SOAS University of London

South Asia Department

Hindi Language 4 (Postgraduate)

Course Code:
Unit value:
Taught in:
Full Year

Objectives and learning outcomes of the course

At the end of the course, a student should be able to demonstrate…

  1. knowledge and understanding of complex Hindi grammar structures, and basic Persian and Arabic structures that are found in Hindi/Urdu
  2. knowledge and understanding of a wide range of Hindi vocabulary, from highly Sanskritized to fairly Persianized
  3. knowledge and understanding of the appropriateness of advanced and colloquial  Hindi structures and expressions in a given context
  4. the ability to understand long passages in written Hindi on any topic
  5. the ability to produce passages of the appropriate length in the appropriate register of written Hindi on any topic
  6. the ability to understand spoken Hindi on any topic and at every level of the language
  7. the ability to engage in spoken discourse on any topic and at any level of the language
  8. knowledge and understanding of the role of language in general, and Hindi in particular, in language-based scholarship and research (specific learning outcome for PG students)


Total of 22 weeks teaching with 4 hours language classes per week. 10 research seminars to be taken within SOAS.  Attendance to be proven by signature from chair and to be submitted to the Associate Dean for Masters by the last day of term 2.

Scope and syllabus

The course presumes already advanced knowledge of the Hindi language. The emphasis is on learning and using specialist vocabulary from a variety of areas (politics, religion, psychology and emotions, patriarchy, development, Perso-Urdu culture, patriarchy, etc.). A wide range of (mostly web-based) audio-visual material is used for the purpose, as well as appropriate selections from plays, stories and articles. Listening and reading comprehension of difficult passages and specific language registers is fostered throughout. Proficiency in written Hindi is fostered through writing of responses, speeches, articles on specific topics or using specific language registers or idiolects.  

Communicative practice is established through discussion in Hindi of the issues arising from the specific topics, role-plays and presentations. Hindi alone is used throughout the course.

The course provides students with an advanced knowledge of Hindi and practice of using Hindi in a variety of situations. It allows students to interact with Hindi speakers in Hindi and to use original Hindi language sources within the level covered in the course. This provides students with a basis to approach research topics relating to Hindi language and the histories, societies and cultures associated with Hindi.

Method of assessment

One three-hour written examination (50%); a 500 word essay in Hindi (date of submission to be given by the convenor) (5%); a translation project to be completed over the academic year of a suitable length to be submitted on the last day of term 2 (30%); an oral examination (15%) taken in May/June.

Suggested reading

1) The course will be based on
  • Advanced Hindi course pack  

and additional materials which will be made available throughout the course.

2) Additional Hindi References
Hindi Learning Resources
  • Jain, Usha R. 2007. Advanced Hindi grammar. Berkeley: Center for South Asia Studies, University of California.
  • Montaut, Annie. 2004. A Grammar of Hindi. München: Lincom  Europa
  • Sandahl, Stella. 2001. A Reference Grammar of Hindi. Leuven: Peeters.
  • Shackle and Snell. Hindi and Urdu since 1900. London : School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London, 1990
  • McGregor, R.S. 1993. The Oxford Hindi-English Dictionary. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Linguistic Studies
  • Masica, Colin P. 1991. The Indo-Aryan Languages. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press
  • Kachru, Yamnua. 1980. Aspects of Hindi Grammar. New Delhi: Manohar.
  • Oberlies, Thomas.  2005. A historical grammar of Hindi. Graz: Leykam.
  • Beg, M.K.A. Socio-Linguistic Perspectives on Hindi and Urdu in India. New Delhi : Bahri Publications, 1996
  • Pandit, Ira. 1986. Hindi English code switching : mixed Hindi English. Delhi: Datta Book Centre, 1986
  • Shackle, C (ed.). 1985. South Asian Languages: A Handbook. London, SOAS
  • Abbi, Anvita. 2001. A manual of linguistic field work and structures of Indian languages. Munich: Lincom Europa.


Important notice regarding changes to programmes and modules