Prema Nandakumar
Tiruchirapalli, Tamil Nadu, India

Dr. Prema Nandakumar obtained her PhD summa cum laude in 1961, at the age of 22, for her study of Sri Aurobindo's epic poem Savitri. Heršs was the first in-depth study of Savitri and opened the way for many subsequent scholars to take up Savitri or Savitri-related subjects for academic dissertations. Dr. Nandakumaršs doctoral dissertation was followed by post-doctoral research work comparing Dante and Sri Aurobindo. Since the publication of these early research works, Prema, who is the daughter of Prof. ICR. Srinivasa Iyengar, the first biographer of Sri Aurobindo, has written and spoken to audiences the world over, about Sri Aurobindo's writings and philosophy.

Dr. Nandakumar is a frequent contributor to several Ashram-related journals including Sri Aurobindo's Action, Mother India, The Advent and The Call Beyond. She has just completed a three-year series of articles on The Evolution of the Aurobindonian Heroine for The Advent and is soon to begin a new series on The Book of Fate. Her latest series of articles has Mahasaraswati as the main theme. She has drawn on sources as varied as the Vedas, the Mahabharata, Karnada literature and Bengali poetry for this. Prema is a frequent contributor of literary essays, reviews and short stories (in Tamil and English) to various other publications in India and abroad.

Premašs most recent book is entitled Women in Vedas and is a translation of women-related hymns from the Vedas. Dr. Nandakumar, who has been giving workshops on the writings of Sri Aurobindo and The Mother for more than thirty years, is also an acclaimed critic and translator and has been recognized with several awards for her contributions to Indian literature.

Dr. Nandakumar has been a member of the Academic Council, Central Institute of Higha Tibetan Studies, Sarnath, Varanasi (1988-91); Member, Board of Studies in English, Andhra University, Waltair; Manba, National Executive of The Indian P.E.N., Senate member of Bharathidasan University and Visiting Professor, Swami Vivekananda Chair, Mahatma Gandhi University.

Prema Nandakumar can be reached at

Selected books of Dr. Prema Nandakumar:

A Study of 'Savitri' (Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry)
•The Glory and the Good (Asia, Bombay, 1965)
•Dante and Sri Aurobindo (Affiliated East-West Press Pvt. Ltd, Madras)
•Subramania Bharati (Rao & Raghavan, Mysore)

•Bharati (Makers of Indian Literature Series, Sahitya Akademi, New Delhi)
•Sri Aurobindo Publications Division, Government of India, New Delhi)
•The Mother (National Book Trust, New Delhi)
•Our Mother (Sri Aurobindo Ashram, Pondicherry)
•Sri Aurobindo: A Critical Introduction (Sterling Publishers, New Delhi)

•Poems of Subramania Bharati (UNESCO & Sahitya Akademi)
•Portrait of a Woman Translation of Akilon's Tamil novel, Chittirappavai (Macmillan, Madras, 1981)
•Viduthalai Tamil translation of Chaman Nahal's English novel, Azadi (Sahitya Akademi, New Delhi)
•Manimekalai English verse translation of the Tamil Buddhist epic by Seethalai Sathanar (Tamil University, Thanjavur)
•T.V. Kapali Sastri (Munshiram Manoharlal, New Delhi)