Route: English orthography vs phonetic/phonemic transcription

T. Hakala hakala at U.WASHINGTON.EDU
Mon Jul 1 16:10:12 UTC 2002

On Sun, 30 Jun 2002, Rudolph C Troike wrote:

>         In school today, and even as far back in the paleolithic as my own
> schooling, we studied -- and were required to study -- such complex
> abstract things as geometry, algebra, chemistry, and biology. No one has
> ever questioned these, so far as I know, but they are MUCH more abstract
> and complex than studying the phonology and grammar of our own language,
> which we have the advantage of already knowing. It is one of the great
> mysteries of our age as to why educators have kept, and continue to keep,
> us and our children and grandchildren in a state of ignorance (and worse,
> fear of knowledge) about our own language that would be comparable in
> science with still teaching that the earth is the center of the universe,
> and that the sun goes around the earth (of course there are a few who
> still believe this, but they do not dominate our educational system,
> fortunately). And why we continue to tolerate and condone the perpetuation
> of this situation is an even greater mystery.
>         Rudy

Indeed!  Here at the University of Washington, English Language Study is
not a required course -- not even for English majors.  Additionally, a
course entitled History of the English Language was most recently offered
as a "special topics" course.

Taryn Hakala

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