Re: Some myths answered
|From:||J Matthew Pearson <pearson@...>|
|Date:||Thursday, May 3, 2001, 19:01|
> Myth 1: There is no difference, or there is a largely indistinguishable
> difference between 'u' and 'y' in Uusisuom.
Nobody ever claimed there was, unless by "difference" you mean "(subjective)
> Answer: There IS a difference in these two vowel sounds. The 'u' is the same
> sound as in the English words 'pUt' and 'bOOk' and is transcribed as <U> in
> IPA. The 'y' is the same sound as in the English words 'bOOt' and 'whO' and
> is transcribed as <u>.
OK, so that business with French "lune" and Italian "punto" was a red herring.
So I guess that "Uusisuom" is pronounced [U:.si.sU.om]. Where does the stress
fall, by the way?
> Myth 2: Surely having two similar vowel sounds makes Uusisuom difficult to
> Answer: No. Uusisuom has been specially designed to make pronunciation
> relatively simple, with practice and effort.
The key here is the last four words: "with practice and effort". What some
people on this list have been arguing is that an IAL should be designed in such
a way that the pronunciation requires as little practice and effort as
possible. Given that the difference between "y" and "u" is relatively rare
among the world's languages, that would supposedly make it difficult for people
to acquire the contrast if their native language does not have it.
Of course, if ease of pronunciation is not one of your goals, then there's no
> The 'y' sound is relatively
> rare anyway, and is employed mostly to indicate pronouns and the accusative
> (seeing as there is no object case in Uusisuom).
I'm not sure what this means. The accusative *is* an object case.