G. N. Devy

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Ganesh Narayandas Devy
Born (1950-08-01)1 August 1950
Bhor, Pune, Maharashtra
Occupation Critic, thinker , editor, educator , activitist
Nationality Indian
Genre Literary Criticism
Notable awards

Ganesh N. Devy or Devy, Ganesh Narayandas ( 1 August 1950),[1] is first Indian English literary critic to receive Sahitya Akademi Award 1993 in English language category for his book After Amnesia: Tradition and Change in Indian Literary Criticism[2].


G. N. Devy was formerly professor of English at the Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, a renowned literary critic[3] and activist and is founder director of the Bhasha Research and Publication Center, Vadodara and Adivasi Academy at Tejgadh, Gujarat established to create a unique educational environment for the study of tribal communities.[4]

He led the People's Linguistic Survey of India in 2010, which has researched and documented 780 Living Indian Languages.[5][6][7][8] He was educated at Shivaji University, Kolhapur and the University of Leeds, UK. Among his many academic assignments, he has held fellowships at Leeds University and Yale University and has been a Jawaharlal Nehru Fellow (1994–96).

Since 2002, he was a professor at the Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information and Communication Technology.(DA-IICT), Gandhinagar. He now functions as a visiting faculty member at DA-IICT teaching the course 'Future of Memory' as an Elective. He has started his career again in Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda. From Vadodara he moves to Dharwad to continue his map of the world's linguistic diversity.[9]


He was awarded Padma Shri on 26 January 2014 in recognition of his work with denotified and nomadic tribes education and his work on dying-out languages.[10] He was awarded the Sahitya Akademi Award for After Amnesia, and the SAARC Writers’ Foundation Award for his work with denotified tribals. He has also won the reputed Prince Claus Award (2003) awarded by the Prince Claus Fund for his work for the conservation of the history, languages and views of oppressed communities in the Indian state of Gujarat. His Marathi book Vanaprasth has received six awards including the Durga Bhagwat Memorial Award and the Maharashtra Foundation Award. Along with Laxman Gaikwad and Mahashweta Devi, he is one of the founders of The Denotified and Nomadic Tribes Rights Action Group (DNT-RAG). He won the 2011 Linguapax Prize for his work for the preservation of linguistic diversity.[8][11]

Dr. G. N. Devy returned his Sahitya Akademi Award in October 2015 as a mark of protest and in solidarity with other writers[12] who sees a threat to Indian democracy, secularism and freedom of expression and "growing intolerance towards differences of opinion" under the Modi government. Devy claimed that police and an Intelligence official called on him after the protest and asked if writers in the country had launched a campaign against the Central government.[13][14]


  • Critical Thought (1987)
  • After Amnesia (1992)[15]
  • Of Many Heroes (1997)[16]
  • India Between Tradition and Modernity (co-edited, 1997)
  • In Another Tongue (2000)
  • Indian Literary Criticism: Theory & Interpretation (2002).[17]
  • Painted Words: An Anthology of Tribal Literature (editor, 2002).
  • A Nomad Called Thief (2006)[18]
  • Keywords: Truth (contributor, date unknown)
  • Vaanprastha (in Marathi, date unknown)
  • Adivasi Jane Che ( Tribal People Knows, in Gujarati, date unknown).
  • The G.N. Devy Reader (2009)


See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Who's Who of Indian Writers". Sahitya Akademi : Who's Who of Indian Writers. Sahitya Akademi. Retrieved 27 October 2015.
  2. ^ "After Amnesia: Tradition and Change in Indian Literary Criticism". books.google.co.in. books.google.co.in. Retrieved 13 September 2018.
  3. ^ "How GN Devy challenges our concept of knowledge". caravanmagazine.in. caravanmagazine.in. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  4. ^ "GN Devy in his new book 'The Crisis Within' warns of the crisis in education in India". financialexpress.com. financialexpress.com. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  5. ^ "The man who 'discovered' 780 Indian languages". bbc.com. bbc.com. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  6. ^ "Getting the language count right". thehindu.com. thehindu.com. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  7. ^ "Scholar GN Devy's Life's Work Is The Best Reply To Those Rallying For One National Language". huffingtonpost.in. huffingtonpost.in. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  8. ^ a b "7 Gujaratis in Padma awards list". The Times of India. 2014-01-26. Retrieved 2014-03-30.
  9. ^ "Ganesh Devy, the man who is out to map the world's linguistic diversity". The Economic Times. Retrieved 4 July 2016.
  10. ^ "Padma Awards Announced". Press Information Bureau, Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India. 25 January 2014. Archived from the original on 22 February 2014. Retrieved 2014-01-26.
  11. ^ Khan, Shoeb (2014-02-07). "India's linguistic diversity in danger: Professor Ganesh Devi". The Times of India. Jaipur. Retrieved 2014-03-30.
  12. ^ "GN Devy on why he's returning his Sahitya Akademi award". dailyo.in. dailyo.in. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  13. ^ "Dr. G. N. Devy returns Sahitya Akademi Award". ZeeNews. ZeeNews India. 15 October 2015. Retrieved 15 October 2015.
  14. ^ "Ganesh Devy returns his Sahitya Akademi award". The Times of India. TNN. 11 October 2015.
  15. ^ "Review: THE CASE FOR NATIVISM". jstor.org. jstor.org. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  16. ^ "Reviewed Work: Of Many Heroes : An Indian Essay in Literary Historiography by G.N. Devy". jstor.org. jstor.org. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  17. ^ "Reviewed Work: Indian Literary Criticism: Theory and Interpretation by G. N. Devy". jstor.org. jstor.org. Retrieved 14 September 2018.
  18. ^ "Review: Redeeming the Silence". jstor.org. jstor.org. Retrieved 14 September 2018.

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