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Meaning and Interpretation In Ancient India
Meaning and Interpretation In Ancient India
Description
Foreword:

Even in ancient times, thinkers cogitated on the various aspects of language. In particular, they were intrigued by the interpretation of various words and expressions. From Vedic times in India, much thought was devoted to these aspects of language. Many of their ideas are still relevant in the modern context, and the latest advances in linguistic studies owe much to these ancient concepts.

Professor Bijoya Goswami, of the Department of Sanskrit, has attempted a study of these ideas in the context of modern semantics. It is hoped that her work will he useful in the academic circle. It is also a valuable addition to the publication works undertaken by the DSA, Sanskrit.

The U.G.C. New Delhi, deserves our thanks for providing financial assistance for the publication of this work under Sanskrit-DSA programme, Jadavpur University.

Manabendu Banerjee
CO-ORDINATOR, DSA, SANSKRIT

Introduction:

Words, meanings and interpretation have always intrigued the human mind as long as there has been language for communication. In modern times, semantics has evolved as an essential branch of linguistics. And the methodology of ancient Indian grammarians and rhetoricians has had a prominent role.

The study of meanings has been treated in various ways by many eminent scholars from time immemorial. In modern times, this subject has been dealt with exhaustively by brilliant scholars like the late Gaurinath Sastri, the doyen of Sanskrit studies in our country. Compared to these works, my effort is but the attempt of the firefly to emulate the stars in the firmament. But in my present project I have attempted in my humble way to take up another aspect of the focal theme. It is my intention to deal mainly with meaning and interpretation as it has been dealt with in Vedic times and later by the grammarians and rhetoricians, as a continuous process. In this, I will have to touch upon the theories of the various schools of philosophy as well as on the viewpoints of western scholars. My project covers factors like the status of the word, the functions of word and meaning, the theories of syntax and the role of intent in the determination of meaning.

In treating a subject so vast, I have had to focus on just a few points and on my arduous journey, I have had to traverse much of the way through paths cut out by pioneers in this field. To them I bow in obeisance and render my heart-felt gratitude--

idam nama rsibhyah purvajebhyah
purvebhyah pathikrdbhyah//

(RV. X/14/15)

CONTENTS

CHAPTER-I:
The History of Meaning and Interpretation in India1
CHAPTER -II:
Word and Meaning-Their Relationship10
CHAPTER -III:
The Functions of Word and Meaning25
CHAPTER -IV:
Theories of Syntax60
CHAPTER -V
The Will of the Speaker69
CHAPTER -VI:
Indian Theories in the Light of Modern Linguistic Studies83
Bibliography & Abbreviations 89

Meaning and Interpretation In Ancient India

Item Code:
IDG418
Cover:
Hardcover
Edition:
2002
Publisher:
Sanskrit Pustak Bhandar
Size:
8.5" X 5.5"
Pages:
97
Price:
$13.00   Shipping Free
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Foreword:

Even in ancient times, thinkers cogitated on the various aspects of language. In particular, they were intrigued by the interpretation of various words and expressions. From Vedic times in India, much thought was devoted to these aspects of language. Many of their ideas are still relevant in the modern context, and the latest advances in linguistic studies owe much to these ancient concepts.

Professor Bijoya Goswami, of the Department of Sanskrit, has attempted a study of these ideas in the context of modern semantics. It is hoped that her work will he useful in the academic circle. It is also a valuable addition to the publication works undertaken by the DSA, Sanskrit.

The U.G.C. New Delhi, deserves our thanks for providing financial assistance for the publication of this work under Sanskrit-DSA programme, Jadavpur University.

Manabendu Banerjee
CO-ORDINATOR, DSA, SANSKRIT

Introduction:

Words, meanings and interpretation have always intrigued the human mind as long as there has been language for communication. In modern times, semantics has evolved as an essential branch of linguistics. And the methodology of ancient Indian grammarians and rhetoricians has had a prominent role.

The study of meanings has been treated in various ways by many eminent scholars from time immemorial. In modern times, this subject has been dealt with exhaustively by brilliant scholars like the late Gaurinath Sastri, the doyen of Sanskrit studies in our country. Compared to these works, my effort is but the attempt of the firefly to emulate the stars in the firmament. But in my present project I have attempted in my humble way to take up another aspect of the focal theme. It is my intention to deal mainly with meaning and interpretation as it has been dealt with in Vedic times and later by the grammarians and rhetoricians, as a continuous process. In this, I will have to touch upon the theories of the various schools of philosophy as well as on the viewpoints of western scholars. My project covers factors like the status of the word, the functions of word and meaning, the theories of syntax and the role of intent in the determination of meaning.

In treating a subject so vast, I have had to focus on just a few points and on my arduous journey, I have had to traverse much of the way through paths cut out by pioneers in this field. To them I bow in obeisance and render my heart-felt gratitude--

idam nama rsibhyah purvajebhyah
purvebhyah pathikrdbhyah//

(RV. X/14/15)

CONTENTS

CHAPTER-I:
The History of Meaning and Interpretation in India1
CHAPTER -II:
Word and Meaning-Their Relationship10
CHAPTER -III:
The Functions of Word and Meaning25
CHAPTER -IV:
Theories of Syntax60
CHAPTER -V
The Will of the Speaker69
CHAPTER -VI:
Indian Theories in the Light of Modern Linguistic Studies83
Bibliography & Abbreviations 89
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