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Folklore and Folklanguage: Myth or Reality?

Folklore and Folklanguage: Myth or Reality?

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1995.Folklore and Folklanguage: Myth or Reality? West Bengal: Kalyani University.
The author maintained that the construction of the category "folk" was born out of super-ordinate's essentialist gaze that de-sign-ates otherness in the form of a discipline, “Folklore”. The dichotomous divisions between folk--non-folk, tribe--non-tribe, civil-savage, sastriya--loukika typically reflect the colonial pedagogy that constitute otherness by deploying different exonyms to peripheral other ignoring the ethno/endonyms as used by a community from their subject-position. These divisions between dominant centre and dominated periphery gave birth to some surrogated subjects like "Folklore" or "Anthropology" in contrast to the white men's epistemological fields like History, Sociology or Physiology. These subjects subjectify as well as objectify dominated and peripheral "other" in the way of surrogating the “scientific” construction of "human beings".
The problem is with the imaginative boundary between these two. One must keep in mind, from the standpoint of enlightened science, that the limit or boundary of different epistemological fields needs to be enumerated or well defined, i.e., in this case, The binaries like Folk language/language, folk art/non-folk-art, Folksong/Classical song, Folk drama/theatre must be distinguished according to the existing enlightened “scientific” logic. However the construction of such boundary, diachronically, is not always transparent, but rather fuzzy; and on the other hand it reflects a tension of maintaining the boundary.

The author showed the nature of linguistic imperialism as evident in the terms like “dialect”, “folk-language” or “standard language”. The author also showed the constitution of Folklore and Anthropology as colonially derived disciplines that surrogate White MEN’s History and Sociology. The author illustrated the fuzziness of such boundaries that reveal the nature of subsumption through subjectification (birth of a discipline), objectification (a group of people are treated/categorized and analyzed as a stable object) as well as subjection (others’ bodies are under the control of the centre).

2005.“Blurring the Divide: Folk art and Classical Art.” Departmental Journal of Folklore(lokodOrpon), Kalyani University. (pp. 181-93)
2001. “Folklore: Searching For Logistics.” Singh, U.N. ed. Culturation. Jawharlal Handoo Felicitation Volume. Mysore: CIIL. ISBN 81-7342-094-7. (pp.26-34)
2000.“Folksong-Classical Songs: The Discursive Formation of Dividing Practice.” Pondicherry Institute of Language and Culture Journal of Dravidian Studies. (pp. 63-70). Pondicherry.
1999. “pranto theke bOla” OytiHaSik. VIII 1-2 (pp.31-62) .Kolkata.
1997.“The Myth of Regionalism” Chakraborty, Dasgupta, Subha ed. Regionality and Comparative Literature. (pp. 77-83). DSA, Department of Comparative Literature, Jadavpur University, Kolkata.
1995.Folklore and Fo1klanguage: Myth or Reality? West Bengal: Kalyani University.

1995.Folklore and Folklanguage: Myth or Reality? West Bengal: Kalyani University.
The author maintained that the construction of the category "folk" was born out of super-ordinate's essentialist gaze that de-sign-ates otherness in the form of a discipline, “Folklore”. The dichotomous divisions between folk--non-folk, tribe--non-tribe, civil-savage, sastriya--loukika typically reflect the colonial pedagogy that constitute otherness by deploying different exonyms to peripheral other ignoring the ethno/endonyms as used by a community from their subject-position. These divisions between dominant centre and dominated periphery gave birth to some surrogated subjects like "Folklore" or "Anthropology" in contrast to the white men's epistemological fields like History, Sociology or Physiology. These subjects subjectify as well as objectify dominated and peripheral "other" in the way of surrogating the “scientific” construction of "human beings".
The problem is with the imaginative boundary between these two. One must keep in mind, from the standpoint of enlightened science, that the limit or boundary of different epistemological fields needs to be enumerated or well defined, i.e., in this case, The binaries like Folk language/language, folk art/non-folk-art, Folksong/Classical song, Folk drama/theatre must be distinguished according to the existing enlightened “scientific” logic. However the construction of such boundary, diachronically, is not always transparent, but rather fuzzy; and on the other hand it reflects a tension of maintaining the boundary.

The author showed the nature of linguistic imperialism as evident in the terms like “dialect”, “folk-language” or “standard language”. The author also showed the constitution of Folklore and Anthropology as colonially derived disciplines that surrogate White MEN’s History and Sociology. The author illustrated the fuzziness of such boundaries that reveal the nature of subsumption through subjectification (birth of a discipline), objectification (a group of people are treated/categorized and analyzed as a stable object) as well as subjection (others’ bodies are under the control of the centre).

2005.“Blurring the Divide: Folk art and Classical Art.” Departmental Journal of Folklore(lokodOrpon), Kalyani University. (pp. 181-93)
2001. “Folklore: Searching For Logistics.” Singh, U.N. ed. Culturation. Jawharlal Handoo Felicitation Volume. Mysore: CIIL. ISBN 81-7342-094-7. (pp.26-34)
2000.“Folksong-Classical Songs: The Discursive Formation of Dividing Practice.” Pondicherry Institute of Language and Culture Journal of Dravidian Studies. (pp. 63-70). Pondicherry.
1999. “pranto theke bOla” OytiHaSik. VIII 1-2 (pp.31-62) .Kolkata.
1997.“The Myth of Regionalism” Chakraborty, Dasgupta, Subha ed. Regionality and Comparative Literature. (pp. 77-83). DSA, Department of Comparative Literature, Jadavpur University, Kolkata.
1995.Folklore and Fo1klanguage: Myth or Reality? West Bengal: Kalyani University.

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. 1995





Folklore and Folklanguage : Myth of Reality?

First Published : July, 1995 Reprint : May, 1997



Dhurjati Prasad Mukhopadhyay, Author & Department of Folklore, Kalyani University We are celebrating your Centenary and still maintalningsociai distance ....

Rs. 15/-

Published by Dr. Barun Chakrovortti, Head Dept. of Folklore, Kalyani University, West Behgal

CONTENTS Foreword - Asis Hoy J",st Gratitude is not enough for Saying somethlnd beforehand Chapter I The Myth of Folklore 1.1. The loss of Self 1.2. Conclusion Appendix to Chapter 1 Epilogue to Chapter 1 A Dialogue on Folklore Chapter II folklanguage and Folklin_gulstics Real, or untrue? 2.0 Introduction 2.1. Standardization 2.2. So-called Fol langueges 2.3 Folkllnguistics - another Myth Bibliography

Page No.

ii iii

1 7





It is a pleasure for me to release the first monograph of the series in, Folklore being published by the Department of Folklore, Kalyani University. Dr. Barun Kr. Chakrabarti, Head, Department of Folklore, has enthusiastically taken up many programmes to develop Folklorogical studies including the publication of this monograph series, conducting seminars, developing a Folklore Museum and Departmental Library. I am sure all these programmes will enhance Folklorological studies in general.

