A Grammar of Kharia: A South Munda Language by John Peterson

By John Peterson

Kharia, spoken in central-eastern India, is a member of the southern department of the Munda kinfolk, which varieties the western department of the Austro-Asiatic phylum, stretching from primary India to Vietnam. the current examine offers the main vast description of Kharia to this point and covers all significant parts of the grammar. Of specific curiosity within the number of Kharia defined right here, is that there's no facts for assuming the life of parts-of-speech, corresponding to noun, adjective and verb. relatively services resembling reference, amendment and predication are expressed by means of considered one of syntactic constructions, mentioned the following as 'syntagmas'. the amount could be of equivalent curiosity to normal linguists from the fields of typology, linguistic thought, areal linguistics, Munda linguistics in addition to South Asianists in most cases.

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Sample text

During my first two visits to Jharkhand in 2001 and 2002, Hindi was the language of consultation, except with Mr. Anil Kullu, with whom English was used. However, beginning with the third trip to Jharkhand in 2003, all interviews were conducted monolingually in Kharia. ariah1rnl 16 CHAP1ERONE southern and western Simdega district in one group and those from other regions in the other. Where such differences of opinion were noted, the variety of the "Simdega" group is discussed in this grammar in detail, and the other variety, referred to here for ease of reference as the "Gumla" variety, is mentioned in passing.

Through these speakers I gained some insight into Kharia as younger speakers-at the time still in school-speak Kharia. I also greatly profited from conversations on Kharia, both grammar and lexicon, with the late Mr. Stanislas Kullu, father of Mr. Anil Kullu, and at that time president of the All-India Kharia Society, who also worked with Heinz-Jiirgen Pinnow. Mr. ) in the vicinity of Simdega for as long as was possible, during which time I was in a largely Kharia-speaking environment and was able to record a number of traditional songs and learn a number of facts about Kharia as it is spoken in the countryside, before having to return to Ranchi for reasons of safety.

In fact, Kharia (culture, language, literature and history) can even be studied at the Department of Tribal and Regional Languages at Ranchi University, where many of the courses are taught by Kharia. There is also a growing amount of literature in Kharia, beginning with Archer (1942), a collection of songs and riddles in Kharia, although unfortunately only some of these have been translated (see the indices in Pinnow, 1965a: 284, 286). There are also a number of partial Bible translations, song-books for the church service and other religious texts, as well as a translation of some of Premchand's works.

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