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Learning Hindi Fun Way

Storytellers to the nation

One example of how Amar Chitra Katha has shaped Indian popular culture is, incongruously, from the world of feminine attire. In the Indian imagination, medieval queens and royal women wore an outfit that consisted of a draped dhoti-like garment from the waist down, and a cloth bustier covering their shapely chests, over which a gauzy dupatta would be draped artistically – the whole held in place by an impressive tonnage of jewellery. This dress-code – for it became almost a dress-code – was replicated in such adaptations of Indian epics as Ramanand Sagar’s Ramayana and BR Chopra’s Mahabharata. It even found its way to Bollywood, and in several 1980s films, elaborate item numbers featuring props like giant drums, shiny kitchen vessels and tennis balls would also have the leading lady dancing energetically in just such an outfit. The outfit was practically invented by artists like Ram Waeerkar at Amar [...]

Google Maps update: Hindi language, improves notifications

Ida Torres As a special Diwali gift for millions of mobile Android users who speak the language, Hindi has been added as an official language in the latest Google Maps update. Another segment of digital users that will be happy with this update are the Android Wear users, as it brings improved notifications for wearables that are on Google’s platform. These seem like minor improvements, but of course, for apps, any updates, minor or otherwise are always welcome. Hindi is the most widely-spoken language in the world’s second-largest population, and so it is but logical for Google to add it to their ever-growing multi-lingual lexicon. The update includes voice navigation in Hindi as well. The other major improvement in the update is that the navigation notifications for Android Wear devices has been tweaked. Of course there aren’t that many smartwatches yet using the platform, but it’s good news for [...]

Google Maps update: Hindi language, improves notifications

Book Club: Eat, Pray, Love: 10-12

The second book in our book club series is Eat, Pray Love . Is it a Hindu book? Not exactly, but it is very relevant to the experiences of non-Indian Hindus. The author has a Hindu guru (whose identity has been rather easily found out by those familiar with the world of Indian gurus). Julia Roberts after playing the author in the movie, claimed to have become a Hindu. So I think it will be worthwhile to examine the experiences and stories that led these women towards Hinduism… Bead 10 Gilbert has set off for Italy. In order to set off on her year of travels she gives up her house, her apartment, puts her belongings in storage and is free to take off to find herself. I’ve heard criticism that it taints the authenticity of her spiritual experience that “I can actually afford to do this because of [...]

Book Club: Eat, Pray, Love: 10-12

Can Tinder Light A Fire In India?

BY ANKITA RAO, OZY The writer, Ankita Rao, is an Indian-American journalist currently based anywhere from the villages of Orissa to the streets of Mumbai. There are gods on Tinder. Not Adonis-like gym buffs with quotes about success and protein shakes. No, I’m talking profile photos of Hindu deities like Shiva, Vishnu, Buddha — even the avatar Venkateswara, who, to be honest, I would rather associate with my grandparents and not a dating app. That was the first thing I reported home to my friends after fiddling around with my iPhone one day in an auto rickshaw this spring, just weeks after moving to India to kick-start a freelance journalism career. Half curious, and half bored, I wanted to check out how the New Delhi scene fared in comparison to Washington, D.C. — and Tinder was an easy window into the madness. Luckily, I didn’t have too much stake [...]

Can Tinder Light A Fire In India?

Facebook and Hindi meet at Saskatoon’s Cliff Wright Library

Mohammed Nurulamin and Manju Sinha came up with the idea and developed a class to teach Hindi-speakers how to use Facebook. (CBC) Facebook is used around the world, but that doesn’t mean everyone knows how to use it.  Manju Sinha and Mohammed Nurulamin at Saskatoon’s public library, hope to help change that.  Every Tuesday from 2 p.m.. to 3 p.m.., anyone can drop by the Cliff Wright branch in Saskatoon’s east-end and learn how to use the social media site in Hindi.  "We’ve noticed that a lot of people (who) were using the computer didn’t know how to use a lot of the things, and Facebook was one of things they wanted to be a part of, but the language being a barrier, they just couldn’t," said Nurulamin, who recently moved to Edmonton to work for the library there.   It took the two a year and a half to finally get [...]

Facebook and Hindi meet at Saskatoon's Cliff Wright Library

Why Narendra Modi will deliver his UN speech in Hindi

Make in India—and do it in Hindi. AP Photo/Saurabh Das, File Do you know Hindi? If you want to understand Narendra Modi’s speech at the UN today, you better learn the language quickly. India’s prime minister prefers speaking in Hindi, and with this speech and other public appearances since he has been elected, he is ensuring that Hindi earns its rightful place as a recognized world language. Not only does Modi prefer speaking in Hindi with visiting foreign dignitaries, but he has encouraged Indian diplomats to start using Hindi with their counterparts. The Indian government counts more than 400 million speakers of Hindi or a Hindi dialect, which makes Hindi the fourth most prevalent language in the world after English, Spanish and Chinese. Yet it’s still not one of the United Nation’s official languages. Visitors to world landmarks from the Smithsonian in DC to the Louvre in Paris to the British Museum [...]

Why Narendra Modi will deliver his UN speech in Hindi

Eezham Tamils learning languages

3RD LEAD (Adds voice) [TamilNet, Tuesday, 16 September 2014, 13:38 GMT] Thanks to the sustained efforts of the Indian Consulate in Jaffna ‘interest in Hindi’ is sprouting among Jaffna Tamils, reports New Indian Express on Tuesday, citing ‘Hindi Diwas’ [Hindi Day] celebrated by the Consulate, 20 students completing a course and one of them telling that “There are now people who think it will be useful to know Hindi if they go to north India for studies or pilgrimage.” Eezham Tamils wish that the Chinese embassy would soon start teaching Mandarin Chinese and the other embassies would follow suit in teaching major European, Latin American, Arabic and other Asian languages, so that the nation of Eezham Tamils could have a wider interaction with the world and with their own kith and kin worldwide, commented Tamil activists for alternative politics in the island. “A passion for Hindi film music and [...]

Fun Easy Learn Releases Easy Hindi Learning Android App

Chisinau, Moldova — ( ReleaseWire ) — 09/05/2014 — The Indian language just got easier to learn with the help of an app designed by Fun Easy Learn. The app is all about giving a fun approach to learning Hindi, a language that the company claims can be daunting for a foreign national to master. The app has already garnered several positive reviews ever since it was made available at the Play store for free. The app developers encourage in need of the language to learn Hindi through their app. The company understands that many foreign nationals often face the need for speaking in Hindi when they arrive at the land of Gandhi. If not speaking the language fluently, there is at least a great need for understanding some of the common words in the language, believes the company. The company has purposefully designed the interface of the app [...]

On a linguistic back foot

When a countryman asks me where in India I am from, I say “Andhra Pradesh”, the southern Indian state. As soon as the words slip out of my mouth, I am addressed in the language of the state, which is Telugu. Seeing the bemused look on my face, the person stops short and I can see the question in his eyes. Why don’t I know the language, they ask. And then I start my spiel about my parents being from very different states and deciding to speak in English which was a common language. So, we grew up speaking English and we learnt Hindi in school. The last named was a by-product of having lived in the north for many years and it was our second language in school. Going home recently to deal with some paper work, which entailed interacting with officials in government offices, I realised that [...]

On a linguistic back foot

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