Professor Sabine Mendes Moura, Dn. English Graduate Program 2/2012 English Language History applied to ELT: Basic Concepts
WHY SHOULD WE STUDY THE HISTORY OF THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE? WHY SHOULD WE USE OUR HISTORICAL KNOWLEDGE IN ENGLISH LANGUAGE TEACHING? WHY SHOULD OUR STUDENTS KNOW ABOUT THE HISTORICAL ASPECTS OF LANGUAGE (IN DIFFERENT EDUCATIONAL SETTINGS)? BASIC GUIDELINES FOR OUR STUDY
Prescriptive versus Descriptive Brazilian English Accent Video Spelling Dilemmas English spelling is historical, not alphabetical Masha Bell – “Understanding English Spelling” Debating...
A moth is not a moth in mother,Nor both in bother, broth in brother,And here is not a match for thereNor dear and fear for bear and pear(…)And cork and work and card and ward,And font and front and word and sword,And do and go and thwart and cart - Come, come, I've hardly made a start!A dreadful language? Man alive!I'd mastered it when I was five! Quoted by Vivian Cook and Melvin Bragg 2004,by Richard Krogh, in D Bolinger & D A Sears, Aspects of Language, 1981,and in Spelling Progress Bulletin March 1961, Brush up on your English.
When the English tongue we speak.Why is break not rhymed with freak?Will you tell me why it's trueWe say sew but likewise few?And the maker of the verse,Cannot rhyme his horse with worse?Beard is not the same as heardCord is different from word.Cow is cow but low is lowShoe is never rhymed with foe.Fromhttp://boingboing.net/2006/04/05/poems-showing-the-ab.html
We spell words such as knight or through in these ways because we maintain an old convention of spelling these words in their earliest forms (in Chaucer’s time, they would have been pronounced “k-nicht” and “throoch”). In Britain, the disparity between spelling and pronunciation can be even more extreme: a name such as (…)A city such as Worcester (pronounced “Wooster”) preserves the remnants of an Old English form: originally, Wigoraceaster (ceaster, originally from Latin, castrum, meaning a fort or a town; Wigora referring to a clan or tribe in ancient England: hence, the town of the Wigors). Lerer (2007)
(BAUGH AND CABLE, 2002) Assets: inflectional simplicity – loss of pratically all personal endings, abandonment of almost any distinction between singular and plural, gradual discard of the subjunctive mode ( I wish I were...) Natural (rather the grammatical) gender – process during Middle English period – living creatures are masculine or feminine according to the sex of the individual, and all the other nouns are neutral. Main liability: lack of correlation between spelling and pronunciation. The advent of press (1475) and the creation of a postal system (1516) –standardization and study of the language spoken in London. Printed materials led to education, but it was all during the... Roosevelt (Simplified Spelling Board – Congress denied). English Spelling Reform Proposal
(Baugh and Cable, 2002) World language: “French is more loved, but less used”. English as the powerful Ugly Duckling (aesthetically inferior) Assets: tendency to go outside its own linguistic resources and borrow from other languages (cosmopolitan vocabulary assimilation). Examples: brandy, landscape, uproar (Dutch); umbrella, vocano (Italian); alligator, mosquito, vanilla (Spanish), paradise, check, chess (Persian).
Diachronic language studies lesson plan Hey Ho Lettera Sharing...
