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Identity of Modern Telugus – Yamada Keiko ఆగస్ట్ 28, 2010

Posted by Telangana Utsav in Andhra, Culture, Identity, regionalism, SRC, Telangana, Telugu.
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4 వ్యాఖ్యలు

Origin and Historical Evolution of the Identity of Modern Telugus
Yamada Keiko
Economic and Political Weekly, Vol XLV No.34 August 21, 2010

The “linguistic principle” following the States Reorganisation Act of 1956 was framed as a cultural bond and administrative facilitator for socio-economic prosperity. It has not only been challenged intermittently but also contested as a unifying concept. From the historical point of view, the emergence of the current separate Telangana movement of Andhra Pradesh is testimony to the failure or even death of regional historiography or history consciousness, out of which the Telugu people’s identity once sought to evolve. The historical understanding of a small group of Telugu intellectuals under colonialism finally developed into an imagined common historiography of the Telugus as Andhras. Giving the name “Andhra” to the Telugu region in the 20th century was arbitrary and was due to the intervention of a new historical consciousness emerging among Telugu intellectuals. From the end of the 19th century to the beginning of the 20th century, describing the Telugu people as Andhras and the Telugu region as the Andhra region was not a simple matter of naming. It was an example of a particular historical interpretation that was rooted in colonialism and modernisation. The history of a separate Telangana movement, in a sense, follows a process to bid farewell to the colonial legacy of a modern intellectual tradition formed around regional language and history.

The significance of a common language as a major attribute defining a nation or an ethnic group has come under scrutiny in India. The “linguistic principle” following the States Reorganisation Act of 1956 was framed as a cultural bond and administrative facilitator for socio-economic prosperity. It has been challenged intermittently and contested as a unifying concept.

Andhra Pradesh was formed by combining Telangana, the eastern part of the former Hyderabad princely state, with the Andhra state, after the Andhra movement to integrate Telugus into a single political unit. The former Andhra state, the first “linguistic state” of post-independence India, was carved out of the Madras Presidency in 1953, following an emotional upheaval triggered by the fast- unto- death of Potti Sriramulu. The violence following Sriramulu’s death was responsible for Jawaharlal Nehru’s reluctant adoption of the linguistic principle in the federal system, and for his consent to the formation of the first state for Telugu-speaking people of the region. Indeed, it is ironic that Andhra Pradesh, a larger state combining the regions of Telugu-speaking people from the Madras Presidency and the Hyderabad princely state is now facing a demand for a bifurcation and the creation of a sub-regional state – Telangana – irrespective of the language. (మరింత…)