A Journal of Teaching English Language and Literature

ISSN Print : 2229-6557, Online: 2394-9244

Instilingo Puts Intro: A Study of Indian Variety of English

Karthika Sathyanathan and Rajesh Kumar


This paper focuses on highlighting certain linguistic and syntactical peculiarities of the slang that is spoken by the student community of IIT Madras. The community is notorious for its ‘Insti Lingo’ that has often been a cause for fraternization within itself. Through the paper, I hope to outline some peculiarities of vocabulary (by the different parts of speech) and grammar (construction of plurals and sentences) that, at times, function to give it the status of a dialect of English. Detaching itself from an understanding of language as a single, monolithic entity and looking beyond the categories that emerge from the naming and classifying of language as standard and non-standard language(s), the paper studies the syntactic and semantic features of instilingo through the lens of multilinguality. The paper, thus presents some features of the lingo and hence aims to provide a deeper insight of language, its nature and use. Written from the perspective of a ‘native-speaker’ of this particular slang, this paper holds certain claims to authenticity that previous literature upon this topic (which consists of very little) does not.

Keywords: Instilingo, slang, dialect, multiinguality, Indian Engish

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