The author of this first monograph is a young and dynamic scholar of Linguistics, currently attached to the Linguistic Research Unit, Indian Statistical Institute, Calcutta and' he is also a Visiting Faculty member at the Department of Folklore, Kalyani University. It is evident from Bandyopadhyay's works that he is working within the Post-Structuralist genre and follows the footsteps of Franz Fanonin case of liberalization from any type of Colonial intervention. This work also shows similar type of intention in describing the concepts which are in vogue. His negation of the present order can only be justified, if he further persues his "praxis" in greater detail, which will, I hope, supplement this work. This work denotes the paradigm crisis not only in Folklore or Linguistics but also in the other Social Sciences. The crisis of other Social Sciences are already well-explored, but the crisis of Folklore, as far as I know, has never been talked about. I think, the crisis as painted out by Bandyopadhyay will help to add a new dimension to investigation in Folklore.

Prof. Dr Ashis Kr. Roy,
Vice Chancellor Kalyani University 21st of July, 1995
(i )

Dr. Barun Kr Chakrebarti, Head of the- Dept of Folklore who stimulated tne to undertake a research of this kind; Prof. B. Ramakrishna Heddy, who introduced me some basic notions as inscribed lnChapter-I and encouraged me to present a paper on the same topic at the National Seminar on "Terms of Address and reference" organized by CIlL -arrd Telugu University in March,1995; Prof. Pabitra Sarkar, who inspired me to go ahead and publish the monograph; Prof. Uday Narayan -Singh for his encouraging comments; Dr. B. P. Mallik for introducing me to Hallidaian concept of An_tilanguage; Mr. Sadhan Bandyopadhyay for constantly supplying me books and infusing in me a spirit of reseach from my eerlychitdhood. To Dr. Amitabh Choudhury, Dr. Nirrnal Das, Ms. Mousumi Majumdar, Ms. Shubhasr.ee Ganquli, Subrata Sanker Bagchi, Sanjoy, De and Ms. Rupa Bandyopadhyay for their sustained support in every way.

We are in the midst of paradigm crisis in Folklore. This crisis is due to the' nature of its origin and development as a part of Colonial pedagogy ..The detailed decorative curricula vitae offolklorological investqation (or one may calt it 'intervention' was instigated by the imperial invasion into the dominated culture followed by the dictum "Know them and rule them." To cite one example from many others, Morton, who collected Bangia proverbs, wrote in the preface of his "drisTanto bakko SONgroHO". "..... my office is not to patronize opinions, but to, exhibit them in order to aid an insight into the stucture of native mind". This iiwasion 'into the structure of the-native mind was the real intention of the drientalist enterprise. From Edward Said and Ranjlt: Guha to Tejaswini Niranjana, Debesh Roy - all showed this covert or overt intention in the discursive formation of the orentalists. This knowing practice helps the dominant group to impose hegemonic idealogues on the dominated and often is supported by the sate Lite elites of the dominated land. This epistemological-intervention needs categories like 'folk' or 'tribe'. In the first chapter, the illegitamacy of these non-biological and non economic categories are shown. I do not venture to analyse the folklorological discourse, in this connection, but only focus on thesemantlcs of the terms: If one scrutlrnzes the folklorological discourse, one may
find the striking hatred coupled with romantic eg(; within the

Debaprasad Bandyopadhyay
Department of Folklore Kalyani University 18.7:95

discourse 'and that win be another type of investigation in the 'realm of colonial pedago~JY-Again to quote Morton on the issue of native character. ''Avarice and cunning, selfishness and apathy, everywhere .show thetnselvs; the sordidness of worldly aims, and indifference to higher, are seem to flow naturally from a base idolatry that confers neither elevation of mind, nor' purity of heart." So, he wanted to introduce Christianity as' a "light of truth, the rational pity, a holy, and spiritual religion." Willam Carey translat~d the Bible with the same type' of goal as he
( jj )

( iii )

mentioned in the introduction of the translation that his work-is aimed to purify the natives wretched mind. These are only a few examples of European discursive formation. I do not want to go into the detailed analysis of this discursive formation as it is beyond the scope of the present 'rnonogaph. I think, following Post-structuralist.analysis of colonial discourses in the realm of Literary Criticism, History, Anthropology, Philology etc. folklore' can be benefited to prove its own illegitamacy. From this perspective, the very existence of "folklore" is called as a "Myth" in toe Barthian senseof the term. According to Barthes, Myth is at -once "true and unreal". It is true as the division of 'folk' and 'non-folk' exists within the matrix. of hierarchal society- as a projection of the superordinate's gaze. So, it is a cultural (i.e. non-natural) category which has emerged out of centralist politics. It is 'unreal' because it has nothing to do with the natural class or socioeconomic class, rather it is an inversion of the natural human being. In the words of Silverman and Torode (1980:260)' "... the myth is 'true' because it expresses the practice through which a form of dominations functions., it is 'unreal' because this practice naturalizes history and will be revealed as myth in historical change." The word "naturalizes" here represents the paradox of culturalization or .rather politicalization and it tUTOS to be a case of inversion. This inversion is also at a time, according to Mane, "perceptible and imperceptible". One can perceive the inversion which occurs in the process of classification and -designation, but one can also take it for granted that the category does exists. Thus the category gets a value, which converts every social product into a social hieroglyphic. The task is. to decipher this hieroglyphic and to make the myth a perceptible entity, i.e. to know the denotative meaning of sings. (Marx: 1887:79). -Therefore it ts a commentary on 'de-sign-ation'. The hyphens are put here to foreground the morpheme "sign" as in -the process of de-sign-ation, arbitrary signs are -loaded with values and unloading the values, in turn reveals the thing-Initself, rather than a social product. In this way critique. of design-arion leads to de-structuretion of de-sign (order of things) made by the superordinate class. ( iv )

The first chapter is devoted to this destruduration with a view to develop a holistic theory of praxis avoiding the colonial path of intervention. This will help to understand the nature of so called "folklanguage". The division of standard-nan-standard languages is also a result of the same type of de-sign-ation from the perspective of dominant class. The second chapter is devoted to the problem of language and its variations. . The problem of "folklore" has radically changed in the post-colonial neo-colOnialist market-economy. This is a far more pervading problem and needs more attention to understand the nature of sponsorship by today's dominant-group. Through the sponsorship and .decontextualization of indigenous. culture, the imposition of dominant culture is visible in this era of liberalized market economy. It is observed that "Indigenous crafts from developing countries constitute a $ 2 billion industry, to which our South-Eastern neighbours are among the biggest players." (Kunal Basu,The Telegraph, 9 June, 1995). Incorporation of non-factory goods in the market cornrrrodltizes those goods and makes them decorative show-pieces (or rather museufn-pieces) in the superordinate's residences. This commoditization of marginalized culture has nothing to do with the economic upliftment of the actual group, who are perhaps in the midst of pre-capitalistic mode of production. This museumization of 'the dominated culture is now interpreted as';ethnic wave" . Unfortunately, the wretched of the earlh has nothing to lose but their self-Identity swept by the ethnic-wave of homogenization of culture through a common market. In this position of amazing frustration, globalization is the only issue; and globalization, of course, does not mean the revival of the marginalized wretched who eire far from the madding crowd.

