spectrum. It is interesting to note that a Sanskrit author from Karnataka Nirpaje Bhimbhatta, composed works like Kasmirasandhana- samudyamab- presenting a resume of Kashmir problem, and Haidarsbada-vijaya on satysgraha during British regime at Hyderabad.
Through this work, we can also understand some of the nuances and tendencies of present day Sanskrit writings. Gandhism has cast an everlasting impact on Sanskrit writings of this age. Realism gets the upper hand. The spark of prose, as a vehicle of modem sensibility is slowly replacing the repetitive versification, overloaded with panegyrics and hyperbolism. There is a shift from versification towards prose, from verbal jugglery towards simplicity; and the tendency to cultivate the age-old language of gods as a vehicle for expression of contemporary socio-economic conditions.
Karnataka has produced some of the most outstanding litterateurs of Sanskrit in our times. Galgali Ramachar, Jaggu Vakulabhushana and many others have composed some of the finest specimen of creative pieces that can be a part of the golden treasure of Sanskrit literature. Tradition and modernity go hand in hand together in these writings. We can also find a blend of classicism and modernity. C.G. Purushottam, H.V. Nagaraja Rao, R. Ganesh and some others have made new experimentations and have introduced new genres.
The series on Modem Sanskrit Writings in different states was planned under SAP in Sanskrit Department of Dr. H.S Gour University. Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan has undertaken the Publication of volumes prepared under this series. This is the second volume under the series devoted to contribution of different states to Modem Sanskrit Writings. The first volume by Arum Ranjan Mishra was devoted to the contribution of Orissa. Other volumes are also in planning. We hope that this series will bring out a comprehensive picture of perspectives of contemporary creativity in Sanskrit during the past two centuries.
The state of Karnataka is situated in the Southern part of India. Prior to 1973, it was known by the name of Mysore, its capital city. Presently the city of Mysore is famous on international map as the city of gardens as well as the silicon city of India. With its pleasantly moderate climate and a rich cultural heritage, the state of Karnataka is also known for the pomp and show of the traditional Dushera (Vijyadasami) festival. The Maharajas of Mysore have been great patrons of arts, literature and sastraic learning. The farsighted Deewans like Deewan Rangadhar, Sesadri Iyer, Mirza Ismail and others also promoted the intellectual traditions within the state. The state of Karnataka has been the motherland of a genius like Bharataratna Sir M. Visvesvaraih and Nobel laureate Sir C.Y. Raman. The accomplishments of the former in the field of irrigation technology ushered an era of modernity in this land, whereas the latter made immense contribution to the study of sciences. In the field of literature also, the state has produced seven Gyanpith Awardes, like K. Y. Puttappa (popularly known as Kuvempu), D. R. Bendre, Shivram Karanth, Masti Venkatesh Iyengar, Y. K. Gokak, U. R. Ananthamurthi and Girish Karnad.< P> Mysore has been a great seat of Sanskrit learning. The Emperors under the dynasties of Ganga, Cola, Hoysala and Vijayanagar etc. patronized and promoted pundits by bestowing agnaharas and providing grants for the temples. Mysore grew to be great center of Carnatak music, and at the same time the rulers did not lag behind in encouraging the growth of Hindustani music.
The Oriental Manuscript Library was founded at Mysore during the reign of Queen Victoria (1887). The curator of this Library, Mahamahopadhyaya Shama Sastry brought out the monumental work Kautilya's Arthsastra. Founded in 1916, the University of Mysore was the sixth University of India, and the first University under a princely state in the country. This university has produced eminent savants like Sarvapalli Dr. Radhakrishnan, one of the most outstanding philosophers of modem India; as well as Prof. M. Hiriyanna. The Outlines of Indian Philosphy by Prof. M. Hiriyanna is an essential work for the students of Indian Philosophy. Amongst the patrons of Sanskrit scholarship, the name of Sri Jayachamaraja Wodeyar, the Maharaja of Mysore is worth mentioning. He published major puranas with their Kannada translation. Rgveda Samhita with Sayanabhasya, edited by a group of35 scholars, was brought out in 35 volumes. Yogavasistha was translated into Kannada by Devadu Narsimha Shastry under the patronage of King Jayachamaraja Wodeyar. Wodeyar himself being a scholar, wrote a work on Dattatreya in English. It was under his patronage that Mahamahopadhyaya Lakshmipuram Srinivasacharya created his classics like Darsanodayam, Manameya-rahasya-Slokavartikam and so on.
