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how you define your opinion about language?

+2 votes
Although this question involves and is related to the issue of the word as a language, is not limited to that. My position on the use of means such Esperanto is in no way associated with the chimera of the subsequent widespread use of an auxiliary language, but I find desirable the possibility of an option tending in form, content and experience toward anarchy.
 I have referred to Esperanto because personally it is the only alternative to non-historical language that I experienced with some continuity, but I hate his historicist trace (a sort of selective multiculturalism that permeates his lexicon), its initial claims and inheritance that it entails, and I abhor, of course, Esperantist alienation. On the other hand, the Lojban language shares some handicaps with Esperanto, and though is based on an interesting notion (the search for new forms of interaction of language/mind) it is shittly carried out with a lack of imagination to which I would face so obstinately as I do with the current, because it uses propositional logic as a kind of grammar.

 I understand that the search for a new communication paradigm is as old as communication itself, but is an issue that stimulates my imagination every day, so I ask your help, either with your opinion, recommended readings or/and critics of what I have just pointed.


Aunque esta pregunta implique y esté relacionada con el asunto de la palabra como idioma, no se ciñe a eso. Mi posición con respecto a la utilización de medios como el Esperanto no está de ninguna manera asociada a la quimera de la utilización generalizada (y mucho menos generalizada  aunque fuese solo dentro de una militancia anarquista) de un idioma auxiliar, pero me parece deseable la posibilidad de una opción que tienda en forma, contenido y experiencia hacia la anarquía.
 Me he referido al esperanto porque personalmente es la única alternativa a los idiomas no históricos que he experienciado con cierta continuidad, pero detesto su traza historicista (esa especie de multi-culturalidad selectiva que impregna su léxico), sus pretensiones iniciales y la herencia que eso conlleva, y detesto, cómo no, el alienamiento esperantista y conozco muy pocas personas con las que tener unas palabras al respecto que no estén afectadas por la sobre-especialización anarquista-esperantista. Por otro lado, el Lojban comparte algunos handicaps con el esperanto,  y está basado en una noción interesante (la búsqueda de nuevas formas de interacción de mente-lengua), pero resuelta de manera repugnante, porque usa lógica preposicional como una especie de gramática.
 Entiendo que la búsqueda de un nuevo paradigma comunicativo es tan antigua como la comunicación en sí, pero es algo que estimula y reta a mi imaginación diariamente, por eso os pido amistosamente ayuda, ya sea con vuestra opinión, lecturas recomendadas y críticas de lo brevemente dicho ahora.

[edited several times attempting minor corrections]
asked Oct 24, 2012 by κύων (340 points)
edited Oct 26, 2012 by κύων
oof! google translate!
I guess you said that because of my poor English collocation skill and the inclusion of the original Spanish text but I used a oald's copy in order to search specific words, so the bizarre tone of this kind of transliteration is my doing.

No thoughts on this?
On a second reading, it's very readable. :)  But, no, I have no thoughts. I am useless.

1 Answer

+3 votes
This might not be what you are looking for in an answer, but I do find questions around language very compelling, and am excited to see what others have to say (all puns about speech from here on out, funny or not,  fully intended) on this matter.

I don't have a lot of experience with languages outside of english; I took Japanese in middle and high school for a couple of years, but didn't really absorb it very well. I was extremely uninterested in learning vocabulary, but was fascinated by the differences between the structure of japanese and english, as well as how many japanese characters (especially kanji - the chinese-derivative characters) are based in large part on pictographic symbols.

Language is one of the ways that I came to anarchist thinking. Sort of. Over time I started to see and take an interest in the ways in which different languages represented the same things - for example the gendering of different nouns and conjugates in japanese and spanish (which, to my chagrin, I still don't speak), and how that was informed by, and informed, cultures where that was the dominant language. From there, I started questioning what the implications were for me as an english speaker, which led to a revisiting of Orwell's 1984 to examine newspeak and some explorations of how Hitler and the Soviet Union used language to their ends. By the end I had concluded that language shaped our perceptions of the world, generally in ways that perpetuated hierarchy and domination (not that I would've used that language to say that as a 21 year old punk rocker). I totally got stoked that Chomsky was a linguist, though I never really understood academic theories of linguistics very well.

Several years later, as a (pardon the term) self-identified anarchist, I read Zerzan's Origins essays (for example: http://theanarchistlibrary.org/library/john-zerzan-language-origin-and-meaning) and it brought me back to that initial foray into language as a form of domination. Although I don't fully agree with his conclusions, the idea of symbolic thought and communication as being a root of alienation has always resonated with me. More recently, I have been fascinated by the ways in which terms like political correctness are used to delegitimize confronting oppressive behavior, as well as how progressive and radical endeavors to address oppressive language manage to spawn further forms of hierarchy.

I don't know if we will ever find an unalienated method of communication (I'm not a believer in becoming telepathic post-linguistic hunter gatherers), but I do think that always examining how and why we say what we say is important.
answered Oct 25, 2012 by ingrate (23,670 points)
edited Oct 31, 2012 by ingrate
suzette haydn elgin wrote some fun science fiction about language.
i wish she would write more. :(
more science fiction references FTW!
editing the answer to a question about language for clarity, typos, and generally shitty writing. HA!