Castes & Tribes of Southern India Vol 1
Castes & Tribes of Southern India Vol 1 by EDGAR THURSTON
along with Commentary by VED from VICTORIA INSTITUTIONS
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I think this is my fifth commentary written about certain books of formidable reputation, in the world of history and sociology studies.
The first one was on Travancore State Manual written by V. Nagam Aiya. The second one was Native Life in Travancore by REV. Samuel Matter. The third one was on Mein Kampf by Adolf Hitler. The fourth one was on OMENS AND SUPERSTITIONS OF SOUTHERN INDIA by Edgar Thurston.
However, this last one did go beyond the parameters of a commentary and did sort of become an independent book of mine, titled: Software codes of mantra, tantra, witchcraft, black magic, evil eye, evil tongue &c.
The way I work on these old time books is to take the text and images from the scanned digital copies of these books, which are available online (mainly archive.org), to create a very readable digital book version in pdf. This effort brings up a lot of seemingly unsolvable problems.
One is that the text does not get copied correct. Or that text recognition does not work properly. So that there are umpteen instances of erroneous words appearing in the copied text.
Next is that there would be missing letters or words. This makes text correcting and proofreading a huge work.
Then there is the issue of alphabetic ligatures. These are combined letters such as œ (c + e), æ (a +e), Æ etc. These old-time books do use them profusely. However, when copying the texts, these words do split. I do not remember as to how I dealt with this issue in my earlier attempts at creating a more readable version of the former four books. However, in this present book, I have made some effort to retain the original typographic ligatures.
However, the most formidable issue was that when the digital texts from pdf files are copied, the text more or less mirror the layout of the pdf page. That is, the page becomes a line-by-line arrangement of each line in the page, in a list-like manner. So that, practically I had to correct each line and sentence individually. In a book with around more than 100 thousand words, this becomes a huge work.
This was one of the most terrible issues that I had to face in my earlier attempts at this work. However, over the years, I have learnt a lot of tricks to accomplish various things in the digital world. I experimented with a lot of ideas and came upon a trick that would help me circumvent the problem.
Incidentally, I have written a book on my various information on computer usages, data processing and internet, titled: VEILED routes to resources in Computers & on the Internet, unVEILED!. I find that this digital book has received a good rating on Google books.
My work on Travancore State Manual was the most tedious and time-consuming one. It was my first attempt at this kind of work. The problem with that book was that the original text I got from online sources was quite corrupted and many words simply invisible. I had to work on more than one source to find the correct word which was missing. Moreover, there were a number of botanical technical words, which I had to painstakingly type out. In fact, in the case of that book, I did a lot of typing work.
When I work towards creating an easily readable digital version of these books, the frill benefit that derives upon me is that I get to invariably read the books, and almost without much of an extra effort.
When pondering about what I get in return for this unsolicited-by-anyone works, I think that there is a certain kind of feeling of accomplishment that I derive when the digital book creation is done. Apart from that I come across a lot of information which hitherto I had not known, or seen mentioned in any academic textbooks or other insipid sources of information.
As to financial benefits, though they are deeply expressive of appreciation, the truth is that I do not get much pecuniary benefits. That remains a truth.
Since, I am myself an author, who has done quite pioneering and original research and ponderings on such exceptional themes as Feudal languages, Codes in languages, Software codes of languages, Life and reality, Codes of reality, Software codes of supernatural events, Software codes of human life, body and mind etc., unusual bits of information do help me much.
Edgar Thurston’s book
The writings of Edgar Thurston are not a totally unknown commodity for me. In fact, I have already, as stated above, done a digital book creation of his famous work: OMENS AND SUPERSTITIONS OF SOUTHERN INDIA.
I am totally impressed by him. There are a lot of superlative words that I can mention about him and his works. However, they might be quite supercilious in that, there is no specific need to eulogise Thurston and his writings. (As an aside, I should mention very categorically that I do find most items connected to the English rule in the subcontinent also as of quite superlative character and content. Persons who are interested in following up that route are requested to visit this web-link)
However, there might be some need to snub certain ingenious idiots who write or quote on Wikipedia, words disparaging Thurston and his works, from some malodorous levels of stale banality.
The writings of Thurston are quite good in what they attempted to do. No accusation of racism or other foolish definitions can rightfully be used to define his intentions.
I do not intend to write any more words of praise about this writings. My intentions here are to seek out the limitations or location of incompleteness in his writings and understandings. And also to better understand as to what really took place, as he worked on his writing projects.
As has become a sort of signature style in me, I intend to use the impressionistic method to understand many things. For one thing, I was not present in the age he lived. Second, I do not know much about him as a person. Whatever I know about him are merely what I gathered from two of his book, which I presumably have read completely. Even though in a most perfunctory manner.
Of the Castes and tribes of Southern India, I have read only Part I completely. As to the other parts, I should admit that I have gone through some pages in some of them, when I sought to find some information on certain castes.
This book, I understand is a very powerful record of the immensity of populations that had existed in this land.
VED from VICTORIA INSTITUTIONS
Aaradhana, Deverkovil 673508,