Ye@H-YeP! ambiguous fun in language! (was Re: The pitfall of Chinese/Mandarin
|From:||J Y S Czhang <czhang23@...>|
|Date:||Saturday, December 8, 2001, 7:57|
In a message dated 07.12.2001 06:12:09 PM, Patrick Dunn
(tb0pwd1@CORN.CSO.NIU.EDU) quotes poor, baffled Su Cheng Zhong and writes
>> Answer: I think every language has some where
>> ambiguous. It's better improve it, not leave it alone.
>> Su Cheng Zhong
>Why? Ambiguity is a good thing. It makes possible word play, which makes
>Take Chinese, for example. One of the most annoying things about Chinese
>is the writing system (at least, for those of us learning the langauge
>as a second or third language). Yet it's this very frustrating, illogical,
>seemingly random writing system that gives rise to much of the power of
>Chinese poetry, which is what -- for me -- makes the language worth
>Ambiguity in language is not a flaw, and all languages with ambiguities
>can avoid them if necessary. If you manage to remove ambiguity, you
>create a language incapable of playful poetry, and therefore -- to my
>mind, at least -- devoid of fun.
Took the words right outta my mouth & written much better than my
::bows to Patrick Dunn::
Points to possibly ponder:
1> If a language doesn't have "fun" and "playfulness" either built into
it somehow or latent in its ambiguity, how long will it last? I have always
felt that if a language is resistant to wordplay, neologisms and borrowings,
that language is possibly cutting it's own throat. (Also IMHO any language
that allows large numbers of neologistic words & compound words to be
copyrighted seems to me "less free" as well).
2> ConLangs that have high amounts of "fun" & "strangeness" seem to be
much more attractive to peeps - & not just us conlanging peeps - than
something totally cut-&-dried "logical" & "scientific."
Chaos is a strange attractor ;) esp'ly creative chaos... it can actually
help in the language-learning process to have odd lexical & grammatical &
even phonological "aberrations" - to have something for the mind to "toy"
with, or something for the mind to chew on, or spin... *gigglabyte* idioms
and metaphors (coming to think of it, IMHO certain auxlanger claims of
"scientific logic" or "mathematical precision" in their auxlangs are - in an
extended sense - idiomatic ... possibly rooted in a mainly elitist/educated
Eurocentric cultural viewpoint).
Patrick, can I quote this eventually on my website (when I have a
website)? You will have credit (& if you so desire a link to your website -
if you have one... I can't remember if you do or not).
czHANg, who had too much "fun" [ok, "mischief"] in AuxLang land to be
tolerated... & is simply glad to be here ::tip o' the hat to all on this
list, even the utterly-confused-&-confusing Su Cheng Zhong::