Between the years 1976 and 1979 under the aegis of the University Grants Commission the author undertook at the University of Jodhpur and MSJ College, Bharatpur (affiliated to the Rajasthan University) a study of the unpublished manuscripts of the Vaishnavite poets of Rajasthan. The findings were compiled under the heading 'Semiotics of Braj Culture' based on unpublished manuscripts of poets of Rajasthan devoted to Krishna cult. The present book is a sort of condensed version of the findings in corporated in the original compilation, defining semiotics and also analysing and synthesising the several traits of Braj Culture.
Dr M.L. Gupta (b. 1910) prosecuted his early studies in Rajasthan and Uttar Pradesh. Later he went abroad to the United Kingdom for higher education. Dr Gupta laid down the office as Head of the Hindi Department, University of Jodhpur in 1973. Till 1980 he was associated with the Vrindavan Research Institute as Research Director. Presently he is the Hony. Editor of Rishi Jivan, a religious, monthly of Bhagwan Bhajanashram. Dr Gupta is well-known in the fields of linguistics, phonetics and semiotics. He has immense interest in Braj Culture and has authored several papers on the literature, culture and religion of the Braj area. During his several visits abroad he has not only lectured on his favourite topic but has also presented several papers at International Conferences.
I retired from the services of the University of Jodhpur in the year 1973 and then joined a project of the London University as a programme coordinator. Towards the close of 1975 with an award of UGC I worked for one full year at the University of Jodhpur trying to get utmost advantage of the Rajasthan Oriental Research Institute with its headquarters in Jodhpur. I have been attached to this Institute ever since I joined the then SMK College, Jodhpur as the PG Head of the Hindi Department in the year 1958. After that, with the permission of all concerned, I shifted my project to Bharatpur College which has so much to do with the Braj area. My proposal for the project was for four years but due to UGC rules I could not be allowed more than two years and some months with the result that the investigations are rather not so complete and the analyses a little hurried.
The story of the selection of the topic is a little interesting. The topic has some important words and each one has a special significance from my point of view. I had just, then, returned from Milan, Italy, where I was invited by Professor Umberto Eco to attend the first International Congress on Semiotics. The word was so very fresh in my mind and I wanted it to apply to Culture, specially to the culture of Braj which happens to be the region of my birth. Manuscripts and Rajasthan have been dear to me from the time of my first doctoral efforts and continued till the completion of my postdoctoral thesis. I had devoted so much time in studying the Rajasthani manuscripts that they have become an integral part of my being. With Braj, the Krishna Cult is a must and all cultural attempts are directed to it. Hence the Krishna Cult was added to it. This, of course, gave a long name to my project.
In my project the word 'Semiotics' deserves a special mention. In the plan of the project I have given some idea of what the expression means and how it attracted my attention. But the term needs some more explanation about the concept it carries with it and in what particular sense I have accepted the term for my interpretation. Before attempting that however, I would like to refer to the proceedings of two work-groups on Semiotics which met under the auspices of the UNESCO in the years 1965 and 1966.
Their proceedings are recorded in 'Sign-Language Culture' published by Mouton in 1970. It had an editorial board of world famous scholars, including A.J. Greimas (France), R. Jakobson (USA), M.R. Mayenowa (Poland), S.K. Saumjan (USSR), W. Steinitz (GDR) and S. Zolkiewski (Poland). The articles are in English, French, Polish and Russian and the discussions of the two work-groups took place in Warsaw and Kazimierz respectively. The main divisions were:
1. General Topics: Structuralism, semantics, signs and semantic systems, relation between linguistics and logic, subcode in semiotics.
2. The Problem of meaning: Meaning and reference, semiotic solution, functional approach to the logical semiotics of natural languages, verbal signs, metaphor and metonymy in linguistics, semantics and meaningfulness.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
Art & Culture (792)
Emperor & Queen (493)
Send as free online greeting card
Email a Friend