Award Name : Sahitya Akademi Award
Year of Award : 2013
Award for : Literature
Location : Tirunelveli, Tamil Nadu, India
R. N. Joe D'Cruz is a Tamil writer, novelist and documentary film director from Tamil Nadu, India. He won the Sahitya Akademi award in 2013 in the Tamil language category for his novel Korkai. He is the Tamil Nadu state president of Samskrita Bharati. Joe D'Cruz was born in a Roman Catholic Paravar family in Uvari, a coastal village in Tirunelveli District of Tamil Nadu. He did his schooling in Uvari and Idaiyangudi. He graduated with an M.A.(Economics) at Loyola College, Chennai and did his M.Phil at St. Joseph's College, Tiruchirapalli. He is married to Sasikala and has two children. He has been working in the shipping industry for more than two decades.
Joe D'Cruz published a Tamil poetry compilation, Pulambazhkal, in 2004. His Sahitya Akademi award-winning novel Korkai was originally published in 2009 and prior to that his 2005 novel Aazhi Soozh Ulagu was awarded the Tamil Nadu state government literary award and Tamil Literary Garden award. Both his novels are based on history and the lives of Parathavar fishermen of Tamil Nadu. The first novel Aazhi Soozh Ulagu dealt with the lives of fishermen who used catamarans and their conversion to Christianity. The second novel titled Korkai refers to Korkai, an ancient port city ruled by Early Pandyan Kingdom. It documented 20th-century history of the people in the region. It is considered as a well-researched historical novel. He also filmed documentary films such as Vidiyatha Pozhuthukal (2008), Towards Dawn (2010). His films mostly based on sufferings of Tamil fishermen. He wrote the dialogue for Tamil movie Maryan.