Brenda E. F. Beck

Brenda Beck
Adjunct Professor

Brenda E. F. Beck is an Oxford-educated Social Anthropologist who has spent a lifetime studying South Asia and, in particular, the Kongu Nadu area of Tamil Nadu. She has published ten books and edited others, plus authored over sixty journal articles. Dr. Beck’s passion for South Asian mythology has led her to write a variety of articles related to Indian goddesses and about storied animal figures like the wild boar as well. One unique folk epic, the Land of the Golden River, has held her interest for over fifty years. Brenda is an Adjunct Professor of Anthropology at The University of Toronto, Scarborough and President of The Sophia Hilton Foundation of Canada, a charitable foundation that promotes the use of storytelling in education at all levels.  Her earliest ethnographic work, Peasant Society in Kongu was recently translated into Tamil by Adaiyaalam, a well-known South Indian publishing house. In recent years she has received more than a dozen awards from Tamil community groups based in the US, Canada, India, Sri Lanka and Malaysia for her work in helping to enhance the worldwide appreciation of Tamil folk literature. In recent years she has lectured in many different countries including Japan, Taiwan, Malaysia, Sri Lanka, Poland, Latvia, and the U.K. She has also thrice been a specially invited guest of the Government of India, appointed to lecture for a significant period at various universities there.