Re: Non-linear / full-2d writing systems?
|From:||Ray Brown <ray.brown@...>|
|Date:||Saturday, May 7, 2005, 6:14|
On Friday, May 6, 2005, at 11:28 , Tim May wrote:
> ...................... What I meant
> to say is: if the human "language faculty" (however we choose to
> interpret that phrase) can operate not only in the realm of sounds and
> gestures of the vocal tract, but also in the realm of manual gestures,
> it may be able to operate in other realms also. It might, in
> principle, be possible for a child to acquire, under certain very
> peculiar circumstances, a written language as a first language. The
> graphemes of this language would not, at least in the mind of this
> child, have any relation to any spoken or signed form. The child's
> linguistic thought would operate in terms of these graphical units.
I imagine that this is precisely what would happen if communication was
made through such a medium with a profoundly deaf child from their
> We would then have a written form which was
> fundamentally a language in its own right, analogous to spoken or
> signed language rather than to its transcription.
> Do you agree that this is something that is imaginable?
Yes - see above :)
> To put it another way: I don't know how to define human language,
> exactly, but I know it when I see it. I agree that music and
> mathematical notation don't really count.
..tho at least one auxlang was designed using the notes of the tonic solfa,
namely Solresol, which for a time apparently had quite a following :)
> But since both spoken and
> signed language do count, I know that the medium of transmission is
> not fundamental to the definition. So I can imagine a written
> language that is no more a representation of spoken language than sign
Yep, tho written language from ancient Sumer & Egypt till the present day
has always been secondary to spoken language, it is possible to imagine a
graphic form of communication that is not dependent upon a spoken language.
Indeed, many over the past three centuries have tried to design just such.
Anything is possible in the fabulous Celtic twilight,
which is not so much a twilight of the gods
as of the reason." [JRRT, "English and Welsh" ]