Strength for Today and Bright Hope for Tomorrow

Volume 9 : 11 November 2009
ISSN 1930-2940

Managing Editor: M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D.
Editors: B. Mallikarjun, Ph.D.
         Sam Mohanlal, Ph.D.
         B. A. Sharada, Ph.D.
         A. R. Fatihi, Ph.D.
         Lakhan Gusain, Ph.D.
         K. Karunakaran, Ph.D.
         Jennifer Marie Bayer, Ph.D.



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Noun Morphology in Kuki-Chin Languages

Pauthang Haokip, Ph.D.

1. Introduction

For the purpose of the present study, six languages, namely, Thadou, Vaiphei, Gangte, Paite, Simte and Zou are presented. All the six languages are spoken in Churachandpur district of Manipur where the present study had been conducted.

According to Grierson LSI. Vol. III. Part III and Bradley 1997, they belong to northern Kuki-Chin subgroup of the Tibeto-Burman family. All these languages are mutually intelligible to one another and communication is carried out in their respective languages without any problem.

Linguistically, they constitute the dialects of the northern Kuki-Chin. But political, unlike the Nagas, they regarded themselves, as belonging separate tribes having separate languages of their own. The census of India too has classified them under separate languages. Of course there are other sociolinguistic factors responsible for the split among them which I am not going to deal with here.

Among them, Thadou is by far the largest and the most widely distributed compared to the rest.

Apart from Churachandpur, others districts of Manipur where the Kuki-Chin speakers are distributed are: Senapati, Tengnoupal, Tamenglong, and Ziribam. These languages are also spoken in the adjoining Indian states of Nagaland, Assam and Mizoram. Outside of Northeast India, they are also spoken in Chin Hills of Myanmar (Burma) along with other cognate Kuki-Chin languages. The population of these languages according Census of India 2001 is as follows:

Thadou      Vaiphei          Gangte          Paite          Simte          Zou
1,90,595.    39,673.       14,500.          64,100.       10,225.       20,857

In terms of research, most of these languages except Thadou, have not been described by the linguistic researchers. The only source of knowledge is that of Grierson LSI (1904), which contained some information on consonants and vowels of these languages. There are very few natives trained in theoretical linguistics to carry out research on these languages.

2. Noun morphology

Noun in Kuki-Chin languages may be defined as a word which is capable of taking gender marker, number marker, case marker/postpositions and/or which can be followed by noun attributes like adjectives, numerals, quantifiers, etc. Thus, nouns in Kuki-Chin languages are, structurally, either mono-morphemic or multi-morphemic.

Noun in these languages falls into two classes- (a) non-derived nouns and (2) derived nouns.

This is only the beginning part of the article. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE IN PRINTER-FRIENDLY VERSION.

Attitude towards Mother Tongue - A Study of the Tribal Students of Orissa | Computer-mediated Communication in a Bilingual Chatroom | Compensation Strategies for Speaking English Adopted by Engineering Students of Tamil Nadu - A Study | Acquisition of English Intransitive Verbs by Urdu Speakers | Community, Culture and Curriculum in the Context of Tribal Education in Orissa, India | Auxiliary Verbs in Modern Tamil | Getting Around 'Offensive' Language | Noun Morphology in Kuki-Chin Languages | A Plea for the Use of Language Portals in Imparting Communication Skills | Advances in Machine Translation Systems | A Comparative Study of the Effect of Explicit-inductive and Explicit-deductive Grammar Instruction in EFL Contexts | Lexical Choice and Social Context in Shashi Deshpande's That Long Silence | The Voice of Servility and Dominance Expressed through Animal Imagery in Adiga's The White Tiger | Phonological Analysis of English Phonotactics of Syllable Initial and Final Consonant Clusters by Yemeni Speakers of English | Effective Use of Language in Communicating News through Political Emergency | Helping the Limited English Proficient Learner Learn the Second Language Effectively through Strategy Instruction | P.S. Sri's The Temple Elephant: A Bestiary with Socio-Political and Spiritual Message | Papers Presented in the All-India Conference on Multimedia Enhanced Language Teaching - MELT 2009 | A Phonological Study of the Variety of English Spoken by Oriya Speakers in Western Orissa - A Doctoral Dissertation | HOME PAGE of November 2009 Issue | HOME PAGE | CONTACT EDITOR

Pauthang Haokip, Ph.D.
Department of Linguistics
Assam University
Assam, India

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