Bengali

The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition

Bengali
Portrait of Bankimacandra Cattopadhyaya (Wikimedia Commons) and title page for his collected works (HathiTrust).

Bankimacandra Cattopadhyaya (1838-1894) was not only the very first novelist of the Bengali language but is also considered one of its greatest. He wrote the first novel in Bengali as well as the first novel in English by an Indian. His works are still avidly read and a poem in his historical novel Anandamatha titled “Vande Matram” (“Hail Mother”) so inspired Indian freedom fighters it was officially adopted as India’s national song (not the same as the national anthem which is a poem by Tagore).

Bankim was born in a Brahim family, and grew up in the town of Midnapur where his father worked for the colonial government. After his education Bankim followed his father into civil service while at the same time pursuing a successful literary career. Starting with poetry he turned towards writing novels. His first published novel, Rajmohan’s Wife, was composed in English. However, he soon turned to Bengali and in 1865 published the very first novel in the language called, Durgesanandini (“Daughter of the Lord of the Fort”). He continued to write novels as well as satirical and humorous sketches. A commentary he wrote on the Gita was published posthumously.

Outside Bengal, his historical novel Anandamatha (“The Monastery of Bliss”), published in 1882, became the most famous and somewhat controversial for its attitude towards Muslims. It is set during the Fakir Rebellion of the late 18th century when Bengalis rose up against the oppressive rule of the East India Company during a famine. As mentioned above, it contains an ode to the motherland conceived as a goddess titled “Vande Matram” that became very popular with Indian freedom fighters during the struggle for independence. Bankim’s political stances got him in trouble with British authorities in his own lifetime, but in 1894—the same year he died—Queen Victoria made him a Companion of the Order of the Indian Empire.

Bankim belonged to a generation of Bengalis who had grown up under British rule and were able to reflect on the massive changes that rule had brought. The generation immediately before his had been the first to be exposed to western and modern ideas, and many of them accepted them with enthusiasm while others did so reluctantly. While Bankim did not question the adoption of western and modern ideas and technologies, he and members of his generation were more familiar with them and were in a position to critically judge the promises the British had made to Indians about the benefits of European rule and civilization. At the same time they had gained the confidence to appreciate aspects of their Indian and Hindu heritage which they wanted to hold onto as they modernized. Apart from their literary merits, these are some of the themes that make Bankim’s works relevant to this day.

Bengali, or Bangla to its nearly 230 million speakers, is an Indo-Aryan language belonging to the Indo-European family of languages. It is the official and predominant language of Bangladesh and the Indian state of West Bengal, and also has many speakers in the neighboring Indian states of Tripura and Assam. With a rich and centuries old literary tradition it continues to be a major language of modern South Asia. At UC Berkeley, introductory and intermediate Bengali is taught through the Department of South & Southeast Asian Studies.

Contribution by Adnan Malik
Curator and Cataloger for the South Asia Collection
South/Southeast Asia Library

Title: Granthabali
Title in English: Collected Works
Authors:
Caṭṭopādhyāẏa, Baṅkimacandra, 1838-1894.
Imprint: Kalikata : Upendra Nath Mukhopadhyaya, Basu Mati Office, 1310-11 [1892/93-93/94].
Edition: Indo-European, Indo-Aryan
Language: Begnali
Language Family:
Source: HathiTrust Digital Library (UC Berkeley)
URL: https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/100787603

Other online editions:

  • Bankim Rachanabali (volume 1 of complete works in Bengali), Internet Archive (Digital Library of India)
  • The Abbey Of Bliss (English translation of Anandamath), Internet Archive (British Library)

Print editions at Berkeley:

  • Granthabali. Kalikata : Upendra Nath Mukhopadhyaya, Basu Mati Office, 1310-11 [1892/93-93/94].

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]
previous | about | next post on 3/30/20

The Languages of Berkeley is a dynamic online sequential exhibition celebrating the diversity of languages that have advanced research, teaching and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is made possible with support from the UC Berkeley Library and is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC).

Follow The Languages of Berkeley!
Subscribe by email
Contact/Feedback
www.ucblib.link/languages

What’s your favorite language?


Romance Languages – Online Resources & more

Primavera
Postcard of Sanremo ca. 1925, Biblioteca civica Francesco Corradi, Internet Culturale

Even though the Library’s buildings have been closed through April  7  due to the coronavirus pandemic, faculty, students and staff can still access a wealth of resources online, and we are ramping up our outreach and remote services. The newly created guide Remote Resources for UC Berkeley Library Users provides an overview of resources available to you:

  • Online resources
  • Online help 24/7
  • Librarian consultations and instruction
  • Technology assistance
  • Returning and renewing materials (due date for all items due between March 16 and May 31 is now June 1, 2020)

This blog post, which will be updated periodically, aims to highlight online resources for those doing research in the romance languages and literatures within the context of Southern European studies in particular. If you encounter resources of interest not listed please let me know and I’ll add them, especially if they are not included in the directory of library databases or existing library guides for French, Italian and Spanish & Portuguese. See also the e-resources guide for the Caribbean and Latin American Studies.

Book and journal requests are encouraged but the Library is limited to e-formats at this time. And please don’t forget that I remain available for research and reference assistance by email, telephone, chat via Google Hangouts, or Zoom.

