Theiling Online    Sitemap    Conlang Mailing List HQ   

aesthetics & subjectivity (was: RE: [CONLANG] Fave Conlangs WAS: Silindion

From:And Rosta <a.rosta@...>
Date:Wednesday, March 27, 2002, 3:21
> Surely the point is that all this stuff on this thread and the > 'beautifullest phonology' one is a bit pointless in that whether individual > sounds are 'beautiful', 'aesthetic' or whatever *is* purely subjective.
Yes and no. As I've said before, our aesthetic responses to pretty much anything show a great deal of intersubjective agreement (e.g. get people to list favourite songs, films, novels, poems, or whatever, and the results are highly correlated). Even where people's *favourites* can't be predicted -- as with, say, favourite colours -- people still agree in their aesthetic responses to colours (how cool, warm, soothing, exciting, etc. they are). Our responses to phones are similar, and people's taste in phones and taste in colour schemes alike are interesting and revealing.
> In any case, we don't speak in a sequence of discrete sounds; it's the > overall effect that makes one language sound more or less melifluous than > another. And that has as much to do with intonation and other > suprasegmental features as it does with the mere phonemes.
Definitely true. I love Vietnamese on the page, but find it ghastly in actuality on the ears. And the exquisite pleasure of French is entirely in the prosody. --And.


Raymond Brown <ray.brown@...>aesthetics & subjectivity (was: RE: [CONLANG] Fave Conlangs