Malayalam language is widely spoken in the south Indian state of Kerala. Literature optionals are becoming very popular among the aspirants. Malayalam is one such optional provided by upsc. The subject does not require you to be an expert in the language, rather a basic familiarity with the language and it’s systematic reading.
One should be familiar with the language both spoken and written as both optional papers require you to write the exam in the language itself.
The syllabus and booklist for the subject is very concise and brief to avoid any kind of misunderstanding. Paper 1 requires you a deep reading for the subject and it’s characteristics and origin whereas paper 2 of the optional requires you to study the various literary works of the authors and analyse the work.
The syllabus and booklist of the subject is given below for an understanding.
Early phase of Malayalam Language:
1.1 Various theories: origin from proto Dravidian, Tamil, Sanskrit.
1.2 Relation between Tamil and Malayalam: Six nayas of A.R. Rajarajavarma.
1.3 Pattu school-definition, Ramacharitam, later pattu works-Niranam works and Krishnagatha.
Linguistic features of :
2.1 Manipravalam-definition. Language of early manipravala works-Champu, Sandesakavya, Chandrotsava, minor works. Later Manipravala works-medieval Champu and Attakkatha.
2.2 Folklore-Southern and Northern ballads, Mappila songs.
2.3 Early Malayalam prose-Bhashakautaliyam, Brahmandapuranam, Attaprakaram, Kramadipika and Nambiantamil.
Standardization of Malayalam
3.1 Peculiarities of the language of Pana, Kilippattu, and Tullal.
3.2 Contributions of indigenous and European missionaries to Malayalam.
3.3 Characteristics of contemporary Malayalam: Malayalam as the administrative language. Language of scientific and technical literature-media language.
Ancient and Medieval Literature:
4.1 Pattu-Ramacharitam, Niranam works and Krishnagatha.
4.2 Manipravalam-early and medieval manipravala works including attakkatha and champu.
4.3 Folk literature.
4.4 Kilippattu, Tullal, and Mahakavya.
5.1 Venmani poets and contemporaries.
5.2 The advent of Romanticism-Poetry of Kavitraya i.e., Asan, Ulloor and Vallathol
5.3 Poetry after Kavitraya.
5.4 Modernism in Malayalam poetry.
6.3 Short story
6.4 Biography, travelogue, essay and criticism.
1.1 Ramacharitam-Patalam 1.
1.2 Kannassaramayanam-Balakandam first 25 stanzas.
1.3 Unnunilisandesam-Purvabhagam 25 slokas including Prastavana
1.4 Mahabharatham Kilippattu-Bhishmaparvam.,
2.1 Kumaran Asan-Chintavisthayaya Sita.
2.3 G. Sankara Kurup-Perunthachan.
2.4 N.V. Krishna Variar-Tivandiyile Pattu.
3.1 ONV -Bhumikkoru Charamagitam
3.2 Ayyappa Panicker-Kurukshetram.
3.3 Akkittam-Paudatha Messanthi
3.4 Attur Ravivarma-Megharupan.
4.1 O. Chanthu Menon-Indulekha
4.3 O V Vijayan-Khasakkinte Ithihasam.
5.1 MT Vasudevan Nair-Vanaprastham (Collection).
5.2 N S Madhavan-Higvitta (Collection).
5.3 C J. Thomas-1128-il Crime 27.
6.1 Kuttikrishna Marar-Bharataparyatanam
6.2 M. K Sanu-Nakshatrangalute snehabhajanam
6.3 V.T. Bhattathirippad-Kannirum Kinavum
1.All the novels, short stories, poems and biographies prescribed in the syllabus.
Malayalam magazine such as Bhashaposhini which talks about contemporary issues in the Malayalam Literature world.
2.Kairaliyude Katha – M. Krishna Pillai
Malayala Sahithya Charithram – 3.Kalaghattangalilude – Erumeli
Civil Service exam Malayalam Optional paper I – Jobin S Kottaram
4.Civil Service exam Malayalam Optional paper II – Jobin S Kottaram, Renu Raj, Aswathy