Strength for Today and Bright Hope for Tomorrow

Volume 10 : 11 November 2010
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.
         S. M. Ravichandran, Ph.D.
         G. Baskaran, Ph.D.



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Politics of Sambalpuri or Kosali as a Dialect of Oriya in Orissa

Tuna Biswal, M. Phil.


There have been a lot of debates going on regarding the status of Sambalpuri as a dialect of Oriya in Orissa, a state in India. Linguistic interpretations are unacceptable to many speakers of Sambalpuri. There is a politics of division prevailing based on social, economic as well as linguistic issues. Mutually intelligible dialects of the same language spoken by two speech communities, speakers of Oriya from the coastal districts of Orissa and speakers of the dialect Sambalpuri are in the centre of this controversy. Sambalpuri speakers demand a separate and distinct language identity for their speech, distinct from their current identity within Oriya speakers. This paper seeks to study some of the issues on the politicization of this language controversy. As a language, the true recognition of Sambalpuri, whether as a dialect or a language, would come, not by the constitutional certification, but rather through qualitative and quantitative growth of Sambalpuri language and literature, in specific ways.

Key words: Sambalpuri or Kosali Language, Dialect, Language, Oriya, Politics


"According to Sir George Grierson's The Linguistics Survey of India, there are no dialects of Oriya within its geographical area. However, Prof. Golokabihari Dhala and Dr. Kunjabihari Tripathi have pointed the dialects of Oriya. ….So whether Sambalpuri is an independent language or is it one of the most valuable dialects of Oriya is a debatable question." (Census, n.d.)

This piece of information given in CIIL, Mysore's website appropriately corroborates the very point of discussion of this paper about a debatable issue pertaining to the Sambalpuri language. In fact, it is a million dollar question, whether Sambalpuri is a dialect of Oriya or not in Orissa, which means a lot, particularly, for the people of Western Orissa, for whom, it is closely associated with their identity.

The chief communicative language or speech of the Kosala region is Sambalpuri. Not much research has been done on the accent and phonetics of the Sambalpuri language and it is generally considered to be a dialect of Oriya. (Gordon, 2005) Oriya is the mother tongue of the people in Orissa - a state in India. In Orissa, nearly one third of the population speaks Sambalpuri or Koshli and the rest speak the Oriya language.

The linguistic map of the state is characterized by primarily two dominant speech forms, namely, Oriya or Kataki - the form used by people in the coastal districts and Sambalpuri or Kosali - the form used by the adjoining north-eastern border districts like Sambalpur, Balangir, Bargarh, Sonepur, Kalahandi, Sundargarh, Boudh, Deogarh, Nuapada and Jharsuguda by a population totaling around 9,001,406 according to 2001 Census of India. Sambalpuri was considered to be a dialect of the standard Oriya, but, owing to its distinct grammar and pronunciations, it has achieved or may achieve the status of a distinct language. In the modern context, the Sambalpuri language is popularly known as "Kosali language". (Census, n.d.)

There are plenty of words in Sambalpuri like leti (a ripen mango), jhuri (fish), patal ghanta (tomato) and many more, and also certain sounds like aspirated /dh/ in g¥dhia (mosquito) which cannot be rendered in any form of Oriya, yet by its generic belongingness to Indo-Aryan language family, and by its linguistic affiliation to Oriya, it is recognized as a variant.

An invisible line of differentiation among the people of the state can be found in terms of language spoken by them and, particularly, this is dominant in the area where the Sambalpuri is spoken.

This paper would seek to study the politicization of Sambalpuri as a dialect of Oriya from linguistics point of views by analyzing its similar as well different characteristics.

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

Implementing Explicit Grammatical Instruction in Thailand Schools | Nature of Sentence Intonation in Kannada, Tulu and Konkani | Language and Gender - Linguistic Analysis of Intermediate English Textbooks in Pakistan | Development of Punjabi-Hindi Aligned Parallel Corpus from Web Using Machine Translation | Paralinguistic and Non-Verbal Props in Second-Language Use: A Study of Icheoku and Masquerade in Nigeria | Economic Perspectives and Life-style Characteristics of the Aged Population in Tamil Nadu, India | Redefining Secularism - An Analysis of John Updike's Terrorist and Mohsin Hamid's The Reluctant Fundamentalist as Post-9/11 Novels | Reduplication in Bengali Language | Development of Time-Compressed Speech Test for Children between 8 - 12 Years of Age in Telugu | Bridging the Gap - The Potential of Contrastive Rhetoric in Teaching L2 Writing | ELT in Yemen and India - The Need for Remedial Measures | Relationship between Multiple Intelligence Categories and Learning Styles of Students in Pakistan | Internet as an Educational Resource in Vocabulary Instruction | The Effectiveness of Technology in Teaching Study Skills | A Study of the Comparative Elements in the Poetry of Keats and Ghani Khan | Sentence Pattern Method - A New Approach for Teaching Spoken English for Tamil/Indian/EFL Learners | Enhancing Language Skills Using Learn to Speak English Software in Engineering Students of Andhra Pradesh | Problems in Teaching of English Language at the Primary Level in District Kohat, NWFP, Pakistan | An Appraisal of the Practicum - Finding the Gaps between Theory and Practice in Teacher Training Institutions in Pakistan | A Study of B.Ed. Students' Attitude Towards Using Internet in Vellore District, Tamilnadu, India, Masters Dissertation | Politics of Sambalpuri or Kosali as a Dialect of Oriya in Orissa | A Six-Step Approach to Teaching Poetry Incorporating the Four Skills | Lexis of a Suicidal | A Case Review of Tamil Diglossia | Comparison of Markedness of Lexical Semantic Abilities in Normal Children and Children with Hearing Impairment | Social Effects and Other Impediments in Teaching Literature | Aligning the Connotations of Love and Freedom in the Novels of Iris Murdoch | Spiritual Communication and Managerial Effectiveness | A PRINT VERSION OF ALL THE PAPERS OF NOVEMBER, 2010 ISSUE IN BOOK FORMAT. | HOME PAGE of November 2010 Issue | HOME PAGE | CONTACT EDITOR

Tuna Biswal, M. Phil.
Department of Humanities
Purushottam Institute of Engineering & Technology
Rourkela 770034
Orissa, India

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