August 18, 2010 | Hindi

Consonant Studies and Font Challenges

In which I study hard.

I felt quite virtuous about my Hindi progress today. I did four half-hour Pimsleur lessons—15, 16, 17, 18—and then began cycling back through them, completing a second rep of 15.

I also went to a coffee shop and finished the consonants chapter in my McGraw-Hill book Beginner’s Hindi Script. I think it is cool to be reading a book with a chapter entitled “Consonants.” Next is “Vowels” (seriously!).

I really haven’t been working enough on my writing skills, so I was relieved to spend some more time on the Hindi script today. I successfully copied over a number of three-syllable (!) words, which made me proud.

I Like This Book

These Were Fun to Write

One thing that I notice about Hindi (primarily in my Teach Yourself Hindi book)—and which I also noticed about Arabic—is that I can’t always see the script well enough to copy the letters. The font sometimes looks so tiny and cramped that I can’t make out all the curlicues, etc.

Is it just me? Or is this an issue for other people as well? In the Teach Yourself book, I can read the surrounding words in English without any problem whatsoever, so I am perplexed. I mean, I assume if I were a native speaker I would be able to make out the Hindi lettering with relative ease, but even for native speakers, wouldn’t it be better to have the individual lines and other details be more apparent? Some of the writing is pretty intricate.

As far as I can remember, this has not been an issue in any languages besides Hindi and Arabic.

Comments (2)

Epictetus • Posted on Mon, January 20, 2014 - 10:19 pm EST

It’s certainly true of Arabic, the script in any textbook is invariably smaller than roman. It is weird that no textbook recognizes the need to make Arabic large enough to read.

Ellen Jovin • Posted on Mon, January 20, 2014 - 10:48 pm EST

Well hello, Epictetus. :)

I grappled with this same problem yet again today. I tried to convince myself that the font in the Arabic language book I was using was big enough for me to read. But it really wasn’t!

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