Academic year
2020/2021 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
LT6010 (AF:272380 AR:177582)
On campus classes
ECTS credits
Degree level
Bachelor's Degree Programme
Educational sector code
2nd Semester
Course year
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The course of Indo-Aryan Linguistics falls within the characterizing teachings of the third year of the "Indian Subcontinent" curriculum of the course "Languages, Cultures and Societies of Asia and Mediterranean Africa". The aim of the course is to provide students with a theoretical framework and reference tools enabling them to develop necessary knowledge for the study of Indo-Aryan linguistics (diachronically and synchronically) and philology.

In particular, the course is divided in two parts. In the first part, students will be presented with fundamental concepts of the three major stages related to the evolution of Indo-Aryan languages (Old-, Middle- and New- (or Modern) Indo-Aryan), with special emphasis on the rich literature representing these diachronic stages and on the sociolinguistics of Indo-Aryan languages during the Middle Indo-Aryan period. Moreover we will pay attention to the main linguistic chianges during Old-, Middle- and New- (or Modern) Indo-Aryan. In the second part of the course we will focus on the history of Hindi language and on its standardization during the 19th and 20th centuries.
Through the attendance of the course and individual study, students will:

1. Knowledge and understanding
- Get to know the main aspects of Indo-Aryan diachronic linguistics and aquire analytical and metalinguistic reflection skills, also in a cross-linguistic comparative perspective;
- Get to know the main aspects of Indo-Aryan synchronic linguistics and aquire analytical and metalinguistic reflection skills, also in a cross-linguistic comparative perspective;
- Get to know the basic linguistic terminology and understand the texts that make use of it.

2. Ability to apply knowledge and understanding
- Know how to make a linguistic analysis of different aspects of the Hindi language and to compare it with Italian;
- Contestualize and solve theoretical problems related to translation and linguistic mediation activities;
- Know how to use correctly linguistic terminology at all stages of application and communication of the acquired knowledge.

3. Communication skills
- Know how to communicate the reflection on linguistic phenomena using an appropriate terminology.
No preliminar knowledge required. A basic knowledge of English is helpful for the purpose of consulting additional reference sources, such as dictionaries and textbooks/papers on Indo-Aryan linguistics.
1) Basic outlines on general linguistics
1a) Fundamentals of general linguistics;
1b) Basic knowledge of phonetics: a comparison between Italian and Hindi;
1c) Basic knowledge of morphology: a comparison between Italian and Hindi;
1d) Basic knowledge of syntax and morphosyntaxis: a comparison between Italian and Hindi.

2) Basic knowledge of historical linguistics
2a) Diachronic vs synchronic linguistics;
2b) Diachronic variability vs. diatopic, diastratic, diaphasic and diametric variability;
2c) Phonetic, morphological, morphosyntactic and syntactic changes.
2d) Lexical change.

3) Introduction to Indo-Arayn linguistics
3a) The linguistic families of India;
3b) The Indo-aryan languages;
3c) Hindi as a modern language of the Indo-Aryan;
3d) The evolutionary phases of the Indo-Aryan languages.

4) The Old Indo-Aryan
4a) The literary languages of Old Indo-Aryan: the language of the Vedas and Sanskrit;
4b) The grammatical tradition of Sanskrit;
4c) The linguistic features of Sanskrit;
4d) The distinctive features of Sanskrit in comparison to Vedic.

5) The Middle Indo-aryan
5a) The literary languages of Middle Indo-aryan;
5b) Phonetic changes in the transition from Old Indo-aryan to Middle Indo-aryan.

6) Further linguistic changes of the mid-indo-ario
6a) Morphological and morphosyntactic changes of the mid-indo-ario;
6b) The evolution of the past times in the middle Indo-ary and the birth and evolution of the absolutive-ergative system of the Indo-ario.

7) For a socio-linguistic approach to Middle Indo-aryan
7a) tThe testimony of non-Sanskritic dialects in literary phrases used in the mid-indo-ario;
7b) Mutual influence between Sanskrit and Pracritus;
7c) Leitude deshi in the mid-indo-ario.

8) The New Indo-Aryan
8a) The diachronic stages in the evolution of New Indo-Aryan;
8b) The phonetic changes of New Indo-aryan with respect to the Middle Indo-Aryan.

9) Morphological and morphosyntactic changes of the New Indo-aryan
9a) The expression of cases in Early New Indo-Aryan;
9b) The main postpositions of the modern New Indo-Aryan languages.

10) The evolution of the past tenses in the New Indo-Aryan
10a) The evolution of the absolutive-ergative system in the Western New Indo-Aryan;
10b) The elimination of the absolutive-ergative system in the Eastern New Indo-Aryan.

11) For a history of the Hindi language
11a) The Hindi name and its history;
11b) The influence of foreign languages ​​on the Hindi language;
11c) The role of the Persian language during the Mughal period.

12) Towards the standardization of the Hindi language
12a) The birth of the Hindi grammatical tradition: the grammars of Hindustani;
12b) John Gilchrist and Fort William College;
12c) Fort William College and early prose works in Khari-boli Hindi.

13) The Hindi language in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries
13a) The Hindi-Urdu question;
13b) The process of Sanskritization of the Hindi language in the second half of the 19th century and in the first half of the 21st century;
13c) The Hindi versus English linguistic question in modern and contemporary India.

14) Insights into synchronic linguistics on Hindi (I)
14a) The use of intensive verbs in modern and contemporary Hindi.

15) Insights into synchronic linguistics on Hindi (II)
15a) The use of the adverbial particle *** TO *** in modern and contemporary Hindi.
1) Piano, S., Dispense di lingua hindī. Appunti del corso istituzionale di Lingue e letterature arie moderne dell’India. Università degli Studi di Torino; versione originale, con integrazioni, aggiornamenti e correzioni (nel corso degli anni) a cura di Alberto Pelissero, Pinuccia Caracchi e Andrea Drocco;
2) Mc Gregor, Ronald S., Oxford Hindi-English Dictionary, Oxford University Press, New Delhi-Oxford, 1993 (or subsequent editions) (PREFERABLE), oppure Chaturvedi, M. & Tiwari, B., A Practical Hindi English Dictionary, New Delhi, National Publishing, 2004;
3) Burrow, Thomas. The Sanskrit Language. London: Faber & Faber, 1955, only chapter 1 and 2;
4) Masica, Colin P., The Indo-Aryan Languages, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, 1991, only the following chapters: 1, 2, 3, 4 and appendix II;
5) All other material and indications concerning further reading will be provided by the course convenor during classes.
Preparation of short dissertations during term time and final colloqium with the professor.
Teaching in classroom with Power-point presentation.
Students are advised to attend classes regularly during term time.
This programme is provisional and there could still be changes in its contents.
Last update of the programme: 16/08/2020