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CONLANG  June 2004, Week 3

CONLANG June 2004, Week 3

Subject:

Re: an accidental conlang

From:

Rik Roots <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Sat, 19 Jun 2004 10:16:03 +0100

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On Wednesday 16 Jun 2004 22:44, David Peterson wrote:

> You might be interested
> in taking a look at the online write-up I did (or am still doing.   I
> need to finish it) of the two pidginization experiments I ran at
> Berkeley.   The url is:
>
> http://dedalvs.free.fr/wasabi.html
>
> -David
>
What an interesting experiment!

Just a couple of thoughts I'd like to throw into the pot:

- I'm not sure about your conclusion II (all the students have to learn the
wordlist). Maybe an adaption to the experiment would be to come up with 600
words, but supply the students with a common core of 100 words and then
randomly select another 100 words so that each student only has 200 words to
learn at the start of the experiment. This might encourage interaction when
they are set some of the early group tasks (such as "describe what is
happening in this cartoon picture"), and also make the word learning process
a bit more interesting. It would also allow some measurements for the end of
the course (how many words had each student learned? How did they learn words
not on their lists? etc).

- One thing that interests me is word compounding. Rather than go for 600
"essential" words, another option might be to go for 200 essentials and 400
"imagistic" words, or perhaps provide each word with a range of closely
related meanings which don't map exactly with the bulk of the student's L1.
(fairly sure that's going to sound incomprehensible to anyone reading it,
apologies!) For instance, the word list does not include any word for modern
vehicles or mass transport systems, but the cartoons to be described clearly
show a car or a train, which means the students would need to think of using
the words they do have to describe something new.

Anyways, you can see your experiment got me thinking furiously. Thank you for
pointing me in the direction of your write-up!

Rik

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