3

When IPA can incorporate most of the sounds with Roman like symbols. Why do we need IAST?

Why do we need yet another standard for representing Indic scripts/sounds? If non phone-city of Roman alphabet is the reason. Is it not sufficient to use IPA?

9

IPA and IAST serve different purposes, as their respective names already suggest. IPA is an alphabet for phonetic rendering of speech (in the broad sense). To use it on Sanskrit we would have to agree first on how Sanskrit is pronounced correctly or have different renderings depending on traditions of pronounciation (Is, for example, भ् an aspirated stop or breathy voice? Is Visarga ः pronounced as kind of an echo of the preceding vowel with h inserted or as a velar fricative?). Also, for example, the letter Anusvāra would be represented by different symbols depending on its pronounciation which again depends on the surrounding letters. Furthermore, we would not be able, to distinguish different spellings if they are (supposedly) pronounced the same, as संधि vs. सन्धि.

This being stated, doesn't it (at least for most indological purposes) seem much easier to use IAST, which as the name suggests is a system for transliteration of Sanskrit? That means, we have a one-to-one correspondence of symbols in Devanagari and IAST, which does neither add nor remove any information that is preserved in the original text?

  • Wow..that explains it..thanks a lot. never thought that way. – pinkpanther Jun 1 '16 at 15:17
2

It's mostly a matter of historical convention. The two transcription systems are roughly the same age, both from the late 19C, and IAST (I believe) is based on earlier, similar systems which preceded the IPA. The IPA itself only became something approaching a universal standard (though it still isn't quite that) sometime in the mid-20C, by which time IAST was firmly entrenched among Sanskrit scholars. Most Sanskritists aren't linguists and see no reason to change their transcription system, which would be a costly and confusing enterprise. Also, before the advent of computerized fonts it was easier to print IAST, which uses only Roman characters plus a small set of diacritics, than the IPA with its specialized characters.

-1

IAST (modified) is readable, transliteratable and suitable for print media.

IPA Vs IAST(modified)

TS:

Knowledge is the wealth of nations, and language is the main social technology by which knowledge is communicated. An efficient orthography is therefore of great importance. English, as the principal international language of the early twenty‐first century, has much to offer the world, but its spelling is archaic and dysfunctional. Technically, the reform of English spelling would not be difficult, but there are very major political obstacles in the way. The benefits of spelling reform would greatly exceed the costs, and a ‘Big bang’ approach to reform is required. The present article outlines a technical solution and the way in which reform could be implemented.

Respell Spell-able:

Naalaj iz dha welth av neishanz, aend laengwij iz dha mein soshal teknaalaji baai wich naalij iz kamyunakeitid. An ifishant awrthaagrafi iz dherfawr av greit impawrtans. Inglish, aez dha prinsapal intarnaeshanal laengwaj av dhi arli twenti‐farst senchari, haez mach tu awfar dha warld, bat its speling iz aarkeiik aend disfankshanal. Teknikali, dha rifawrm av Inglish speling wud naat bi difakalt, bat dher aar veri meijar palitakal aabstakalz in dha wei. Dha benafits av speling rifawrm wud greitli iksid dha kawsts, aend a 'Big Baeng' aproch tu rifawrm iz rikwaaird. Dha prezant aartikal aautlaainz a teknikal salushan aend dha wei in wich rifawrm kud bi implamentad.

Respell Diacritic:

Nälàj iz dhà welth àv neishànz, ănd lăngwij iz dhà mein soshàl teknälàji bäi wich nälij iz kàmyunàkeitid. àn ifishànt ŏrthägràfi iz dherfŏr àv greit impŏrtàns. Inglish, ăz dhà prinsàpàl intàrnăshànàl lăngwàj àv dhi àrli twenti‐fàrst senchàri, hăz màch tu ŏfàr dhà wàrld, bàt its speling iz ärkeïk ănd disfànxànàl. Teknikàli, dhà rifŏrm àv Inglish speling wud nät bi difàkàlt, bàt dher är veri meijàr pàlitàkàl äbstàkàlz in dhà wei. Dhà benàfits àv speling rifŏrm wud greitli ixid dhà kŏsts, ănd à 'Big Băng' àproch tu rifŏrm iz riqäird. dhà prezànt ärtikàl äutläinz à teknikàl sàlushàn ănd dhà wei in wich rifŏrm kud bi implàmentàd.

