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Hindi Language At Cornell
Language Information Courses Other Resources

Language Contact Person: Sujata Singh
Phone: (607) 255-4358
Office: 129 Rockefeller Hall
Complete List of Staff
Hindi
Placement Tests in Hindi and Urdu:

Please see instructor if you are interested in taking a placement test.

The courses we offer this semester are:

Hindi 1102: for students who have had very little or no exposure to Hindi.
Hindi 1110: for beginning students who cannot read or write the language, but have had some exposure to it, and have some passive knowledge of Hindi.
Hindi 2202: the second year course.
Hindi 3302: the third year course.


Hindi-Urdu is the third most widely spoken language in the world. It belongs to the Indo-Aryan group of languages, a subset of Indo-European.

Some history:
Hindi and Urdu are descended from the language that was spoken in the area in and around Delhi in North India roughly in the ninth and tenth centuries. This language was given the Persian metonym Hindvi/Hindi, i.e the language of Hind (the land of the Indus river), by the Persian-speaking Turks who overran Punjab and the Gangetic plains in the early eleventh century and established what is known as the Delhi Sultanate. Hindvi was constructed largely from Sanskrit loan words which had been 'softened' for 'bol-chal' or common speech. It also absorbed Persian, and through Persian, Arabic loan words, and developed as a mixed or broken language of communication between the newly arrived immigrants and the resident native population of North India. It travelled south and west as the Sultanate expanded beyond the Gangetic plains. From the eighteenth century Hindvi began to flower as a literary language. In the course of another century it split into Hindi and Urdu, the former representing a Sanskrit bias and the latter a Persian one. Contemporary spoken Hindi and Urdu speech registers have a measure of English thrown in too. With such rich historical antecedents, it is an exciting language to learn. If you choose to learn the Urdu script you get two languages for the price of one.

The Hindi Language At Cornell
There are three levels of Hindi-Urdu instruction at Cornell. The first level is split into two streams. The 1101-1102 sequence is intended for true beginners, students with no prior exposure to the languages. The 1109-1110 sequence is an accelerated course intended for students with various degrees of prior oral and/or aural exposure to the languages, but very little or no formal education in them. Both streams continue on to 2201-2202 and 3301-3302. Students with prior exposure to Hindi-Urdu should consult the instructor or take a placement exam to determine what level they should start in.
Cornell Area Program Affiliation: South Asia Program
The South Asia Program coordinates teaching, research, and campus activities focusing on the Indian subcontinent, which comprises the modern nations of Bangladesh, India, Nepal, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka. Since 1985, Cornell has been in consortium with Syracuse University as a National Resource Center for South Asia. The Program attracts students engaged in regional history and the social sciences, and students are well known for their research on questions concerning the environment, rural inequality and agrarian change, labor market dynamics, economic liberalization, social movements and questions of governance. Through a weekly seminar series, yearly workshops and cultural events, students, faculty and invited speakers exchange ideas, research experiences and on-going research.

Last edited by elk38 on Tue Jan 14 2014 at 02:11 PM.