(v )


When we face 'technical jargons' like 'folk'and 'tribe' the main problem is that we take them qS naturally granted words without questioning the basis of these designations of human being or Homo Sapiens. The questionIs: Is there any natural or biological basis for these categories? Who, for what cause, did set up these categories to si~nify certain group of people?

There are many questions arising out of the lexical definition of Folk and Folklore. If folks are lexically, defined as "common people", then who are those "uncommon people" or "non-folks"? In the same way one may ask, what are the actual . bioloqicaldlfference between 'tribe' and 'non-tribe'? Often we use folkculture to refer tribal culture without differentiating between the notion of 'folk' and 'tribe'. Do we have any right to devide homo sapiens on the basis of binarities like 'folk/nonfolk', 'tribe/non-tribe'? So this will be a commentary on the de-sign or rather on . .de-sign- ation, provided by the powerful centre to its periphery, We will consider centre's gaze which de-siqn-ates the periphery in order to understand the act of de-sign-ification by the centre. Thus the othering of periphery was in operation through the terms of address and reference. And the centre- periphery relationship is _usually referred to as Colonialism, the discourse of which is conveyed through the media of academics, politics or economics of the powerful and powerless. The Powerful Centre enjoys surplus by exploiting the pairphery. It is an economic domination of centre accompanied with hegemonic imposition of power, This powerful centre categorizes the periphery according to its own need to dominate. A type of

-"othering" is involved when, in the industrialized society, Centre's gaze Signifies other with some technical signifiers like tribe or folk. The Empire intervened into the periphery but not without any obstruction. This obstruction is from the part of the periphery to resist colonizer's intervention into the realm of their own economy, law and culture. The distantiation between colonizer and colonized, the West and the East, was made, according to Said, by diectic categories "we" an d "they". (Said, 1978,1984,1993) Xenophobic and paranoid "We" de-sign-ated "they" as primitive, savage and "we" called those homo sapiens as "tribe" "aboriginals" and "folk". Said and Guha emphasized (ibid & Guha,1988) the obvious xenophobia and paranoia behind this designation, but there were reasohs.(Jt was due to the ignorance about the natives. Therefore, it was necssary to open the secret file of natives in the form of narratives to rule them as a remedy to their insecurity. Thus the 1- you/they relation was tensed.) The unalternatinqdivislon of labout, possession of the common in the land,_blending of agricultu're and handicrafts of "they" did not match with the Eurocentric "modern" division of labour. So "they" are called "primitives" or "savage". However, the term "primitive" Is ambiguious as it does not specify the inte-rplay of static/dynamic elements ina given c'oUectiV1ty. Some of the traditional diachronic elements are changed and some elements are prserveved in every community though there 'are intervention of dynamic elements.Strauss scrutinized the issue and commented, "A primitive people is not a backward or retarded people; indeed it may posses, in one realm or another, a genius for invention or action that leaves the achievement of civilized people far behind." (1963:102). Viswanatan(1988:257) gave another clue in this regard. He cited Conrad's novels which showed ~'how western man had constructed the savage as the other to impose his own savagery on him. The jungJ~ has become theatre of that enactment." Thus "we" considered the "progress" of European society as "standard" and "developed" through industrial revolution while the inferior savages, natives are backward in the perspective of EUropean timescale. This projection of self- image is crucial when they designate others. 2

Regarding the temporal distance, the notion of static primitive society in the perspective of colonizers is derived from enlightenment, or more specifically, -Hobbsian state of nature. Hobbes described rampant disorder in describing state of nature: "Every man is enemy to every other man. There is no place -for industry, no culture of the earth, no navigation, no instruments for moving , no knowledge of the face of the earth, no account of time, no arts,no letters, no society." (quoted in Visvanathan; 1988 :257) So, from the perspective of modernity and civilization, the dlstantitiation may seem to be tempera], which- is not real, if I am allowed to follow Strauss. On the contrary, Strauss himself, in course of defining "folk", considered 'temporal' distance as ~ea1as he said rather loosely, in folklore," ...the explanation to lie in the fact that the phenomena st~died are very old( and therefore far distant, in time if not in space)" (Strauss, 1963:361). But the distance between "we" and "they" were also spatial. The myth 'ofspetial distance, as showed by Saig was created. by "we" through arbitrary "imaginative geography" of occupied territory. Said showed that the spatial distance between "our" land and _"their" land much depends on the familiarity and arbitrariness. According to him" A group of people living on few acres -of land will set up boundaries between their land and 'its immediate surroundings and the territory beyond, which they called "the land, of barbarians". other words, the universal practice of designating in one's mind a familiar space which is "ours" and an unfamiliar space beyond "ours" which is "theirs" is a way of making geographical distinctions that can be entirely arbitrary". (Said, 1978: 54)ln the perspective of familiar territory of "we" the unfamiliar territory of "they" was constructed Without taking consent of "they". (Said, 1978:54). They are "out there". This according to Said, " dramatization" (ct. Visvanthan's metaphor, "theatre -of that enactment" mentioned above) of spatial distance through the "poetics of space" (a'ia Bachelerd), The difference was " between what is close to it and what is far away." (ibid:55)


Let us now consider the other side of the story by concentrating on "what is close to it" . The close to "we" is not 3

frtbe, folk or savage, they are the collaborators, selected natural leaders, native elites or satellite elites. Some of these native elites are baboos, 'if they are Brahtnins, have another name, a 'hidden name, whlch is generally referred to as "raSnam". This' raSnam is not to be contaminated by otl1er, sudras, or m,lecchas: So; it is hidden as well as sacred. No one should utter it as a protective measure. In this way, the self is not only -tfiviQed, it is also ~ -aiienated .frorn the socalled "common". _

