A language kept alive on life support, literally

Joel S. Berson Berson at ATT.NET
Sat Jan 19 19:16:45 UTC 2008

The following is a little bit like saying, "The Siberian tiger is
just another tiger."  Or, perhaps, "The giant panda is just another bear."


At 1/19/2008 01:56 PM, Dennis Baron wrote:
>Preservationists argue that when a language dies, a little bit of the
>world's culture dies with it. Yes, and every time a bell rings, an
>angel gets its wings. It's true that every tongue has its own way of
>putting "what's out there" into words, and studying the
>idiosyncrasies we find in the world's languages gives us some insight
>into the nature of language and its relation to culture and the mind.
>But to give each language its own lock on reality suggests that we
>live in multiple separate universes and denies the possibility of
>translation, not to mention tourism or climbing very high mountains
>with the help of Sherpa guides.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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