The Dravidian Languages  book cover
2nd Edition

The Dravidian Languages

Edited By

Sanford B. Steever

ISBN 9781138853768
Published December 16, 2019 by Routledge
564 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations

USD $250.00

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Book Description

The Dravidian language family is the world's fourth largest with nearly 250 million speakers across South Asia from Pakistan to Nepal, from Bangladesh to Sri Lanka. This authoritative reference source provides a unique description of the languages, covering their grammatical structure and historical development, plus sociolinguistic features. Each chapter combines a modern linguistic perspective with traditional historical linguistics, and a uniform structure allows for easy typological comparison between the individual languages.

New to this edition are chapters on Beṭṭa Kuṟumba, Kuṛux, Kūvi and Malayāḷam, and enlarged sections in various existing chapters, as well as updated bibliographies and demographic data throughout.

The Dravidian Languages will be invaluable to students and researchers within linguistics, and will also be of interest to readers in the fields of comparative literature, areal linguistics and South Asian studies.

Table of Contents

1 Introduction to the Dravidian Languages

Sanford B. Steever

2 The Dravidian Scripts

William Bright

Part I: South Dravidian

3 Old Tamil

Thomas Lehmann

4 Modern Tamil

E. Annamalai and Sanford B. Steever

5 Malayalam

P. Sreekumar

6 Betta Kurumba

Gail Coelho

7 Kannada Sanford B. Steever


8 Tulu

D.N.S. Bhat

Part II: South-Central Dravidian

9 Old Telugu

P. Ramanarasimham

10 Telugu

Bh. Krishnamurti

11 Koṇḍa

Bh. Krishnamurti and Brett A. Benham

12 Gonḍi

Sanford B. Steever


13 Kūvi

Sanford B. Steever


Part III: Central Dravidian

14 Kolami

P.S. Subrahmanyam

15 Gadaba

Peri Bhaskararao

Part IV: North Dravidian

16 Malto

Sanford B. Steever

17 Kurux

Masato Kobayashi and Tetru Oraon

18 Brahui

Josef Elfenbein

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Sanford B. Steever holds three degrees in linguistics and a diploma in Tamil. The author of five books and 60 articles on historical linguistics, syntax, Dravidian linguistics and Tamil, he spent three years of study and fieldwork in India. He has been a member of the Linguistics Society of America for nearly 50 years, is a life member of the Dravidian Linguistics Association and serves on the advisory board of the International Journal of Dravidian Linguistics.


Praise for the previous edition:

‘Steever sets out the aim of this volume as being to enable "the layman or linguist … to satisfy his curiosity about these individual languages" … The volume succeeds in Steever’s aim, while in addition suggesting a number of interesting questions for further investigation.’

Bernard Comrie, Journal of Linguistics, Vol. 36 [2000]