Cyber Maadhva Sangha
dvaita at eskimo.com
Wed Nov 27 18:30:34 EST 1996
> lf> >Consider: a knowledge of standard modern Kannada gives one access
> lf> >to all the literature in that language since Basava (12th
> lf> >century). Written Tamil has [etc.]
> lf> It seems to me that we are entering a kind of discussion where we
> lf> quarrel about the cultural merit of various Indian regions.
> lf> Everybody "knows" that Bengali literature is "vastly superior" to
> lf> Hindi literature,
> I have given here not a literary evaluation of Hindi vs. Kannada/Tamil,
> but a very hard, totally objective historical fact that can be verified
> by anyone. There is just much more history in Kannada and Tamil (and
> other literatures) than in Hindi. This is simply _not_ a debatable
> issue. And this is an Indologically crucial matter.
Your "very hard, totally objective historical fact" is false. I am a
native Kannada speaker, and know for a fact that even compositions of
the 17th century and later are not easy to grasp for me. Try reading
the "hari-kathA-amrta-sAra" (18th cent.) if you want proof. There is
as little or as much available in Kannada for a modern speaker than
there is in Hindi, although it is certainly the case that the works of
Purandara Dasa, etc., have served to slow the change in the language,
just as change in post-Shakespearean English has been slower than it
was before him.
There is as much literature/"history" in Hindi, but it may be in
dialects other than the standard "khaDI bolii" of today. Just as much
of Kannada literature is in dialects other than today's official one.
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