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Re: fictional worlds

From:H. S. Teoh <hsteoh@...>
Date:Thursday, August 8, 2002, 13:48
On Sun, Aug 04, 2002 at 04:37:58PM -0300, Santiago wrote:

> I have a question for you all... I'd like to know to what extent are the > cultures behind your conlangs absolutely fictional... I mean, what sort > of words you didn't include in your langs, because of referring to > human-made objects or concepts so closely related to human cultures that > they cannot exist in your fictional cultures...
Ebisedian is set in a remote culture in an alternate universe with different laws of physics and different physical structure. Although there are many similarities to the "real world", there are also many divergences, as participants in the last translation relay can attest to. :-) Many words in our world have no equivalent in the Ebisedian conworld, one prime example from the last relay being stars. (I won't go into length on this---search the list archives for ample discussion on this topic.)
> Have you thought of the physical appearance of your langs' speakers?
Yes, they are essentially human manifestations in the Ebisedian conworld. As such, they are quite human, although their interaction with this different universe has caused them to acquire other attributes, the most visible being the _krachui'_ [kraSu"?i], a shimmering kaleidoscopic field of energy that covers their body.
> My lang, Moesteskin (Moestesian would be in English) has a lot of > vocabulary relating to the latest (an not so late) technology > developments... Yes, words like "television", "computer"... what do you > think of that? It doesn't look original, does it?
Does it matter? It depends on what you want your conlang to be. Your conlang doesn't *have* to have a fictional setting, and there is nothing wrong with having a conlang that can be used for everyday conversation in the modern age.
> Should I do away with those terms, and try to create a whole culture > with their own objects and then name them with the lang?
It's your decision.
> Moesteskin actually was born as that, the language of a people of a > fictional world, but then I abandoned the idea of thinking so much about > the fictional context... Now I'm considering the issue...
[snip] If you don't want to think about the fictional context, there is nothing wrong with isolating the language from it. The case of Ebisedian is different, because it arose from the conworld I was creating instead of the other way round. T -- EMACS = full(y) crippled operating system