José Pereira (scholar) Indian historian, writer and artist

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José Pereira (22 January 1931 – 26 January 2015[1]) was a Sanskrit scholar, historian, writer, artist, and linguist from Goa, India.[2]

Writings

Pereira was the author of 24 books and 145 journal articles.[2]

Paintings

Pereira was internationally recognised for his fresco paintings.[3] His first works, titled "Images of Goa", were exhibited in Mumbai when he was 18 while still a student at J J School of Art. The works would also be exhibited in Delhi, in 1969.[2]

Languages

Dr Pereira was fluent in at least 13 languages. In particular, he was a strong supporter of the Konkani language.[2]

Recognition

In 2012, the Government of India conferred the Padma Bhushan, the highest civilian award on India, on Pereira in recognition of his work in the field of Indian history and literature. He is considered to be the only Goan to be conferred this award while being non-resident in India.[2]

Controversy

Dr Pereira was awarded a PhD in Ancient History and Culture from St Xavier's College in 1949 then later graduated, with honours, from Siddharth College in 1951. In 1949, he traveled to Portugal as a guest lecturer at the Insituto Superior de Estudoes Ultramarinos in Lisbon. A year later, he departed Lisbon following his public statement that “Goa has a cultural identity of its own and can never be a showcase of the greatness of the Portuguese.”[2]

In later life, his "Epiphanies of the Hindu Gods" caused Hindu fundamentalists to protest in 2010 due to the nudity in the artwork. Pereira countered with quotations from Sanskrit scriptures that justified the piece.[2]

References

  1. ^ "José Pereira". riverdale-on-hudson.com. Retrieved 10 February 2015.
  2. ^ a b c d e f g "Sanskrit scholar & historian Dr Jose Pereira passes away in USA". goanews.com. Retrieved 2 February 2015.
  3. ^ "Earth and heaven in conversation". tambdimati.com. Retrieved 2 February 2015.
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