When learning a new language, students are often encouraged to use that language as much as possible. As a beginner to Marathi, the language I’m studying this summer in India, daily I proceed through a slow slog to find the words I want to say in Marathi when the English words are on the tip of my tongue. So, knowing that I should try to speak the new language as much as I can, I’m finding it both a blessing and a curse that English is used so much in Marathi. One example is that the word for “table” in Marathi is “table.” Table is just one of hundreds of English words that have found their way into the daily speech of Marathi speakers.
In this picture the blue “State Bank” in the Roman alphabet is exactly the same as the last two words written in blue in Devanagari. And the first word in blue is the word India, but not in English. This mix of multiple languages and multiple scripts makes learning Marathi and Devanagari script an exceptionally challenging but enlightening, and interesting, experience!
Photo credit: http://www.financialexpress.com/news/sbi-may-sell-assets-to-aid-recovery/1125820. June 6, 2013
Sigur Center 2013 Summer Language Fellow
AIIS Pune, Marathi Summer Language Program, India