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255: Tamil Communism

January 15, 2018


I’ve been sitting on these dozen covers for almost six years now. Back in 2012 my friend Jesse sent these scans from a visit to India, and it got me real excited. Translations and bibliography was supposed to follow, but that fell through, so they’ve been languishing in a folder on my computer. Figure I might as well post, and maybe some of you out there will know more about them and can provide some context. So please post comments if you know more about any of these books!
[UPDATE!! Shaun S. from Justseeds found a relative that knows Tamil, and sent me transliterations and translations! They are now included here. He also mentioned that overall, this collection appears to be Maoist-leaning.]
The above books are—
top: Thagaval Thurai Egaadhipaththiyam [Information Imperialism] by Yuri Kashlev
left: Puththagangal Pirandha Kadhai [Books’ Birth Story] by Manimegalai Pirasuram [Manimekalai Publishing Co.]
right: Dhalith Samooga Iyal [Dalit Sociology], likely writings of BR Ambedkar who is pictured
And below—
left: Vidudhalai Poril Thozhilaallar[Worker in Freedom Struggle] by Arandhai Naaraayanan
right: Thennindhiyaavai Kanden [I Saw South India] by Ameer Haidharkaan [Amir Haider Khan]

Jesse documented them at a friend’s family place he was staying at, and I guess the family had serious red tendencies and history, so the idea was that most of these were communist titles, or at least leftist. And that seems likely, although I suspect a couple of these might be crime novels. Since I don’t have any bibliographic info, and can’t read Tamil, I’ve put these in my best guess of chronological order. Anyway, I’m just going to share these below, and let me know what you think!
Below, first row—
left: Singaaravelu—Thennindhiyaavin Mudhal Kamyoonist [Singaravelu—South India’s First Communist] by K. Murugesan and C.S. Subramanyam. An English version of this book can be found here.
right: Thozhar Maniyam Ninaivu Malar [Comrade Maniam Commemoration Volume] (Maniam is a Sri Lankan Communist)
Second row—
left: Moonraam Ulagam—Valarchchiyaa, Nerukkadiyaa? [Third World – Development or Crisis?]
right: Amerikka Bayangaravaadham Varalaarru Thadangal [US Terrorism Historic Stages] by T.Gnanaiah
Third row—
left: Jehaanaabaadh Chiraiyudaippu – Sollappadaadha Seydhigal [Jehanabad Jailbreak – Untold News]. ALthough the image is taken from a 1969 poster in support of the NY Panther 21, the book is about a 2005 Naxalite prison break. More info here, which makes the publishing date of this likely 2005/2006.
right: Mumiyaa: Siraiyum Maranamum [Mumia: Prison and Death] by Mumia Abu-Jamal, translation in Tamil by V.Nataraj



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