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Re: OT: Tinkering versus creativity

From:Jörg Rhiemeier <joerg_rhiemeier@...>
Date:Tuesday, July 4, 2006, 11:44

On Sun, 2 Jul 2006 20:09:34 +0100, And Rosta wrote:

> My interest in natlangs other than English (which is the focus of the entire > research component of my professional life) is only of the most casual and > superficial sort. So I'm not unlike Sai's reports of himself, in this > regard. I think it's quite likely that conlangers divide (to a pronounced > but not exhaustive extent) into (a) artlangers with a great interest in > multifarious natlangs, in language typology, and so forth, and with large > and well-thumbed collections of reference grammars,
Yes. Most artlangers (but not all of them, in fact, the line between "artlangs" and "engelangs" is a blurry one) seek to build languages that resemble natlangs and at the same time are different from their native language. Hence, they develop an interest in multifarious natlangs, language typology, historical linguistics etc. At least, this is my impression, and definitely true with regard to myself.
> and (b) engelangers > whose interests in linguistics would tend to be abstracted from the > specifics of particular languages.
This may also be true. Because their languages are unlike any natlangs anyway, it doesn't really matter to engelangers what other natlangs are like. To them, the kind of "concrete" descriptive linguistics pursued by artlangers is less useful than more abstract pursuits of semantics, pragmatics, etc.
> I note this not with any intention of making value judgements, but simply > out of interest in the conlanger landscape -- out of interest, as it were, > in why everybody who is here is here.
Yes. And it matches my observations. ... brought to you by the Weeping Elf