Tone in Indo-Aryan

Joan Baart joanbaart at HOTMAIL.COM
Thu Mar 6 11:45:22 UTC 2003

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Dear colleagues,

I would like to learn more about recent work on tone in Indo-Aryan
languages. Especially references to publications after, say, 1990 would be
appreciated. (I am quite aware of most work on languages in Pakistan, and
quite ignorant about work on languages in India.)

I have done a rough survey of tone languages in Pakistan, see:

(with apologies for the non-technical nature of this paper; it was written
for a mostly non-linguistic audience.)

My conclusion is that the northwestern part of the subcontinent is fairly
rich, both in number of tone languages as well as in different tonal
phenomena displayed. Compare Moira Yip's comment in "Tone" (Cambridge UP,
2002, p. 171): "There are of course also non-tonal languages [in Asia and
the Pacific], most prominently the Austronesian languages of Malaya and
Indonesia, and the languages of the sub-continent (although even here we
find the occasional tonal language, such as Punjabi)." Well, Punjabi is not
occasional. It is part of a much larger area that is almost all tonal, and
almost all of these languages are Indo-Aryan.

With best wishes,

Joan Baart

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