“It must be emphasized that this process of invention [of elven languages] was/is a private enterprise undertaken to give pleasure to myself by giving expression to my personal linguistic ‘aesthetic’, or taste, and its fluctuations. It was largely antecedent to the composing of legends and ‘histories’ in which these languages could be ‘realized’; and the bulk of the nomenclature is constructed from these pre-existing languages, and where the resulting names have analyzable meanings (as is usual) these are relevant solely to the fiction with which they are integrated.” [Letters of J.R.R. Tolkien (1981) p.380]
Styrash Example From: http://santharia.com/languages/styrash/styrash.htm
PRONUNCIATION/GRAMMARMAIN PRINCIPLES - STYROSH Styráshgrammar is based on Latin. This includes the complex forms of declinations, conjugations as well as special cases like the vocative or the ablative. The german pronunciation scheme is the main basis for the construction of elven pronunciation. However, there are different elven tribes which have different pronunciations. The letter è is pronounced as ö (as in german "öffnen") or as oe (as in French "oeuvre"). The elven language has two genders: feminine and masculine, the characteristic existential nature of a certain thing discerns its grammatical gender. In general the feminine gender is associated with the vowels A, I and the masculine gender with the vowels O and U. There are no unpersonal subjects in the elven language (it, man). So if an elf wants to express that it's raining he'd say (translated) "the sky gives water" or if it's dark he'd say "the sky negates color". Very often elves speak in community-terms, replacing I (iú) with we (iuí). This is no majestetic plural (as human kings tend to speak) but a plural of community, expressing commonly shared feelings between the elves.
(Baugh & Cable, 2002) “The diversity of cultures that find expression in it is a reminder that the history of English is a story of cultures in contact during the past 1.500 years” English entered England in 5th, but the island had been inhabited for at least 50,000 years. Celtic languages – Gaelic and Brythonic branch – entered the island during the Bronze age. Latin was spoken for a period of four centuries (invasion under Claudius AD 43)
AD 449 – beginning of the Germanic tribes invasion – Jutes, Saxons and Angles – Anglo-Saxon civilization. Early Latin writers, following Celtic tradition, called them Saxons and their land Saxonia. After the recognition of the king by Pope Gregory (601) Angli and Anglia. Their language was always Englisc (derived from Angles in OE Engle, but used to describe the language of all invading tribes. Anglecynn (Angles-kin) – Englaland – England and English. Middle English (1066)– William, the conqueror (the duke of Normandy) brings dialectal forms of French.
British Empire/ North-American Empire – cultural, political and economic influences. Regional varieties: “Indian English, Caribbean English, West African English, etc.” Growth and decay: in Shakespeare, nice meant “foolish” and rheumatism meant “a cold in the head”. Phonetic and synthatic alterations through analogy – Great Vowel Shift (1450-1750) This means that the vowel in the English word date was in Middle English pronounced similar to modern dart; the vowel in feet was similar to modern fate; the vowel in wipe was similar to modern weep; the vowel in boot was similar to modern boat; and the vowel in house was similar to modern whose.
Concepts of culture (Culture and culture) Hegemony (Gramsci) Language Sharing... The sociolinguistic perspective and lesson planning. CULTURE, HEGEMONY AND LANGUAGE
Many states in the world have more than one official language. This may simply reflect the existence of well defined groups speaking different languages, often including minority groups near borders, and in many such cases the use of multiple languages is unproblematic. However in some cases the issue of which language is to be used in what contexts is a major political issue, with the rights of particular language groups a constant source of political friction. Only these latter cases are listed here. More than a question about language per se, such frictions generally illustrate the uneasy cohabitation of different cultural communities, sometimes with different ethnic origins. This is especially the case if one community dominates, or used to dominate, the other (better economical situation, control of government, etc.). List of states where language is a political issue (from wikipedia)
List of states where language is a political issue (from wikipedia) • Assessments of gravity • Serious - language is a major organizing principle of the state's politics, and language disputes persistently threaten the unity of the state and/or involve violent protest or terrorist action • Moderate - language disputes regularly arise, but are currently contained • Minor - language issues are the concern of a small minority of the population (though those people may take them very seriously.)
