Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
h a l f b a k e r y
0.5 and holding.

idea: add, search, annotate, link, view, overview, recent, by name, random

meta: news, help, about, links, report a problem

account: browse anonymously, or get an account and write.



International Language

Speak everyones language!
  (+1, -3)
(+1, -3)
  [vote for,

When you go abroad i am sure everyone will agree that they feel out of place if they can't speak the lingo. Well if countries can merge into a eupopean union, why don't we have an international union. Where one language is spoken everywhere in the world. That way all confusion with communication will be abolished!
Turkish, Jan 12 2002

doing ravenswood's work for him in his absence http://www.geocitie...um/5037/yindex.html
esperanto [po, Jan 12 2002, last modified Oct 04 2004]

Lojban http://www.lojban.o...ductory+Brochure&bl
Lojban is a constructed language. It was originally called Loglan by project founder Dr. James Cooke Brown, who started the language development in 1955. Loglan/Lojban has been built over four decades by dozens of workers and hundreds of supporters, led since 1987 by The Logical Language Group. [zen_tom, Apr 09 2006]


       As Po says, 'baked'. Esperanto was intended to be just this.
StarChaser, Jan 12 2002

       shneeeeeeeeeeowng how about sound effects?
technobadger, Jan 12 2002

       Baked. It's called English. It's becoming more and more dominant all the time.   

       I think it makes up something like 80% of the written word and growing. Other languages go extinct every year.
seal, Jan 12 2002

       <sound effect>shneeeeeeeeeeowng</sound effect>

Sex is The International Language
*waits for larch*
thumbwax, Jan 12 2002

       1. The countries merged into a European Union have not given up their languages, and don't plan to do so in the near future. (One of them is France.) Most countries have at least a few different dialects; there are many countries where many completely different languages are spoken, and have been spoken for a long time.   

       2. Once everybody speaks the same language, you'll feel out of place because you don't wear the same clothes, watch the same shows, believe in the same things, drive on the same side. Once you've fixed all that, why bother to travel?   

       More directly, communication is nice, but maybe there is something about having many different approaches to something coexist that is worthwhile, too. Every language is an experiment about how to speak. By abandoning all languages but one, you're giving up that experimentation.   

       3. People make their languages different in order to create separate societies where they can try out different sets of social rules. By speaking the language, someone proves that they have spent a lot of time in that society and will follow the same rules as the other speakers. I believe that if you stopped the world and reprogrammed every person in the whole world to speak exactly the same language, differences would soon appear and eventually evolve into completely different languages.
jutta, Jan 12 2002

       'Making the French swallow a toad each morning before breakfast sounds like an excellent idea'
After all, they eat parts of them already.
angel, Jan 15 2002

       I think it is possible to live in an "international space" consisting of air ports, five star hotels and other enclaves in almost every country but beyond that you have to experience local culture beyond that found for sale in gift shops or recreated in Disney theme parks. However to travel properly you really have to participate in other people's cultures. I don't want to travel to another European country to see something that has been homogenised, instead I want to see a country with a history and culture as rich as the UK.   

       A good example of this is Manga comics in France. Before a while back the main source of Japanese Manga comics was through America where they generally had been edited for sex, violence and the downplaying of "alien" cultural elements. This lead to Manga being considered to be very poor comics by the comic-loving French until the practise of direct importation and translation from Japan was adopted.   

       We need those seperate linguist pools to maintain variety and to maintain human creativity.
Aristotle, Jan 15 2002

       //People make their languages different in order to create separate societies//   

       //language drifts with time, and consequently geographical separations have generally led to separate languages//   

       Chicken and egg. Linguistic diversity goes hand in hand with cultural isolation, just as cultural diversity goes hand in hand with linguistic isolation.   

