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Re: [WMASTERS] Selvaa's suggestions


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    Prof. Schiffman:

      I asked a few questions and I've retained only relevant parts of
      your answer. You've brought in many other issues which are
      no doubt interesting but they open up a can of worms.

      Based on your answer, Prof. Schiffman, I think, you had stated
      and continue to make statements,  not permitted by your data.

*          C.R.(Selva) Selvakumar wrote:  
*>          Having explained my viewpoint, hopefully better,
*>          now I want to know why
*>          you believe in 'purism' of mythology and not 'purism' of language?
*>          [ may be the basis for this 'mythology', as you put it, is
*>          based on incorrect observations, but is your claim of
*>          'pure' mythology based on some firm ground, if I may ask ? 
*>           Just curious.]  
*that will destroy the language.  There is no proof to this contention; I
*do not have statistics on the failure of puristic movements, but the most
*>      [2] You claim that empirical study shows that purism is 'in general'
*>          counter-productive ( of what ?) and it leads to abandonment
*>          of the language in more cases than not. Please tell me how 
*>          many cases have been studied. Why in some cases such abandonment
*>          did not take place ( as your statement says) ? 
*The only case I know of where revival and purism have worked is with
*modern Israeli Hebrew, and that because it was an immigrant society (in
*> Does it not  proof-enough that 'purism' itself does not cause
*So Israel is only one case; I don't see Tamilnadu as another Israel,
*bucking the world trend on this.  The problem with purism is that my
*arguments (99% of cases fail, l% succeeds) are likely to be taken as proof

         Here again you're making a statement I have much trouble accepting.
         [1] You have not got a large enough sample to make 
             such asserion, as I understand. Feel free to correct me.
         [2] The case of Hebrew is not, I think, 'purism' but a revival
             of a dead language which has no relation to the case of
             Tamil. Tamil has had a continuous life of great intensity
             and variety ( as seen by epigraphical evidences and available
              manuscripts). Your comparison seems ill-founded, as I see it.
*that if ONE can do it, SO CAN TAMIL.  I don't believe this, but as I said
*earlier, we are not dealing with rationality here, we are dealing with
*belief systems.  
*>          ( I'm not advocating 'purism', only trying to understand your
*>          citation of empirical study). How was it proved
*>          that it was the 'purism' that caused abandonment and not other 
*>          causes (say like migration, religious conversions, abandonment

        C.R.(Selva) Selvakumar


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