Non native speaker?

Wed Oct 23 20:14:28 UTC 2002

I agree with Lesa Dill "it's easy, intentionally or not, to sound garbled,
illiterate and/or non-native." So what's the use of the native/non-native

Incidentally, I'd like to know what forensic linguists think of specimens
(freshman English, of course) such as the following. I did get an expert
opinion in 1985. But I would like a second opinion if anyone would care to
comment, even for fun. The basic syntax seems perfect.

"During the Middle Ages everybody was middle
aged.... After a revival of infantile commerce slowly creeped into
Europe, merchants appeared. They roamed from town to town expo-
sing themselves and organized big fairies in the countryside.... Finally
Europe caught the Black Death. It was spread from port to port by
inflected rats.... Theologically, Luther was into reorientation muta-
tion.... Great Brittian, the USA and other European countrys had
demicratic leanings. Among the goals of the chartists were universal
suferage and an anal parliament.... In 1937 Lenin revolted Russia.
Germany was displaced after WWL... War screeched to an end when a
nukuleer explosion was dropped on Heroshima. The last stage is us."
(Britannica 1984 Book of the Year)

T. M. Paikeday

----- Original Message -----
From: "Lesa Dill" <lesa.dill at WKU.EDU>
Sent: Wednesday, October 23, 2002 2:23 PM
Subject: Re: Non native speaker?

> The debate about the identity  of the sniper is being debated currently on
> Forensic Linguistics listserv.  There's quite an argument about whether
> person is native or non-native.  I'd have to agree with you and say
native.  I
> agree with your comments about the phrasing of the statement about our
> children being in danger.  It is stylistically well formed.  I also think
> easy, intentionally or not, to sound garbled, illiterate and/or
> Isn't the sound subsitution regular in Black English/Ebonics/African
> English?  What's PC in linguistics for that these days?  Certainly not the
> latter.
> Lesa
> Duane Campbell wrote:
> > According to published reports, the notes left by the sniper are in an
> > imperfect English indicating perhaps a non-native speaker. Yet the one
> > sentence they have released -- "Your children are not safe at any time
> > in any place." (from memory) -- strikes me as a very well crafted
> > sentence. Not just lucid and free from error, but stylish.
> >
> > Any forensic linguists on the list? Is there such a thing as a forensic
> > linguist?
> >
> > While I'm asking questions, Chief Moose (who is, incidentally, Dr.
> > replaces all of his "th" sounds with either a hard "D" (initial) or "F".
> > I have heard this from time to time, though usually not so pronounced,
> > including a classmate in 1950s rural Pennsylvania with a 100 percent
> > white school population. I had always assumed it was a minor speech
> > impediment (is there a new PC word for this?) or an ideomorph. Are there
> > dialects that include this shift?
> >
> > D

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