September 23rd, 2007

tsuki no usagi

something Turkic (perhaps)

Hi! It's me again, and it's again about Futurama :)

Watch this tiny excerpt from one episode as shown on Ukrainian TV (dubbed in Ukrainian language).
Here, however, Leela speaks some other language (as she's probably being shot for a foreign commercial). Judging from the context, it must be Kazakh and it really sounds Turkic. If anyone can make anything out please tell: is it really Kazakh or any other language or is it just gibberish mess?

Thanks in advance.
pixelated moi
  • tisoi

nh as ng?

A friend sent me a YouTube link of a Portuguese rapper from the Azores singing a song titled Tu és uma gallinha.

It sounds like he's pronouncing the nh as [ŋ] (ng). Is it just me or is it some quirk of his accent? He also does the same with the nh in fofinha but the ones in cozinha and amanhar sound like as I normally hear it, as [ɲ].

I've heard this kind of pronunciation years ago, on a Pimsleur course recording.

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kudzu

Challenges for ESL/EFL Learners (and/or Teachers)

I'm sure this has been asked before, but it wasn't in the memories, and I don't have the time to go through past entries.

What are some of the biggest challenges for ESL/EFL learners? Language specific is probably best, but generalizations would work, too, I suppose. Whether you yourself have learned ESL or EFL, you've taught ESL/EFL, or you just know a lot about these challenges, any information would be great. I am particularly interested in Japanese speakers learning English, as I'm learning Japanese and planning on doing the JET program in a few years. Other languages heavy in the U.S., like Spanish, would also be good.

I'm having to choose a topic for a linguistics research paper this week, and since I'm interested in teaching ESL/EFL one day, I thought that looking into that might be good idea. If I could write only about Japanese English learners, I would, but I've already done a lot of research and haven't found much. So, I'll probably focus on a few different languages.

Also, if anyone knows of any informative books, websites, or journals, on this topic, I would love to know about them. I need to find some more academic resources, and my school's library seems to be a bit lacking.
pentacle
  • dadi

German animals are hotter than others?

Not for the first time, I have noticed that, in German, there exists a different term for the English "in heat" for many species of animals.. to name just a few, if a cow is in heat she is "rindrig", a horse is "rossig", a cat is "rollig" and a dog is "läufig".

None of the other languages I know has this specific feature.. in Italian for example animals are all simply "in calore", in Romanian they are "în călduri" etc.

I wonder if a)there are such specific terms maybe in local dialects in particularly agricultural regions and b)this means that in German for some reason communication of the fertile status of specific animals used for protection, nutrition and transport were more important than elsewhere? These terms are also rarely, if ever, used in an out-of-context fashion, as sometimes happens in other languages regarding the sexuality of animals (in Italian for example, "in calore" is quite often used for humans with intense sexual appetites, even if originally it refers only to animals).
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    contemplative contemplative
geisha

Why is there a random French quote in this book!

At least I'm assuming it's French. I think the most annoying part is that I was laying in bed reading this book and I'm down to the last 5 pages and he sticks a untranslated quote in here now.

La prépondérance de la linguistique a conduit á des situations surprenantes: les archéologues utilisent les conclusions des linguistes pour asseoir leurs inférences sur la culture materielle, et les linguistes partent des conclusions des archéologues pour attester l'existence de locuteurs d'une quelconque sous-famille ou rameau bantu dans un secteur géographique.

It's credited to Vansina and it's about the Bantu language family in Africa. Now I'm going back to bed to finish the rest of the book. Thank you for your help.

Who/whom

An informal poll about modern usage of the objective case of the pronoun 'who'.

Some friends of mine, native speakers of American English, insist that conversational usage of 'whom' in as good as non-existent; unless in some frozen expressions, a native speaker will always use a 'who'. Other say that, as other ungrammatical usages, this indicates poor education. Some others claim that while substituting who for whom in some constructions, like in the beginning of a question, is not uncultured, in others a properly educated person would use 'whom'. I have also heard opinions that this depends on the age and origin of the speaker rather than on his or her cultural level.

So my question is to native speakers, not necessarily American: how do you personally feel about that and do you use 'whom' yourself?