ಕನ್ನಡ ಪತ್ರಿಕಾ ಕೋಶ

KANNADA  PATRIKA  KOSHA

A Rare Collection of Kannada Newspapers

India is a land of languages of all hues and shades and linguistic plurality is one of its cultural identities. Researchers have estimated that there are more than 780 languages in India and the list continues to grow. Studies have also estimated that over 220 languages have already disappeared in the last five decades (People’s Linguistic Survey of India). Today there is greater realization of the need to preserve linguistic heterogeneity and yet again media has come to the rescue of lesser-known languages that are being crushed under the weight of language of the majorities. India has given official language status to 18 languages. The State of Karnataka is the home for Kannada language spoken by the majority of the population and exists along with historically significant linguistic minorities speaking Kodava, Konkani and Tulu languages.

Indian language press of all hues and shades is a laboratory for research. It gives a potential platform for social scientists and media pundits to produce analytical, theoretical, and empirical research that contributes to public debate on social issues and process of communication in India. It is a matter of concern that the issue of growth and development of newspapers had not received the importance that it deserves in the journalism academia in India. There is dearth of studies and endeavours to document the history of Indian language press in general and Kannada press in particular. The growth of Kannada journalism is a potential area of study that requires a broader platform for continuous and consistent research to strengthen the institution of language press per se. The lack of research studies in this area has turned the subject of Kannada Journalism as a virtual goldmine for researchers.

Perhaps the major contribution of this web portal is linking Kannada journalism with Kannada literature. The interdisciplinary work encompassing the disciplines of Journalism and Kannada literature need to be harnessed and developed into a potential area of study. The growth of Kannada journalism is interdisciplinary in nature and therefore calls for networking in the academic world. The web portal has voluminous content that will be fertile ground for researchers of Kannada journalism and Kannada literature.

In fact the history of has been enriched by the contribution of researchers from Kannada literature. Perhaps Kannada newspapers and magazines have been richly benefitted by the writings of eminent writers. No study on Kannada journalism is complete without the study of impact of Kannada literature. This database helps researchers to map the history of Kannada journalism in pre- and post Independent period to understand the factors like literary movement of Kannada literature that influenced the growth of Kannada journalism.

173 Years of History

The State of Karnataka was formed on November 1, 1956 as a result of implementation of States Reorganization Act 1956 on linguistic basis. The State earlier known as Mysore was the princely state ruled by Wadeyar dynasty – the Kings of Mysore, and it became one of the Indian States after India gained Independence as the Wadeyars of Mysore acceded the State into the Republic of India on August 9, 1947 consequent to unification of princely states of India. The mother tongue of the people, Kannada was recognized as the official language of the State and linguistic harmony required for balanced growth of the state. The geographical parts of, Nizam’s Hyderabad, Bombay Presidency, Madras Presidency and the Kodagu were integrated into the State of Mysore in 1956 to unify Kannada speaking people.

The Mysore state was renamed as Karnataka State on November 1, 1973. The new state initially had 8 districts of erstwhile Mysore state (Mysore, Mandya, Bangalore, Kolar, Tumkur, Chitradurga, Chickmagalur and Hassan), 4 districts of Bombay-Karnataka region (Dharwad, Belgaum, Bijapur and Uttara Kannada), 3 districts of Hyderabad-Karnataka (Bidar, Gulbarga and Raichur), 2 districts of Madras-Karnataka (Bellary and Dakshina Kannada) and Coorg district.

The new state was formed in 1956 with 18 districts. Interestingly, by 2014 the state had 30 districts to reduce regional imbalances in development. Kannada press has a history of 173 years for which foundation was laid by Christian missionaries who established printing press and learnt the language with the sole intention of publishing religious literature for propagation of Christianity. These Christian missionaries have contributed to the growth of Kannada literature and journalism because the establishment of printing press by them paved the way for the publication of literature and newspapers in Kannada. Therefore, the religious preachers who migrated to propagate religion were instrumental in the birth of Kannada journalism.

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