This seems like the perfect moment for one final plug - we can still squeeze one or two more folk into our Spoken Sanskrit Summer School, 7-19 Feburary 2016 on the south coast of New South Wales.
Please let your students and colleagues know.
From: INDOLOGY <email@example.com> on behalf of Madhav Deshpande <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Sent: Sunday, January 10, 2016 11:02 PM
Subject: Re: [INDOLOGY] FYI: Spoken Sanskrit blog entry plus discussion at "Language Log"
Thanks, Birgit. What a wonderful blog by Victor Mair. Spoken Sanskrit in its many varieties has always been alive in India, though only recently being taken seriously as a subject of academic study in the West. From the stories of Kielhorn studying the Mahābhāṣya
with Ananta Shastri Pendharkar at the Deccan College in Pune to Ingalls studying Sanskrit texts with young S.D. Joshi (before S.D. Joshi became his student at Harvard), there were accounts of a few western scholars going to India and studying Sanskrit with
pandits using Sanskrit as the medium of instruction. I have heard from George Cardona the story of a Sanskrit pandit being woken up in the middle of the night by his rivals for a debate in Banaras. Long before the emergence of the movement of Samskrita Bharati,
there was encouragement to spoken Sanskrit in Pune when Ashok Aklujkar, Saroja Bhate and myself were students at institutions like the Tilak Maharashtra Vidyapitha and Sanskrit Pathashala. While colloquial forms of Sanskrit can be seen and heard in meetings
of Samskrita Bharati and All India Radio, perfectly fluent Shastric Sanskrit can be experienced at forums like the Ganapati Vakyartha Sabha organized by the Shankara monastery annually. Now many of the audio and video recordings of these sessions of Shastric
debates in Sanskrit are becoming available through YouTube. Last year, at a workshop on Sanskrit grammar organized by Jan Houben at Pondichery, I participated in discussions that were held in Sanskrit. Having some exposure to spoken Sanskrit makes the experience
of reading Sanskrit texts qualitatively different, because in many texts like the Mahābhāṣya of Patañjali, Śabara's Mīmāṃsāsūtrabhāṣya or Śaṅkara's Brahmasūtrabhāṣya, we almost have recordings of spoken debates. Having participated in Sanskrit dramas on stage
in Pune, I remember how my understanding of those dramas changed when I had to verbalize them on stage, and how different intonations of the same sentence might bring out different nuances. Some years ago, I was thrilled to have the opportunity to give a talk
in Sanskrit at Heidelberg during their summer course in spoken Sanskrit. I am glad to see a serious interest emerging in spoken Sanskrit within western academics. Best,