Prof. Scaria Zacharia
Prof. Scaria Zacharia (1947-2022) energised Malayalam knowledge network by adding more than one hundred texts to its canons. His discovery of the rare works of Hermann Gundert and many invaluable texts of Malayalam from the Tübingen University archives in Germany was a groundbreaking moment in the history of Malayalam studies. Digital versions of these manuscripts are now available for scholars across the world. This paved way for many empirical and theoretical developments in literary historiography, textual analysis, comparative literature, translation studies, folklore, and cultural studies. His contributions to the area of Jewish Malayalam studies, particularly through Karkuzhali (a bilingual book on Jewish Malayalam folksongs published by the Hebrew University), not only revitalized the fading cultural memories of Kerala, but also showed Kerala as a hyphenated society citing text, practices, and narratives in different languages. His pioneering works have earned him many accolades like Kairali Lifetime Achievement Award (State Higher Education Council, Government of Kerala), Honorary D.Litt by Thunchath Ezhuthachan Malayalam University, Honorary D.Litt by Mahatma Gandhi University, Kerala Sahitya Akademi Lifetime Achievement Award, Alexander von Humboldt Research Fellowship at the University of Tübingen, DAAD Fellowship at the University of Tübingen, and Visiting Research Professor at Hebrew University, Israel. In view of his immense contributions, he was also appointed as the first Hermann Gundert Chair Professor at the University of Tübingen. He has delivered invited public lectures at many leading institutions across the world, including American Library of Congress, Harvard University, and Oxford University. He has more than 30 books and 180 articles to his credit. He died on October 18, 2022.
His CV can be accessed from this link.