Claude Potts
Librarian for Romance Language Collections

Ebooks

Most ebooks in English are acquired through packages with publishers such as Cambridge, JSTOR, Project Muse, ProQuest and are discoverable in OskiCat as well as Start My Search. Here are a few important European ebook platforms that can be explored directly (or individual ebooks encountered through OskiCat):

Cairn ebooks  updated 3/26/20
Primarily a journal collection but UCB has has also purchased access to 568 ebooks through Cairn. During the closure, they are providing access to the full catalog of 10,174 ebooks, the Que sais-je? series and also some popular magazines.

Classiques Garnier Numérique
During the COVID-19 crisis, this publisher is generously providing access to digital versions of books we’ve purchased in print, including collections such as Classiques Jaunes, Littérature française, Littératures francophones and more.

Digitalia
Collection of Spanish and Catalan e-books published in Latin America and Spain. To date, the UCB Library has purchased more than 2,700+ titles. To preview the complete list search OskiCat for “Digitalia e-Books UCB access.”

DOAB oa
The Directory of Open Access Books is an initiative to increase the discoverability of open access books. Currently, it includes 27,592 academic peer-reviewed books from 377 publishers.

L’Harmathèque
Digital platform for Éditions L’Harmattan which is the largest publisher of French-language ebooks. Search OskiCat for “Harmathèque eBooks” to discover the 1041 titles acquired by the Library.

HathiTrust Emergency Temporary Access Service added 4/3/20   HathiTrust Digital Library
Current UC Berkeley faculty, staff, and students will be able to take advantage of HathiTrust’s Emergency Temporary Access Service, helping the Library continue to serve its mission even during the COVID-19 pandemic. The service provides view-only access to digital versions of millions of the physical volumes held by libraries across the 10-campus UC system — plus NRLF and SRLF. For more information, read HathiTrust’s guide and FAQ on the Emergency Temporary Access Service.

Humanities E-Book Project (formerly History E-Books Project)
Access to the full text of 5,400 frequently-cited academic books in humanities. (ACLS History E-Books Project – HEB) [1920s – present]

Internet Archive’s National Emergency Library added 3/24/20
A collection of nearly a million and a half digitized books, most still under copyright, in all languages are being made publicly available through June 30, 2020. Up to 10 books at a time can be checked out with the creation of a free account.

OpenEdition Books oa updated 3/26/20
A French open access interdisciplinary humanities and social sciences portal with four complementary platforms: OpenEdition Books (ebooks), OpenEdition Journals (scholarly journals), Calenda (academic announcements), and Hypothèses (research blogs). While most of the 9,463 ebooks are available in html, UCB has purchased freemium access to 4,751 ebooks that are now discoverable in OskiCat through the handle “OpenEdition Books.” Purchased titles have been optimized specifically for e-readers, tablets, and smart phones (ePub, PDF, etc.). 700 new titles were recently purchased and freemium access should be turned on by April however during the period of confinement, most books will be available in all formats.

REDIB (Red Iberoamericana de Innovación y Conocimiento Científico) oa
A platform for the aggregation of open scientific and academic content in the electronic format produced in the Ibero-American context. Currently 3,199 journals and 852 ebooks.

Torrossa
Casalini Libri’s full text digital platform provides access to 3,161 ebooks, 530 conference proceedings, and 141 journals by major Italian publishers.

Journals

Cairn
The most comprehensive collection of French-language journals in the humanities and social sciences available online. Full text to more than 500 peer-reviewed academic French and Belgian journals, as well as citations for open-access journals, in the humanities and social sciences. [2001 – present]

Dialnet oa
Indexes articles, conference papers, book chapters, dissertations and other documents in the social sciences and the humanities published mostly in Spain and to a lesser extent in Latin America. Full text provided to open access content. [2001 – present]

Fabrizio Serra Journals
Collection of more than 50 Italian scholarly journals primarily covering literature, literary criticism, philology, and linguistics. [start dates vary by title; most begin in 2000].

OpenEdition Journals oa
Formerly Revues.org is part of OpenEdition, a comprehensive digital publishing infrastructure whose objective is to promote research in the humanities and social sciences. The open access scholarly journal collection includes 534 mostly French but also English, Italian and Spanish titles in the humanities and social sciences. [1999-]

Persée oa
Free and open access to French scholarly journals in the sciences, social sciences, and humanities as well as to books, conference proceedings, serial publications, primary sources, etc.

RACO: Revistes Catalanes amb Acces Obert oa added 3/24/20
A cooperative open access repository of 506 full text scholarly journals.

REDIB (Red Iberoamericana de Innovación y Conocimiento Científico) oa
A platform for the aggregation of scientific and academic content in the electronic format produced in the Ibero-American context. Currently 3199 journals and 433 ebooks published by CSIC.

Torrossa
Casalini Libri’s full text digital platform provides access to 3161 ebooks, 530 conference proceedings, and 141 journals by major Italian publishers including Fabrizio Serra Editore.

Digital libraries and other online collections

 


French

The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition

French
La Vallière manuscript of Candide, ou L’optimisme (1758), Gallica, Bibliothèque nationale de France    

Si c’est ici le meilleur des mondes possibles, que sont donc les autres?

If this is the best of all possible worlds, what are the others like?

