Scholars, historians and anthropologists came together to felicitate Dr. Tarun Chhabra on his definitive work on the Toda tribe
The 150 year old Nilgiri library witnessed the launch of a definitive volume, The Toda Landscape Explorations in cultural ecology. It is a labour of passion, by Dr. Tarun Chhabra, and is co-published by Orient Black Swan and Department of South Asian Studies, Harvard University.
The event started with a traditional song by the Toda elders. Mrs. Geeta Srinivasan, the President of the Nilgiri Library gave the welcome address.M R Srinivasan, Former Chairman, Indian Atomic Energy Commission spoke of the rare dedication that Chhabra has shown, in his study of the Todas over almost 25 years. He has always been on the move in the Nilgiris studying rare orchids, plants, grass, sacred rituals, etc. and has spoken exhaustively at various forums.
This book, said Srinivasan, should serve as a catalyst for other scholars to study and bring out equally authoritative volumes on the other tribal communities.
C R Sathyanarayanan, Regional Head, Anthropological Survey of India, Mysore, also called it a major breakthrough in the study of the Todas, bringing to light unknown ethnographic aspects of this tribe. It was perhaps the first such effort by a local Indian scholar. This book comes at a time when rapid changes and transformations are taking place in life of the Todas.
The Toda Landscape… was formally released by eminent historian and anthropologist Ramachandra Guha and the first copy was ceremoniously presented to Toda elders Kwattawdr Kwehttn, Ooner Kwehttn and Taihhthilly Kwehttn. […]
Terming it an effortless blend of science and literature, Guha, said the book was staggering for the range of subjects it covered; art, architecture, ethno pottery, after-world and a total history of the Todas. […]
Source: Book launch of The Toda Landscape: Explorations in cultural ecology by ANURADHA IQBAL, The Hindu, October 26, 2015
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