Hindi-Urdu conversational styles/exchange patterns

Nick Enfield Nick.Enfield at MPI.NL
Wed Aug 14 19:30:31 UTC 2013

It would be great if there were solid empirical work on turn and sequence
organisation in speech varieties such as these. Many have described their
impressions of 'turn-taking' in various varieties, but where this question
has been systematically tested, what seemed to be giant differences turn
out to be subtle variations in 'calibration' of the same underlying
system; see Stivers et al (2009). "Universals and cultural variation in
turn-taking in conversation." PNAS, 106 (26), 10587-10592. It's worth
distinguishing turn-taking in a technical sense from other matters of
conversational style.

On 8/14/13 8:20 PM, "Mike Morgan" <mwmbombay at GMAIL.COM> wrote:

>then I assume, as hinted at in previous email, the most likely
>prospect for finding differences in dialoguic language (i.e.
>differences in turn-taking strategies, etc as you mentioned) would be
>differences between the Urdu of Pakistan and the Hindi of India.
>In India -- I have lived in both Mumbai (a VERY multilingual city) and
>Delhi (more or less a Hindi+English speaking city -- though granted
>some Punjabi is still heard, but much less than before, and even most
>Sikhs speak Hindi most the time nowadays), and although I spend most
>of my time (work and play) with Deaf and thus Sign Language users, I
>have still had considerable contact with speakers who would
>self-describe themselve as both Hindi and Urdu speakers. But, aside
>from a certain greater tendency to use insh'allah as an additional
>future marker (i.e. in ALL positive future statments) by Muslims, and
>a few of the lexical differences which I am sure you know about, I
>have noticed nothing different. Which of course is just anecdotal
>evidence. PLUS, of course, I don't hang around with Indians who would
>be described as being predominantly non-secular quite as much, and I
>myself clearly belong to NEITHER group. so there may be more
>differences in intra-communal discourse.
>BUT again I am not aware of any such studies... BUT your question has
>piqued my interest as well, so I will now defintiely be on the look
>out ;-)
>On 8/14/13, Everett, Daniel <DEVERETT at bentley.edu> wrote:
>> Mike,
>> Thanks. Yes, I am aware that they are the same language. When I taught
>>at U
>> of Manchester, I regularly assigned intro students to interview folks
>>on the
>> "curry mile" about Hindi and Urdu. The language attitudes vary quite a
>> However, now that the cultures are diverging I am interested in exactly
>> those "stylistic" differences. Though they are mutually intelligible,
>> different strategies occuring for dialogue in different contexts,
>> contexts that exist in one cultural context but not another?
>> I did not want to prime my question in any way, hence it could have
>> the impression that I wasn't aware of the well-known fact that they are
>> same language.
>> I am interest in variable rates of shift for culture and language and
>> one can come to affect the other.
>> Dan
>> Everett, Daniel. in progress. Dark matter of the mind. University of
>> Press.
>> On Aug 14, 2013, at 1:51 PM, Mike Morgan wrote:
>>> Dan,
>>> I am not sure you will find anything, since at the conversational
>>> level they are one and the same language. (and, at least in some parts
>>> of India -- Mumbai for example -- everyone -- except right wing Hindu
>>> fanatics -- will admit that the purist Hindi speakers are the
>>> Muslims... because "pakka" Hindi = Urdu).
>>> Differences only come into play at "higher" stylistic levels... and
>>> when politics comes into play (i.e there may well be a LOT of
>>> differences in speeched of Hindu "fundamentalist" wing politicians in
>>> Hindi vs Muslim "fundamentalist" politicians in Urdu. (Also of course
>>> difference in writing styles... beond the obvious difference ins
>>> cript.)
>>> OR, given the 60-some years of separation there might be differences
>>> at the conversation level between the Hindi-Urdu of India and the Urdu
>>> of Pakistan.
>>> BUT, that said, I am unaware of any such contrastive studies off
>>> On 8/14/13, Everett, Daniel <DEVERETT at bentley.edu> wrote:
>>>> I am looking for a study contrasting or comparing conversational (in
>>>> particular turn-taking) patterns in Hindi vs. Urdu.
>>>> Dan
>>> --
>>> mwm || *U*C> || mike || माईक || мика || マイク (aka Dr Michael W Morgan)
>>> sign language linguist / linguistic typologist
>>> academic adviser, Nepal Sign Language Training and Research
>>> NDFN, Kathmandu, Nepal
>mwm || *U*C> || mike || माईक || мика || マイク (aka Dr Michael W Morgan)
>sign language linguist / linguistic typologist
>academic adviser, Nepal Sign Language Training and Research
>NDFN, Kathmandu, Nepal

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