The Magic Café
Username:
Password:
[ Lost Password ]
  [ Forgot Username ]
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Not very magical, still... » » Take Ten People (0 Likes) Printer Friendly Version

Partizan
View Profile
Inner circle
London UK
1682 Posts

Profile of Partizan
Take Ten People with different languages and place them in an isolated environment for a year (like an extended big brother), would one language become dominant or would a hybrid language evolve?
"You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus."
- Mark Twain
RandyStewart
View Profile
Inner circle
Texas (USA)
1990 Posts

Profile of RandyStewart
English is quite universal and might be exercised above and beyond others. I'd say if one of the ten were to become dominant it would be English.

Believe it....or not....

Even if all ten were willing to create a hybrid language, they might find themselves doing so with bits of English among them.
paisa23
View Profile
Inner circle
7294 Posts

Profile of paisa23
This sounds like the 13th Warrior. with Antonio Banderas but I think that would be a good reality show. of course with subtitles for us.
Partizan
View Profile
Inner circle
London UK
1682 Posts

Profile of Partizan
Let us imagine that the people selected know only their own language and that no english speaker is involved unless the others know no english.
"You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus."
- Mark Twain
Patrick Differ
View Profile
Inner circle
1540 Posts

Profile of Patrick Differ
Would a lot depend on the participants personality types? What if you had only one A-Type personality? I'm thinking this would be the most important consideration.
Will you walk into my parlour? said the Spider to the Fly,
Tis the prettiest little parlour that ever you did spy;
The way into my parlour is up a winding stair,
And I've a many curious things to show when you are there.

Oh no, no, said the little Fly, to ask me is in vain,
For who goes up your winding stair
-can ne'er come down again.
Partizan
View Profile
Inner circle
London UK
1682 Posts

Profile of Partizan
But how would an A-type communicate. An A-type is only this type while they can express themselves is this way.

The group dynamics should be diverse, as is humankind. This may create some spicy hybrid tounges.
"You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus."
- Mark Twain
Alym Amlani
View Profile
Inner circle
Canada
1465 Posts

Profile of Alym Amlani
You would get what's known as a pidgin language: see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pidgin.
Logic Defied
Partizan
View Profile
Inner circle
London UK
1682 Posts

Profile of Partizan
Or would you?

Lets ask how a language can become pigin'd when only one person in the group speaks it?

As I understand, it takes a consensual agreement on the definition of a word. If noone understands your definition then any word you speak can have any meaning.
"You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus."
- Mark Twain
Alym Amlani
View Profile
Inner circle
Canada
1465 Posts

Profile of Alym Amlani
You're right; people would have to agree on the definition of a word. But if I point to a rabbit walking down the street and say "gavagai" and you acknowledge what I'm refering to then you and I would now have the common understanding that the word gavagi references the rabbit; in case you're wondering though, innate grammar assumes a whole object assumption so you likely would know/assume I was referring to the rabbit and not the speed with which it was moving (for example).

Thus, although you need consensual agreement on the definition of a word as time progresses, some people in the group would adopt the nouns of other languages and as time progressed it would be akin to having 10 words for the same thing and they'd pick the easiest one. Now carry this on for a very long time and people would start using the commonly accepted word for different nouns until you had a vast blend of all the languages - a rudimentary pidgin with limited grammatical structure. If this group then subsequently procreated, you'd likely develop what is known as a Creole - a more sophisticated, grammatically advanced language.

The second point about personality types also does come into play - the more dominant personalities would probably affect the development of common nouns moreso than the less vocal people in the group...

If you are truly interested in this stuff there are some very good books on psycholinguistics and such that would be very interesting to you!
Logic Defied
Partizan
View Profile
Inner circle
London UK
1682 Posts

Profile of Partizan
Would I think gavagai is the rabbit or the action of walking or could you be saying gavagai is the colour or species or group the entity whose direction you point too!
If I did not understand you then how could you define that the sound you use relates to one aspect or another of our shared reality.

As you see, the fragmentation of meaning is a big issue. Personality is moot if your way of expression is not understood.

What if one person in the group encouraged emapthy through song, that all people in the group could understand the emotives of a song to be shared. Language is not confined to words.

I would put forward that initial communication developes through gesture, ie visual simulation.
"You cannot depend on your eyes when your imagination is out of focus."
- Mark Twain
Alym Amlani
View Profile
Inner circle
Canada
1465 Posts

Profile of Alym Amlani
Partizan - there is a wealth of info on this subject and many documented cases of such circumstances actually happening.

The innate whole object assumption is a documented and researched idea that shows that when pointing at a common referent (the rabbit) the brain will assume that you're referring to the object itself and not a feature of it (the speed/direction/colour/etc). This is a feature of what's known as UG (universal grammar).

Here is some info about the whole object assumption: http://www.stanford.edu/dept/bingschool/rsrchart/markman.htm

This is fun (great thread btw)
Logic Defied
The Magic Cafe Forum Index » » Not very magical, still... » » Take Ten People (0 Likes)
[ Top of Page ]
All content & postings Copyright © 2001-2020 Steve Brooks. All Rights Reserved.
This page was created in 0.14 seconds requiring 5 database queries.
The views and comments expressed on The Magic Café
are not necessarily those of The Magic Café, Steve Brooks, or Steve Brooks Magic.
> Privacy Statement <

ROTFL Billions and billions served! ROTFL