Hindi: vyakti

Discussion in 'Indo-Iranian Languages' started by greatbear, Mar 28, 2012.

  1. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    This thread has been split from the one on "shakhs" here.

    I have no idea if they are different or no, but yes "vyakti" is used for both the sexes; I wouldn't use "vyakti" as well though if I know it's a woman we are talking about. To translate "four women are going to the market" as "chaar vyakti bazaar jaa raheN haiN" sounds awkward or even misleading even if grammatically correct.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 5, 2012
  2. lafz_puchnevala Senior Member

    A good case to study for all languages which are gender based...
  3. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Very awkward indeed! And I don't know how it would be grammatically correct.
  4. tonyspeed Senior Member

    JA- English & Creole
    so there is no grammatically neutral term for individual in Hindi is your claim?
  5. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    You could read my post again. I said I would feel awkward.
  6. marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    shaxs شخص in Urdu is a masculine noun. vyakti व्यक्ति in Hindi is a feminine noun. There is nothing creative in BP SaaHib's approach, it is simply the truth (Urdu). I think that using 'creativity' is not proper here.

    shaxsiyyat شخصیت has nothing to do here since this thread goes about shaxs شخص and its gender.

    shaxs or vyakti is a person - which gender has a person? 2 vyakti jaa rahe the or 2 vyaktiyaaN jaa rahii thiiN?

    do shaxs jaa rahe the or do shaxseN jaa rahii thiiN?
  7. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    Where did you get the idea that "vyakti" is feminine?
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2012
  8. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو

    S ويکت व्यक्ति vyakti, vulg. vyakt, s.f. Appearance, manifestation;—clearness, distinctness, discernibility; discrimination;—specific appearance or variation, individuality;—a person, an individual (opp. to jāti);—variety; (in Gram.) gender; case, inflection; the proper form of an inflected word:—vyakti-vāćak, adj. Denoting, or expressive of, a person or individual;—s.m. (in Gram). A proper name
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2012
  9. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    From Caturvedi,

    व्यक्ति vyakti (nm) an individual, a person; subject; ~क individual, personal; ~गत subjective; individual, personal; ~निष्ट subjective; -पद singular term; ~वाचक proper; •संज्ञा proper noun; ~वाद individualism; ~वादिता individualism; individualistic outlook; ~वादी an individualist; individualistic; ~वैचित्र्यवाद (in literature) the theory of subjective/personal typicality/identity; hence ~वैचित्र्यवादी (a, nf).

    In other words, it's laughable to think of "vyakti" as feminine.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2012
  10. marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    As an Urdu-speaker who has a pretty good command over Hindi and preceeding languages, let me ask you whether the following dictionary reference is no longer used>

    व्यक्तिसंज्ञा स्त्री० [सं०]१. व्यक्त होने की क्रिया या भाव । प्रका- शित या द्दश्य होना । प्रकट होना । २. मनुष्य या किसी और शरीरधारी का सारा शरीर, जिसकी पृथक् सत्ता मानी जाती है और जो किसी समूह या समाज का अंग समझा जाता है । समष्टि का उलटा । व्यष्टि । ३. मनुष्य । आदमी । जैसे,—कुछ व्यक्ति ऐसे होते हैं जो सदा दूसरों का अपकार ही किया करते हैं ।

    This dictionary is old and I am iterested to know the modern usage, of course!
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2012
  11. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    "vyakti" is indeed feminine when it means "व्यक्त होने की क्रिया या भाव" and all related meanings (all under 1. above), though the word in this sense is hardly used now: the derivation "abhivyakti" (again feminine) is still used a lot, though.
    However, when "vyakti" means an individual, then it is masculine. Even in the the definition you've given above, you can see the example "कुछ व्यक्ति ऐसे होते हैं" - there is "hote" instead of "hoti", since "vyakti" as individual is masculine.
  12. marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    It is the same usage as shaxs. A person, the sex not being specified. However the grammatical one is masculine.
  13. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    Yes, of course it is; whether used for women or men, the gender of the word "vyakti" remains masculine when meaning individual.
  14. marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    OK, I agree as to the usage, be it shaxs or vyakti, any person. But you have to follow the grammar, which doesn't necessarily mirror the actual sex.
  15. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    I never questioned that. What I asked, would you say for four women "chaar vyakti/shaxs jaa rahe haiN"? Would it be natural for you to refer a woman as shaxs?
  16. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    I quoted an entry from Platts which gives "vyakti" as feminine. He does indicate the origins of the word as S (Sanskrit). So, I was merely pointing out to you a non-web source where the word is given as feminine. The title of the dictionary, after all, is "A Dictionary of Urdu, Classical Hindi and English". Even though I knew the usage of vyakti in Hindi (masculine), it occurred to me that this could possibly be one of those words which is used in both genders. If Platts is wrong in assigning the feminine gender to this word, then this is another matter. Perhaps his mistake was in giving the Sanskrit gender of the word which had switched over as far as Hindi is concerned. Arthur Anthony Maconnell's "A Practical Sanskrit Dictionary" also gives vyakti as feminine.

