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15th-Jul-2005 03:51 am - A link that some of you may enjoy
wog avatar

I found this section of the CBC's web site to be quite interesting. :)
13th-Jul-2005 12:24 pm - Random bit of curiosity
Quelles langues parlerait Louis Riel pendant sa vie? Français? Anglais? Michif?

Which languages would Louis Riel have spoken during his lifetime? French? English? Michif?
9th-Jul-2005 03:59 pm - Yogourt and Bilingual Labelling
wog avatar
It always brings a smile to my face when I'm in a grocery store and see yogourt labelled as such. I think that the subtle spelling change to allow for the label to be bilingual is a positive statement about our nation - making small compromises to accomodate as many people as possible. Yes, technically, the English spelling should perhaps be yogurt or yoghurt, as it derives from the Turkish yoğurt.

It's rare when I support the altering of a word. I still staunchly spell "colour", "cheque" and "doughnut" as such. I think the difference is in the intent; I view "color", "check" and "donut" as being laziness, whereas "yogourt" is appeasement.

Also, I consider the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis to be pertinent; for those not familiar with the SWH, Wikipedia defines it as "[the SWH] states that there is a systematic relationship between the grammatical categories of the language a person speaks and how that person both understands the world and behaves in it". The full article is here

How do you spell yogourt? I find most of us French-speakers spell it such in English; angophones tend to stick to different variants.
Poll #529272 Yogourt?

When writing in English, I spell this certain dairy product as:

6th-Jul-2005 10:01 pm - "Transformations" from Brother Bear
Does anyone here speak Inupiaq? (Yes, I know Inupiaq is spoken in Alaska and not in Canada, but seeing as it is closely related to Canadian Inuit languages, I thought it might be worth asking.)

The song "Transformations" from Brother Bear is in an Inuit language, and since Brother Bear is set in Alaska, I would bet it's Inupiaq. I want the real lyrics of that song, together with an English translation. See my entry in linguaphiles for the details.
6th-Jul-2005 12:53 am - Intro / Question
Salut, la gang!

Je suis Californienne d'orgine, pis je viens juste d'obtenir mon bac (dans le sens universitaire) à Boston, mais la plupart de mes recherches se fait à Montréal. Pour l'instant, je me concentre sur l'anglais et le français québécois (ce qui choquera personne), mais aussi sur l'ASL (langue des signes américaine) et la LSQ (langue des signes québécoise). Je peux entrer dans les details s'il y a quelqu'un qui veut *vraiment* en savoir plus. ;c)

Et ma question: y'a-t-il qqn ici qui vient de la Nouvelle-Écosse, d'une région métropolitaine de preference? et si oui, connaissez-vous un centre sociale pour les Sourds dans votre ville? Je fais des premiers pas vers un projet sur la langue des signes des Maritimes, et d'après ce qu'on dit, les derniers locuteurs se trouveraient quelque part dans la N-É. Je me suis dite qu'en trouvant des centres sociaux des Sourds je pourrais commencer à me faire des contacts.

Merci d'avance, et - umm - re-bonjour! ;c)

Hey, everyone!

I'm originally from California, and just completed college in Boston, but most of my research takes place in Montreal. Current languages of interest are English and QFr (unsurprisingly), as well as ASL (American Sign Language) and LSQ (Quebec Sign Language). I'm happy to discuss details of what I do with anyone who *really* wants to know. ;c)

My question is this: is there anyone here from Nova Scotia, preferably a relatively urban area? and if you are, do you know of any Deaf clubs in your city? I'm trying to put together a project involving Maritime Sign Language, and as far as I can tell, the remaining speakers are likely to be somewhere in NS. I figure finding Deaf clubs would be the best way to start making contacts.

Thanks in advance, and - um - again, hi! ;c)
5th-Jul-2005 09:51 pm - Intro-yo!
Hi there, I'm Sara, I live in Vancouver, BC - but my home is Twillingate, Newfoundland.

I speak standard English as well as Newfoundland English and understand quite a bit of french.

Language fascinates me, and I hope to be learning Farsi soon. :)
5th-Jul-2005 09:30 pm - Intro post =)
Hi there, I'm from near Winnipeg Manitoba, and I've been interested in learning new languages for a while. I was all into learning Japanese for a while, but that's been sort of pushed by the wayside due to lack of anywhere to learn it. I'm not very good at the self motivation ;) Having two close friends who are super into linguistics helps kick start the interest too ;)

J'étais dans immersion française depuis maternelle, et je suis pas mal fluent. Cependant, j'ai encore beaucoup de difficulté avec la grammaire et l'eppelation. Je crois que si je lisai plus en français, ca ameliorai.