— Voltaire, Candide, ou, l’Optimisme (trans. Burton Raffel)

Voltaire, né François-Marie Arouet (1694-1778), was a French philosopher who mobilized the power of Enlightenment principles in 18th-century Europe more than any other thinker of his day. Born into a prosperous bourgeois Parisian family, his father steered him toward law, but he was intent on a literary career. His tragedy Oedipe, which premiered at the Comédie Française in 1718, brought him instant financial and social success. A libertine and a polemicist, he was also an outspoken advocate for religious tolerance, pluralism and freedom of speech, publishing more than 2,000 works in all possible genres during his lifetime. For his bluntness, he was locked up in the Bastille twice and exiled from Paris three times.[1] Fleeing royal censors, Voltaire fled to London in 1727 where he, despite arriving penniless, spent two and a half years hobnobbing with nobility as well as writers such as Alexander Pope and Jonathan Swift.[2]

After his sojourn in Great Britain, he returned to the Continent and lived in numerous cities (Champagne, Versaille, Amsterdam, Potsdam, Berlin, etc.) before settling outside of Geneva in 1755 shortly after Louis XV banned him from Paris. “It was in his old age, during the 1760s and 1770s,” writes historian Robert Darnton, “that he wielded his second and most powerful weapon, moral passion.”[3] Early in 1759, Voltaire completed and published the satirical novella Candide, ou l’Optimisme (“Candide, or Optimism”) featured in this entry. In 1762, he published Traité sur la tolerance (“Treatise on Tolerance”), which is considered one of the greatest defenses of religious freedom and human rights ever composed. Soon after its publication, the American and French Revolutions began dismantling the social world of aristocrats and kings that we now refer to as the Ancien Régime.[4]

With Candide in particular, Voltaire is credited with pioneering what is called the conte philosophique, or philosophical tale. Knowing it would scandalize, the story was published anonymously in Geneva, Paris and Amsterdam simultaneously and disguised as a French translation by a fictitious Mr. Le Docteur Ralph. The novella was immediately condemned for its blasphemy and subversion, yet within weeks sold 6,000 copies within Paris alone.[5] Royal censors were unable to keep up with the proliferation of illegal reprints, and it quickly became a bestseller throughout Europe.

Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels (1726) is considered one of its clearest precursors in both form and parody. Candide is the name of the naive hero who is tutored by the optimistic philosophy of Pangloss, who claims that “all is for the best in this best of all possible worlds” only to be expulsed in the first few pages from the opulent chateau in which he grew up. The story unfolds as Candide travels the world and encounters unimaginable human suffering and catastrophes. Voltaire’s satirical critique takes aim at religion, authority, and the prevailing philosophy of the time, Leibnizian optimism.

While the classical language of Candide is more than 260 years old, it is easy enough to comprehend today. As the lingua franca across the Continent, French was accessible to a vast French-reading public since gathering strength as a literary language since the 16th century.[6] However, no language stays the same forever and French is no exception. Old French, which is studied by medievalists at Berkeley, covers the period up to 1300. Middle French spans the 14th and 14th centuries and part of the early Renaissance when the study of French language was taken more seriously. Modern French emerged from one of the two major dialects known as langue d’oïl in the middle of the 17th century when efforts to standardize the language were taking shape. It was then that the Académie Française was established in 1635.[8] One of its members, Claude Favre de Vaugelas, published in 1647 the influential volume, Remarques sur la langue françoise, a series of commentaries on points of pronunciation, orthography, vocabulary and syntax.[9]

At UC Berkeley, scholars have been analyzing Candide and other French texts in the original since the university’s founding. The Department of French may have the largest concentration of French speakers on campus, and French remains like German, Spanish, and English one of the principal languages of scholarship in many disciplines. Demand for French publications is great from departments and programs such as African Studies, Anthropology, Art History, Comparative Literature, History, Linguistics, Middle Eastern Studies, Music, Near Eastern Studies, Philosophy, and Political Science. The French collection is also vital to interdisciplinary Designated Emphasis PhD programs in Critical Theory, Film & Media Studies, Folklore, Gender & Women’s Studies, Medieval Studies, and Renaissance & Early Modern Studies.

UC Berkeley’s Bancroft Library is home to the most precious French holdings, including medieval manuscripts such as La chanson de geste de Garin le Loherain (13th c.) and dozens of incunables. More than 90 original first editions by Voltaire can be located in these special collections, including La Henriade (1728), Mémoires secrets pour servir à l’histoire de Perse (1745) Maupertuisiana (1753), L’enfant prodigue: comédie en vers dissillabes (1753) and a Dutch printing of Candide, ou, l’Optimisme (1759). Other noteworthy material from the 18th century overlapping with Voltaire include the Swiss Enlightenment and the French Revolutionary Pamphlet collections.

Contribution by Claude Potts
Librarian for Romance Language Collections, Doe Library

Sources consulted:

