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19th July 2022 (7 Topics)

Balamani Amma, grandmother of Malayalam literature


Google Doodle celebrated the 113th birthday of famous Indian poet Balamani Amma, known as the grandmother of Malayalam literature.


About Balamani Amma:

  • Balamani Amma, the grandmother of Malayalam literature, was born on 19 July 1909 in Thrissur district.
  • She continues to be known as the ‘amma’ (mother) and ‘muthassi’ (grandmother), of Malayalam poetry.
  • Balamani Amma never received any formal education.
    • She was taught at home by her uncle Nalappat Narayana Menon, who was also a famous Malayali poet.
  • Balamani Amma was also the mother of Kamala Das.
    • Kamala Das was nominated for the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1984.
  • She passed away in 2004 and was cremated with full state honours.


  • Her first poem, titled Kooppukai, was published in
  • Her most famous works include Amma (1934), Muthassi (1962), and Mazhuvinte Katha (The Story of the Axe) (1966).


  • Amma was the recipient of various awards and honours like the
    • Padma Bhushan, India’s third highest civilian honour, in 1987;
    • the Sahitya Akademi Award for Muthassi in 1965;
    • the Saraswati Samman for Nivedyam in 1995
  • The Kochi International Book Fair gives a cash prize for writers in her name, the Balamani Amma Award.

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