Essential Reads | An English Made in India: How a Foreign Language Became Local

Editor | Non-fiction
In An English Made in India, the author delves into the various aspects of Indian English— as lingua franca, colonial bequest, the language of the elite and those who aspire to elite status. She explores the English language’s earliest influences on Indian languages (and vice versa), the evolution of Indian English after independence and the way the language is spoken today.

She talks to people from different parts of the country to create a colourful portrait of the ways in which the English language has influenced different segments of Indian society.
The book is an entertaining narrative about the myriad Indianisms to be found in the English used by a large percentage of Indians; the growing importance of Indian English in a world of many Englishes; the ongoing tussle between the elite who speak the King’s English and those who speak in their mother tongue or mother-tongue-accented English; the effect of the IT boom on global English; and the changing attitudes of young Indians towards a language introduced by the Raj hundreds of years ago.

About the author

Kalpana Mohan’s pieces in India Currents magazine have won her the New America Media prize and the San Francisco Peninsula Press Club prize. Her monthly column for India Currents, Desi Lens, looks at how Indians have changed in America and how they have changed America. Her first book, Daddykins, a memoir about the last two years with her ailing father, was published in 2018.

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