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Day: August 24, 2016
Why is linguistics considered a science?
Supplemental to the list given by David Rosson (ah, your American bias is showing, David 🙂 cc C (Selva) R.Selvakumar As Dmitriy Genzel points out, Historical Linguistics is an observational science, like Astronomy. A lot of hypothesis testing though. To add to Tibor Kiss’ list of German words, Linguistic Typology is a Versammelnde Wissenschaft: a […]
What’s the onomatopoeia for a computer?
Thing about onomatopoeias is, they get conventionalised and stick around, even if the referent no longer makes that sound. I mean this sound? This sound, the doot doot doot bloop bleep flurgh frump virrrr of a dial up modem? Hasn’t been heard in functional use for what, twenty years? And yet it is still used […]
What are the drawbacks to standardizing languages?
You lose linguistic diversity, as the dialects gradually die out, or at least are marginalised. You may not may not care about linguistic diversity, of course. You lose ways of saying things that are specific to non-standard dialects. Cretan dialect for example has a distinct word for “trickle”. (To my annoyance, I don’t remember it.) […]
Are there any sources from antiquity about the study and teaching of foreign languages?
The closest we have that I know of (and it’s really not very close at all) are the Pseudo-Dosithean Hermeneumata. They’re a third century AD Berlitz phrasebook of Greek and Latin. Nothing about language teaching methodology, and of course not much of a language teaching methodology is on display anyway. I did find the following […]