Department of Asian Studies
Department of Asian Studies

In Memory of Andrée Sjoberg

Mon, June 25, 2018
In Memory of Andrée Sjoberg

The Department of Asian Studies is saddened to learn of the death of Andrée Frances Sjoberg, who passed away on March 12th, 2018 at the age of 94.  Andrée was Associate Professor of South Asian Studies at the University of Texas and taught Telugu and South Asian culture for nearly 40 years.  She received her Ph.D. in 1957, the first person to be awarded a doctoral degree in Linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin, writing her dissertation on Telugu phonology.  She was also an expert on Uzbek grammar.  She had broad interests in South Asian culture, but also in the Asian region as a whole, and was an expert in the special features of agglutinative languages, such as those found in the Dravidian language family.  She was one of the founders of the Center for Hindi and Telugu Studies in 1962, the first federally-funded South Asia program at Texas, which eventually developed into our current South Asia Institute.  In 1968, with Professor Robert Hardgrave, Andrée organized the Conference on Dravidian Civilization at Texas, which was the first conference of its kind to be held outside of India.  The proceedings were published in book form under the title Symposium on Dravidian Civilization.   She made eight research trips to India during her lifetime, basing herself in the city of Hyderabad.  Throughout her career, she published books and articles not only on Uzbek and Dravidian topics but also on more general themes, as evidenced by her 1990 edited volume titled Images of Women in Asian Literatures.  Her volume of collected essays, Dravidian Language and Culture, was published by Dravidian University in Kuppam, Tamilnadu, in 2009.  She is survived by her husband Gideon Sjoberg, Professor Emeritus, Department of Sociology, and we join him in mourning her loss.  The Sjobergs anonymously endowed a Scholarship in Dravidian Studies in the late 1990s, and it has now been renamed the Andrée Sjoberg Endowed Scholarship in Dravidian Studies.

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