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CONLANG  April 2005, Week 1

CONLANG April 2005, Week 1

Subject:

Re: Advanced English to become official!

From:

Christian Thalmann <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

Constructed Languages List <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Sun, 3 Apr 2005 00:20:10 -0000

Content-Type:

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--- In [log in to unmask], "Pascal A. Kramm" <pkramm@A...> wrote:

> Well, then go and create your own spelling reform, rather than talking
> someone else's work bad just because he's a "German".

Sheesh, as if there hadn't been enough reform proposals
already. Heck, even I've done two of those in my early
conlang days.

I'll have to agree with the general opinion that the
proposed spelling is suboptimal for the needs of the
English language. You neglect several important phonemic
distinctions, and some choices (like |ei eu| for [ai oi])
appear to have no other motivation than to make it look
like German. In this light, the name "Advanced English"
even seems to suggest that advanced = German.

What would you think if somebody made a German spelling
reform abolishing all umlauts and writing ch's as k's,
since foreigners tend to mispronounce them anyway, and
maybe spell /ai au S v/ as |ij ou sh v|, and have the
nerve to call it "Advanced German"? Vie vurde dir das
gefallen?

Your ideas certainly have a certain appeal as a thought
experiment, e.g. for a fictional alternate-history story
setting where the Germans won WWII and "Germanized" the
English world. If you want it to be fit for real-world
English, it needs more work. And a more modest attitude
wouldn't hurt either.


-- Christian Thalmann


PS: The most realistic English spelling reform (and I do
    agree that one is due) that I've heard proposed so
    far is to assign exactly one (the most common)
    pronunciation to each English grapheme, and
    regularize only those words which deviate. For
    example, |ea| would stand for [i:], so beard, hear,
    mean, read etc would all retain their spelling, but
    heart and head would become hart and hed. This way,
    English would still feel like English to the native
    speakers, and the reform would be much more likely
    to be accepted.

    Is there a website with an explicit "master plan"
    for this concept? If not, I'd be tempted to write up
    such a plan. Maybe with the help of a dedicated
    Yahoo!Group?

    Argh... please stop me before I fall for the
    auxlanger syndrome. ;o)

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