Monday, January 16, 2006

Language and expressiveness


Dainik Jagrans recent set of ads (note the pic) above are eye opening in more than one sense. Note the picture above. The caption reads (seen partly in the picture), "Can changing the language change our relationship with objects?" Below is a picture of a Mango, with the first captioned in English. The rest are varieties of Mango noted as Hapus, dasehri, langda, totapuri, and so on. There is another similar advertisement with the picture of an "uncle" first captioned as uncle and then as chacha, mama, mausa, fufa and tau.

The chain of thought that this triggered is that our languages are far more expressive than English. This probably applies to other foreign languages too, but then I am not so aware of foreign langauges.

Knowledge of local languages (and perhaps more languages) creates a greater awareness and expressiveness than knowing only one language.

2 comments:

Niti Bhan said...

You may not be aware of 'foreign' languages, but keep in mind, that any language we do not understand is 'phoren' to our ear. so in actual fact I'm guessing you are already trilingual - english, hindi and your mother tongue (tamil?) I wonder if that makes for interesting situations in it's own right?

AkaRound Peg said...

I never understood this ad.

To me Hapus and Langra and Dasheri are NOT alike. About as alike as Lion and Tiger.