languages Re: [xmca] On being silent at XMCA

From: Tony Whitson <twhitson who-is-at UDel.Edu>
Date: Fri Sep 28 2007 - 07:40:10 PDT

Michael's post reminds me of one afternoon in 1973 when I was sitting in a
small cafe in Taibei, with a group of college-aged students standing next
to me. Apparently they came from from diverse Asian and Pacific countries
where they spoke different native languages, but they were conversing
fluently with each other in a form of English that was different from
anything I've heard spoken in any native English-speaking country, but
seemed like a very well-formed and linguistically "regular" form of
English in which they were all fluently conversant (and I would not have
   I expect that there is research literature on such phenomena, although I
am not informed about that.

On Fri, 28 Sep 2007, Wolff-Michael Roth wrote:

> Dear all,
> rather than thinking of English as the language of hegemony and cultural
> oppression, think of it as lingua franca, there is no other spoken as
> widely---Esperanto never has had wide impact.
> Then think of English as a MANY rather than as a one, and in this move to
> thinking of speaking Sabir, one of those merchant languages that mixes
> languages for the purposes at hand, shifting heterogeneity to an unfamiliar
> level, but doing nothing other than what happens at the heart of English---or
> French, Spanish, German, Russian.....
> Language and culture are mêlées, so don't worry about formalists and
> grammarians...
> Cheers,
> Michael

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Received on Fri Sep 28 07:48 PDT 2007

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