I'm also learning sign language, I've got the fingerspelling down, and basic greetings and things like brother, sister, girl, boy, apple, happy, and I'll be starting a course in school next year! I'm so excited to learn it, I think it looks so graceful, and it will be so useful to be able to communicate without voice :)

Well, I think that's all the pertinent information for now :) I'm looking forward to meeting all of you and joining in on the discussions :)
5th-Jul-2005 08:15 pm - Bilingualism/Multilingualism
What kind of multilingual are you?

Wikipedia gives three types:
* coordinate bilingualism: the linguistic elements (words, phrases) in the speaker's mind are all related to their own unique concepts. That means, a French-English bilingual speaker of this type (as can be found in large numbers in Quebec) has different associations for 'chien' and for 'dog'. This type of bilingual speaker usually belongs to different cultural communities that do not frequently interact. These speakers are known to use very different intonation and pronunciation features, and not seldom assert the feeling of having different personalities attached to each of their languages.

* compound bilingualism: speakers of this type attach most of their linguistic elements to the same concepts. For them, a 'chien' and a 'dog' are two words for the same concept. Those speakers are reported to have less extreme differences in their pronunciations. Such speakers are often found in minority language communities, or amongst fluent L2-speakers.

* subordinate bilingualism: the linguistic elements of one of the speaker's languages are only available through elements of the speaker's other language. This type is typical of, but not restricted to, beginning L2-learners.

I'm a French-English coordinate bilingual, but everything else for me is subordinate. For example, "une chaise" and "una silla" are the same thing to me, but "chaise" and "chair" hold different associations. I would say that this is mostly due to that I used French and English in different environments as I was growing up; school was in French, and at home I spoke English. "Une chaise" I associate with the kind of chair one would see in a school, whereas I see a "chair" as a chair you would see at home. I also learnt Spanish at school and therefore to me, chaise = silla.

The voice I use for speaking French has a noticably more feminine pitch to it; I tend to have rather androgynous intonation when speaking English. I speak French slowly by francophone standards, but it's still noticably faster than my English.
Hello, I can speak English, French, but my native language is Ukrainian. I'd like to represent you one more of Canadian languages - Canadian Ukrainian (or Canadian Ukrainian dialect? I'm not a linguist, sorry). Here goes few facts about the language (dialect):
- About one million of Canadians recognize Ukrainian as their native language
- First Ukrainian speaking settlers came to Canada in 1892
- "Heritage language", "Baba's language" are simplified synonyms used to identify the Canadian Ukrainian
- Term "Canadian Ukrainian language" is not official, but settled difference between Ukrainian spoken and written languages in Canada and Ukraine is recognized by linguists. Last years, because of new media and thousands of well educated newcomers from Ukraine the gap between Ukrainian in Canada and Ukraine has tendency to diminish
- Ukrainian (or Canadian Ukrainian) is recognized as a heritage language in Manitoba, Alberta, (Saskatchevan?)
- There are many cultural and academic institutions intended to develop Ukrainian and Canadian Ukrainian in Canada
- Ukrainian (as well as Ukrainian Canadian) uses Cyrillic alphabet, not latin. Канада - is Canada written in Ukrainian, мова - means language, демократія - democracy, вареники or пироги - means pirogies
- In Alberta and Saskatchewan kids can teach Ukrainian as second language. They usually start (at grade 1) with studying Canadian Ukrainian and switch to modern Ukrainian in High School
3rd-Jul-2005 04:26 pm - A change to titirausiq nutaaq
coffee-drinking atheists
Titirausiq nutaaq is the syllabary (a phonetic writing system with symbols that represent syllables) used to write Inuktitut, and is used soley in Canada. In Greenland, they use Cyrillic for writing Inuktitut, and in Alaska, a Latin orthography.

image of the old syllabaryCollapse )

Originally, there was another row, for syllables ending in "ai". (image of the early Cree syllabary, which titirausiq nutaaq was based on, on Collection Canada's web site</a>, article here). The ai-pai-tai row was removed in the 1970s so that there would be few enough symbols to put on a typewriter, and the "ai" dipthong was simply written as "-a", then "i".

With the help of new fonts such as AiPaiNunavik, Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami is now restoring the "ai". I find that to be rather interesting. The ITK and the Gov. of Nunavut have been releasing quite a few Inuktitut resources onto the internet in recent years, such as Asuilaak. My hopes are that these efforts will slow the disappearing of the language. :)
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