TEDxLahore – Tariq Rahman – Who’s afraid of Urdish and Urdi?

Linguistics expert Tariq Rehman, explores why we are threatened by linguistic change while tracing the origins of the Urdu language and wants us to accept code-switching and borrowing if we want Urdu to remain a living language. About the speaker Dr. Rahman’s work on sociolinguistics uncovers the historical and social evolution of language in the subcontinent, and talks about how we can understand and approach its natural and ongoing evolution. He considers the purist attitude that has developed towards language change in Pakistan to be alarming and believes that language change must be accepted as a reality in all living languages. Tariq Rahman is a Professor of Sociolinguistic History at the National Institute of Pakistan Studies, Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad. He is a highly published scholar with over 90 articles in scholarly journals, 9 books, 4 encyclopedia articles, 22 contributions to various books and several book reviews. His history of language-learning among the Muslims of South Asia, Language, Ideology and Power (OUP 2002) remains a landmark in the field. His latest book, Denizens of Alien Worlds (OUP 2004), connects the medium of instruction with world view, poverty and politics in Pakistan. About TEDx, x = independently organized event In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep

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  1. shankyxyz says:

    i dont give a shit again. learn any language u want, as long as english is compulsory. I will give all this fake patriotism a pass. most probably I know more indian languages than you, but nevertheless.
    when i say eveyone speaks english, i meant more like everyone aspires to speak it. which is a very worthy and honourable goal.

  2. Pleeezing says:

    I wish in Pakistani Punjab, we could have alphabets for punjabi ( like gurmukhi) or we could learn gurmukhi.. it will give new life to language which is dying down..;(

  3. Pleeezing says:

    hahhahahahaaaaaa less than 5% speak “indian” English… get your facts right before such a sweeping statement,
    You should be proud of all Indian languages, it enriches your soul and gives you sense of belonging, You should also learn English, the most spoken language in the world… but discarding all other languages shows how limited your thinking is.

    Go to France and German or Spain and see how you survive with English… I could not !!

  4. shankyxyz says:

    no one gives a shit in india anymore. everyone speaks english. the best choice amongst the three.

  5. coolwinds1 says:

    This guy looks lyk anupam kher..!!

  6. Grazikon says:

    @yoshimitsu1001 @yoshimitsu1001 Great pure languages like Norman French? It had prestige in Medieval England because . That’s it. And as for “pure”, it’s specifically a dialect of French (which already has Frankish influence on Latin) which includes Scandinavian influences. And the standards of “British English” and “American English” are about equal in what they keep from earlier forms of English.

  7. kyamusibathayphir says:

    simply he want in 21st century nobody will left in Pakistan to understand literature which produced by our ancestor .. well

  8. MrRuggedboy27 says:

    now i am an indian muslim and i come from hyderbad deccan, and i dont say jameen, neochawar, i still say zameen, nichawar though at school we only learned hindi and thus also came across the wrong pronunciations, but we just read n laughed and stuck to our guns, my urdu alhumdulliah though deccanish, is still very pronunciation wise right
    peace out

  9. yoshimitsu1001 says:

    for god sake don’t tell and teach us this stuff…….. the great pure languages latin and norman french turned into british english and later the beauty of british english is screwed by the american english…………….. we loved classical urdu – lost it – now don’t make us loose whatever remnants we have…. please – we love urdu – and we do not have any respect for urdish

  10. nabeelva says:

    The nerd in me really enjoyed this. Being an American Pakistani who has Urdu roots and love the language, I really enjoyed the historical perspective and history of the ideological biases and the impact of those biases. Thanks for broadening my thought process.

  11. gabcraft says:

    A very interesting talk. As the speaker’s intro says, he is a socio-linguist. Someone with a focus on linguistics only, would differ with him. By saying that code-switching and phonetic substitution is ok, he is not considering the question of identity and its relationship with language. For a country struggling with an identity crisis the way Pakistan is, I don’t think it would be such a good idea.

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  14. 1971PWF says:

    Thanks for this informative piece sir!

  15. ahmertension says:

    the best talk out of all the ones in TEDx Pakistan. absolutely brilliant, and pertinent

  16. rahidelvi says:

    This talk was simply beyond fascinating. Thanks for posting.

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