Indian Theories of Meaning and Grammar – Novel Perspectives


Deadline: 15 April 2023

Despite the fact that the academic tradition in both India and the West is centuries old, and that numerous aspects of Indian theories of meaning and grammar have been widely addressed, there are still many issues that remain unresolved. Thus, research that reinterprets and reevaluates some of these well-known topics in semantics and syntax is urgently required. Regrettably, when approached through the prism of Western schools of linguistic thought, Indian theories of meaning and grammar have not garnered a great deal of attention. There are many aspects of the Indian grammatical tradition that have much in common with current research in Western linguistics. For example, the role of context in meaning, as explored by Indian philosophers of language using terminology such as Śabdaśakti, and particularly Vyañjanā, has not been investigated in the light of modern pragmatic theories, such as that developed by Grice. Along the same lines, what similarities are there between old Indian syntactic theories of compounding and Kāraka and modern syntactic theories? This international workshop and conference is intended to address these issues. The conference will feature three lectures each by Andrew Ollett (Chicago) and John J. Lowe (Oxford), who will present their findings in semantics and syntax. These keynote speeches will be followed by simultaneous afternoon sessions dedicated to papers addressing the topic of this international conference, “Indian theories of Meaning and Grammar – Novel perspectives.”

We solicit abstracts for papers (20 minutes for the presentation and 10 minutes for discussion) to be presented at the upcoming conference at INALCO in Paris on June 6-8, 2023. Abstracts should be in Word format, anonymous, and no more than 500 words in length, and be sent to: as soon as possible, and preferably no later than April 15, 2023.

More information is available here.

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