Inaugurated by the then Raja Pramukh late Sree Chitra Thirunal Balarama Varma Raja
of Travancore in 1956, Kerala Sahitya Akademi is an autonomous institution established for the promotion and development of Malayalam language and literature. Some of their objectives are to publish literary works including history of literature, bibliographies, dictionaries and encyclopedia; award prizes and give recognition and assistance to individual writers; organize or sponsor literary conferences, seminars and symposia; and encourage or arrange translations of literary works from Malayalam to other languages and vice versa.
In order to recognize and honor the writers of Malayalam language and literature, the academy gives yearly awards to the eminent works in various branches of the language such as poetry, drama, short story, novel, literary criticism, humor and translation. Important endowment awards are also given through the academy. In addition, it has a good reference library of rare books on different subjects and languages. The academy also conducts literary classes to students in the rural areas along with exhibition of books published by the academy.