the Vedas, the Ramayana or the Mahbharata without noticing the fact that those terrnsido not fit into today's cendition of pre, capitalist nature of "their" cluster. The nationalist idealogy of India was born out of colonial confrontation only within the Indian elite who internally colorrized Indian 'villages through their culture of critical discourse. This critical discursive formation took -reference from its "glorious" Senskritic past to, designate colonized "other", e.g. external colonizers.defined Indians as "black natives, barbarians, field rat, cuaR( an indian word Jar field raf) , hill man, kulitporter], buno(savage) etc. On' the otherhand internal colonizers referred to "other" as "kol « Sanskrit kulla) , sabara; nisada, dasa,dasyu, bhill <Sanskrit bhilla) , kinnara, Iodha «Scmskrit lubdhaka) .etc, without consJdering their self-identity as -a,collectivity. For this reason a single collectivity is represented differently in different area( same "Kherwal" 'group is-represented as Santal, Munda,Khiria, Ho, Kharwar, Birhor, etc.).(Si'myal,1987) In case nationalist discout-se-; names are borrowed from ancient Hindu categories by 'fallaciously considering that fhose group are st111 static in their present day existence and the order of things is the same as an'cient Indian orders. This epistemological reccurance proves the alienafion of Indian elites from the mass. Not only that, these designations also alienate people as these terms are used in politico-administrative purpose of designation or merely as an academic category, which may also, be called, fotlowlbg Karl Popper "administrative category". The other perspective, apart from industrialization, which made the divide of city 'and village, .of folklore, is that it was born out of anti-industrialization-and pre-romanticism ( Belmont in Kuper et al., 1984: 3(8).1 The discontent from the pan of "we"and "you", arising out of industrial revolution stimulated "we" and "you" to search fora reality untouched by industry and its subsequent discontentment. That is they had tried to find human beings in the "raw" state, who are un spoilt by


So there is 'another diectic category "you"- in between "we" and "they". In Bangia atddressingsystem'; 'these three terms may be represented as /amra/ "we" /apni/ "you-honorific" and)tara! "they- non-hbnorffk';. Bangia equvalents may deonstrate the spatfo-temporal and. pers~nal djst~nce between these three categoies. The politics, of translation, . _as exemplified below' , is . also vivid from the discourse of national elites, who internally colonized "th~y't vis a \lis external colonization by foreigners,

This ",!lOU" also de-sign-ates other "the~/'by naming them as "10k" (translated from "folk") and "upojati" (translated from "tribe"), or "[On", "gao:. The term "upojati" refers to a jati branched fr-om another .jati or inferior jati. But the question is which jati is referred to here, from which' the upojati is-bern? The term bears almost the same connotation as "aboriqinals", Some Homo Sapiens areaddressed.as "Aboriginals" who do not really have an' abnormal origin! On fhe btherhand, the concept of "lok" i~ born out of an eptstemologlcal, recurrence. In ancient Indian tradition the term "lok' means ('vulgpr people';" . as Gunaratna(15 C.) defined, "lokah nirvicarah samnyah lokah ..", i.e. Iok is dogmatic common people. On the other hand Sankaracarya defined 10k as vulgar people. (Chattopadhyay, 1987: 15-.17). This translation of folk, in its origin hea;rs the _legecy of Samkara-and Madhava in its essence.


The other important point is that- in addressing other "they'''', you considered "they" as a static continulty, So they arbitrarily borrowed terms like 10k, jan, gOn, daS-, dossu from 4


industrialism. (Caudwell,1937/86:89). This is another side of the power poJiUcs, though is related to tharsame type of "h.egemo;fiic intervention, played b~ the "we" and "you" taking motivation from romanticism or its prefiguration. So "we" and lfyoU'! eQj0yed almost the same position .in addressing "they". It may seem that "we" had introduced a "coeroive se!ving" (Dasgupta,1988:l25) in incorporating: "you".. This selving gave birth to an inclusive and hegemonic "we" which .includes "good orient" aryans by 'excluding "bad orient" "they" which camp-rises most noh-aryans. (Said ,19.78j 1993:Xiii) In genei'al, this inclusive' "we" altogether plays a' hegemonic role" to designate others. Generally a name is given to a child without the acknowledgement of th~ child, In the process of add1f!:ssing,"we'" also considered ditferent unfamiliar 'bther" as child. Nandy pointed out that this child is not smller version of the adult, but an inferior version p£ the a.dult, the concept of which was drawn from seventeenth century Europe. "We"devided "you" and "they?' as "ohildlRe" r::nd "childish" respectivly on the Dasi~.of this premise (Nancly,19&3:15-16). This child, when s/he entered into this repressive world of signs, the,y suffered a loss of self. The political de-sign made hiro/hgr an entity who are not natural or biological Homo Seplensbutas a 'biped mam~al, almost an anim~.1-like entity. This savage child is in a state of anarchy as described by Hobbes, (Visvanathan, 1988:260) This referente to Hobbes may be copsideredas a ref~.r~mce,to the European enHghtenmeht from politics of which aU these, -order (If things. are derived. Unfortunately, we are taking all these' categorilils as granted and contnuousLy produce discourses like Anthropology, Folklore, History, Linguistics etc. -following the. centre's gaze and in this way "yop" legi~jmates.that gaze.

So there is a divide, a divide between European "I" and Oriental "you" or more distant "they". "I" others "you" and "they" and then categorized "other" in the form of some paradigms like History, Annals, Anecdotes, Folklore, AlithropoloQY, Philology etc. ~ a series of narratives, what we usually call today as Orientalist project .of representing other in their own terms and methods. All these terms represent the otherness of colonized and we face an Orwellian world of inversed word order and we need to have write one more "Idiot's Dictionary" following Gustav Haubert's footsteps simply to understand the-fact why some Homo Sapiens are categorized as "tribe" or "folk". The ansVJer lies in-the centre's. gaze (i.e, idealpgy) which signifies andcategorizes "ether" ( i.e. colonized) in order to rule 'them following their own standards. This centre's gaze is guided by 'the intention to ·know and to .rule the resistance group. Language condenses our perception as. well as our uderstanding and colonialism still captures our fhought(so, it is a hermenutic problernl). So still we follow the colonial order of things, mode of representation without challenging their validity in the realm of epistemology. Our. language, 'thus, is not free from colonial hang over and Eurocentric bias. Incase of categorizing some people as tribe or folk and their languages as tribal language, dialect or folklanguage, we are just repeating the colonial (ab)usages without considerinq the biological or economic factors for selecting a collectivity as folk or tribe. The problem is not only with terminology, but with the discursive formations of subjects like Anthropology(by veiling History), Folklore whichrefled the colonial power-politics. That is, discursive formation of these narratives is related with nondiscursive formation of colonialism and nationalism. Without this colonial' hang over there is no reason to designate some peasants and their sub-categories into "tribe: or "folk".




Let us summarize, the whole dramatic
folloWi1)g : I

siJua,UotIJ ill


near periphery centre

further periphe,'ry



Empire Dominant CdkHlizer

External Colony lriterna.I Empire Dominated
,city .

External COk~;l~Y ,tnt,ernal catony


The above analysis sh9WS t~e inooosist~ncy and ambiguity In dennin.g~t,he term "Folklore' ,., But; as the, term is used frequ,ently 'i!1 our.discourse; 'it may Q~ 'rather helpful if we look into' the socio-Politlcelmlleau ofthe incepl~onof 'this tern). '

Let us look into a 'wo'ddng deflntlon of 'fOll{' as, ,s~mmarized
by 'Ion-au foUowing, the~deHnition S~f)gupta'1.'1975:48):
',of B,run\1and"(1968~ cUe\d in


ExternaUy colonized

,Ex'terna;f~y and Inle.,rnafly colonized
viUag,e .

