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Future English (was Re: CHAT Re: evolving languages)

From:Samuel Rivier <samuelriv@...>
Date:Sunday, January 19, 2003, 19:52
I go to high school in Illinois with over 20% of
students of south Asian descent (India and Pakistan,
for all you geography whizzes), and there has been
some influx of Hindi words in our vocabulary. As a
white student, I'm called or sometimes call my friends
"betta" (brother), and nobody says "Indian" anymore--
we either say "brown" or "Desi," the latter of which
is of course borrowed. Most people are familiar with
at least the top two and lowest parts of the caste
system (Brahmin, Kshatriya, and Untouchable,
respectively), but it's usually only talked about by
Indian students. The biggest influence is from the
names, however. Anyone who graduates from our school
has no problem pronouncing Indian names, because we
deal with them every day. Though this has little
effect on word borrowing (with the possible exception
of calling any Indian with really, really dark skin
"Babu," after a crazy graduate from last year), it may
increase the chances of those graduates incorporating
Hindi words they hear into their own vocabulary.
Oh, and from the several Pakistani Muslims I know, the
only Arabic term that has been picked up at all is

Hope this is somewhat informational


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Joe <joe@...>