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 DDSearle
Joined: 5/20/2017
Msg: 1
The Origins Of LanguagePage 1 of 2    (1, 2)
Is this, which may be the greatest creation of all, a human invention, a consequence of Natural evolution, civilisation or what? And it may be worth bearing in-mind that it hasn't always improved through the ages. There are several indications that, in civilised parts of the world, the language has degenerated, despite the proliferation of dictionaries, libraries, schools, the internet etc. And a language that embraces the influence of Noah Webster Junior, HipHop or Rap performers, the politically overcorrect, insincere etc, may be damaging itself
 DDSearle
Joined: 5/20/2017
Msg: 2
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/25/2017 2:11:14 PM
My opinion is that the verb is the most important part of speech. And analysing its functions, such as by voice, tense, aspect or mood, may be a better way of addressing this question. An other, may be to focus on a person's favourite, such as Homeric Greek or Sanskrit: and to inquire why it should be so
 LOLTrump
Joined: 3/7/2017
Msg: 3
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/25/2017 3:24:13 PM

There are several indications that, in civilised parts of the world, the language has degenerated, despite the proliferation of dictionaries, libraries, schools, the internet etc. And a language that embraces the influence of Noah Webster Junior, HipHop or Rap performers, the politically overcorrect, insincere etc, may be damaging itself


So what you are saying is you actually have very little understanding of language and how it evolves, not just by who is using it, but the device used to convey the message.


Because if you really thought that languages has degenerated, then the question is, why do you choose to use such a modified version of English and not use the original English, or even the Latin or Hebrew?
 DDSearle
Joined: 5/20/2017
Msg: 4
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/25/2017 3:40:26 PM
I know several languages, though in not one of them other than English am I fluent.
And this is a (Standard) English-using forum, is it not?

THE LOL IS ALL HOLLOW

You jolly-well know.

A wally will use it,
By Golly, for show
 LOLTrump
Joined: 3/7/2017
Msg: 5
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/25/2017 4:02:51 PM

I know several languages, though in not one of them other than English am I fluent.
And this is a (Standard) English-using forum, is it not?


It is, so why not use it and explain what you mean when you say that "...the language has denigrated..."
 DDSearle
Joined: 5/20/2017
Msg: 6
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/25/2017 4:28:16 PM

It is, so why not use it and explain what you mean when you say that "...the language has denigrated..."


But have you not misquoted me?
 LOLTrump
Joined: 3/7/2017
Msg: 7
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/25/2017 6:20:42 PM

There are several indications that, in civilised parts of the world, the language has degenerated, despite the proliferation of dictionaries, libraries, schools, the internet etc.


Please explain what you mean by degenerated.
 DDSearle
Joined: 5/20/2017
Msg: 8
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/25/2017 7:29:57 PM
It is degeneration when a language loses some subtleties, say, for the sake of simplification. And that's not to say that the more difficult it is, the better. For example, English used to have more verb subject-classes, a more widespread use of gender, a more complete paradigm of declensions, etc. But nowadays it appears to be more formulaic, less flexible, and less-carefully used. The same can probably be said of other languages, such as Greek and, to a lesser extent, German. And with the advent of 'net-based lexicons, such as the handy and most popular Dictionary.com, British English orthography seems set to decline in the face of American English, with its NoahWebster-based spelling, which pays little regard to the etymology or make of the vocabulary. Meanwhile, parents are giving their children more fanciful and less meaningful names. It's as though the system is being abused. And don't human beings have more history of harming than improving their language? But what are the origins of this or parallel systems? Did an alien civilisation bring us about half a dozen near-perfect languages that have, by re-styling, laziness &c, been damaged or destroyed?
 Yule_liquor
Joined: 12/7/2011
Msg: 9
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/25/2017 8:11:26 PM
@ OP



And don't human beings have more history of harming than improving their language?


Language is subject to the laws of entropy like anything else that is contrived by Humans
Look at how Latin "degenerated" into its respective regional vulgates...none of which are as sophisticated
whether that process constitutes a "harm"...or whether its just an evolutionary process, is up to the observer.
 DDSearle
Joined: 5/20/2017
Msg: 10
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/25/2017 9:06:23 PM
From what I can understand of entropy, I wouldn't (despite its 'laws') apply that to a language
 IgorFrankensteen
Joined: 6/29/2009
Msg: 11
view profile
History
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/26/2017 3:31:50 AM
Well, I would say myself, that whether language is "degenerating" or not, is entirely a matter of perspective. From the perspective of the Gorillas, for example, the branch of the species which evolved into man, was a decided step in the wrong direction.

From an historical perspective, language usage has always differed by class within each society. Perhaps the shift you see and don't like, isn't so much a deterioration, as it is a proliferation of the ability of less educated classes, to be able to publish what they want to say.