, I!' foUilore; is, oral,' 1. e. it ~isa, study~ non- literate culture.,' of mien of :folklore anH on Ute otherhand, Si"qdh1fsand Lalan Shah are non ..folk. as their'songs are preserved 'in -the wrften f-orm'. As a matter- of f,act, Dundas was aglnst this. HOnan that Folksare people with -writihg es he pointed 'ouJ the flexibllitu of the term, According to' hirn, ~'.Ja.nguage, hunting ~echniques: and matria,ge . 'rules ,(100- passed ,or,aJly from one 'g~naration-ttl' ifnother, few' folkh)'rist would s,ay, ~tba;t "tb,~se cultural materials ere .folklore; ...second, there are SIQom~ Iorms of fqJkJore w!hkh·ar~ 'm;an.H~st:ed 'ana corntntmlceted almost :,ex.ctu.slv,~ly in 'wrftt;en as opposed to oral form, such.as ~autograph-book ~erse, book-marqtnella.... a professlonal fo~ndO;ristMdoe:s .net go, so'far'as to s~y that a fol~ta~e
a ballad ~snot a' folklore'. simply because 'it -has at sometime tn,tts Ufe-:-historY bsen transqli'tted by writing or print .... .The third ·d4ffic.uHy, with· the criterion. of 'oral transmission concerns those .forms of f.Qlklore c$~pending upon.body-movments; that is there is some questions as to whether folk dances, games end gestures are passed on orally." ("19"050:1-2 quotedin Sengupta, ibid]. . ,:.~ ' ' d'lll • 2" "F· n~l ' ..js t a"t'rona1 ,Ot·,is passerd on, repeal~e~'llywna ..ouaore ,ra"' J

"Sed ;c;ontra:: By this den~jtion Socrates arId Buddha "are

Non ..folk Non ..common

Niitive: people

common people



Non... biibe

Diat~ct!trihcd language/Folkli;ulg"U~'g~

Classica] Father

Sastrlo. 'childlike

l.;.' :.lS,u CuI-"~ld''; L

~laUvel'y fixed and standard form'

Sed contra: There 'are many problems re;gapcUng, this criterion. ,Many socallad f,oi,k~elem'ents a~e p'~d and :pari~lof- socalled non-folkstmaybe as a result of cultural ,8ilfusionl, :e.g. some parts 'Of the roardage rituals, proverbs, j'Ok,es, riddles etc. When, Or.., Iiaj enaraprasad perf o rme d· foot,.,wa.shin'Q Q,f Brahmans. ' or 'Dr7.Sankarda.ya! Sharma performed rituals af.ter getting the:

pre~~jdent~hip 'or some

dtu,al .~~ d.ivhled as' }'Sa~trio'" (scrip'tural~"dassicar) as ~o~,pp$edo '(louklk'" (folkal) without t considering the· hf$totic~I' fatt· that. once upon a lime this binary division between -Sastrlo}louldk was not in o!p'eration and what Is called toda9 as S;a~·trio 1J.}";~ evoiVed oUt'.of people' 5 process of Imagination in course of confronting ~atu~ and .·~qufdi:ng 'up ..c~1ture~The status "Sastrio" la.rgely depends on fher sponsorship . ,of th~~ t(UUng class who hegemonicaUy ~Ronsorsl '~ntprpora.te5, any .~le:m,~n~:of sodet~' a;ccording. to their own ne!ed, h)' rule, :e.. ;,a) g BUddha" was oOins~dered ·asa,yatara Visn'y though··Buddha had nothing ·to do with gods. and 'goddes~es ('if,Hinclu ttadition~b). at the time of Turkish lnvaslon in Bengal, ma.ny. SxbJ:n. ns 11!l~m:atedo some rernote '1mag'es, .where they, found soma deities t Which ar~: included in their religion with the, 'eoc~taH of Hi:ndu p\,JrflO. Trds' gave birth, to' a notion like N,OnoSa. es a dallghter pf S~bJcOn:D{ as an tncamation af durga etc.; c) ·tbwsspqnsorship ~~ ~en:-,examp1il:wed.in the sto,ry pI cC;lMd'SOda;gar.,(a merchant named EpndJ MOnosp. g'01 the ,p~sUg,e',01 deity· only after the' e ,_, . . ., . fF!ercpant offered H.I1'uJa~' (wotship) to M~OnoSa. ,

fact, the mJ;~;rria:ge( eremonies of Hindus are· almost full of Ved~,c c rit~4~, ·which are also tradifiol1at tho-ugh, t~,ese _,ar~:not called '1, ts'''''' t . .... . d a$, "f'" 0;lk €,leme'O'· '~.U1S: ea d th' tnese are' ca:'teg.Ol;]ze". as·',~"S· as'1"" . . no.'

in any inat,lguratio.n c;f!r~ljliQny,no one considers them as ·"Fo.1~;·' In ,.

Olini.sh~·rs break


though they had enjo,y,ed the re,sutt of GutenberB revolution.

~r"hrus deUriiUon oos-o·· opposes

'ttl€! deHr;l~Uon 2 as D'el.. 2:
in '~·relati:vel~l.fi.xea.

maintains the, idea thet folklore istrans,r'litied and standard form.'" ~

These traditional m,arda~


4. "Folklore is usuaUy anonymous' : ,authorS'oa:m,e se:tdom. p~rts, of texts, 'that are o.r-aity' transmitted ~"


, Sed contra: the words like .. 'usuaUy'~ , "seldom" .~~de£.4 H make th-e' d~finItion· fiexJble and jncons~stent Ihi~ tv.pe of ;self-,

defe.aUng definiton is useless for deSignating agr9up as a fdlk. ' -

of people


5,. "most folklore tends to become' fo,t:muladz.eO-: that is expressed partly in cUches whl,eh, ranged-rom' shiipl,e ~et phrases and pat'tern$~o,t rep:eUHon j:o ,ela,15.orate opening: Q:n~ desin§ devlce'$' or' whole passages of traditional verbal sterQtypes, ", sed contra: "Themost noflcable thi.ng 'about Horner's-verse is the repeated use Oil ,a, relntively. I~:mi,ted. Pf.'rto'ire of stock ~ phrases and ~es'f.dptioI1S,!" observed, A.tkJnso'fltl~,65;88) :011 the baSis of ~U,lman .'Rq;r~: stpdy(t9il) on. Herner, .dD not know s whether the Illiad dr·tne OddysS€i!l are considered as a folkw6rk or-not, Those two works ,,' 'CG'ns:ilSts of a" pfedictablle deployme:nt











'Of set formuiae;t~.('ibi,tE89)' .


definitio.A~ the; cuJtu:te· of Li31an or 8alaharm (;o,mnnJ:nltyai'e not considered-to be' "Folklore '.',as they opposed the, tradUmonaHty of the. SOciety arid gav,e birth to ne'w concept~ of sociaUife, byeofljradiE:ti,rig ageo-.ld "CO'A(;€ption e"t Brahmanism.