    vyakti(p. 300) [ vi½akti ] f. manifestation, appearance; distinctness, clearness; distinction, differ ence; differentiated thing, individual (opp. gâti); grammatical gender:-m bhag, stand out clearly (rivers).

    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2012
  17. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    You could read post no. 30 to know when vyakti is feminine and when not. Dictionaries merely record what people speak; it is what people speak that defines, thankfully, a language.
    It's Macdonell by the way. As you said recently, even two mistakes in one sentence (this is one word though) are very common. And the dictionary is Sanskrit, which we are not discussing here.
  18. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Thank you for the correction and I had read post 30.

    I think if scholars begin to include everything that all people say as a guide to correct standard speech (for example, fir/shaqs/roj/jyaada/azeeb/raheN haiN...), then we will end up with a right mess! Grammar books and dictionaries attempt to reflect what is considered to be an agreed acceptable language by the best speakers and writers of that language.
  19. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    Well, but, as already evident in Caturvedi, "vyakti" as masculine when it means individual is standard Hindi: you are indeed right if scholars start listening to har gayaa-guzraa (for example, vyakti "individual" as feminine, some of the future tense constructions), then dictionaries would be in a mess (not "we" though in my opinion, for even a person who hasn't seen a dictionary speaks his or her language fine enough).
  20. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Regarding "vyakti", I have clarified my position in post 38 which you have already read. About "future tense constructions", watch this space.

    I have never claimed to be infallible. If I make a mistake, I put my hand up and say I was wrong. I don't lose any self-esteem over the matter. agar aap kii nazroN meN maiN "gayaa-guzraa" huuN to ko'ii baat nahiiN.
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2012
  21. tonyspeed Senior Member

    JA- English & Creole
    In all the early sources vyakti is feminine. Shabd Saagar has it as feminine as well.

    In the Mcgreggor Oxford Hindi-English it is marked (m.;f). In the intro information it says words marked (m,f) mean
    words that change with the gender of the thing referred to but (m;f) has a semi-colon and not a comma. So I can only assume it means that depending on who you talk to (or what source you are reading)
    the gender is masculine or feminine (with masculine being now dominant.). My two other dictionaries have it marked as masculine. I think we can safely assume that when vyakti was first introduced into Hindi from
    Sanskrit it was feminine. As time went on, due to the lack of consulting the dictionary standard or through a process equating shakti to shakhs, the gender has changed.
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 31, 2012
  22. marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    Indeed, it is correct. Still, the question remains unanswered whether native speakers use vyakti when referring to women?
  23. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    I think I had already said in post 7 that it's used for both the sexes; and - to me - it is a much more natural neutral term than 'shaxs', though I wouldn't prefer using any of them if I know that I am referring to a woman.
  24. marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    Post #7 was so long ago! So I see that gramatically it might be used regarding women but teh usage of the native speakers prefers to indicate the sex rather than using vyakti. Thank you for this information.
  25. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    No, I think I said in both the posts about my personal preference; native speakers are quite comfortable using "vyakti" for women.
  26. marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    Seemingly I was wrong considering your opinion to be one of the native speakers, to be followed. I'll take the needed margin further on.
  27. marrish Senior Member

    اُردو Urdu
    Not only are the Hindi speakers comfortable with using ''vyakti'' for a female but don't shy from using it in the feminine in the general sense, as a noun.