Your question of whether language is a consequence of natural evolution or of some other factor is more intriguing to me. I used to assume that it was entirely an artifact of civilisation. But when I learned how much subtle physiology can affect it, I came to realize that mutation might play a larger role than I had previously imagined. Foreign Accent Syndrome, while rare, may still be the cause of some shifts in language, as people who suffered injury or illness that affected their vocalizations in the past, may have been driven to leave their original homes, and set up a new group of humans elsewhere.
 LOLTrump
Joined: 3/7/2017
Msg: 12
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/26/2017 7:53:54 AM

English orthography seems set to decline in the face of American English, with its NoahWebster-based spelling, which pays little regard to the etymology or make of the vocabulary.


Would that be similar to what happen to English with the advent of the telegram?




Meanwhile, parents are giving their children more fanciful and less meaningful names.


Citation needed.




It's as though the system is being abused. And don't human beings have more history of harming than improving their language?


If that was the case then we would not have any language left.




But what are the origins of this or parallel systems? Did an alien civilisation bring us about half a dozen near-perfect languages that have, by re-styling, laziness &c, been damaged or destroyed?


There is no such thing as a perfect language, as language must evolve with the medium in which it is being used.
 Inicia
Joined: 4/12/2015
Msg: 13
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/26/2017 8:08:04 AM
When i write anything that i feel might be substantive and even when i have conversations i am quite a stickler of meaning! often do not like using one definition of my idea. often repeat same idea utilizing different "verbiage" in many cases i am told using different words do not help the reader or listener when i do this i am looking for words that will spark understanding. in addition i often am very offended by others representation and perceptions of what i have said. I was arrested i told the officers no one had authority over me EXCEPT GOD!!! you know what they wrote in their supposed accurate police report--- Female subject said no one could control her except god, not even self... yeah and cannot contest a police report... good luck with that.. i find my word usage and chosen combinations leave many without understanding.. i spend much time looking up roots of words their origination's etymology first introduced history, how combinations came to be lingua francos etc... often the most basic like the a and in as a prefix ARE VERY HARD TO LOCATE...new derivations of words and usage are sometimes more accurate in representing origination with the combined sounds and structure of combinations. often it is the effect that is being represented in new combinations of words and sentence structures/. some times new combinations and representations are just adaptations to remove weakness of separating sentences and words into actions, genders, nouns, pronouns prepositions ignoring these rules and creating stronger more powerful integral dynamics in language. the power in in hieroglyphs and many ancient languages based on symbols as representing integral ideas.. and look at bantu and khoesian banter and cohesion... not such a huge leap...much can be said of the value maintained in words....you must look and seek you will find..not confusion but consecration many ideas often have their origin based in mistranslations and misunderstanding... i like finding the oil blended in language... rather than the mistranslated " language confounded... "

Our language center developed around same time we lost majority of bodily hair and evolved for hair on heads, privates, pits etc.as louse DNA shows...(Newseek, between may 1994 and 2001) possibly Time during those years...
 SLAFFA
Joined: 8/13/2007
Msg: 14
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/26/2017 5:25:39 PM
Undoubtedly, one of the greatest benefits of language, was that it enabled us to pass on/down information - KNOWLEDGE.

And today we have in all it's splendor and glory the amazing... (insert drum roll) "Smartphone". And while they are certainly useful devices, I am willing to bet a years pay that they will go down in history as a huge back kward step for society, people skills, ability to actually TALK to others F2F and all manner of other woes. No matter where you observe people using them, most people are furiously pushing buttons totally oblivious to others and the world around them.

I'm pretty sure "smartphones" have hurt OLD and not helped because there are way too many folks today who feel they are so much cooler online because of the way and speed with which they can arrange nothing but symbols on some screen before hitting send.

Probably not what you were asking about...
 LOLTrump
Joined: 3/7/2017
Msg: 15
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/26/2017 6:10:59 PM

And while they are certainly useful devices, I am willing to bet a years pay that they will go down in history as a huge back kward step for society, people skills, ability to actually TALK to others F2F and all manner of other woes.


So how far did the telegram sent back society?
 aremeself
Joined: 12/31/2008
Msg: 16
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History
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/26/2017 9:49:30 PM
I don't think we have a clue where languages came from.
There are roughly 7000 apparently.
And
Loosing them by the week!

