The People’s Linguistic Survey of India provides an overview of the extant and dying languages of India, as perceived by their speakers. It is the culmination of a nation-wide survey of languages, documented by linguists, writers, social activists and, most importantly, members of different speech communities. The work chronicles the evolution of these languages until 2011, and incorporates their socio-political and cultural dimensions. Critically, it encapsulates the world view of the speakers of the languages.
The state of West Bengal is unique in that the languages spoken in the state belong to four different language families––Austroasiatic, Dravidian, Indo-European and Tibeto-Burman. The geographical location of the state and its contiguity with other states and countries contributes to the wide variety and richness of languages in the state. The Languages of West Bengal documents not only the five Scheduled languages spoken in the state (Bangla, Bodo, Santhali, Nepali and Urdu) but also 23 Non-Scheduled languages spoken there. This volume also includes a chapter on nine endangered languages of north Bengal.
G. N. Devy is the chief editor of the PLSI series. He taught at the Maharaja Sayajirao University, Baroda, till 1996 before leaving to set up the Bhasha Research Centre in Baroda and the Adivasi Akademi at Tejgadh. There, he worked towards conserving and promoting the languages and culture of indigenous and nomadic communities. Apart from being awarded the Padma Shri, he has received many awards for his work in literature and language conservation.
Sankar Prasad Singha is retired Professor, Department of English, Vidyasagar University. He has authored, edited and translated seven books.
Indranil Acharya is Professor, Department of English, Vidyasagar University. He has authored, edited and translated six books.
The People’s Linguistic Survey of India
The National Editorial Collective
List of Volumes
A Nation Proud of Its Language Diversity: Chief Editor’s Introduction
Contributors to the Volume
An Appeal to Readers
List of Languages Covered in the Volume
PART I: SCHEDULED LANGUAGES
PART II: NON-SCHEDULED LANGUAGES
12. Kharia Sabar
13. Kol Hayam
16. Kurukh (Oraon)
19. Lodha Sabar
20. Mahali Alakhand
23. Rabha/Kocha Krau
29. The Endangered Languages of North Bengal
LIST OF TABLES AND FIGURES
Table I: Distribution of Indian Scheduled Languages
Figure I: Distribution of Indian Scheduled Languages
Figure II: Speakers of Scheduled Languages in West Bengal (out of every 10,000 people)
Figure III: Political Map of West Bengal