  1. Davidson, Ian. Voltaire. New York: Pegasus Books, 2010. xviii
  2. Ibid.
  3. Darnton, Robert. “To Deal With Trump, Look to Voltaire,” New York Times (Dec. 27, 2018).
  4. Voltaire. Candide or Optimism. Translated by Burton Raffel. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2005.
  5. Davidson, 291.
  6. Levi, Anthony. Guide to French Literature. Chicago: St. James Press, c1992-c1994.
  7. Kors, Alan Charles, ed. Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment. Oxford University Press, 2002.
  8. Ibid.
  9. Ibid.

~~~~~~~~~~

Title: Candide, ou L’optimisme (Manuscrit La Vallière)
Title in English: Candide, ou L’optimisme (La Vallière Manuscript)
Author: Voltaire, 1694-1778
Imprint: La Vallière (Louis-César, duc de). Ancien possesseur, 1758.
Edition: 1st edition
Language: French
Language Family: Indo-European, Romance
Source: Gallica (Bibliothèque nationale de France, Bibliothèque de l’Arsenal, 3160)
URL: https://gallica.bnf.fr/ark:/12148/btv1b520001724

Other online editions:

Print editions at Berkeley:

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]
previous | about | next

The Languages of Berkeley is a dynamic online sequential exhibition celebrating the diversity of languages that have advanced research, teaching and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is made possible with support from the UC Berkeley Library and is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC).

Follow The Languages of Berkeley!
Subscribe by email
Contact/Feedback
www.ucblib.link/languages

What’s your favorite language?


Turkish

The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition

Turkish
Cover for 1974 edition of Bir Avuç Gökyüzü.

The Turkish writer Çetin Altan (1927-2015) was a politician, author, journalist, columnist, playwright, and poet. From 1965 to 1969, he was deputy for the left-wing Workers Party of Turkey—the first socialist party in the country to gain representation in the national parliament. He was sentenced to prison several times on charges of spreading communist propaganda through his articles. He wrote numerous columns, plays, works of fiction (including science fiction), political studies, historical studies, essays, satire, travel books, memoirs, anthologies, and biographical stories.[1]

His novel Bir Avuç Gökyüzü (A Handful of Sky), was published in 1974 and takes place in Istanbul. A 41-year-old politically indicted married man spends two years in prison and then is released. Several months later he is called into the police station where the deputy commissioner has him sign a notification from the public prosecutor’s office. This time, the man will serve three more years and he has a week to surrender to the courthouse. The novel chronicles the week of this man’s life before he serves his extended sentence. Suddenly, an old classmate with thick-rimmed glasses appears with the pretense to help. The classmate convinces the main character to petition his sentence and have it postponed for four months so that he can make the necessary arrangements to support his family. Unsurprisingly, the petition is rejected on the grounds of the severity of the purported offense that led to conviction. His classmate then urges the protagonist to take a freighter and flee the country, but instead he turns himself in. From the prison ward’s iron-barred windows he can only see a handful of sky.[2] The protagonist experiences lovemaking with his mistress mainly as a metaphor for freedom lost; the awkward and clumsy sex he has with his wife, on the other hand, seems an apt metaphor for the emotionally inert life he leads both in and outside of prison.[3]

Çetin Altan was well aware of language’s power and wrote articles on the Turkish language in the newspapers where he was employed as a journalist. At the age of 82 and during his acceptance speech at the Presidential Culture and Arts Grand Awards in 2009, Mr. Altan said, “İnsan kendi dilinin lezzetini sevdiği kadar vatanını sever’’ (A person loves the homeland as much as he loves the flavor of his own language). He loved Turkish and wrote with that love. In his works, as he put it, he “never betrayed the language and the writing.”[4]

An argument can easily be made to study Turkish. There are 80 million people who speak Turkish as their first language, making it one of the world’s 15 most widely spoken first languages. Another 15 million people speak Turkish as a second language. For example there are over 116,000 Turkish speakers in the United States, and Turkish is the second most widely spoken language in Germany. Studying Turkish also lays a solid foundation for learning other modern Turkic languages, like Kazakh, Kyrgyz, Tatar, Uzbek, and Uighur. The different Turkic languages are closely related and some of them are even mutually intelligible. Many of these languages are spoken in regions of vital strategic importance, like the Caucasus, the Balkans, China, and the former Soviet Union. Mastery of Turkish grammar makes learning other Turkic languages exponentially easier.[5]

Turkish is not related to other major European or Middle Eastern languages but rather distantly related to Finnish and Hungarian. Turkish is an agglutinative language, which means suffixes can be added to a root-word so that a single word can convey what a complete sentence does in English. For example, the English sentence “We are not coming” is a single word in Turkish: “come” is the root word, and elements meaning “not,” “-ing,” “we,” and “are” are all suffixed to it: gelmiyoruz. The regularity and predictability in Turkish of how these suffixes are added make agglutination much easier to internalize.[5] [6] At UC Berkeley, modern Turkish language courses are offered through Department of Near Eastern Studies.[7]

When I was asked to write a short essay about the Turkish language based on a book, I was pleasantly surprised to discover that the UC Berkeley Library has many of Çetin Altan’s books in their original language. While he was my favorite author when I was in high school and in college in Turkey during the 1970s and 1980s, my move to the United States and life in general caused these memories to fade away. Now I am excited and feel privileged with the prospect of reading his books in Turkish again and rediscovering them after all these years.

Contribution by Neil Gali
Administrative Associate, Center for Middle Eastern Studies

Sources consulted:

  1. http://www.turkishculture.org/whoiswho/memorial/cetin-altan-953.htm (accessed 3/10/20)
  2. https://www.evvelcevap.com/bir-avuc-gokyuzu-kitap-ozeti (accessed 3/10/20)
  3. “İnsan kendi dilinin lezzetini sevdiği kadar vatanı sever,” (October 21, 2017) P24: Ağimsiz Gazetecilik Platformu = Platform for Independent Journalism. http://platform24.org/p24blog/yazi/2492/-insan-kendi-dilinin-lezzetini-sevdigi-kadar-vatani-sever (accessed 3/10/20)
  4. İrvin Cemil Schick, “Representation of Gender and Sexuality in Ottoman and Turkish Erotic Literature,” The Turkish Studies Association Journal, Vol. 28, No. 1/2 (2004), pp. 81-103, https://www.jstor.org/stable/43383697 (accessed 3/10/20)
  5. https://names.mongabay.com/languages/Turkish.html (accessed 3/10/20)
  6. https://www.bu.edu/wll/home/why-study-turkish (accessed 3/10/20)
  7. http://guide.berkeley.edu/courses/turkish (accessed 3/10/20)