<.... :fioU.owln;g this.

3. \',foUdore

exists.in di:ffe'(e'ri.t versions,"


Sed conjra,:' The Ramayana has ·dUierent \!~rs·ions in IndID8 .and .its nejghbourb'lg countries, 'b:tit seldom "is it n?f~rred, to' as a Folktale instead of "Classic"; Some people consider it as. a .dotllmentetf Hisfory( 'though they ,are:negHglbie" in an academic . a:ccoUnt). ·Avijnan~' Sakuntalam by Ri,UdJasa' has different versions a~d no one bothers to ,c~n .it a folktale., 'Only the' inven'tipn. of Printing press through' G1uten:berg Revolution g,C},ve . the Industrialised sOCiet.y the appb,rtunrty to 'gre$,er\le a work on 1it.~.rature10: its purest for~ but not ,always as' wa .haV,e came -across ,tlje' d.iffe:J;en~'readio:Qs of Shakespeare and Rabindranath


This is a dialogue between F and A on the ilIeg'itamacy of Folklore. Both of them are eppeerantly unanimous -about the myth of Folklore, but their future course of actionJs still undecided. So, they ate conversing ..... F: If "we" could not use such value-loaded terms; then how could "we" describe "other", who are not like "us';? A: If you want -to maintain the idealogies' and values of industrialised society, the divide betweent'we" and "they", then you will have to follow the existing paradigms like Folklore and Anthropology! F: But these paradigms are surrogated version of History (in case of F~lklore and Cultural Anthrspologyer Sociology) and Physiology (in case of Physical Anthropology). A: And it is surrogated to maintain the values and create a myth: at a time "true and unreal". It -is "true" as it reflects the order of things created by the industrialised SOCiety and it is "unreal" as it is not legitimate natural order of things without any intervention of powerful cxploitiors ... F: Consider Bamall's allegation that the academic interest behind Anthropological and Historical investigation is escapism. .Investigator tries to escape the rea! situation of industrialization and s/he tries to justify the intervention in so-called primitive society in the name of modernization. On the otherhand, the little knowledge about investigator's own society helps to 'maintain the order of things as it is. A: Then the question is how to b_uildup a theory of praxis, _which will help us to decolonize or how could- we get rid of Eurocentric bias to establish a free and just society? F: I think, firstly, it will depend on the- critique of existing paradigms and then, secondly by studying-any given group on the basis of their nature of solidarity, socio-ecorromic condition

etc. one can define the .eollactivity, In the first case, one can develop Foiklorographlcal (d. Historolgraphical] investiqation where one can relate discursive formation of Folklo:rologist with the non-discursive fo~'mation of colonialism. imperialism etc. A; In the second case, one may use the term "sub-altern" versus "dominant" to. represent tney,wB devide. The term "subaltern" will cover thee_ntire power-relation of dominaritand dominated and the study will be on this power-relation with a reference to propositional and rron-proposltiorral cultural elements. E: There may be a .minor problem .1n substituting (he. term "folk". Whoever is beleived to be a folk, may not b~p.omin&ted; " ..)t can be elitist too .. Not all sfnge~ and balladeers took a sympaJ[tetic view of it(peasants' revolution) .. Som~ of them belonged fa upper: cas,te·famUies fallen ali hard times or to other irnpoversished groups within the' .middla strata of rural society. Cut off from the tillers of the soil by status if not by wealth, they hung on the rural gentry for patronage and expressed the latter's anxities and and prejudices 'in their compositions on the theme of agrarian disturbances. Thus, the insurgent voice which comes through the Mundaripoetry and homiletics published by Singh, 'or the anti-survey song in Sandip dialect published by Grierson, is more than balanced but in folk literature by the representation of an obviously landlord's point of view in some of the verses cited in Saha's account of the Pahna Bidroha, Ray's on the Paglapanthi insurrection, and so on." (Guha, 1983: 15). A: This problem can easily be sorted out by taking socioeconomic criteria for assigning a group and their cultural manifestation, Collaborative and non-collaborative attitude also playa majo~ role -iri subalterns' consciousness. in fad your citation from Guha proves my point. We are not at all interested to write subaltern's curricula vitae in a decorative manner like other folkloroloqists. F: But, we have to survey the discourse of folklorogists to understand the hegemonic role of the elite, especiallyorientalists' attitude towards other dominatated ...



-A: So there are two task, one is to understand the complex consciousness of the sub-altern and on the otherhand to scrutinize the texts written by folklorologists or Anthropologists. _ F:And that is another'story ....... another beginning .....



1. In the Industrialised ,society, .this centre-periphery relation is generally exposed through the dichotomy of city and village. Though there are numerous heterogeous communities in villages with a 'differences of economic ,SOcial and linguistic background they are categorized as 'folk' ina homogenous way. This covering term does not care for the different collectivities under the name of "folk" with or without diffei'enttypes of production systems. The structure of centre-periphery relation is more complex when we face thapeople without any mode of

2.0 INTRODUCTION If the concept of "folk" is a myth, then there is no question of folklanguage. Every human being has the capacity ~9:.create infinite sets of sentences' out of finite sets of words. The task of ~ Unguistis to 'analyse this Internalized Language (ILl with' a view to understand the human cognitive domain. The variationphenomena is merely an arbitrary fact. But, there are variations in Externalized Language (ELi and these variations are related to social facts. The either task of a linguist then is, to attest the correlation between social facts and EL Here it is attempted to analyze the concept of "ather" variatio'ns' vis-a Vf5-S~ called "standard language". Suppose there are variations 'v'<s which, are mutually intelligible. Sometime, one v becomes'V due tosome nonlinguistic causes. this transformation v ...,. V gives birth to a centre-periphery relation between V and v. V as a centre enjoys the defeat of other vs, which are now called as dialect in contrast to Standard Language V. Thus defeated vs are suffering from inferiority complex and striving far acquiring V, a standard tool for the socio-functianal purpose of commurucatlon. Thus vsare defeated, languages and the speakers of these defeated .langueges are captive speakers of those languages ..