       Anyhoo, it's all but impossible to make any meaningful distinction between regional dialect and *national* language so it's arguable that we already have a common language, just divided into countlesss dialects that are more or less 'authorised'. On the other hand, it's also all but impossible to make any meaningful distinction between regional dialect and local / subcultural idiom ('Baked', 'A big pile of pants', 'redneck', 'ned', 'jakie', 'tired and emotional' 'space cadet'), so we'll _never_ have a common language, just a bunch of people yammering at each other with their own constantly changing personal vocabulary and grammar which, fortunately, has enough overlap with enough like-minded others for them to get by in the world.   

       English is shaping up to be the winner as *International Standardised Authorised Dialect* just because it's the best at reflecting the dynamic nature of language, stealing from all over the place, constantly generating new words and idioms (I've always rather thought of it as a creole, a bodged-together Anglo-Saxon-Norse-Norman tongue of trade, rather than a *proper* language... but that may just be to annoy pedants). In the end, I suspect, there will be more French words in the English language than there are speakers of French. Of course, by then, there may be so many words of Spanish in English that we won't even call it English anymore.   

       Ciao, baby, as they say.
Guy Fox, Jan 15 2002

       jutta, I've just revisited your Paragraph 3 and remark to PS....Does that mean that you think we are "meant" to misunderstand one another, in even the best of circumstances? ..... "Meant" may imply a higher order that neither you nor I intend....Is "bound" a better word? I truly suspect that the linguistic and semantic origins of "English", in all its many forms, accents, and dialects, may prove your point, but I'm interested in your reasoning.
jurist, Jan 15 2002

       And, Guy, before you get too puffed up with the importance English has in World Affairs, I was reminded in a recent e-mail that less than 10% of the world's population speaks (let alone, understands) any version of English, and fewer than 30% are actually literate in ANY language...which, may, in the endgame, make all our musings a moot point.
jurist, Jan 15 2002

       Obligatory <theological necromancy>Tower of Babel/Babble</theological necromancy> Post
thumbwax, Jan 15 2002

       I wouldn't say "puffed up", jurist. I'm not a huge fan or proponent of English (like GTR says, bit of an imperialism issue for us Celts), just interested in the idea that if we end up with any form of International Language, it's likely to evolve out of this sort of bastard slut of a mongrel tongue. And, like Latin amongst scholars of the Middle Ages, it may well be *international* but not exactly "universal". Anyhow, it'll be interesting to see how things pan out over the next few decades for the Big Players - English, Japanese, German, Spanish, etc.. Never know, we might all end up speaking like Gant in BladeRunner.   

       BTW, a friend of mine is actually working on evolutionary models for linguistic diversity (from an A-Life perspective) as his PhD. Interesting stuff. There's a lot of different opinions over whether evolutionary benefits are even required for linguistic 'speciation' to occur; diversity may well just be a feature built into language at the most basic level, not actually 'selected for' by any particular pressure or set of pressures.
Guy Fox, Jan 15 2002

       I'm all for improving the ability of all people to communicate with each other, but I sometimes think that the extinction of a language is a greater loss than the extinction of a species.   

       Not that it's true, necessarily, but I think it sometimes.
beauxeault, Jan 15 2002

       Agreed, beaux. However, nearly every Sci-fi book (okay, not really, just some of the few that I've read) has a "Common" language that is taught and spoken in all schools. That way, everyone gets to keep their traditional language, but they have a way to communicate with anyone else. Not that everyone attends school these days, of course, but still.
Galileo, Jan 21 2002

       The problem with esperanto is it had no cultural base, so no-one felt "cool" using it or knew their target listeners. In fact, English grammar is remarkably simple compared to others, and is one reason why it became so popular in the first place. In Europe, Germans do business with the Spanish etc, and simplify the pronunciation to do so, thus creating an artificial "Inglish" that many native's wouldn't understand.
git, Jun 06 2003

       //The problem with esperanto is it had no cultural base, so no-one felt "cool" using it or knew their target listeners.//   

       I disagree. At least among the youth that speak Esperanto the prevelent "culture" is akin to the freelove movement, at least from my experience. (Two universal languages in one). That and a satisfaction of wanderlust.
oinonio, May 04 2004


back: main index

business  computer  culture  fashion  food  halfbakery  home  other  product  public  science  sport  vehicle