~~~~~~~~~~

Title: Bir Avuç Gökyüzü
Title in English: A Handful of Heaven
Author: Altan, Çetin, 1927-2015
Imprint: Kavaklıdere, Ankara : Bilgi Yayınevi, 1974.
Edition: 1st edition
Language: Turkish
Language Family: Turkish, Turkic

Recommended Online Resource:
“İnsan kendi dilinin lezzetini sevdiği kadar vatanı sever,” (October 21, 2017) P24: Ağimsiz Gazetecilik Platformu = Platform for Independent Journalism. Blog post of tribute to the writer with photos, videos, etc.
http://platform24.org/p24blog/yazi/2492/-insan-kendi-dilinin-lezzetini-sevdigi-kadar-vatani-sever (accessed 3/10/20)

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]
previous | about | next

The Languages of Berkeley is a dynamic online sequential exhibition celebrating the diversity of languages that have advanced research, teaching and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is made possible with support from the UC Berkeley Library and is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC).

Follow The Languages of Berkeley!
Subscribe by email
Contact/Feedback
www.ucblib.link/languages

What’s your favorite language?


Give Big to Languages at Berkeley

The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition

Big Give 2020Support research, teaching, and learning of diverse non-English languages at UC Berkeley today. #CalBigGive

Art History/Classics Library Fund
University Library

East Asian Library Fund
University Library

South/Southeast Asian Library Fund
University Library

Library Collections Fund
University Library

Berkeley Language Center Fund
College of Letters & Science

Visit biggive.berkeley.edu for other library fundraising programs.

 

The Languages of Berkeley is a dynamic online sequential exhibition celebrating the diversity of languages that have advanced research, teaching and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is made possible with support from the UC Berkeley Library and is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC).

Follow The Languages of Berkeley!
Subscribe by email
Contact/Feedback
www.ucblib.link/languages


Breton

The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition


“Lec’h ma vije ‘r zorserienn hag ar zorserezed;
Hag a diskas d’in ‘r secret ewit gwalla ann ed.”

“Where were the wizards and witches,
for they are are the ones who taught me how to spoil the wheat.”

 from “Janedik ar zorseres” in Gwerziou Breiz-Izel: Chants populaires de la Basse-Bretagne 

François-Marie Luzel (1821-1895) was a French folklorist and Breton-language poet who assumed a rigorous approach to documenting the Breton oral tradition. After publishing a book which included some of his own poetry in 1865 entitled Bepred Breizad (Always Breton), he published a selection of the texts that he collected in the two-volume set Chants et chansons populaires de la Basse-Bretagne (Melodies and Songs from Low-Brittany) in 1868. It is this latter work that is featured here and offers a parallel translation in French with the intent of making the corpus of songs available to as wide a readership as possible. Throughout the 19th century, Celtic revivalists such as the controversial Théodore Hersart de la Villemarqué undertook an equally ambitious project to collect, preserve, and disseminate folk songs and stories. According to Stephen May, “The modern Breton nationalist movement draws heavily on the persistence of Breton traditions, myths memories and symbols (including language) which have survived in various forms, throughout the period of French domination since 1532.”[1]

Of the many minority languages spoken in France today, Breton (Brezhoneg) is the only one of the Celtic branch of the Indo-European family. Its history can be traced to the Brythonic or Brittonic language community that once extended from Great Britain to Armorica (present-day Brittany) and as far as northwestern Spain beginning in the 9th century. It was the language of the upper classes until the 12th century, after which it became the language of commoners in Lower Brittany as the nobility adopted French. Because of the predilection for French and Latin in the early modern and modern periods, there exists a limited tradition of Breton literature. After the revolution of 1789 when French became the official language, regional languages and dialects became viewed as anti-democratic and hence prohibited in commercial and workplace communications. The Loi Deixonne of 1951 opened the doors grudgingly for the teaching of Breton in France together with Basque, Catalan and Occitan. There has since been some expansion to roughly 5% of the school population.[2] Despite a flowering of literary production since the 1940s, Breton has been classified as “severely endangered” with approximately 250,000 native speakers.[3] Since 1911, Breton has been a core language taught in UC Berkeley’s Celtic Studies program, the oldest of its kind in the country.[4]

Contribution by Claude Potts
Librarian for Romance Language Collections, Doe Library

Sources consulted:

