The European Commission denies English language favouritism

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esperantisto  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:15
Member (2006)
English to Russian
+ ...
Strike back Jul 10, 2012

Kinda strike back to the French. The French were main opposers to use of Esperanto as a neutral international language, favoritizing, yes, the French language. Now, the things have changed. Who needs French except the French? A couple of African LDCs?

Use of any national language in international communication inevitably results in language favoritism and inequality. Take it and shut up! Or finally understand the need in Esperanto


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Krzysztof Kajetanowicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 07:15
English to Polish
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this could be useful Jul 10, 2012

The French ego, if exploited properly, could do a great job by forcing EU institutions to drastically cut the volume of documents they produce. If the torrent of statements, press releases, analyses and communiques is English-only because translations are cumbersome and costly, how about cutting the volume by 90% and having whatever is left translated to French?

The overall savings might offset the cost of the European Parliament sessions in Strasbourg.


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LilianNekipelov  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 01:15
Russian to English
+ ...
Esperanto is an artificial language, lacking certain phonetic harmony Jul 10, 2012

Esperanto is an artificial language, and it should not be imposed on anyone. I personally think it lacks certain features natural languages have. I would rather learn Finnish, or use Latin as an international language. These are at least natural languages. To tell you honestly, I think English has the best chances to become the new Lingua Franca. Why not? Of course national languages should not be downgraded, underestimated and, first of all, underrepresented in various international organizations.

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esperantisto  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:15
Member (2006)
English to Russian
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Utter nonsense Jul 11, 2012

LilianBoland wrote:

Esperanto is an artificial language


So what? Artificial are German Hochdeutsch, modern Hebrew (Ivrit), Serbocroatian (srpskohrvatski), Macedonian (makedonski). Yet, millions of people communicate using them and consider them their mother tongues.

I personally think it lacks certain features natural languages have.


Please, specify those features. Can you substantiate this statement? Are your linguist? Where can I learn your works in linguistics? We, esperantists, hear this bullshit for over 100 years, still with no proof.

To tell you honestly, I think English has the best chances to become the new Lingua Franca. Why not?


Because, first of all, there’s no English language anymore. There British, American, Indian etc. If, say, I learn the language by British textbooks, I will inevitably fail with TOEFL. Which one do you suggest and why? Second, the language is way too ambiguous. The word “run” has about 60 (sixty) translation to Russian and probably more to other languages.

Of course national languages should not be downgraded, underestimated and, first of all, underrepresented in various international organizations.


So says the European Commission. The result is the contrary, as we see from the discussed article.


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Stanislav Pokorny  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 07:15
English to Czech
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Why not? Jul 11, 2012

LilianBoland wrote:
To tell you honestly, I think English has the best chances to become the new Lingua Franca. Why not?


Why not Czech, Swedish, Italian or German?


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Ty Kendall  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 06:15
Hebrew to English
Sour grapes Jul 11, 2012

French resentment of the dominance of English is not news to me, actually, it's a well-known fact. It's never nice to be eclipsed and to become the fading star in the show, but as the French say "C'est la vie".

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Ty Kendall  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 06:15
Hebrew to English
Revival / Language Planning is not the same as language invention Jul 11, 2012

I also just have to disagree that Modern Hebrew (my source language) is an artificial language. I know that's what the Wikipedia article on conlangs says, but it's ill-informed if you ask me. Hebrew was revived, not created like other conlangs such as Esperanto and Klingon. Even if you subscribe to the Ghil'ad Zuckermann school of thought regarding "Israeli" (which I definitely do not), even then it doesn't warrant labelling the language as "artificial". It's a natural human language which was modernized.
It has a history, a culture, a soul....it is not the product of an over-zealous linguist.

*Note to add: I have nothing against constructed/artificial languages, I just don't believe that you should conflate them with natural human languages which have undergone even minor language planning. They are not the same.


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esperantisto  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:15
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English to Russian
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Because Jul 11, 2012

Stanislav Pokorny wrote:

Why not Czech, Swedish, Italian or German?


Sorry, can you read?