In another case, this V is not fully mutually Intelligible 'with the other vs, but in the same way manoeuvres other vs. This V enjays the. status of non-regional Language, National Language, Official Language, Majority language or international language etc. . In this way, vs do not look at each other, instead they look vertically to the supposed sun, the centre, the V. 14

Concentrating on .sun V as a centre is called Sunflower Syndrome (vs are here sunflowers) or it may be called as linguistic imperialism. Empire V deprives the colony vs, either internally (e.g. Standard language vs. Dialects) or externally (e.g. International language vs. native Ianguaqes), between vs and V is not as "natural" There is nothing "il1 itself" within V (in fact, it is also <it v) that makes it so prestigious, but it is V's geopolitics (or geopolitical intervention) which plays the biggest role in this case. It may be due to a "historical accident" (Lyons, 1968:35) that makes the difference. The geopolitics is obviously is centralised in this character. Thus the relation

as IL but it is. "cultural".

'develop' a language following rigorous 'planning' and can be advertised for sale. If one can mind the jargons involved here (management, planning, status planning, correction, language development etc.), one can easily discover the discourse of an all pervading market eccnomy '. The formation of linguistic planning triggers the planning from above without paying any heed to the planning suggested from the below. {the words "above" and "below" are used here followinq social hierarchical structure) . Thus following Dasgupta (1989:117), we may attest a "captive language" situation which evolves within the Speech Community in relation to V-v situation, where V internally colonize other dialects of the san:e language.

I try to depict the situation without any Jargons as jargons like dialect, standard language etc. are heavily loaded with idealogy. These jargons (like standard language, dialect, tribal language, folk language etc.) are used rn the critical discourse of linguistics. (for detaile-d discussion ' see Phillipson, 1993, 38 - 46). will be attempted
In the next section, the review of standardization process with a view to make out the V-v relation.

There are a-lot of controversies regarding the status of "Folklanguaqes" as a technical term in Linguistks. It is generally referred to as a rural language, which is totany antithetical to the existing standard or even local dialects. Some -others define it as a rural language, not different from local dialects. According Sarkar (199 I L Folklangu'age is attested according to the gaze of dominant groups who .speak standard language. This is the stereotypical perception of superordinates which designates "other" as . a lurnpsum whole. If one considers this stereotypical gaze to define a lingUistic concept, the illegitimacy of the gaze (which signifies other) can not be challenged. Keeping the illegitamacy in mind, one may of course consider the mode of categorisation according to that gaze. .

. Ray (1968) used the metaphor "tool" in reference to the process of Standardization. 'the concepf of "tool" is related to 'the lridustrial Society. The primary demand of Industrialization is a common market, and to add more, a common language, which can meet the demand of centralised education, revolutionised media; by means of which one can transmit Mcluhanian "message" of an Industrialised society. In this context, one can quote Ray (1968:754): "We expect of a standardized tool that it will be cheaper to acquire and maintain, individual specimens will be very much alike and of a relatively uniform dependability." (underlined by me) Thus standard language is a "cheaper tool" available in the "market' and it can be developed through the newly-invented system of "Ianguage-managemenf' which is employed to


But quite contrary the different definitionsof so called which is not merely a dialect, we propose to call it a distinct sociolact of different social groups, which mainly emerged as a sub-altern force against the greater culture out of their non-collaborative attitude towards it. As these sociolects are used to maintain their group-identity, solidarity and selfdetermination, these groups Use a type ofsecret language, which may be called as "Anti-language" following Halliday (1979).



The value-loaded relation between synthetised notion, of a given society. Though 17

V and v is a v ·is antithetical


to V, there is another v {av} which arises antithetically to this synthetised situation of This antithetical v is called Antilanguage, which is. a prO(!:il,ld of anti-society (i.e. a.society which is .antithetical to the established society.) Idealized V-v relation is opposed by the avo This.av is also q language, but it is different from usual -acceptcd norm of V-v. This av also borrows Externelrzed Linguistic features of nearby v or V.


bhOgoliNgo moithun bindu dud\1 kala-boba rup khet bij baMka nodi phulpho'Ia kumir OmoboSSa IOta

vagina and phallus Intercourse dot milk deaf and dumb form/beauty field seed the zig-zaq course of a river flower crocodile new moon plant

disciple's ear and preceptors commands relation between preceptor and disciple semen deed of saint semen flow women

There are some sects/groups in Bengal who not only oppose the established sastriya religion, but have developed their own solidarity and self-detemination (such as Baul, Sahebdhani, Kartabhaja,Balahari etc.]. All of them use different types of languages, different from their consecutive dialects as well as standard languages. Some sociolinguistic characteristics of these avs as proposed by Halliday (1979) may be noticeable from the fieldexperience of Chakroborti (1989) : Secrecy: Chakroborti (1989) took almost five Y!2ars to understand the jargons of these various sects as these sects try to keep distance with "other" as a part of their noncollaborative attitude. They call it "aptoSabdhan" (awareness from/aptol"reliable authority"), according to Chakroborti the meaning of which is : 'apono SadhonokOtha/na koH.io JOthatOtha/aponare aponi tumi Hoio Sabdhan ("Do not tell others the secrets of your rites. YOl! also should be aware of yourself"). This awareness. sometimes leads to misleading stat~ments to confuse others. Chakraborti cited some interactions with such groups, where one may find such awareness from others. '. . 2. Relexicalization : As Halliday (1979) pointed out that one of .tha features of Anti-language is partial relexicalization ("new word for Old'lbut without any change in grammar). This feature is also found in some of the religious sects of Bengal. e.g.

and menstrual

womb semen vagina attainment lust menstrual child of puberty



3. Ovedexicalization : Apart frornrelexicalization, there is also a ·fe~ture, accgrding to H,!itlliday which is called overiexicalization, i.e. many connotative words are used for one object : pittribostu bindu bij bostu father's dot seed object



_Normal meaning.
pOntotOtto Five theories essential or five'

Changed meaning
Five food-items


4. Use of Metaphor: Though metaphor 'is' 13 normal but non-noticeable, forgotten and unknown feature of everyday language, av is itself a "metaphorical entity" (Halliday, 1979 : 177). The examples cited above are all metaphor in a sense that it swerves from the "norm" (normal = standard or well established dialect). Here are soiTIeexampie :



ghOrami jOnmochaMda nouko khaMca baper pukur SaS

house-builder a boat with a hole cage father's breath pond

God unsuccessful human mother's preceptor body womb life


the Eurocentric

is to develop a theory of praxis, which bias of the existing paradigm.

can wipe

off . '