  1. May, Stephen. Language and Minority Rights: Ethnicity, Nationalism and the Politics of Language. 2nd New York: Routledge, 2012.
  2. Price, Glanville. Encyclopedia of the Languages of Europe. Oxford, UK: Blackwell, 1998.
  3. UNESCO Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger, http://www.unesco.org/languages-atlas.
  4. History of Celtic Studies at UC Berkeley, http://celtic.berkeley.edu/celtic-studies-at-berkeley

~~~~~~~~~~

Title: Gwerziou Breiz-Izel: Chants populaires de la Basse-Bretagne, recueillis et traduits par F.M. Luzel
Title in English: Gwerziou Breiz-Izel: Melodies and Songs from Low-Brittany
Author: Luzel, François-Marie, 1821-1895.
Imprint: Lorient, É. Corfmat; [etc., etc.] 1868-74.
Edition: 1st edition
Language: Breton
Language Family: Indo-European, Celtic
Source: Université de Rennes 2
URL: http://bibnum.univ-rennes2.fr/items/show/321

Other online editions:

  • HathiTrust Digital Library: Luzel, François-Marie, 1821-1895. Gwerziou Breiz-Izel: Chants populaires de la Basse-Bretagne. vols. 1-2. Lorient: É. Corfmat; [etc., etc.], 1868-74.

Print editions at Berkeley:

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]
previous | about | next

The Languages of Berkeley is a dynamic online sequential exhibition celebrating the diversity of languages that have advanced research, teaching and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is made possible with support from the UC Berkeley Library and is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC).

Follow The Languages of Berkeley!
Subscribe by email
Contact/Feedback
www.ucblib.link/languages

What’s your favorite language?


Thai

The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition

Thai
Cover of Prachum kāp hē r̄ưa – a collection of royal barge songs

From the beginning of its known history, Thai was the official language of the monarchy of Thailand. Spoken by more than 60 million people today, it retains a formal vocabulary of respect, used in ritual and in addressing the royal family. Its writing system is a careful adaptation of that of Khmer to a language with a distinct sound pattern and flavor.[1] 

Prachum kāp hē r̄ưa is a collection of Kāp hē r̄ưa. Kāp hē r̄ưa is a traditional genre of Thai literature written and used for royal barge processions in Thailand. The content of Kāp hē r̄ưa is usually a description of a variety of royal barges and natural scenery that the poet sees along the way, especially trees, fish, and birds. Some poets also write about their lovers from whom they have to part upon their journey.

The Department of South & Southeast Asian Studies (SSEAS) at UC Berkeley offers programs in both undergraduate and graduate instruction and research in the languages and civilizations of South and Southeast Asia from the most ancient period to the present. Instruction includes intensive training in several of the major languages of the area including Bengali, Burmese, Hindi, Khmer, Indonesian (Malay), Pali, Prakrit, Punjabi, Sanskrit (including Buddhist Sanskrit), Filipino (Tagalog), Tamil, Telugu, Thai, Tibetan, Urdu, and Vietnamese, and specialized training in the areas of literature, philosophy and religion, and general cross-disciplinary studies of the civilizations of South and Southeast Asia.[2] Outside of SSEAS where beginning through advanced level courses are offered in Thai, related courses are taught and dissertations produced across campus in Anthropology, Asian American Studies, Comparative Literature, Ethnic Studies, Folklore, History, Linguistics and Political Science (re)examining the rich history and culture of Thailand.[3]

Arthit Jiamrattanyoo
PhD Student, Department of History, University of Washington

Sources consulted:

  1. Dalby, Andrew. Dictionary of Languages: The Definitive Reference to More Than 400 Languages. New York: Columbia University Press, 1998.
  2. Department of South & Southeast Asian Studies, UC Berkeley (accessed 2/21/20)
  3. Thai (THAI) – Berkeley Academic Guide (accessed 2/21/20)


~~~~~~~~~~
Title:
Prachum kāp hē r̄ưa
Title in English: n/a
Author: Gedney, William J., Damrongrāchānuphāp Prince, son of Mongkut, King of Siam 1862-1943.
Imprint: [Phranakhō̜n?]: Rōngphom Sōphon Phiphatthanākō̜n, 2460 [1917].
Edition: 1st edition
Language: Thai
Language Family: Kra-Dai
Source: HathiTrust Digital Library (University of Michigan)
URL: https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/000415896

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]
previous | about | next post

The Languages of Berkeley is a dynamic online sequential exhibition celebrating the diversity of languages that have advanced research, teaching and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is made possible with support from the UC Berkeley Library and is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC).

Follow The Languages of Berkeley!
Subscribe by email
Contact/Feedback
www.ucblib.link/languages

What’s your favorite language?


Polish

The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition

Polish
Title page of 1882 edition (left) and engraving by M. E. Andriolli (right).

Modern day academics and literary scholars have spent considerable time studying the phenomenon related to the use of literature to create national heroes. While, the use of literary forms gives a particular author the means to incorporate the cultural sensitivities, the literary forms that evolve are functions of the society and time in which a particular author was born. Pan Tadeusz as an epic poem is not an exception but reinforces the stereotypes of a particular period through the poetics of Adam Mickiewicz.

