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Re: Lingustic Experiences (was: Phonation or Register Tones)

From:Matt Pearson <mpearson@...>
Date:Wednesday, January 27, 1999, 18:05
Herman Miller wrote:

>Kenji Schwarz wrote: > >>It would be sort of interesting -- though probably wouldn't demonstrate >>anything -- to find out how many people first came into conlanging through >>the influence of 'artlanging' (Tolkien, RPG stuff, etc) vs. 'auxlanging' >>(Esperanto, etc.). > >Or both at about the same time. My interest in Tolkien only predates my >interest in Esperanto by about a year or two.
Same here. I've known about Tolkien for most of my life. (Tried unsuccessfully to read the Lord of the Rings when I was 8 or 9; succeeded eight years later). I discovered Esperanto through a Mario Pei book when I was 12, I think. I don't remember when I first connected up Tolkien with invented languages. Probably when I discovered the Eldarin vocabulary list at the back of the Silmarillion. But it was Esperanto, I think, which first suggested the viability of conlanging to me - interesting, since I subsequently became an artlanger, and now have little or no interest in Esperanto or its cousins... I started my first ambitious conlang project when I was about 13, I think. It was, of course, a relexification of English. Greater sophistication came later, when I started taking German in school, and began learning about linguistic diversity from Mario Pei and other 'popular' writers, and from reading teach yourself grammars. But it was only after I started encountering other artlang projects (Klingon, Laadan, Yilane, Kesh) that the conlanging bug really took off. It was that wave of enthusiasm that eventually propelled me into linguistics, where I remain today. (Did I tell you guys I'm doing job interviews and guest lectures at MIT next month? And me with my dissertation less than half finished. I'm VERY nervous...) Matt. ------------------------------------ Matt Pearson UCLA Linguistics Department 405 Hilgard Avenue Los Angeles, CA 90095-1543 ------------------------------------