Monday, April 30, 2007

Chapter1: The Language I

1.10 The words bhaashe (<bhaash) and paatero (<paater) have been formed from the roots bhaash and paater′ that mean ‘to talk’. Human evolution has progressed through the expression of ideas by way the language. Communication of ideas among a set of people can be achieved using a language. People in an area expressing their feelings in specific style, consisting of ample set of words and sentences, can be defined as their language. There are numerous languages in the world. The discovery of languages has served an important role in the evolution of human history. Charles Darwin has expressed that nothing is as wonderful as or greater than the discovery of languages.

Early humans expressed their varied feelings like desire, affection, joy, despair, fear gratitude, plea etc., mutually through the utterances making use of mouth, throat and tongue in such a way that is properly heard and understood by the listener. With increased human interactions and contacts and the growth of civilization, the languages have also grown and evolved expansively. However the significance of the language in our routine life has become so casual and implicit like the routine respiration taking place in our lungs of which we are usually unmindful in our journeys in the society.

1.11 Human life is similar to that of other animals in the physical sense, with the basic exception of ability to express through the language. Several creatures live as well organized communities carrying out wonderful deeds. Like bees and ants, for example, that gathers food, build nests, bring up offspring as an organized community, and communicate through signals. These kinds of signals are the initial forms of the language.

Human beings endowed with vocal chords are able to communicate these signals through sound and spoken language. This vocal power or the ability to speak is a natural faculty to the human beings. The vocal faculty enabled him to imitate the melodious tunes of the bird koel, and this in the long run led him to evolve and compose systematic musical notes. Similarly he was able to arrange spoke words in such a way that the listener is able to comprehend the exact meaning of his utterances. In this way, languages evolved by developing systematic structures or methods for arranging words in specific patterns in the form of sentences so as express the innate feelings. Understanding and analyzing these structures and methods of the language is the realm of the grammarians. In other words, consequent upon the origin and development of the language, its structure and usage grammar books came into being. In some languages, on account of rapid development of literature and poetry some of the usages went beyond the control of the grammarians and it was necessary for the grammarian to cite exceptions to his rules. Nevertheless, the languages developed and refined persistently in oral forms and the grammars stood mute testimonial to the prior status and form of the language once upon a time. For example, in English language, grammars have been published periodically. Yet, the rules of the grammar were meant simply for the purpose of lame studies for students without yielding any mastery of the language. One of the negative aspects of these traditional grammar books is that rules and exceptions are clubbed together, leading to total confusion when enforced upon the students. The teachers were unable to answer as to why the rules are like that. It was subsequently realized that this sort of imposition of grammar on students is a meaningless teaching method.

With study of Sanskrit language, western experts developed interest on the interesting and scientific grammar of Panini. The influence of such systematic grammars led to the growth of philology.


1.2 Philology is systematic study of the language. (Greek: philos = love, logus =language).Philology came into existence in the beginning of the last century and later it evolved into linguistics about thirty years later. The general linguistics has further ramified into analytical, acoustic, areal, comparative and cultural linguistics branches on one hand and experimental, evolutionary, structural and psychological linguistics on the other. The philology of a language also involves elements of sociology, psychology and anthropology and is useful for technologists and engineers.

1.21 Since Tulu language has limited literature (status as on 1980- Editors note) this work analyses and attempts to describe the structure of the Tulu language, using audiovisual comparisons as well as historical and cultural perspectives mainly within the ambit of ‘philology’ in general. The present Author preferred the term philology, to linguistics, especially because the philos (=love) in it, that represents ones love for his mother tongue. On the basis of foundation of Panini’s grammatic rules, subsequently several south Indian languages like Kannada and Telugu developed analyses of grammatic rules for their languages. Kesiraja’s ‘Shabdamani Darpana’ is a fine example for historical grammars in regional languages.

In this work the class structural elements of Tulu grammar have been outlined. Besides, an effort has been made to compile as many verb roots as possible.

1 comment:

Sachin said...

Excellent read. Pls continue to post the entries. Its a good insight for those of us who only speak Tulu and not Kannada.