Adam Mickiewicz was born in Nowogródek of the Grand Dutchy of Lithuania in 1798. Nowogródek is today known as Novogrudok and is located in Republic of Belarus. He was educated in Vilnius, the capital of today’s Lithuania. He is recognized as the national literary hero of Poland and Lithuania. However, most of his adulthood was spent in exile after 1829. In Russia, he traveled extensively and was a part of St. Peterburg’s literary circles.[1] There have been several works that track the trajectory of Mickiewicz’s travel and exile. Pan Tadeusz reflects the realities of the partition of the Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth from the perspective of the poet. The drive for liberty and freedom were indeed two traits of Adam Mickiewicz’s life journey that cannot be ignored. The synopsis of the story has been summarized below. Also of interest are the illustrations to accompany the storyline. One prominent illustrator was his compatriot Michał Elwiro Andriolli (1836-1893).[2] 

 Pan Tadeusz is the last major work written by Adam Mickiewicz, and the most known and perhaps most significant piece by Poland’s great Romantic poet, writer, philosopher and visionary. The epic poem’s full title in English is Sir Thaddeus, or the Last Lithuanian Foray: a Nobleman’s Tale from the Years of 1811 and 1812 in Twelve Books of Verse (Pan Tadeusz, czyli ostatni zajazd na Litwie. Historia szlachecka z roku 1811 i 1812 we dwunastu księgach wierszem). Published in Paris in June 1834, Pan Tadeusz is widely considered the last great epic poem in European literature.

Drawing on traditions of the epic poem, historical novel, poetic novel and descriptive poem, Mickiewicz created a national epic that is singular in world literature.[3] Using means ranging from lyricism to pathos, irony and realism, the author re-created the world of Lithuanian gentry on the eve of the arrival of Napoleonic armies. The colorful Sarmatians depicted in the epic, often in conflict and conspiring against each other, are united by patriotic bonds reborn in shared hope for Poland’s future and the rapid restitution of its independence after decades of occupation.

One of the main characters is the mysterious Friar Robak, a Napoleonic emissary with a past, as it turns out, as a hotheaded nobleman. In his monk’s guise, Friar Robak seeks to make amends for sins committed as a youth by serving his nation. The end of Pan Tadeusz is joyous and hopeful, an optimism that Mickiewicz knew was not confirmed by historical events but which he designed in order to “uplift hearts” in expectation of a brighter future.

The story takes place over five days in 1811 and one day in 1812. The Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth had already been divided among Russia, Prussia and Austria after three traumatic partitions between 1772 and 1795, which had erased Poland from the political map of Europe. A satellite within the Prussian partition, the Duchy of Warsaw, had been established by Napoleon in 1807, before the story of Pan Tadeusz begins. It would remain in existence until the Congress of Vienna in 1815, organized between Napoleon’s failed invasion of Russia and his defeat at Waterloo.

The epic takes place within the Russian partition, in the village of Soplicowo and the country estate of the Soplica clan. Pan Tadeusz recounts the story of two feuding noble families and the love between the title character, Tadeusz Soplica, and Zosia, a member of the other family. A subplot involves a spontaneous revolt of local inhabitants against the Russian garrison. Mickiewicz published his poem as an exile in Paris, free of Russian censorship, and writes openly about the occupation.

The poem begins with the words “O Lithuania”, indicating for contemporary readers that the Polish national epic was written before 19th century concepts of nationality had been geopoliticized. Lithuania, as used by Mickiewicz, refers to the geographical region that was his home, which had a broader extent than today’s Lithuania while referring to historical Lithuania. Mickiewicz was raised in the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth, the multicultural state encompassing most of what are now Poland, Lithuania, Belarus and Ukraine. Thus Lithuanians regard the author as of Lithuanian origin, and Belarusians claim Mickiewicz as he was born in what is Belarus today, while his work, including Pan Tadeuszwas written in Polish.”

Polish is a prominent member of the West Slavic language group. It is spoken primarily in Poland and serves as the native language of the Poles who live in various parts of world including the United States. Poles have been involved in the history of the American Revolution from early on. One such example is that of Andrzej Tadeusz Bonawentura Kościuszko who was an engineer and fought on the side of American revolution.

At UC Berkeley, Polish language teaching has been a major part of the portfolio of the Slavic languages that are being taught at the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures. This department was home to UC Berkeley’s only faculty member, Polish poet Czeslaw Milosz (1911-2004), to have ever received the prestigious Nobel Prize in Literature.[4]  The tradition of Milosz is continued today in the same department by Professor David Frick. Professor John Connelly in the History department is another luminary scholar of Polish history.

Marie Felde, who reported on his death in the UC Berkeley News Press release on 14th August 2004 noted, “When Milosz received the Nobel Prize, he had been teaching in the Department of Slavic Languages and Literature at Berkeley for 20 years. Although he had retired as a professor in 1978, at the age of 67, he continued to teach and on the day of the Nobel announcement he cut short the celebration to attend to his undergraduate course on Dostoevsky.”[5] 

Contribution by Liladhar Pendse
Librarian for East European and Central Asian Studies, Doe Library

Sources consulted:

