Department of Humanities and Social Sciences

Indian Institute of Technology Ropar


HSS Seminar


Hypotaxis in Hindi: An approach to the interplay between semantics, discourse properties and formal structure of complex sentences with adverbial clauses.




Prof. Taitiana Oranskaia


February 10, 2017 (Friday) at 10.00 AM


Venue: Conference Room 2

Languages reflect complex situations in a number of ways. The talk will deal with various (Standard) Hindi syntactic structures that fulfill this task on the clause, sentence and micro-text level. It is the Functional Grammar theoretical framework (Halliday, Michael A.K. An Introduction to Functional Grammar. London: Arnold, 1985) that is seen as having a special salience for this investigation.

The discussion will be based on electronic, written and oral primary sources as well as results of transformation processing of the structures including more than one clause. It will focus on qualitative and quantitative comparison of three basic types of synonymous syntactic sequences with final-verb sentences as their immediate constituents: compare, e.g. 1. माँ आज शादी में गई है | दीदी को खाना बनाना है | [cause-result] ~ 2. (चूंकि) माँ आज शादी में गई है, इस लिए/तो दीदी को खाना बनाना है | [cause-result] ~ 3. माँ आज शादी में गई है और दीदी को खाना बनाना है | [cause-result] and 4. दीदी को खाना बनाना है क्योंकि माँ आज शादी में गई है  | [result - cause]. The same types underlay the construction of the database.

The assumption that various structural types (as in 1.-4.) differ in their communicative force forms the starting point for the analysis. It is the objective of the project to find out whether this hypothesis holds. The talk will outline the approach aimed at revealing the diverging parameters and their determining factors.


Brief Bio-sketch of the speaker


Prof Oranskaia has been a Professor of Linguistics at the Department of Culture and History of India and Tibet, Asia and Africa Institute, University of Hamburg, Germany. Her research interests lie in the fields of Hindi Language and Literature, Historical and typological grammar of Indo-Aryan languages, multilingualism, Hinduism: local cults, and cultural studies.