[INDOLOGY] recent publications: conference reports over 2011-12, 2012-13, 2013-14

Jan E.M. Houben jemhouben at gmail.com
Sat Dec 12 22:16:56 UTC 2015

Dear List members,

Since conferences at the Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes combine teaching
with original research, EPHE conference reports may contain contributions
of interest to those working in the respective fields.

Three points may be singled out from my conference reports over 2011-12,
2012-13, 2013-14 (http://ashp.revues.org/1748).

1. Already in Vedic times the name/concept índra was meant to be open to an
adhyātman interpretation which is largely neglected in modern accounts
although it was lexicalized in some derivations and by grammarians
understood in that way.
2. Pānini's Astādhyāyī, understood as a reconstitutive grammar (rather than
as a "wildly generative" grammar), shows a "triple dichotomy" structure;
the first dichotomy is the one into:
(A) the first part (chapters 1-5), which provides elementary conceptual
tools and (through the gaṇas: ALL) linguistic elements needed for PARSING a
preliminary Vedic or current statement (which may show some variation,
expected to be mostly within the range of Vedic and then current
Sanskrit-Prakrit usage)
(B) and the second part (chapters 6-8), which gives the rules for the
prakriya "progressive development" of the form, including its accentuation
(this includes the remaining gaṇas concerning mostly accentuation,
cerebralisation, lengthening, vrddhi), as finally used in the (verified or
perfected, samskrta) language utterance.
3. Both the unduly neglected shorter Vrtti (I propose to call it
laghuvrtti) and the longer vrtti (brhatī) give information on the teachings
of Bhartrhari author of the Vakyapadiya, but neither the one nor the other
provides a secure access to his statements:
only the karikas, i.a. because of their tight inner structure involving
regularities of syntax, metrics and sense,  have a reasonable chance to
have reliably traversed the centuries and the transfer from mss to mss,
although even here, as is well known, we find a relatively small number of
textual problems.

Since not everyone may easily read French, I have introduced an innovation
in the report by summarizing, for each year, some original point in the
form of one or two sanskrit verses.
This may contribute to demonstrate the wide expressive function not limited
to any specific conviction or worldview which Sanskrit has (and which it
has fulfilled over the centuries), next to its well known archival function
which has been (passionately but still insufficiently) explored in two
centuries of indology.

Jan Houben


Directeur d’Études

Sources et histoire de la tradition sanskrite

*École Pratique des Hautes Études*

*Sciences historiques et philologiques *

54, rue Saint-Jacques

CS 20525 – 75005 Paris

johannes.houben at ephe.sorbonne.fr



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