Sringeri Sharadapeeth was established in this state by Sankaracarya. Suresvaracarya the author of Brhadarnyakabhas- yavartika, Taittiritabhasyavdrtika and Naiskarmyasiddhi was the first pontiff of this great seat of learning in Advaita Philosophy. During the course of time, this peetha has produced savants like Saccidananda Sivabhinava Nrsimhabharati Svami, Chandrasekhara Bharati Svami, Abhinava Vidyatirtha Svami, Bharatitirtha Svami. They have been epitomes of erudition and spiritual values. The Sanskrit commentary of Candrasekhara Bharatl Svamf on Sankaracarya's Vivekacudamani is the only a pointer in this direction.
Be it critical writing or literary creations or translations from Sanskrit in Karnataka, literary traditions have ever been zealously persued in Karnataka.
Kamataka has also been a great seat of learning in Dvaita Philosophy. Madhvacarya (1238-1317 AD) was the founder of Dvaita system. He not only wrote commentaries on ten principal Upanisads, Srimad-bhagavadgita and Brahmasutra; but also commented upon the first forty hymns of Rgvda, and composed an abridged version of the Mahabharata in verse form. He also wrote notes and comments on Bhagavata, the Dasaprakaranas or ten philosophical monographs expounding the logic and metaphysics of Dvaita system. His critical exposition of the Brahmasutra one of the greatest works in the realm of Indian philosophy.
Contrary to popular beleif, there is an astonishing quality ,f creative upsurge of writing in Sanskrit today. Modern Sanskrit writing is qualitatively of such high order that it can easily be treated on par with the best of Classical Sanskrit literature, It can also easily compete with the writings in other Indian languages. The enormous quantity of the published works in Sanskrit composed during the past two centuries encompasses all forms of literature. attempt is being made in the present monograph to account and evaluate the contribution of Karnataka to Twentieth Century sanskrit literature, which convincingly disproves the criticism that sanskrit is a dead language. It will hopefully serve as a ready reckoner for the researchers on modern Sanskrit writings.
The methodology uniformly employed in this book is first to state the author's date of birth, his family, his qualifications, an account of his creative or critical writings as well as the honours or laurels which he might have received and an assessment of his overall contribution to literature. The work is divided into nine chapters pertaining to nine decades during which the authors taken p here were born. Thus the work stretches from Jaggu Singararya (born on 20.10.1891) to R. Ganesh (born on 4.12.1962). There are authors whose date / year of birth could not be confirmed, I have kept them under the section miscellaneous. This work highlights the contributions of poets who have been honoured with Sahitya Akademi Award by the National Academy of letters, or have been conferred the President's certificate of honour or the title of Mahamahopaddhyaya by the Rashtriya Sanskrit Sansthan, New Delhi. Jaggu Vakul Bhushana, author of more than 60 works in various genres; Galagali Ramachar, the editor of Madhuravani, Kadur Krishna Jois, Ranganatha Sarma, K.T.Pandurangi, Pandarinathacharya Galagali, Paraddi Mallikarjuna, H. Y.Nagaraja Rao, Ramakrishna Bhatta and Satavadhani Ganesh are a few to mention amongst them.
The contemporary Sanskrit poets of Karnataka have inculcated the spirit of realism in their writings by depicting the social evils like dowry, bribery, corruption, unemployment and so on. They have also suggested possible and plausible solutions of these evils. H.Y. Narayana Shastry's Gunapanksanam, H.Y. Nagraja Rao's Dampatyakalahah, Ganesh's Anvesanam are pointers in this direction.
Patriotism and nationalism also occupy a significant trend of modem Sanskrit poetry wherein we find works being composed on religious saints and national leaders like Basavanna, Vidyaranya, Mahatma Gandhi, Sivakurnara Swamiji (the present pontiff of Siddha Ganga Mutt Bharatiya-desabhakta-caritam and so on. Basavabhaskarodayah - an epic on Basavanna by Paraddi Mallikarjuna, Vidyaranyakathatarangini, Gandhitopilahari and Gandhivaibhavam by Galagali Ramachar and K.S. Nagrajan Siddhagangayah Suddhachetanah by H.Y.Nagraja Rao, Bharatavaibhavam and Bharatiyadesabhakticaritam by K.S. Nagrajan are some examples in establishing contemporarily Of Sanskrit writings in Karnataka.
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