Former Vice Chancellor of Potti Sreeramulu Telugu University, eminent writer and scholar Nayani Krishnakumari has passed away at the age of 86.
"Krishnakumari passed away last night," a statement issued by Hyderabad-based Potti Sreeramulu Telugu University said on Saturday.
She is survived by her husband, two sons and a daughter.
A pioneer in folklore studies and women literature, she is credited with identifying the folk literature as a separate and valuable part of Telugu literature, the statement added.
Krishnakumari had worked as a Professor and Head, Telugu Department, Osmania University. She was awarded Doctorate for her research in folklore from Osamnia University. She was also Principal, Padmavathi Mahila College, Tirupati, and Vice-Chancellor, Potti Sreeramulu Telugu University.
During her tenure as VC, she published a textbook on folklore titled 'Telugu Janapada Vijnanam: Samaajam, Samskruti, Sahityam', containing articles by several scholars in folklore.
"One of Krishnakumari's innovations is to apply the straight line equation from mathematics to the storytelling methods in folklore. This is an innovating experiment in the studies of folklore in Telugu and marked her knowledge of mathematics and her erudition in research methodologies", the University said.
Krishnakumari's 'Telugu Janapada Geya Gaathalu' (Telugu Ballads) is considered her major work. In this dissertation published in 1977, she discussed at length the origin and development of Telugu ballads in the context of Telugu folk literature.
Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu and the University Vice-Chancellor Prof Elluri Siva Reddy, Gnanapeetha Awardee Dr C Narayana Reddy and several literary personalities paid their condoloences.