How have our languages evolved? At our Online Talk #KahaniHindiKi, linguistics scholar Peggy Mohan traces a path from the time of the earliest hunter-gather migrants out of Africa to the Indian subcontinent, 65,000 years ago, through the Dravidians who came to the Indus Valley 12,000 years ago, through the Vedic people to the present day Hindi-speaking region of North India. She looks at the languages made by the different groups of migrants, and the different ways in which the languages and peoples mixed, making language a good mirror of the history, politics and economy of the region, while focussing on one language - Hindi.
About the speaker
Peggy Mohan was born in Trinidad, West Indies, and studied linguistics at the University of the West Indies and the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. Her Ph.D. dissertation was on Trinidad Bhojpuri, which she also later investigated as a language death situation. She has taught linguistics at Howard University, Washington DC, and Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi, and Mass Communication at Jamia Millia Islamia, Delhi. She has also written extensively on language issues in India. ‘Wanderers, Kings, Merchants: The Story of India through its Languages’ is her fourth book.