Dr. Ian Hancock talks with The Southeast Review about the power of words, the arts and inspiration

Dr. Ian Hancock talks with The Southeast Review about the power of words, the arts and inspiration

Check out this fascinating Q&A with renowned Romani writer, linguist, and academic Dr. Ian Hancock. He’s the author of our textbooks, We Are the Romani People and one of the editors of The Roads of the Roma: a PEN anthology of Gypsy Writers

“I try to write both fiction and non-fiction in Romani, and that is a challenge, because of the need for the means of expression. Romani is a rich language, and while it can adopt foreign vocabulary very easily, it isn’t always necessary because it is rich in metaphor, and the closer a text is to the native lexicon, the more easily is it understood by the widest audience. For example, a writer in Denmark, wanting to express “Internet” might insert the Danish or the English word, which would not be understood by someone reading the text in another country and who didn’t know English or Danish. But the native Romani word drakhalin has entered the language, its actual meaning is ‘grapevine,’ but it is now used metaphorically to mean the Internet and is everywhere understood.”

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