Classification of Kurdish Dialects: Challenges and Solutions
Throughout its history, the Zagros region has been a hometown to the native speakers of a wide variety of languages. These languages which constitute part of what is currently being described as Iran’s cultural heritage have been used both as a medium of communication and as a means for creation of an invaluable body of literature. Despite the undeniable significance of these linguistic varieties in formation and evolution of Iranian civilization, there still remains several unanswered questions concerning various aspects of their structure. More specifically speaking, there exists minimum amount of reliable information regarding the diachronic features of these linguistic varieties in their Old and Middle eras, and their synchronic forms, which are mainly characterized as New north-western and south-western Iranian dialects, haven’t yet received the systematic attention they deserve.
The Institute of Kurdistan Studies at UOK is planning to hold a series of conferences on dialectology of Zagrosian linguistic varieties to provide an academic platform for topic-oriented discussions of some of long-standing questions in this regard. Shedding light on intact characteristics of these linguistic varieties and discussing some of the challenging topics of this area of Iranian linguistics from a scientific viewpoint are among the main purposes of these events. Hereby, the Institute of Kurdistan Studies at UOK proudly invites linguists and researchers to take part in the aforementioned conferences and present the outcome of their original research projects on linguistic and dialectological analyses of Zagrosian varieties.
In order to obtain the best possible result, the organizers have decided to allocate one specific topic to each of these conferences. The first conference, which might be possibly extended to other sessions as well, is agreed on to be allotted to the critical analysis of those classifications which have been put forward in various sources for Kurdish language, as one the main language groups within the Zagrosian varieties. It is hoped that the overall outcome of discussions in the first conference would highlight the advantages and drawbacks of existing classifications and consequently pave the way for coming to other optimal and comprehensive suggestions.