Internalization of Speech: Pronunciation and Perception of the Word

Akane Saito


There are various philosophers who have discussed the role of language in ancient India. Among them, Bharthari considered the relation between the superficial appearance of speech and its essential nature. In actual life, we pronounce and perceive the word. He held that there must be some link between ideal logic and worldly truth. His focus in the Brahmakāṇa of the Vākyapadīya, is on the process of communication, the process of the internalization of speech. He differentiates the perspective of the speaker and the hearer, and explains the movement of sounds. The sphoa theory addresses both how to pronounce the word and how to perceive it. Traces of his discussion are found in the works of his follower Maṇanamiśra in his book, Sphoasiddhi. 


Indian philosophy on language; Bhartṛhari; Vākyapadīya; Maṇḍanamiśra; Sphoṭasiddhi

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