Transliteration:

નાલજ્ ઇઝ્ ધ વેલ્થ્ અવ્ નેઇશન્ઝ્, ઍન્ડ્ લૅન્ગ્વિજ્ ઇઝ્ ધ મેઇન્ સોશલ્ ટેક્નાલજિ બાઇ વિચ્ નાલિજ્ ઇઝ્ કમ્યુનકેઇટિડ્. અન્ ઇફિશન્ટ્ ઑર્થાગ્રફિ ઇઝ્ ધેર્ફૉર્ અવ્ ગ્રેઇટ્ ઇમ્પૉર્ટન્સ્. ઇન્ગ્લિશ્, ઍઝ્ ધ પ્રિન્સપલ્ ઇન્ટર્નૅશનલ્ લૅન્ગ્વજ્ અવ્ ધિ અર્લિ ટ્વેન્ટિ‐ફર્સ્ટ્ સેન્ચરિ, હૅઝ્ મચ્ ટુ ઑફર્ ધ વર્લ્ડ્, બટ્ ઇટ્સ્ સ્પેલિન્ગ્ ઇઝ્ આર્કેઈક્ ઍન્ડ્ ડિસ્ફન્ક્ષનલ્. ટેક્નિકલિ, ધ રિફૉર્મ્ અવ્ ઇન્ગ્લિશ્ સ્પેલિન્ગ્ વુડ્ નાટ્ બિ ડિફકલ્ટ્, બટ્ ધેર્ આર્ વેરિ મેઇજર્ પલિટકલ્ આબ્સ્ટકલ્ઝ્ ઇન્ ધ વેઇ. ધ બેનફિટ્સ્ અવ્ સ્પેલિન્ગ્ રિફૉર્મ્ વુડ્ ગ્રેઇટ્લિ ઇક્સિડ્ ધ કૉસ્ટ્સ્, ઍન્ડ્ અ બિગ્ બૅન્ગ્ અપ્રોચ્ ટુ રિફૉર્મ્ ઇઝ્ રિક્વાઇર્ડ્. ધ પ્રેઝન્ટ્ આર્ટિકલ્

IPA:

ˈnɑləʤ ɪz ðə wɛlθ ʌv ˈneɪʃənz, ænd ˈlæŋgwɪʤ ɪz ðə meɪn ˈsoʊʃəl tɛkˈnɑləʤi baɪ wɪʧ ˈnɑlɪʤ ɪz kəmˈjunəˌkeɪtɪd. ən ɪˈfɪʃəntɔrˈθɑgrəfi ɪz ˈðɛrˌfɔr ʌv greɪt ɪmˈpɔrtəns. ˈɪŋglɪʃ, æz ðə ˈprɪnsəpəl ˌɪntərˈnæʃənəl ˈlæŋgwəʤ ʌv ði ˈɜrli ˈtwɛnti‐fɜrstˈsɛnʧəri, hæz mʌʧ tu ˈɔfər ðə wɜrld, bʌt ɪts ˈspɛlɪŋ ɪz ɑrˈkeɪɪk ænd dɪˈsfʌŋkʃənəl. ˈtɛknɪkəli, ðə riˈfɔrm ʌv ˈɪŋglɪʃ ˈspɛlɪŋ wʊdnɑt bi ˈdɪfəkəlt, bʌt ðɛr ɑr ˈvɛri ˈmeɪʤər pəˈlɪtəkəl ˈɑbstəkəlz ɪn ðə weɪ. ðə ˈbɛnəfɪts ʌv ˈspɛlɪŋ riˈfɔrm wʊd ˈgreɪtli ɪkˈsid ðəkɔsts, ænd ə bɪg bæŋ əˈproʊʧ tu riˈfɔrm ɪz riˈkwaɪrd. ðə ˈprɛzənt ˈɑrtɪkəl ˈaʊtˌlaɪnz ə ˈtɛknɪkəl səˈluʃən ænd ðə weɪ ɪn wɪʧriˈfɔrm kʊd bi ˈɪmpləˌmɛntəd.

Vowel scheme:

ɘ,ʌ,ɑ̈,ɪ,ɪ̈,ʊ,ʊ̈,æ,æʊ,ɑ̈ʊ,ɛ,ɑ̈ɪ,ɔ,o,ɝ,ɚ,ɒ/ɑ̈/ɔ

à,á,ä,i,ï, u,ü,ă,aeu,äu,e,äi,ŏ,o,àr,àr,ɒ/ä or ŏ.......diacritic

a.aa,ii,u,uu,ae,aeu,aau,e,aai,aw,o,ar,ar,ɒ/aa or aw......spell able

  • 3
    Did you know that you don't have IAST in your answer. – user6726 Feb 7 '17 at 20:09
  • Each consonant produces these 15 sounds when combined with vowels. ્,ા,િ,ી,ુ,ૂ,ૅ,ે,ૈ,ૉ,ો,ૌ,ં ,ં,ઃ ə ɑ ɪ iː ʊ uː æ ɛ əɪ ɔ o əʊ əm ən əh .........IPA ạ ā i ī u ū ă e ại ŏ o ạu ạm ạn ạh.............Roman a,aa,i,ii,u,uu,ae,e,ai,aw,o,au, am,an,ah...Type able – ken Feb 8 '17 at 17:08
  • en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Devanagari – ken Feb 8 '17 at 17:21

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.