Chidananda Murthy, Mathada, (em. cidAnandmUrty) (ಚಿದಾನಂದಮೂರ್ತಿ, ಮಠದ) is a great scholar of Karnataka who has made lasting contributions to various academic disciplines such as linguistics, epigraphy, cultural history, prosody, textual criticism, folklore and history of Kannada literature. He has been in the fore front of Kannada language movement for the past few decades and has evinced keen interest in the socio-political realities of our society.

Chidanandamurthy was born in a small village called hirEkOgalUr, in Chennagiri talluk which is now a part of Davanagere district. He had a distinguished academic career and secured his B.A. and M.A. degrees from the University of Mysore . He was awarded a Ph.D. degree for his dissertation on ‘Kannada Shaasanagala Samskrutika Adhyayana’. (Cultural Study of the Inscriptions of Karnataka) This is one of the most admired works of its kind in Kannada). This is a systematic study of the inscriptions from 450 A.D. to 1150 A.D. It is full of insights and throws light on many cultural practices prevalent during that period.

After working as a lecturer in Kannada in a few colleges Dr Murthy joined the University of Mysore in 1960. He moved on to Bangalore University in 1968 and took voluntary retirement from his job as a professor of Kannada in 1990. He has worked as a visiting professor in Chicago University during 1967-68. He has participated and presented papers in seminars held at prestigious Universities in U.S.A. such as Berkeley and Stanford.

His work in many fields of scholarship has been trend setting and path breaking. He is one of the scholars who liberated literary research from its academic boundaries and imbued it with socio cultural dimensions. He could import this outlook to whatever area he chose to work upon. In fact, he is one of the pioneers of inter disciplinary study of literature and culture. Total solar eclipse, Lambani language and culture, religious practices of rural Karnataka are some of the issues that have engaged his mind. He was not keen to confine himself to research based exclusively on literature and writers. His has evinced a keen interest in a socio-cultural analysis of many rituals and practices.

Chidananda Murthy has published more than thirty books and contributed about four hundred research papers both in Kannada and English. Some of the important contributions of Chidananda Murthy are listed below:

1.      Shunyasampadaneynfnu kuritu 1962

2.      Bhashavijnada Mulatatvgalu 1965

3.      ‘Samshodhanataranga-1’ 1966

4.      ‘Samshodhanataranga-2’

5.      ‘Kannada Shasanagala Samskrutika Adhyayana 1966

6.      Samshodhane 1967

7.      Basavannanavaru 1967

8.      Basavanna’ (In English) 1972

9.      Kavirajamarga 1973

10. Vachana Sahitya 1975

11. Grameena 1977

12. Vagartha 1981

13. Sampoorna Suryagrahana 1982

14. Madhyakaleena Kannada Sahitya matftu asprushyate’ 1985

15. Lingaayta Adhyayanaglu 1986

16. ‘Kannada Samskruti-Namma Hemme 1987

17. Hosatu Hosatu 1993

18. Chandotaranga 1993

19. Vachanashidha 1994

20. Kannadaaayana 1999

21. Veerashaiva Dharma, Bharateeya Samskruthi 2000

22. Pandityarasa 2000

23. ‘Karnataka-Nepaala 2003

For the past three decades Chidananda Murthy has been an inseparable part of the Kannada language movement and tried his best in fostering the cause of Kannada and Karnataka. ‘Kannadayana’ is an account of his journey on foot from Bangalore to Hampi delineating his experiences and his concerns for Kannada.

Chidananda Murthy has received many awards and honors during his illustrious career. Central Sahitya Academy Award for ‘Hosathu, Hosathu’ in 1997, Rajyotsava Award, (1985) Pampa Prashasti, (2002) Karnataka Sahitya Academy Award (1984), Karnataka Janapada and Yakshagana Academy Award (1993) are a few among them. ‘Samshodhana’ is the felicitation volume presented to him.




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