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Dr.P J Cherian

“We swim in the past as fish do in water and cannot escape from it but our modes of living and moving in this medium require analysis and discussion.” - Eric Hobsbawm

One of the turning points in the study and reconstruction of human past was the faithfulness shown to evidence. The corpus of the material, written and oral evidence retrieved, analysed and conserved constitute the greatest achievement of the scientific and socially conscious communities across the world.

The past as trustworthy account or its ignorance/ neglect/ manoeuvre, would continue to constitute and reconstitute us. As Prof Eric Hobsbawm said we cannot escape from the past; therefore to move in the “present” requires analysis and discussion. Unfortunately the survival, accessibility, and the capacity to conserve and study evidence were not consistent across the world. The systematic conservation and critical examination of evidence were often exclusive intellectual exercises with their social importance little realised.

The Digitising Kerala’s Past (DKP) initiative respects the primacy of evidence and hopes to promote “critical thinking” on Kerala’s past and inevitably on her present. The DKP database will be accessible to all, subjectivities debatable and errors correctable. The project is following an inclusive approach– even those who are in the margins will find a space in the documentation through the voluntary participation of informed and enlightened participants.

In a phased manner the DKP intends to take care of all tangible and intangible resources on Kerala’s past as well as our micro-level direct experience which often escapes conscious recording. It is a pro-people documentation initiative for Malayalis and all interested in Kerala society across the world.

Soliciting your earnest support,

Kind regards,
P J Cherian,
Director, KCHR (2001 -2016)