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A. Sethumadhavan
Malayalam writer Sethu.jpg
Pen name Sethu
Nationality Indian
Genre Novel, short story

A. Sethumadhavan (born 1942), popularly known as Sethu, is a Malayalam fiction writer. He has published more than 30 books.[1]

Sethu won the Kendra Sahitya Akademi Award in 2007 for the work Adayalangal. He received the Kerala Sahitya Akademi Awards in 1982 and 1978 for his works Pandavapuram and Pediswapnangal; and Vayalar Award for Adyalangal in 2005.[2] Sethu's other literary works include Velutha Koodarangal, Thaliyola, Kiratham, Niyogam, Sethuvinte Kathakal and Kaimudrakal. He also served as the chairman of the South Indian Bank.[3]


Sethu was born in Chendamangalam, a village in Ernakulam district, in the year 1942. He had his school education at Paliam High School, Chendamangalam, and took his Bachelors’ Degree in Physics from the Union Christian College, Aluva, at the age of 18.

Sethu began his professional career at a very young age taking him to various parts of the country. This phase of his life was instrumental in shaping his literary sensibilities and came to be reflected in many of his important works. He joined the banking profession as a Probationary Officer in the State Bank Group. After holding many important positions in the Group, he took over as General Manager in the Corporation Bank and later as the Chairman of the South Indian Bank, a major private sector bank of the country. Widely travelled, he had attended many international conferences both on banking and literature in various countries. He was also on the board of the State Bank of Travancore for a period of three years. At present he is in General Council of Sahitya Akademi. In 2012, he replaced eminent historian Bipan Chandra to become the chairman of National Book Trust, New Delhi.[4]


Sethu, is one of the pioneers of modern Malayalam fiction who brought about a radical transformation of sensibility through his writings during the sixties and early seventies. In a literary career spanning over four and half decades, Sethu wrote over 18 novels and 20 collections of short stories. Many of his novels and stories have been translated into English and other Indian languages. His prominent works include Pandavapuram, Niyogam, Kaimudrakal, Vilayattam, Atayalangal,Kilimozhikalkkappuram, Marupiravi. Aliya (Novels), Petiswapnangal, Doothu, Chilakalangalil Chila Gayathrimar, Arundhathiyute Virunnukaran, Sethuvinte Kathakal (Short stories) and Sanidasa, Yathrakidayil (Essays). Sethu has been honoured with many awards including the Kendra Sahitya Akademi Award,Kerala Sahitya Akademi Award for both novel and short stories, Vayalar Award, Otakkuzhal award and Muttathu Varkey award. Four of his works have been made into films including the much acclaimed Pandavapuram, which was also made into Bengali titled Nirakar Chhaya. His latest work is Aaliya (2013), one of the path-breaking novels in Malayalam.



  • Njangal Adimakal (ഞങ്ങൾ അടിമകൾ)
  • Ariyatha Vazhikal (അറിയാത്ത വഴികൾ)
  • Kiratham (കിരാതം)
  • Thaliyola (താളിയോല)
  • Pandavapuram (പാണ്ഡവപുരം)
  • Niyogam (നിയോഗം)
  • Navagrahangalude Thatavara (നവഗ്രഹങ്ങളുടെ തടവറ) (with Punathil Kunjabdulla)
  • Vanavasam (വനവാസം)
  • Vilayattom (വിളയാട്ടം)
  • Ezham Pakkam (ഏഴാം പക്കം)
  • Kaimudrakal (കൈമുദ്രകൾ)
  • Kaiyoppum Kaivazhikalum (കൈയൊപ്പും കൈവഴികളും)
  • Atayalangal
  • Kilimozhikalkkappuram
  • Marupiravi (മറുപിറവി)
  • Aaliya (ആലിയ)

Short story[edit]

  • Thinkalazhchakalile Aakasam (തിങ്കളാഴ്ചകളിലെ ആകാശം)
  • Velutha Koodarangal (വെളുത്ത കൂടാരങ്ങൾ)
  • Aswinathile Pookkal (ആശ്വിനത്തിലെ പൂക്കൾ)
  • Prakasathinte Uravidom (പ്രകാശത്തിന്റെ ഉറവിടം)
  • Pampum Koniyum (പാമ്പും കോണിയും)
  • Pediswapnangal (പേടിസ്വപ്നങ്ങൾ)
  • Arundhatiyude Virunnukaran (അരുന്ധതിയുടെ വിരുന്നുകാരൻ)
  • Doothu (ദൂത്)
  • Guru (ഗുരു)
  • Prahelika Kantam (പ്രഹേളികാകാണ്ഡം)


  1. ^ "Recreating Muziris". The Hindu. 6 August 2011. 
  2. ^ "Malayalam writer Sethumadhavan wins Vayalar Award". Silicon India. 9 October 2006. 
  3. ^ "Writers never retire, says Sethu". The Hindu. 28 May 2005. 
  4. ^ "Sethu appointed National Book Trust chairman". Madhyamam. September 6, 2012. Retrieved February 14, 2014.

External links[edit]

Original courtesy of Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sethu_(writer) — Please support Wikipedia.
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4 news items

The Hindu

The Hindu
Fri, 06 Dec 2013 05:30:00 -0800

For the last 45 years, A. Sethumadhavan has been living two lives — one during office hours, and the other between 4 a.m. and daybreak. Where one ends, the other begins. Only Sethu, the successful banker and the prolific writer, can explain this rare ...

The Hindu

The Hindu
Wed, 27 Nov 2013 04:33:45 -0800

In the Seventies, Sethu, along with contemporaries such as Vijayan, Kakkanadan, Zachariah and Mukundan rode the crest of the wave of modernism in Malayalam fiction. Beginning with Njangal Adimakal in 1972 to his latest work Aliya, his works have ...
The Hindu
Thu, 03 Nov 2011 23:48:55 -0700

Novelists who take the untrodden path in writing may not get noticed during their time, but they are the ones who influence and inspire the future, writer Sethu has said. Inaugurating an evening on the 'New paths of Malayalam novel' as part of the ...
The Hindu
Sat, 06 Aug 2011 06:34:59 -0700

A. Sethumadhavan (Sethu)'s brilliant literary career spans over a period of 40 years. He has published more than 30 books of fiction. He has bagged many prestigious literary awards including that of the Kendra Sahitya Akademi. A few of his books have ...

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