When our family members, in 2007, decided to bring out in print some of our sister India Devi’s short stories translated into English in CUPID’S ALARMS, it was indeed a collaborative effort; sister Selvi selected the stories; I did the translations which younger brother Seenu edited meticulously, going over each story many a time to improve its tone and diction; brother Nannu wrote the introduction that captured the essence of our sister India Devi — as a short story writer and as a person.
India Devi wrote in Tamil, our mother-tongue, though she had no formal education in that language; at school, she studied Telugu — and we, her siblings, followed her example - except brother Seenu, who studied Oriya, the State language. If memory serves me well, India Devi wrote and published one short story in Telugu that was published in ANDHRA VANI or PRAJA VANI - a magazine now long defunct. I remember seeing the printed version somewhere in her files — only once — that’s all I remember about it. I also believe none of the other members of the family knows anything about it.
Recently it occurred to me that I should translate Vindihiya’s stories in Telugu and put them on my website so that some of her friends still living and others might read and enjoy them. I discussed the matter with sister Selvi who promptly encouraged my efforts. She also helped me by going over my Telugu translations and suggesting changes to improve their style and readability. Sister Selvi, I believe, has a better feel and appreciation of the idiom and speech patterns of the Andhra Brahmin culture — which I wanted to reflect in my translated short stories.
So my first thanks are to sister Selvi for her timely help.
Next, I would like to acknowledge and thank the couple Sirigini Anu Radha and Srinivas for developing the TELUGU LIPI software that I have used for my translation.
I have presently included these following short stories:
1. PREMA HR UDA YAM, translation of the lead story CUPID’S ALARMS. This story won prize as one of the best four stories in Tamil in the International Short Story Competition held by the New York Herald Tribune in 1950;
2. ANTARBUDDHI, translation of TNTUTION, which explores, with wry humor, how a young bride feels ‘touchy’ about seeking medical treatment from a male doctor — a phenomenon not altogether uncommon — at least fifty years ago — in small towns and rural surroundings of India. The English version that appeared in CUPID’S ALARMS was by our late father Prof. K.N. Sundaresan. Here I have presented my Telugu version.
I have also included in these Telugu versions the pictures that originally appeared in the Tamil magazines — as nostalgia.
I intend to add more stories in the future.
Please send your suggestions/comments to firstname.lastname@example.org.
December 28, 2008
El Cerrito, California, USA