Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

New book on conlangs out

From:Thomas R. Wier <trwier@...>
Date:Friday, July 23, 2004, 1:15
Hi all.  I was looking up some information on the LINCOM Europa
website, and found something that might be of interest to our
community.  It says the book is in preparation; don't know if it's
already come out.  Not entirely sure I buy the claim about language
universals below, but nonetheless it'll be interesting to see.

LW24: A Priori Artificial Languages
Alan Libert
University of Newcastle

The best known artificial language is Esperanto. However, hundreds
of other artificial languages have been proposed, although some
have not progressed beyond the stage of sketches and few have seen
much actual use. Those which are not consciously based on natural
languages are called a priori languages. Such languages have been
less successful than artificial languages built with elements of
natural languages, such as Esperanto and Interlingua.

However, a priori languages are of considerable theoretical interest,
in particular from the point of view of language universals: if a
universal property holds even of languages created "from scratch",
then it can indeed be seen as a property of any (usable) human
language. Therefore, in the description of the grammars of several
a priori languages, particular attention will be given to whether
their features are in accord with proposed universals, of both the
Greenbergian and Chomskyan types.

After an introduction one chapter each will be devoted to phonetics/
phonology, writing systems, lexicon, morphology, syntax, and semantics.
The languages described include aUI, Babm, Fitusa, Loglan/Lojban,
and Suma. Most of these languages have received very little attention,
even from scholars studying artificial languages.

ISBN 3 89586 667 9.
Languages of the World 24.
DM 68 / USD 44 / £ 25. 2001/I.

Thomas Wier	       "I find it useful to meet my subjects personally,
Dept. of Linguistics    because our secret police don't get it right
University of Chicago   half the time." -- octogenarian Sheikh Zayed of
1010 E. 59th Street     Abu Dhabi, to a French reporter.
Chicago, IL 60637