July 10th, 2009



Hi fellow Linguaphiles,

do you know any languages that distinguish between various sorts of the first person in plural i.e. we ?  I can think about several different ones but I never heard of a language whose grammar would distinguish between them:

1) WE = ME + YOU i.e. the person(s) I am talking to

2a) WE = ME + the persons on whose behalf I am speaking and who are present

2b) WE = ME + the persons on whose behalf I am speaking and who are absent

3) WE = ME + YOU + THEM

In languages that offer a variety of pronouns that are related to levels of formality/politeness some of the above distinction could be delivered between lines - but are there languages that can do the same by simply using separate personal pronouns?

Miles Prower

Turkish noun constructions.

In the following passage,

Bakanın Çin boykotu hükümetten döndü Hürriyet gazetesinin haberine göre, Sanayi ve Ticaret Bakanı Nihat Ergün, Yozgat'ta Çin malları için boykot çağrısı yaptı. Ancak kısa süre sonra danışmanı "Bakanın kendi görüşü. Hükümetin böyle bir kararı yok" dedi.

how do you translate the bold part? I can't work out whether it's a definite izafet Bakanın [Çin] boykotu or an indefinite Çin boykotu. Any ideas how I would be able to tell for future reference?

Thanks guys and gals.

Learning to hear accents in a language you are learning

How well do you think one has to know a language before being able to hear and place the accents within it? (The social, economic implications which one learns to attach to certain accents aside).

I would say my English accent placement for UK accents is fairly well developed - within London and for general swathes of the country (Welsh, Geordie, Black Country etc).

In Italian I can recognize that they are different, but cannot place it.
Same for Japanese.

Mandarin... well China is a different case of dialects ...

Haven't had a chance to hear French or German regional accents yet.

I could recognise a really obvious Russian accent in German... but probably not one that is intra-country.

What are your experiences?

English/Spanish Legal terms and ESL websites

I am an ESL tutor in Texas. I have two questions for you linguaphiles-

1- Next week I will be getting an intermediate- to advanced-level ESL student (a visiting Spanish-speaking lawyer) for a two-week custom class. I am wondering if anyone could recommend any resources I could use to help him work with his English-speaking clients. If you know of a website with Spanish/ English definitions of legal terms (or just English ones for that matter) I'd love to hear about them.

2- I have a special request for those of you in this community who are studying English; what websites do you use to help you learn English? What do you like about them?

Thanks, Yall!
  • tgies

French and German textbooks for sale

Here are some French and German textbooks from my collection that I don't need any more. These are all from the Concordia Language Villages immersion program and are pretty hard to come by elsewhere.

Sorry about the cell phone pictures; that's what I have to work with right now.

Collapse )

(no subject)

There's a store that sells crepes in central Osaka called "Client". The katakana underneath the letters shows the pronunciation クリアン (koo-ree-an). I'm wondering if this comes from a language other than English because 1) the English word doesn't have this pronunciation, and 2) the English word has nothing to do with crepes.

amy winehouse

Sign Language

If anyone experienced in American Sign Language and/or Special Olympics and Special Education could help me with these questions, I would be very grateful.

I am a long-time Special Olympics volunteer and coach. Sign language is sometimes used by athletes with poor hearing or especially pronounced speaking difficulties but I have never met an adult athlete fluent in sign language, only children.

I know very little sign language but am intrigued by the interpreters I have seen. It is typical at large events (such as the Summer State Games) for there to be a sign language interpreter who interprets the speakers at awards ceremonies and the opening and closing of games. Among college-age friends I have from Special Olympics, especially those studying to be Special Education teachers, sign language is commonly taken for foreign language credit.

I was wondering if anyone was aware of noticeable differences in MR individuals using American sign language as opposed to average intelligence deaf individuals? Also, what considerations do Special Ed teachers have to take in when speaking to MR students and what areas of speech do such individuals typically have difficulty with?