‘The destiny of man is inextricably linked to the destiny of language’
The Generative Linguists of the Old world (GLOW), inspired by the
pioneering work of Chomsky and his Many outstanding followers across the
globe, believe that to unravel the abstract properties of human languages is to
move forward in their quest to understand the human mind and its generative
capacity for language. It is therefore heartening to note that in 2005, GLOW
met in India, where well over two thousand years ago Linguistics as a Science
was founded and where Grammar (Vyakaran) was considered the most
important of the six branches of knowledge (out of the four language related
branches; Phonetics, Prosody and Etymology being the other three) which men
who aspired for wisdom were expected to learn. Panini’s astounding work on
Sanskrit grammar found mention in Noam Chomsky’s 1965 preface to
‘Aspects of the Theory of Syntax’ as an example of the generative enterprise.
Prior to that the Discovery of Sanskrit had enhanced India’s contribution to the
study of comparative grammar (which was the evolutionary scientific paradigm
of linguistic inquiry at the turn of the last century), and in the post-generative
grammar phase it was again contact with India as a ‘Sociolinguistic giant’
which strengthened the sociolinguistic enterprise to link competence with
CIIL as the apex body on language matters of the country is committed to
take forward all those who are engaged in the scholarly pursuit of
understanding human language in general and Indian languages in particular.
Even a cursory look at the papers in the volume will bring to the fore that
several reputed researchers and teachers from across the world had come
together in this endeavour at Delhi, where representatives from both
Jawaharlal Nehru University and Delhi University had lend the proceedings,
even though somewhat delayed, will contribute in some manner to
revitalization of linguistic studies in the country and foster more enduring
partnerships in future that would make findings of the Old World relevant to
the emerging New World as an After- glow.
The 5" GLOW Conference was held at Jawaharlal Nehru University, New
Delhi from 5" to 8"" October, 2005. The conference was funded by the Central
Institute of Indian Languages, Ministry of Human Resource Development,
Government of India, and Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi. A large
number of academicians under the rubric of generative linguistics made their
presentations on diverse fields like acquisition studies, historical linguistics,
sign language studies, phonology, evolutionary linguistics, etc. and
observations from diverse languages ranging from Tagalog to sign languages.
Prof. K.A. Jayaseeelan inaugurated the conference with his keynote lecture.
Prof. Mamuro Saito, Prof. Tim Stowell, Prof. Veneeta Dayal, Prof. Anoop
Mahajan, Prof. Guiseppe Longobardi, Prof. Alice Davison among others were
the invited speakers of the conference. The 5™ GLOW Conference was another
milestone of GLOW in India.
Of the 54 presentations in the conference, 24 papers are included in the
proceedings volume. These papers are on a wide range of syntactic-semantic
and phonological phenomena drawn from a wide range of languages on
architecture to articulation. In a way, the present volume adds to the growing
knowledge in our understanding of natural language in its diachronic-
synchronic, relatedness-variations, architecture-acquisition, and computation-
We take this opportunity to thank Dr. Ayesha Kidwai and Dr. Tanmoy
Bhattacharya who not only made the conference possible but also the
proceedings volume. We are immensely grateful and indebted to them for
being editors without portfolio.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
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