Hindi etc.

gail at utxvms.cc.utexas.edu gail at utxvms.cc.utexas.edu
Thu Nov 28 18:44:49 UTC 1996

The opposition to Hindi in the South is not limited only to 'DMK-type
politicos who use that as a vote-generating issue', and its not just old
stuff. I've spent most of my life in Tamil Nadu and always felt that
people generally didn't want a language *imposed* on them for *any*
political reason. They use whatever language is most convenient, and it
just happens that there isn't much reason to know Hindi in Tamil Nadu,
while there's *lots* of reason to know English and Tamil. So people who
like watching films on TV pick up some Hindi through TV, and some people
learn it if they plan to go North for jobs, but not many learn it
otherwise. (Also, English speaking children in Tamil Nadu who are not
fluent in Tamil sometimes choose Hindi for their second language school
requirement, because they see it as 'easier' to learn.). 

I taught for a year in an English medium school in Gudalur (Tamil Nadu)
where the students were all Malayalam and Tamil mother tongue speakers,
and struggled to learn enough English to do well in the 10th grade exam.
The school offered both Hindi and Tamil for the second language
requirement, but *nobody* chose to study Hindi -- yet they were willing to
struggle to learn English! 

It isn't true (in my experience) that Hindi/Urdu is generally better 
understood than English in the south.

Gail Coelho 

On Wed, 27 Nov 1996, Cyber Maadhva Sangha wrote:

> > Thank you for making this point, which confirms my own experience. This
> > again means that Hindi as a link language is rather superfluous, and
> > that (as language activists in the south argue) the time and other
> > resources which are spent in India on Hindi education would be spent
> > much better in improving both English and mother-tongue education.
> Btw, who are these "language activists in the south"?  The only
> opposition to Hindi in the South is in Tamil Nadu, and that too only
> from the DMK-type politicos who use that as a vote-generating issue.
> And the bulk of the anti-Hindi agitation was before I was born.  I
> submit to you that there is no significant opposition to Hindi
> elsewhere, and that in fact Hindi/Urdu are better understood in other
> places in the South like Karnataka, than English.
> Regards,
> Shrisha Rao
> > RZ.-
> http://www.rit.edu/~mrreee/dvaita.html

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