"Another form is "dhOndobaji" (puzzling ¥trategy)". As for example, Imaneli Saheji.of Dhaparaopened his exercise book. and said, "Write down babu, the information .about "kar"> Ondhokar (darkness), kuakar (form like a well or bad form), akar (form), Saker (with the form), Dimbakar {oval shaped}, nirakar·'(withouf shape), Sunnakar (zero-shaped), Hel-lakar ('cry of despair), Huriukar (cry of agonY),,:nairakar (without any form}-these are the information about eleven kar, other four are secret." This text, as cit~d by Chekroborti (1'989 : 13) creates some Ilngulstic problems as the "information about kar" linguisticaily does notmean anything. According to Chokroborti, this puzzling strategy is intended to confuse non-sect people. The morphemic analysis of the above mentioned words shows that there are two separate morphemes-perceived as "kar", viz. akar "form/shape" and kar "one, who' does", The internal sandhi between, as for example, sunno (Sunya "zero") and akar has become sunnakar and gave birth to .a p.ercption like "kar' following the pressure, of paradigm as presented' by .Imanali. Imanali did. not consider the diachronic reference to 'analyse these words.," .' This instance shows the linguistic attitude of the "common people" and reveals their beliefs.regarding language. "... We are making systematic assumption about language, brj,nging into play what Peter Doughty calls 'a "Folklinguistios", a "Gammon sense" about the language We live by' (Doughty et aLl~72:8}". (Halliday, 1979:21). Sarkar (1991) described these linguistic scientific or unscientific and all these- beliefs scope of Folklinguistics. There are many this absolute comment. ' beliefs' as preare within the problems with

, These metaphors are sometimes idiosyncratic, born out of individual poetic innovations and then those items .are used in the community, but there is also a reverse possjb.ili~ as the vocabulary, which representsthe particular community s world view, maybe dE!veJoped by the community itself and then it is used in songs or other forms of communication.

5. Deviation': What Mukarovsky called as "deviation" from the "norm", is also found in avs. In all, these examples, lexeme deviates from the "normal" everyday meaning.
The main focus of this analysis focussed on the minor religious sects, but there are some other professional groups who do not match with the Eurocentric' division of labour. The mightLer standard oppositional force of industrialization makes these groups alienated. But they have technical s:kills to produce commodities. So they use their own vocabulary to represent technicalities. De (1994) scrutinized one such professional group, who are age-old potters. Their use of technical jargon represents a reality different from industrialized society in a sense that those two antithetical entities have different types of modes of production as well as relation of production.

All these are characteristics of EL and have nothing to do with IL. But the categorization of EL in relation to a certain group is a severe problem, as the group affiliation needs a thorough investigation it'! socioeconomic criteria.
. The question of solidarity (organic or inorganic, in. relatio.n to which restricted and elaborated code can be determmed.) 1S also to be scrutinized, The available curricula vitae of some \ groups, ,referred to as folk, is still inadequate t? ensure the socioeconomic status of groups. Therefore, the need of the

One should consider the linguistic perception of, the common people as a matter of study In- the realm of cognitive



psychology. If we consider the case, cited above, it is found that the "common people" do not have the cognition of morphemic breaks as analysed by the linguists. This problem may lead us to Rajinder Singh's hypothesis· on Morphological Analysis. Rajinder Sfngh(1994) repeatedly emphasized one crucial fact of Morphologica] Analysis : Do we have, in our cognitive domain, network of related morphemes as stated or analysed by linguist? For example, do we have a mental network of morphemes like 'require

the speaker science.

without considering

if from the purview of modern


acquire ~ acquisition; edit ~ editor, eat ~ edible etc.? Different linguists interpreted this morphemic network differently,. Aronoff relates Iexemes "nominate, nominatee, 'nominee" instead of interpreting them morphemically, whereas accordingto Kipersky, morphemes 'ea' and 'ate' are added to the morpheme'nomin'. Singh emphasized, following Aronoff, that lexical network precedes morphemic network. He citedremarks of Nag~sa : although there is an expectancy of the anga when thesuffix is added, it is absent when we have the knowledge of the. suffix. There are, therefore, no grounds for, accepting an imp lication of theaogain the grammar."
n ..


Beliefs regarding Ianguage are found both in the 'folk and non-folks. So, the absolute statements folklinguistics tells us nothing. Non-folk beliefs are. also, in the sense of Sarker, "unscientific and pre-scientific:'. The Sanskrit mantras have been abridged and arranged for the "common man" by an eminent linguist for marriage ceremonies and the Holy tJ1read ceremonies with the belief that. those mantras (which are endowed ¥Jith magic) would help to bring -about a happy marriage and the upliftof being; On the ofherhand, followers of Balhari, who are believed to be folks, do not .accept this fetish belief as Balahari argued, "If god would appear by the strength of chanting 'Hori, Hori' (name of god); why don't you then chant 'guR, guR' (molass) to ~y.;eete~nyour mouth?" Here folks do not accept t~e socalied "common belief" of magical mantras.



One follower of Lalan Shah_,(who is considered as "folk"} composed the following song, which goes with the scientific "notion on langdage : *mOhommOder l'beHester jOnmo jodi Hoto edeSe tejeSObaj Sikhlere bhai kon QJ7IaSaHoto balta eSe.

Singh interpreted it as : "If the suffix and the form to which it has been' added always appear together, a reference to the suffix is sufficient to direct operations correctly." He gave priority to .leXicon following the Non-Panlntan-analysts of Lexemes. Singh. also interpreted Katy.ayana's varttika 7 in the following wag : "When the suffix is mentioned, we understand what we need to; redundantly, of course.:". This perspective negates the morphological analysis in the traditional sense of the term which creates an ontological' problem. Instead he proposed the network of related lexemes, which works within the minds of a speaker of a given language. This priority of lexicon. over morpheme is obviously non-Panmian and non-descriptive Linguistics. From this perspective, it is far more important to understand commonsense interpretation of language rather than to understand language from .the traditional Linguistic point of view. It will reveal the cognitive map and complex network of

matribhaSa *arbi bhaSa

tate bhai phOYdc;lio nai OboSeSe. "If Mohammed had been born here, what language of hel! would speak? There is no benefit,if one learns Arabic by shunning off one's moihertongue."


This composition highlights the arbitrariness of EL in an eloquent manner. Secondly, it emphasizes on the Linguistic human right. 56, whoever is considered as folk, may not posses unscientific knowledge on language (or folk's own "unscientific Linguistics"!) . There is another problem regarding the expression, "unscie ntific and pre-scientific". Levi Strauss (1966, quoted in Ghosh, 1979) showed, "Bothscience and magic however require same sort of mental operations and they differ not so' much in



kind as in"the different types of phenomena to which they are applied." The requirement of the. post-modern science is to attest this figuration of this conscious mental operation without abandoning it by calliflg it unscientific; , . In' another perspective, if anything that goes aqainst science, is considered as "Folklinguistics", then we may call Soviet linguist Mal',r or B,E Skinner fnlklinguists ! This' type' of argumentation is redundant, if we tty to understand sul)·altern's linguistic consciousness withoutguided by the violent modern science. Inthls Post-structuralist eta, the post-modern science 'throws, info its-focus the order of 'things asprescribea. by 'Science and develops the critique of Tl)odernity. The' sirriple-interition behind' this type of argumenfahon is to establish 'a new 'theory of praxis by shunning off redundant notions' like Folklore, Folklanguage and Folkl.inguistics.

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