Monday, November 2, 2009

A. K. Ramanujan

Attipat Krishnaswami Ramanujan or A. K. Ramanujan, as he is known, was born in Mysore, India in 1929. He was a transitional figure in the history of Indian English Literature, and also a trans-disciplinary scholar, working as a poet, translator, linguist, and folklorist. Although he wrote primarily in English, he was fluent in both Kannada and Tamil, the language of his family. Ramanujan received his BA and MA in English language and literature from the University of Mysore. He then spent some time teaching at several universities in South India before getting a graduate diploma in theoretical linguistics from Deccan University in Poona in 1958. He went to the U.S. in 1959. In 1962, he became an assistant professor at the University of Chicago, where he was affiliated throughout the rest of his career. The following year, he went to Indiana University where he got a Ph.D. in linguistics in 1963. He taught at several U.S. universities, including Harvard, University of Wisconsin, University of Michigan, University of California at Berkeley, and Carlton College. At the University of Chicago, Ramanujan was instrumental in shaping the South Asian Studies program. He worked in the departments of South Asian Languages and Civilizations, Linguistics, and with the Committee on Social Thought. In 1976, the government of India awarded him the honorific title "Padma Sri," and in 1983, he was given the MacArthur Prize Fellowship. Ramanujan breathed his last in Chicago on July 13, 1993.

No comments:

Post a Comment