Title: How Ladakhi Must Be Written. Postulates Regarding the Codification of Written Ladakhi, Its Development and Education


Chorol, Tsering

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Ethnologia Polona 37 2016 (2017)


Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology Polish Academy of Sciences

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24 cm


This text involves a debate surrounding the language of the Ladakh region of India. The Ladakhi language has long since been written in accordance with classical Tibetan grammar. This paper stresses the need for it to be written in accordance with spoken Ladakhi style. This postulate is drawn from the personal research of the author and other researchers in the field. It does not undermine the importance of the classical Tibetan language, which has had a huge influence on the Buddhist population of Ladakh. The paper seeks to propose that the script be made accessible to all Ladakhis, irrespective of their faith. It also points to the differences between Ladakhi and Tibetan languages, resulting in a proposal that Ladakhis should first be made to read and write in the language they speak and subsequently introduced to the classical style


Butcher A. 2013. Grammatically speaking: Religious authorities and development discourse in Buddhist Ladakh, Durham Anthropology Journal 9, 95–109 ; Francke A. H. (1905–1941). 2000. A Lower Ladakhi Version of the Kesar Saga. With an introduction by Suniti Kumar Chatterji, Calcutta, reprint ed. Delhi ; Hodge S. 1990. An Introduction to Classical Tibetan, Warminster ; Khan M. T. 2014. Education in Mother Tongue – A Children’s Right. International Journal of Humanities and Management Sciences (IJHMS) 2 (4), http://www.isaet.org/images/extraimages/P1214011.pdf. Access: 03.05.2017 ; Koshal S. 1976. Ladakhi Phonetic Reader, CIIL Mysore ; Koshal S. 1979. Ladakhi Grammar, Delhi ; Naga S. T. 2012. Tibetan Language, Literature and Grammar, LTWA Dharamsala ; Zeisler B. 2005. On the Position of Ladakhi and Balti in the Tibetan Language Family. In J. Bray (ed.), Ladakh Histories: Local and Regional Perspectives, Leiden–London ; Zeisler B. 2006. Why Ladakhi must not be written-being part of the Great Tradition: Another kind of global thinking. In A. Saxena and L. Borin (eds), Lesser-known Languages of South Asia: Status and Policies, Case Studies and Applications of Information Technology, Berlin, 175–194 ; Noormohamadi R. 2008. Mother tongue, a necessary step to intellectual development, Journal of Pan-Pacific Association of Applied Linguistics 12(2), 25–36


Ethnologia Polona



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oai:rcin.org.pl:66277 ; 0137-4079


IAiE PAN, call no. P 366 ; IAiE PAN, call no. P 367 ; IAiE PAN, call no. P 368 ; click here to follow the link




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Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology of the Polish Academy of Sciences

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Library of the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnology of the Polish Academy of Sciences



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