Webpages of Tamil Electronic Library ©K. Kalyanasundaram

A Research Center for Resource Development in Language and Culture

MOZHI is a public charitable Trust engaged, since 1990, in developing resources in language and culture. MOZHI was founded by a group of individuals belonging to disciplines such as linguistics, language teaching, publishing, information science etc., pooling their long experience in respective areas, to develop conceptual and technological facilities in language teaching and learning and in understanding culture.

MOZHI's perception of language and culture and its activities have already won acknowledgement in the form of support from international organizations like the UNESCO, the Ford Foundation and of collaboration from the University of Chicago and national research organizations such as the Central Institute of Indian Languages, Mysore, the Tamil University, Thanjavur etc.

MOZHI has successfully established a computer centre with facilities for compiling dictionaries and in analyzing texts in Tamil. It recently extended computer support to a major dictionary project - Dictionary of Contemporary Tamil - which is the first of its kind in any modern Indian language and which makes use of the latest developments in linguistics, lexicography and information technology. This Dictionary, supported partly by Government of India, also has been hailed as a major landmark in Tamil in the recent years and is acknowledged as a valuable tool for any teacher, learner or user of Tamil.

MOZHI is now engaged in compiling a dictionary of idioms, phrases and word combinations in modern Tamil. This data- based dictionary will be the first of its kind in Tamil. MOZHI has also plans to expand its representative database in modern Tamil which will be useful for any study in Tamil relating to grammar, semantics and stylistics.

MOZHI's another important project is developing a spell checker in Tamil for use on computers. This project very relevant to the present needs of the Tamil society involves joint effort of linguistics and computer specialists. MOZHI has already generated a body of data on the structure of modern Tamil. In the last few decades there has been so much change in Tamil that anyone writing in that language needs a variety of tools of which style manual is one. To fulfill this need, MOZHI is developing a style manual for contemporary Tamil. This project is a tripartite one involving the Central Institute of Indian Languages and the Tamil University.

A few other projects taking shape at MOZHI are an English- Tamil dictionary and a hyphenation dictionary for contemporary Tamil. The basic work in identifying the conceptual problems in developing these tools is well under way.

In a major recent development, MOZHI is now engaged in creating a library for Tamil studies in collaboration with University of Chicago. This project consists of housing, cataloguing and microfilming a huge private collection built over 40 years by late Roja Muthiah of Kottaiyur, near Karaikkudi. This collection consists of over 1,00,000 items consisting of books, periodicals and a variety of non-book materials. For this project University of Chicago has received grants from U S Department of Education, National Endowment for Humanities and the Ford Foundation. Wellcome Institute for the History of Medicine, UK, is also extending collaboration in the area of medicine. This collection is a rare one covering all major subjects and will prove a valuable help for scholars in Tamil studies. MOZHI has been chosen for this project from a panel of scholarly institutions in Tamilnadu. Roja Muthiah Research Library which houses the collection, will provide machine readable catalogue for the collection, archival microfilming conforming to international standards and facilities for conservation of paper materials. The first phase of organizing the collection involving creation of a short title catalogue is planned to be completed by December 1995. By January 1996 the Library is expected to start providing reader services.

The microfilming of the items in the collection has been recently started and is expected to be spread over a period of five years. MOZHI proposes to develop, with Roja Muthiah Library as its core, a network of private collections which will facilitate proper perspectives on the study of history and culture of Tamilnadu.

Dr P. Sankaralingam,
Director, Roja Muthiah Research Library,
Jayalalitha Nagar, Madras-600 050;
or to
`Amaravathi' Plot 181, Door No. 9/1, 24th East Street
Thiruvanmiyur, Madras 600 041,
email: rmrl@giasmd01.vsnl.net.in
Telephone: (91)(44)-416445

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