  1. Adam Mickiewicz, 1798-1855; In Commemoration of the Centenary of His Death in UNESDOC DIGITAL LIBRARY (accessed 2/21/20) 
  2. Andriolli : Ilustracje do “Pana Tadeusza” (accessed 2/21/20) 
  3. “Pan Tadeusz – Adam Mickiewicz,” Culture.pl (accessed 2/21/20) 
  4. The Nobel Prize in Literature 1980,  https://www.nobelprize.org/prizes/literature/1980/summary (accessed 2/21/20) 
  5. UC Berkeley News (August 14, 2004), https://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2004/08/15_milosz.shtml (accessed 2/21/20)

~~~~~~~~~~
Title: Pan Tadeusz

Title in English: Pan Tadeusz or The Last Foray in Lithuania
Author: Mickiewicz, Adam, 1798-1855.
Imprint: Lwów : Nakładem Księgarni F.H. Richtera (H. Altenberg) , [1882?].
Edition: unknown
Language: Polish
Language Family: Indo-European, Slavic
Source: HathiTrust Digital Library (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)
URL: https://hdl.handle.net/2027/uiug.30112046983406

Other online editions:

Print editions at Berkeley:

  • Pan Tadeusz; czyli, Ostatni zajazd na Litwie. Historja szlachecka z r. 1811 i 1812, we dwunastu ksiegach, wierszem, przez Adama Mickiewicza … Wydanie Alexandra Jelowickiego; s popiersiem autora. 1st edition. Paryz, 1834.

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]
previous | about | next

The Languages of Berkeley is a dynamic online sequential exhibition celebrating the diversity of languages that have advanced research, teaching and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is made possible with support from the UC Berkeley Library and is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC).

Follow The Languages of Berkeley!
Subscribe by email
Contact/Feedback
www.ucblib.link/languages

What’s your favorite language?


An African American short story in French

Le Mulâtre by Victor SéjourBorn in New Orleans, Victor Séjour (1817-1874) was a Creole writer who moved to France at the age of 19 to continue his education, find work, and flee the racial oppression of Louisiana. His short story “Le Mulâtre” (“The Mulatto”) was first published in the abolitionist journal Révue des Colonies (March 1837) not long after his arrival in Paris and is now freely available through Gallica—the digital library of the Bibliothèque nationale de France. It is the first work of fiction written by an African American author. Set in Saint Domingue before the Haitian Revolution, Séjour’s work centers on the injustice and cruelty of slavery. According to Marlene Daut and David O’Connell in her article “Sons of White Fathers: Mulatto Vengeance and the Haitian Revolution in Victor Séjour’s ‘The Mulatto'” published in Nineteenth-Century Literature 65:1 (June 2010), the tale was “not simply a blow . . . struck for the cause of abolition in the French colonies, but [was] . . . also one of the first manifestations of a ‘literature of combat’ written by an American black.””

A full English translation of “The Mulatto” was published more than one hundred years after his death in The Norton Anthology of African American Literature, edited by Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Nellie Y. McKay (New York: W. W. Norton and Co., 1997). Remembered as one of the first black writers of both the African American and French literary traditions, Victor Séjour enjoyed a period of success as a playwright, was naturalized as a French citizen, and is buried in the Père-Lachaise Cemetery in Paris. The Library has reprints in French and a few English translations of his works in the Main Stacks while The Bancroft Library houses two rare first editions – La madone des roses : drame en cinq actes, en prose (1869) and La tireuse de cartes; drame en cinq actes et un prologue, en prose (1860) in its African American Writers collection.

This post has been shared as part of a UC Berkeley initiative announced by Chancellor Carol Christ to mark the 400th anniversary of the forced arrival of enslaved Africans in the English colonies.

 


Yoruba

The Languages of Berkeley: An Online Exhibition

Yoruba
First page of – Iwe Alọ (1885) – a collection of riddles

Yoruba, a tonal language, is spoken by nearly 40 million of the 185 million people living in Nigeria (2016 World Bank estimates). Some two hundred thousand Yoruba speakers also live in neighboring Benin and Togo. In Nigeria, Yoruba claims the second most speakers nationwide behind only English, the former language of colonial British Nigeria. In turn, Yoruba along with the two other national indigenous languages (Ibo and Hausa) are hegemonizing smaller, local languages throughout the country. Yoruba is part of the Yoruboid branch of the Niger-Congo language family, of which there are some 1,500 other languages. It includes numerous loanwords from English and as a result of the slave trade was important in Brazil, Cuba and other American countries.

Published in Lagos, Nigeria in 1885, Iwe Alọ is a collection of nearly 200 riddles and puzzles written in Yoruba. The author, Nigerian born David Brown Vincent, changed his name to Mojola Agbebi and preferred African to European fashion, due largely to his anti-colonial sentiment. After his ordination as a Baptist minister in Liberia in 1894, he summed-up his feelings: “I believe every African bearing a foreign name to be like a ship sailing under foreign colours and every African wearing a foreign dress is like the jackdaw in peacock feathers.” The print edition of Iwe Alọ, housed in the Bancroft Library, is part of the renowned Yoruba collection of William and Berta Bascom, which comprises some 470 volumes with plenty of examples of similarly early Yoruba language publications. The digitized edition of the Iwe Alọ is freely available through the HathiTrust Digital Library.

Contribution by Adam Clemons
Librarian for African and African American Studies, Doe Library

~~~~~~~~~~
Title:
Iwe Alọ
Title in English: [Booklet]
Author: Agbebi, Mojola, 1860-1917. (David Brown Vincent)
Imprint: Lagos: General Printing Press, 1885.
Edition: 1st edition
Language: Yoruba
Language Family: Niger-Congo
Source: HathiTrust Digial Library (UCLA)
URL: https://catalog.hathitrust.org/Record/101690224

Print editions in Library:

  • Iwe Alọ. Foreward by D.B. Vincent. Lagos: General Printing Press, 1885.

The Languages of Berkeley [fan]
previous | about | next

The Languages of Berkeley is a dynamic online sequential exhibition celebrating the diversity of languages that have advanced research, teaching and learning at the University of California, Berkeley. It is made possible with support from the UC Berkeley Library and is co-sponsored by the Berkeley Language Center (BLC).

Follow The Languages of Berkeley!
Subscribe by email
Contact/Feedback
www.ucblib.link/languages

What’s your favorite language?