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Old 04-05-2006, 03:42 AM   #15 (permalink)
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Hello, Fred,

Chicken will be less delicious very soon, since they'll prohibit live chicken in the wet market, we'll have chilled or frozen chicken, which is incomparable to live chicken. Btw, I do like full English breakfast in English canteens, provided they have fish filets and hash browns
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Old 04-05-2006, 05:07 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Language change is also sometimes cyclical. Languages move through typologies - English, for example, which used to be very fusional, much like Latin with myriad case endings and affixes everywhere, is moving towards a more isolating style, while other languages with less affixing morphology are starting to gain it. Neither is necessarily good or bad - it's just evolution.

Jean said: "People whose a given language is not their mother tongue are much more touchy about its respect.They are the knights of such language while in its own country the treasure of a nation is wrecked by villains."

If I'm understanding you correctly, I could give you a few examples where those who carried the language out of its 'motherland' have conserved the language of their time more than the motherland itself has: the French spoken in Quebec; the English spoken in some areas of the Appallachian mountains, which I have read is very similar to that spoken in Elizabethan London. I think the situation is, as Jean pointed out, immigrant communities guard their language as an integral part of their culture, that which bonds them and sets them apart from the rest of their new land's milieu. Those in the motherland have less reason to resist change, less reason to feel their language is threatened by the gradual shifts that naturally occur.

I also am interested to see nallatu's comments regarding text messages - English text messages are getting hard to read, and when I try to speak to someone in french online using the french they teach me at school I'm often completely confused by the simplest expressions because the writer is using wrong homonyms or unexplained abbreviations!

I think more people than ever before are starting to pay attention to language change, and I think this is directly due to the revolutions that have come about in communications technology and travel. We can broadcast conversations around the world in seconds flat (as this very forum demonstrates), and more and more dominant languages such as English are starting to make an effect everyone can see, where usually language change is a lot less noticable synchronically.

Isn't it interesting: language is a tool designed to communicate with others, and eminently suited to do so; yet our ability to communicate easily with others - the fuzzing of the isoglosses, so to speak - is threatening the very existence of many minority languages.

We've created a monster!

--Catachrest
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Old 04-05-2006, 05:57 AM   #17 (permalink)
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Hi, catachrest,

The language issue in Quebec has been a political issue for many years. Language issues are often political issues in many countries.

As for the fusion of languages, code-mixing and code-changing are a common phenomenon in bilingual and multilingual countries. Personally, I object to code-mixing, I think it's for people who can't speak either language properly.
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Old 04-05-2006, 12:03 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Hi, Catachrest!
Does your pseudo relate to catachresis? If so,it's pure self-doubt for I don't see many strained uses of words in your post.(Kidding!).
The fuzzing of the isoglosses you refer to has become a minor phenomenon compared to the fuzzing of classglosses.Languages tend to flatten and slip into socially undifferentiated speeches, because television is THE model.What we have got now in developed countries is an almost commonly shared language, with the exceptions of ghetto speech and self-satisfying purism.
The average lexical stock has everywhere dramatically decreased in the past 30 years. People just don't understand words that were of daily usage half a century ago, and certainly not sophisticated ones at that.
"Cata"(kata) implies the notion of fall/falling, so I am sure you understand
our languages have fallen damn low.
Keep fighting!
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Old 04-05-2006, 12:44 PM   #19 (permalink)
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jean fred i agree with you (could you all use simple words though, or explain them... i have no idea what these classgloss and isoglosses are )
but when you write :

"People whose a given language is not their mother tongue are much more touchy about its respect."

i'm not sure about that. i'd rather interpret this the way catachrest did, ie people who kept their language inside a more or less small community are more touchy about it, because they need to defend it. in the two examples given by catachrest, it's their mothertongue they protect.

...because imho, i wouldnt care much if english adopted more italian words, german adopted indian words or whatever

and for my own language, french, i only care for old words, that are part of our cultural background. for words of new technologies, it's not that bad if we use "firewall" or "parefeu" (french version) for example.
there's an interesting story about that : in the sixties, when computers appeared, french people used the english word "computer". than a french guy (probably asked by our académie française ) made out the word "ordinateur", which has completely replaced the english word since, and has even influenced other countries.

last thing about language evolution : the french double negation (ne...pas...) is about to die in young people common speech. i wonder if we'll still keep it, at least in written speech, or if it will completely disappear...i wouldn't be very sad about it though...i just don't feel i speak naturally when i'm in front of an employer and i need to pay attention to always say the double negation
well i'm not really being honest saying this, because i remember ten years ago, i was suprised....and disappointed to see they already taught french in english books with the simple negation...seems like i'd like to speak french the way i want but oblige foreigners to learn it at an excellent level...this is unfair

(a funny thing is that french-learners often forget to say the "pas", whereas native french always keep the "pas" but take off the "ne"...who will win the fight ? )

last thing : catachrest, we are terrible indeed in our language online one of the acronyms you may need is the equivalent of "lol", it's "mdr". (dead from laughter), and we also have xpdr (explosé de rire) and ptdr (pété de rire)...teens have an inexhaustible imagination
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Old 04-05-2006, 07:56 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Hi, Bonjour, Nallatu! Let me try French to answer your post so that I make myself crystal clear.
Les isoglosses sont en linguistique les courbes qui définissent géographiquement les zones de contact entre des idiomes proches mais néanmoins differenciés (dans ton pays par exemple l'alsacien et l'allemand
ou le lorrain et l'alsacien, ou le provençal et l'italien , ou l'occitan et le catalan). Le fuzzing des isoglosses est le caractère flou que prennent les spécificités de ces idiomes jusqu'à gommer les subtiles différences qui les identifiaient. Nous sommes là en présence d'un phénomène strictement spatial.
Il en va autrement de ce que j'appelle les "classglosses" car nous passons d'un rapport d'espace à un rapport de structure sociale. L'écrasement du langage n'est plus l'abolition d'une frontière horizontale sur la carte, mais bien
celle, verticale des strates d'une échelle sociale.(Hope my french makes sense, as my english did!)OK?
En ce qui concerne l'attachement des locuteurs à une langue,je suis bien entendu d'accord pour dire que les communautés emigrées, et même depuis des siècles, sont les farouches gardiennes de la langue des ancêtres fondateurs de la colonie ou du territoire. C'est d'autant plus vrai que l'influence linguistique est d'ordre politique comme c'est le cas au Canada.
Et cela a été vrai sous l'empire soviétique des langues des républiques non russophones d'origine.
C'est à un tout autre phénomène que je faisais référence en évoquant les locuteurs d'une langue qui n'est pas leur langue maternelle ou qui du moins ne résident pas dans le pays "mère" de cette langue. Je crois savoir que dans ton pays les dictées de Bernard Pivot couronnent plus de champions chez les francophones non français que chez les autochtones.
A ma manière sans doute parfois maladroite, je cherche à honorer ta langue et la culture de ton peuple. Toute langue appartient au patrimoine de l'humanité. Let's preserve all of them!
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Old 04-05-2006, 07:59 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jean Fred
Hi, Catachrest!
Does your pseudo relate to catachresis? If so,it's pure self-doubt for I don't see many strained uses of words in your post.(Kidding!).
Ah, but you should see me trying to speak French or German!!! ha ha ha. Then you'll see some catachresis.

I use this handle in a number of contexts online and you're the first person to catch the reference. Kudos!

--Catachrest
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