Keddah refers to a large stockade, and a system of capturing elephants developed in South India. A crowd of people and captive elephants are used to drive a wild elephant herd into the stockade, where they are contained.

The Book Keddah is a project at the Elephant Hub which aspires to collect the largest and most diverse bibliography of Asian elephant related literature.

By diverse we mean collecting research on captive and wild Asian elephants that spans not only the natural scientific literature (biology, ecology, evolution, etc) but also social scientific literature (anthropology, geography, history, etc). Further, we aim to include other informative texts too, such as 19th century British books on hunting, references to elephants in the colonial administrative reports, depictions of elephants in fiction novels, elephantological treatises from South and Southeast Asia.

The Book Keddah will construct a bibliographic record of all these texts that reference elephants in any way. We will tag them accordingly, and so when searching on a subject – let’s say “musth” – results will produce references across the spectrum of disciplines – from chemical analysis in dung, reports of musth in colonial and elephantological texts, to the use of the term ‘musth’ in music appreciation in South India!

Where copyright allows it, we will endeavour to attach a scanned copy and allow for it to be downloaded. This is a huge project so we encourage people to contribute. If you want to suggest some references or help build the bibliography, please contact us here. Even if the mention of elephants is only a single page in a book, but it is interesting, take a scan and send it to us so we can upload and share it. 

Back to the elephant bibliography