Assamese and Bengali programs

Joel Tatelman tatelman at
Thu Dec 12 01:02:00 UTC 1996

Dear Katherine Ulrich,

I don't know of any place in Canada where one could study Bengali or 
Assamese (except by hiring a tutor) and I'm not at all well informed 
about the U.S.

I do know that one of my fellow students at Oxford, Paola Tinti, studied 
Bengali with Dr. Sanjukta Gupta and Pali with Prof. Richard Gombrich 
before doing pretty extensive fieldwork among Buddhist minorities in 

I myself have never studied Bengali with Sanjukta or any one else; I can 
say that Paola had only good things to say about her. From my own 
experience, Sanjukta knows Sanskrit and scholarship and her own 
traditional culture so well and is so well-disposed to students that 
asking almost anything is bound to be rewarding. 

Oxford might be a good place to do a thesis in Hinduism or Buddhism that 
involved the study of written Bengali sources and/or fieldwork in a 
Bengali-speaking region. However, if one wanted Bengali in the context of 
modern South Asian politics or economics, Oxford, at least the 'Sanskrit 
and Indian Studies Dept.', would probably not be the best choice. Having 
said that, the place at Oxford for modern Asian Studies is St. Anthony's 
College - what sort of programmes or facilities they have I don't know. 
Michael Aris is a fellow at St. Anthony's. He's a Tibetanist and 
historian of Bhutan and other Himalayan states.

I don't have an e-mail adress for Sanjukta Gupta, only the following 
postal address:

                        Dr. Sanjukta Gupta,
                        The Oriental Institute,
                        Pusey Lane,
                        Oxford OX1 2LE, U.K.

Hope this helps.

Joel Tatelman.

Joel Tatelman
#2-293A Roncesvalles Ave.
Toronto, Ontario,
M6R 2M3 Canada.

Tel.: (416) 535-4997
E-mail: tatelman at

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