List of states where language is a political issue (from wikipedia) • Algeria (Arabic and Berber): moderate to serious • Azerbaijan (Azerbaijani, Talysh, and Tat): serious • Bahrain (Arabic and Persian): serious • Belarus (Russian and Belarusian): serious • Belgium (Dutch and French): moderate to serious • Wallonia (French and Walloon): minor • German-speaking community of Belgium (French and German): moderate • Cameroon (English and French): moderate to serious • Canada (English and French, particularly in Quebec; also, to varying degrees, English and Aboriginal languages): moderate to serious • China, People's Republic of (Chinese and various local languages): minor • China, Republic of (Mandarin Chinese, Taiwanese Chinese, and to some extent Hakka Chinese): minor • Cyprus (Greek and Turkish): serious • Egypt (Masri and Arabic): moderate • Estonia (Estonian and Russian): serious • Finland (Finnish and Swedish): minor to moderate, see mandatory Swedish • France (French, Basque, Breton, Catalan, Franco-Provençal, Flemish, Alsatian and Italian), minor except Basque Country and Corsica: moderate
List of states where language is a political issue (from wikipedia) • Greece (varieties of Modern Greek): solved after 1975 • India (English and Hindi, Hindi and local language in some states): moderate • Indonesia (Bahasa Indonesia and various native languages): serious • Iraq (Arabic and Kurdish): serious • Iran (Persian, Azerbaijani, and Kurdish): serious • Italy (French in Aosta Valley and Friulian in Friuli-Venezia Giulia): minor; (Valdôtain in Aosta Valley, German in Trentino-South Tyrol, and Slovenian in Trieste): moderate • Ireland (English and Irish): minor • Kazakhstan (Kazakh and Russian): serious • Latvia (Latvian and Russian): serious • Macedonia (Macedonian and Albanian): serious • Malaysia: (Malay, Mandarin and English): moderate • Moldova (Russian, Moldovan, and Romanian): serious (ironically, part of the issue is whether Moldovan is the same language as Romanian) • Morocco (Arabic and Berber): moderate • Netherlands (Dutch, Frisian): minor • New Zealand (English, Maori and NZ Sign Language): minor to moderate • Norway (Bokmål, Nynorsk, Sami and Finnish/Kven): minor to moderate
List of states where language is a political issue (from wikipedia) • Pakistan (Issue among the official language Urdu, the most common language Punjabi and regional languages such as Sindhi): moderate • Philippines (Filipino based on Tagalog and English ): moderate. (English and Spanish: serious in past, now very minor, Cebuano native speakers resist Tagalog). See Languages of the Philippines • Romania (Romanian and Hungarian): minor • Serbia and Montenegro (Serbian, Albanian, Hungarian, Bosnian, Montenegrin): serious • Slovakia (Slovakian, Hungarian and Romani): moderate • South Africa (English, Afrikaans, Zulu, Xhosa and seven smaller Bantu languages): minor to moderate. • Spain (Basque, Catalan, Galician and Spanish): serious. Aranese, Asturian, Basque, Catalan and Galician are co-official in certain regions. (Catalan and Valencian): serious). • Sri Lanka (Sinhalese and Tamil): serious • Syria (Arabic and Kurdish): serious • Sweden (regionally Swedish and Meänkieli/Finnish): minor • Switzerland (regionally French and German): minor • Taiwan - See "China, Republic of"
List of states where language is a political issue (from wikipedia) • East Timor (Tetum and Portuguese in relation to Indonesian): moderate. Indonesian and English are considered working languages. • Turkey (Turkish, Kurdish, and Laz): serious • Ukraine (Russian and Ukrainian): moderate • United Kingdom • England (English, Cornish): minor • Northern Ireland (English, Ulster Scots, Irish Gaelic): minor to moderate. Irish Gaelic and Scots were officially recognised as regional or minority languages in 2001, when the UK ratified the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. Under the Good Friday Agreement, and subsequent legislation, both Irish Gaelic and Scots have cross-border, state-funded language boards. • Scotland (English, Scottish Gaelic, Scots): minor. Some Gaelic language service provision was guaranteed by statute in 2005. Scots and Scottish Gaelic were officially recognised as regional or minority languages in 2001, when the UK ratified the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages. • Wales (English and Welsh in Wales): minor to moderate. Welsh is a national language and can be a medium of instruction within Wales.
List of states where language is a political issue (from wikipedia) • United States (English and Spanish; also English alongside Hawaiian (in Hawaii), French (in Louisiana), and various Native American languages (on Indian reservations): minor to moderate (see also Spanish in the United States) • Uzbekistan (Uzbek, Persian, and Russian): serious