There are no ' simple' languages either.
They're not evolving.
They're devolving, just like we are.
They're devolving and disappearing.
 DDSearle
Joined: 5/20/2017
Msg: 17
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/27/2017 5:55:31 AM
The popularity of the internet &c, which has benefited society greatly, may have some drawbacks too. For instance, the ease with which it enables a user to communicate or interact may be requiring of considerably less thinking than, in times of widespread letter-writing. Contrasting the comments of those such as, say, LOLTrump with the heavily-worked efforts of those in here a decade-or-so ago, seems to exemplify a recent degeneration in the English language. And when the leading publishers of dictionaries, presumably in making to lessen the decline in printed matter sales, publicise their latest 'word of the year', it doesn't improve things if it be taken from the begging-to-be forgotten lingo of the criminal or Hip-Hop classes. Perhaps there should be a topic on the real meaning of 'cool'
 DDSearle
Joined: 5/20/2017
Msg: 18
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 7/27/2017 6:21:51 AM
A tendency, which seems to be increasing, is that professionals or those whom we'll take to be guiding us, are using (impressive?) words or constructions in grammarless or nonsensical settings. For example, in making my will, I have discovered that my expensive lawyer is inviting me to sign a document that is, in parts, so ungrammatical or illogical that I cannot understand it: and I wonder at whether the Judge in any dispute that may arise from it would be able to do anything more than to pretend to make sense of it. Meanwhile, linguists or whatever we're to call them, are setting-out, with much publicity, their philological observations on matters abstruse enough to impress the common people. But they are doing that in statements that are frequently ungrammatical. And if they won't teach us, who will? I fancy that we'll have to do it for ourselves. The internet can be very helpful
 feirene
Joined: 1/3/2017
Msg: 19
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History
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 8/1/2017 2:28:20 PM
People don't talk to their kids much, i believe this is detrimental to vocabulary. Use of txt spk and using messaging to communicate also part of that problem, imo.
There is a critical period for language acquisition, funnily enough, for something that evolved from something that never speaks to what we are now i think this is interesting.
Plus having a wide vocabulary myself i often find most of the words i know are never needed, or indeed used, so i don't think it's as big of a problem as you might consider it to be.

I also see pseudo intellect being displayed by poor choice of vocabulary, it makes me laugh. Knowing big words does not mean intelligence if you cannot use them appropriately.
 LOLTrump
Joined: 3/7/2017
Msg: 20
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 8/1/2017 2:38:01 PM

Use of txt spk and using messaging to communicate also part of that problem, imo.


So you are blaming the use of the telegraph, or do you not understand that "text speech" has literally been around for as long as we started to write sh*t down?

Not adapting your message to the medium is a failure at understanding how to communication works.
 feirene
Joined: 1/3/2017
Msg: 21
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History
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 8/3/2017 6:18:27 AM
People aren't actually talking to each other, and neither do they have (and probably don't need) a wide vocabulary. That's the point i was making.
 LOLTrump
Joined: 3/7/2017
Msg: 22
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 8/3/2017 6:21:13 AM

People aren't actually talking to each other, and neither do they have (and probably don't need) a wide vocabulary. That's the point i was making.


Language has been modified to fit the medium since the time when we started writing stuff down is the point I was making.

Ergo, this is nothing new.
 Inicia
Joined: 4/12/2015
Msg: 23
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 8/3/2017 9:22:21 AM
Yes language has developed and modified over time. this is nothing new. Yet finding origins in language can be extremely helpful in understanding what has been lost as well as what has been preserved. Often in looking at the origins we find what salient ideas have carried through in language preservation. Furthermore when one uncovers the ideas that were not carried through; we can see the power dynamics in cultures and reflect on what the minority culture had offered that the supplanting or assimilated culture chose to ignore. Often very precious concepts were lost. Unfortunately many cultures without written languages are mostly lost to us. We cannot say that their contributions were valueless, and now we are trying to find lost languages and the culture that was inherent to the language developed. Not me on the smart phone my flip phone predicts enough horrible translations of words lol. I get predicted english words that do not even exist for simple spelling errors. lol it will not even accept he me or no...i have to change my choice to abc's for these words.
 DDSearle
Joined: 5/20/2017
Msg: 24
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 8/3/2017 10:37:51 AM
On coming across an unusual figure of speech, I found that it's one of several with which educated Ancient Greeks would have been acquainted. But how is it the a small population would have as many literary devices or principles available as they did? It's as though they were presented, perhaps in Pre-Hellenic times, with a language more extensive (or complete) than that available to the much larger number of people that use Standard English
 BeckyHT
Joined: 1/1/2013
Msg: 25
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History
The Origins Of Language
Posted: 8/3/2017 12:50:52 PM


There are several indications that, in civilised parts of the world, the language has degenerated, despite the proliferation of dictionaries, libraries, schools, the internet etc

Where is your evidence on this?

Here's how another person explains:

"Literacy is a new phenomena. For all the history of humans, most people in most times did not read or write. Most languages have never had a writing system. The vast majority of writing systems are descended from 3 systems. The first writing system was 5000 years ago. They only really got going around 3000 years ago. It was only used by scribes. It was only used by a very small culture relative to the whole world. Humans have been around for at least 200,000 years. It seems that the idea of writing is very hard. Given the example of the idea some places have made their own without using another system. There were several writing systems in North America (Mexico is part of North America). The most sophisticated ones were also all descended from one source just like all the ones in Europe are from one source.

In 1500 at first contact with America, almost no one in Europe could write or read. The numbers of literate was about 5% ."

So is language better now, or was it better a thousand or two thousand years ago?
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