Once again, use of any national language in international communication inevitably results in language favoritism and inequality.


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esperantisto  Identity Verified
Local time: 08:15
Member (2006)
English to Russian
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Not really Jul 11, 2012

Ty Kendall wrote:

Hebrew was revived, not created like other conlangs such as Esperanto and Klingon


You mix up things. Ancient (Biblical) Hebrew was a language that evolved with time. Modern Hebrew (Ivrit) is a totally different thing. It was not revived, it was created pretty much like Esperanto. The difference is, that Perelman (Ben-Iehuda) used solely Hebrew for his work, while Zamenhof used some common European basis not tied to a particular language.


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Stanislav Pokorny  Identity Verified
Czech Republic
Local time: 07:15
English to Czech
+ ...
I can. Can you? Jul 11, 2012

esperantisto wrote:

Stanislav Pokorny wrote:

Why not Czech, Swedish, Italian or German?


Sorry, can you read?

Once again, use of any national language in international communication inevitably results in language favoritism and inequality.


Mine was a reaction to the post I quoted. So, to avoid any disambiguities or misunderstanding: Why should it be English and not any other language? Question directed at Lilian.

I hope it's clear now?


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Ty Kendall  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 06:15
Hebrew to English
I don't mix things up Jul 11, 2012

esperantisto wrote:

Ty Kendall wrote:

Hebrew was revived, not created like other conlangs such as Esperanto and Klingon


You mix up things. Ancient (Biblical) Hebrew was a language that evolved with time. Modern Hebrew (Ivrit) is a totally different thing. It was not revived, it was created pretty much like Esperanto. The difference is, that Perelman (Ben-Iehuda) used solely Hebrew for his work, while Zamenhof used some common European basis not tied to a particular language.


No offence, but I think I know a little bit more about my source language than you.

Modern Hebrew is NOT a totally different thing. Modern Hebrew was NOT created. If they are so unrelated then it shouldn't be possible for Israelis to understand the Ancient Hebrew scriptures. This isn't the case. Lexically, grammatically they share a LOT! Enough to be mutually intelligible.

As I said, I don't deny that some amount of language planning was involved, but this is a far cry from language invention. I don't deny it borrowed from other languages, but this is a far cry from language invention.

The very fact that you seem to place importance on Ben-Yehuda shows how little you know. His contributions were more symbolic. He lit a match; it was others who started the fire and kept it going.

It's not called "The Invention of Modern Hebrew", it's called "The Revival" for a reason.


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Krzysztof Kajetanowicz  Identity Verified
Poland
Local time: 07:15
English to Polish
+ ...
LOL Jul 11, 2012

esperantisto wrote:

Stanislav Pokorny wrote:

Why not Czech, Swedish, Italian or German?


Sorry, can you read?

Once again, use of any national language in international communication inevitably results in language favoritism and inequality.


Sorry, but you're being obnoxious and rude. And desperate to make a point that is beyond absurd.

1. Esperanto will not become a meaningful language anytime soon because nobody friggin' speaks it. By "nobody" I mean "nobody, except a few hobbyists". And there are no incentives to learn it because it doesn't help you communicate with anybody (again, see definition of "nobody").

2. I'm not a historian or a linguist but it appears that languages that dominate the world (English, Chinese, Spanish, perhaps French still - in no particular order) are languages of present/former colonial empires and/or countries with huge populations. That's how you get people to speak a language. You raise them or conquer them, it seems, and only then do "voluntary learners" like many of us here follow.

3. English is the European lingua franca because it is spoken by 46 million Germans, 17 million French (though some would dispute this particular number), 17 million Italians, 14 million Dutch, 11 million Poles, 7 million Russians, and so forth. Not to mention a few Brits and Irish. Well, not a few, 70 million of them. If you go to any Scandinavian or Nordic country, you can easily speak English with just about anybody, though the Netherlands must hold the world record for the ubiquitousness and quality of English as a second (non-colonial) language.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_English-speaking_population#List_in_order_of_total_speakers

[Edited at 2012-07-11 16:10 GMT]


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