Vicious Debate

Vidhyanath Rao vidynath at MATH.OHIO-STATE.EDU
Thu Dec 3 16:46:33 UTC 1998

The criticism of Vivekananda reminds of a question that I have asked
before: Why is Whitney, in spite of his well-known biases which
are no less obnoxious than anything Vivekananda might have said and
are full of `essentialist' attributions to `Hindu Grammarians',
the standard grammar book even today?

It is not as if replacements do not exist, for example Renou's
two books.

It is not as if it is not without effect. I was told, in the IE list,
that Panini is unreliable as a guide to synchronic grammar or list of
roots. I can point to a recent book which attributes the meaning
``used to go'' to `agacchat', to be contrasted with `tena gatam'.
I have known linguists who thought that the syntactic role of the
so-called pluperfect in RV is similar to the formation of the same
name in European languages.



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