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Re: Calling all Conlangers!

From:Aquamarine Demon <aquamarine_demon@...>
Date:Saturday, January 26, 2002, 1:02
>>Ah. I thought you were talking about someone denigrating artlangs with respect to auxlangs.
I did see that, but I thought it was basically correct. No artlang has, or can have, anything like the depth of a natlang.<< I personally think it depends on what you mean by depth.>>Why study natlangs, other than for severely practical reasons, after all? (Why study Latin nowadays, e.g., when it can neither help you buy cattle in Rome nor get you into the civil service?)<< Why be practical at all? I don't want to learn languages because they are "practical" (meaning for *purely* communicational reasons), I want to learn them because they are unique, interesting, and opens up new perspectives (which in itself is quite practical, and I believe necessary, if we are to ever stop from killing each other).
>>For two reasons, I believe: to gain access to a literature, and to learn >>something about a people,specifically about the way they saw themselves and >>their environment.<<
Those are both very good reasons, but they're not the sole reasons that one should learn a language. A language can be learned for any personal reason, since language is used by each person in their own way (generally, each person has their own way of talking, both with how they say it and what they say.)
>>Now the second consideration can hardly apply to any conlang, art- or aux-, and >>the first can apply
only to a tiny minority. There is no doubt E-o poetry that one must study E-o to understand,and if one learns Sindarin, there are a dozen or so works of JRRTs that become open to one. But neither of these are to be compared to what one gains access to by learning Apache orNavajo or Hixkaryana.--John Cowan<< I believe it does. Not only is it important to be introduced to different cultural perspectives, but it is also important to be introduced to different individual perspectives. Conlangs, especially artlangs can do this. Languages are more than just words, they are filled to the brim with idioms and connotations and expressions and aphorisms, all of which are great tools in understanding other people, which seems to be what everyone in this world truly needs, in my opinion.
>>Why? Navajo and Apache speakers have been writing in their tongue for a century, the same
length of time as Esperanto speakers. The literature of over a million people, self-selected for their interest in language, can surely be compared to that a quarter million (50 thousand for the Apache) people. --David Starner << Despite the fact that you only refer to writing (speaking is equally important, maybe even more so), I have to agree with you there. The Aquamarine Demon "All religion, my friend, is simply evolved out of fraud, fear, greed, imagination, and poetry." -Edgar Allan Poe "It ain't the parts of the Bible that I can't understand that bother me, it is the parts that I do understand." -Mark Twain --------------------------------- Do You Yahoo!? Yahoo! Auctions Great stuff seeking new owners! Bid now!