    A couple of examples:
    ve ek aisii vyakti thiiN jo svatantrataa ke prati atyant tiikSHNRa driSHTikoNR rakhtii thiiN. - Mahadevi Verma kii vishwadrishti
    saare ghar meN ekmaatr Pramila hii aisii vyakti thii jiske man meN uske prati sneh ke atirikt shraddhaa bhii thii.
    maarne vaalii aisii vyakti ko uskaa phal turant milnaa praarambh ho jaayegaa
    parantu aisii vyakti jo...
    aisii vyakti adhiktar satii ke chiiroN meN praapt hotii haiN
    शियावोन ने कहा, ‘लेकिन मैं सामंता को कुछ कहना चाहती हूं कि वह बहुत अच्छी व्यक्ति हैं shiyaavon ne kahaa, 'lekin maiN Samanta ko kuchh kahnaa chaahtii huuN ki vah bahut achchii vyakti haiN.'
    बार बार पाप करनेसे मनुष्य की विवेकबुद्धी नष्ट होती है और जिसकी विवेकबुद्धी नष्ट हो चुकी हो , ऐसी व्यक्ति हमेशा पापही करती है | aisii vyakti hameshaa paap hii kartii hai. See just above सुभाषित 209
  28. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    Post 1 itself, by me, said that "vyakti can be used for both sexes", so I don't see what is the whole hue and cry about. However, the question is of what's the impression one gets, what is normal, when women are in question. Here are some of the many interesting sentences found on the Internet:

    हर व्यक्ति औरत को उसके हक देने कि बात करता है , हर मज़हब औरतो के हुकूक के लिए खुद को अव्वल बताता है ...
    यदि एक व्यक्ति किसी औरत की हत्या कर देता तो उसको दंड देने के बजाय ...
    मुर्दाघर में मृत व्यक्ति से औरत प्रेग्नेंट ... (I don't think a woman can make another woman pregnant? :D )
    तीन चीज़े व्यक्ति के मन का विस्तार करती हैं।वे हैं,एक सुन्दर औरत,एक सुन्दर आवास और सुन्दर क्लिम(पात्र) ...
    इस्लाम किसी व्यक्ति को दो, तीन अथवा चार औरतों से इस शर्त पर विवाह करने की इजाज़त देता है ...
    सर्वोच्च न्यायालय ने एक प्रकरण में यह व्यवस्था दी है कि अगर कोई व्यक्ति एक पत्नी के होते दूसरी औरत को भी रख लेता है ...
    एक व्यक्ति एक औरत होने का दावा करने ...
    एक व्‍यक्ति उस बड़े कमरे में आया। वह एक औरत थी। (first, a person came. then the narrator gets to know that it's a woman. note that no "meN aayii")

    How many more need to be put on here?
  29. fdb Senior Member

    Cambridge, UK
    French (France)
    vyakti- is a so-called tatsama, that is: a Sanskrit loanword in Hindi, not an organic part of the evolved New-Indo-Aryan vocabulary. In Sanskrit it is feminine and means in the first instance “separate, individual”.

    PS. I am not commenting on its usage/gender in Hindi.
  30. nineth Senior Member

    Hindi, Telugu
    vyakti when used in the singular to mean a person is 'masculine' in my head - I have absolutely no doubt about it. However, I won't find it odd if it's used in a gender-neutral context describing unknown people esp. in the plural (10 vyakti yahaaN pay baiTh saktay haiN).
  31. Chhaatr Senior Member

    I can't bring myself to say "woh ek achhii vyaktii haiN". If I have to say something like this I would substitute "vyaktii" with "insaan".
  32. greatbear Senior Member

    India - Hindi & English
    Thus, 3 out of 3 native Hindi speakers, who have so far have had something to say, have the same opinion about not preferring to use "vyaktii" for female gender.
  33. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Examples of use of "vyaktiyaaN".

    यह प्रणाली विदेश की धन अंतरण प्रख्यात कंपनियाँ (विदेशी नियंत्रक कार्यालय) तथा प्राधिकृत व्यक्तियाँ (भारतीय एजेंट), जो चालू विनिमय दरों पर लाभार्थियों को निधि वितरित करती हैं, के बीच की एक ताल-मेल व्यवस्था संबंधी विचार करती है । यह प्रणाली कोई बाह्य प्रेषण अनुमत नहीं करती है ।

    http://www.rbi.org.in/hindi/Scripts/apdir.aspx?id=2404 (Reserve Bank of India)--central bank

    वी.आईबी.एस्.ई.टी.आई. को संकाय सहायता अनुभवी व्यक्तियाँ


    दूध दोहन विधियो तथा दुग्ध स्रवण संबंधी व्यक्तियाँ

  34. nineth Senior Member

    Hindi, Telugu
    You want me to email them and tell them their usage was wrong?!
  35. Qureshpor Senior Member

    Punjabi, Urdu پنجابی، اردو
    Do whatever you feel you should do!

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