A Sociolinguistic Analysis of Indian Christian Names: The Case of Telugu Catholics and Syrian Christians

by Smita Joseph (The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad, India)

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This book gives a sociolinguistic account of Syrian Christian and Telugu Catholic personal names. Unlike previous works on the linguistic or sociolinguistic analysis of the personal names of Indian Christians, which have mainly used a reflexive approach to analyse names, this book takes a constitutive approach by analysing the personal names of two Indian Christian communities (Telugu Catholics and Syrian Christians) from the perspective of community members. This novel approach provides greater insights into individuals’ motivations for naming and how names are used to create social identities.

'A Sociolinguistic Analysis of Indian Christian Names: The Case of Telugu Catholics and Syrian Christians' also provides a historical background of how names have evolved in these communities and explores the adaptation strategies used by Indian Christians through the act of naming (e.g., appending caste titles to Christian names, the use of Sanskrit personal names and Christian surnames) as well as the role of culture in naming (e.g., the use of other names, the role of caste titles in indicating one’s identity).

This book paves the way for more qualitative studies to arise in the analysis of first names and will be valuable to graduate students and academics in the fields of onomastics, linguistics, religious studies, and history. It will also appeal to those interested in Indian Christianity in general.

List of Tables and Figures

Foreword by Prof Aadil Amin Kak, University of Kashmir

Acknowledgements

Chapter 1 Introduction

Chapter 2 A Historical Background of Telugu Christians and the Syrian Christians of Kerala

Chapter 3 First Names and Name Motivations among Telugu Catholics and Syrian Christians

Chapter 4 Naming Children in Telugu Catholic and Syrian Christian Families

Chapter 5 Conclusion

Appendices

Bibliography

Index

Dr. Smita Joseph is currently working as an Assistant Professor of Sociolinguistics at The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad. She completed an MA and MPhil in Linguistics at Jawaharlal Nehru University, Delhi and a PhD in Sociolinguistics from The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad.

Dr. Joseph’s most recent publication is 'The Anglo-Indians in Hyderabad: Sociolinguistic, Historical, and Anthropological Perspectives' (2020). She has also written a full course, 'Sociolinguistics', for distance learners at The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad. Smita has been teaching MA, Diploma and Certificate courses at The English and Foreign Languages University, Hyderabad, for 11 years, where she is currently supervising four PhD students.

Socio-onomastics, qualitative methods, name motivations, official names, unofficial names, stances and naming, name categories, place of birth and naming, linguistic variation, name variation, pet names, personal names, act of identity, act of naming, caste system and naming, Christianization of names, social positionings in naming, adaptation of names, cultural compromise names, pan-Indian names, Telugu names, Malayalam names, rhyming names

See also

Bibliographic Information

Book Title
A Sociolinguistic Analysis of Indian Christian Names: The Case of Telugu Catholics and Syrian Christians
ISBN
978-1-64889-280-6
Edition
1st
Number of pages
189
Physical size
236mm x 160mm
Illustrations
14 B&W
Publication date
January 2022
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