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A Reference Grammar of Spoken Tamil (Reference Grammars) [Hardcover]

Harold F. Schiffman

RRP: 89.00
Price: 82.45 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

14 Oct 1999 0521640741 978-0521640749
This is a reference grammar of the standard spoken variety of Tamil, a language with 65 million speakers in India, Sri Lanka, Malaysia and Singapore. The spoken variety is radically different from the standard literary variety, last standardized in the thirteenth century. The standard spoken language is used by educated people in their interactions with people from different regions and different social groups, and is also the dialect used in films, plays and the media. This book, a much expanded version of the author's Grammar of Spoken Tamil (1979), is the first such grammar to contain examples both in Tamil script and in transliteration, and the first to be written so as to be accessible to students studying the modern spoken language as well as to linguists and other specialists. The book has benefited from extensive native-speaker input and the author's own long experience of teaching Tamil to English-speakers.

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"An excellent reference work..." Anthropological Linguistics

Book Description

This grammar of standard spoken Tamil is designed to be accessible to students at all levels as well as to specialists. It is the first such grammar to contain examples both in Tamil script and in transliteration. It benefits from extensive native-speaker input and the use of authentic examples.

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Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A useful reference for adult learners 19 Oct 2010
By agnet1976 - Published on Amazon.com
This book delivers what the title suggests, namely that it is a "reference" grammar for spoken Tamil. Professor Schiffman takes a linguist's structured approach to the language, with detailed descriptions of parts of speech, declension of nouns, and conjugation of verbs, and idioms in sentence structure.

As an adult learner, Prof Schiffman's book is a useful part of one's collection as a reference. I would recommend purchasing the book along with 1-2 other "learning" textbooks, such as Asher and Annamalai's Colloquial Tamil: The Complete Course for Beginners (Colloquial Series) or Hart's Tamil for Beginners. I would also recommend the University of Pennsylvania website, "Tamil Language in Context" to any adult Tamil learner.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Reference, just as the title indicates 30 Oct 2009
By VeggieSD - Published on Amazon.com
This is a spectacularly well done book. ***However, this is not a beginner's book.*** It includes charts and diagrams, is very nicely organized, but generally assumes that you already have an understanding of Tamil before you begin. After having studied for a few months, I can go back to it and look up rules and questions I have.

It would work best as a reference (as it says in the title) in conjunction with a Tamil learning textbook.

Luckily, both google books and professor Harold Schiffman's current university web page have much of the text online, so you can take a look before you buy.

If you were interested in studying the linguistic side of the Tamil language, this is the book for you.
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