Mammoths are extinct though

Click here for the Article.

Name: De-Extinction: The Mammoth Walks Again
Date: 11/8/14
Author: Piotr Gąsiorowski

Key Ideas:

  • New words aren’t replacing old words, New language is replacing old language. Because there are whole new semantic fields for a whole new level of technology and way of life, the old lexicon that we used to use isn’t quite needed anymore.
  • De-extinction can happen sporadically, the word ‘twat’ wasn’t used for a century and came back into existence in the 2000s.
  • A word has a (definable) function if speakers regularly use it to convey a meaning, as long as there is a reason. This keeps a word alive.
Language Features: Language Change, Neologisms,
Course Aspects: Unit 4 - AoS 1 - Language Variation in Australian Society: How English changes over time, how Australian English varies according to geography, including national and regional variation 

Personal Opinion: In this article, Piotr talks about the evolution of language, and I think that his thoughts are interesting, words that are dead that come back to life after time is really cool, and I think the old English used hundreds of years ago is still affecting the change in English today and will continue to do so in the years to come, and the fact that words that were used so long ago now have new meanings is exciting.

“Quotes”:

  • “A word already dead in spoken language may occasionally come back to life.”
  • “A word which is used frequently will be transmitted to new users more reliably, especially if its function is easy to infer from the way it is used.”
  • “Low-frequency words are prone both to semantic change and to lexical replacement: new speakers may quite accidentally fail to hear them used, or encounter them only occasionally in a context which doesn’t quite clarify their meaning. Word death is mostly due to accidental transmission breaks happening too often.”
  • “We are dealing here with a new system replacing an older one, not just a series of lexical replacements.”
  • “If historical linguists had any say in the matter, I’m sure that time-honoured words, priceless as evidence of language history, would enjoy special protection, and every care would be taken that they should be saved for posterity”

I don’t know.. Jesus?

Click here for the Article.

Name: Who will teach our* languages
      *Because all Australians should accept responsibility for keeping them alive.
Date: 27/8/14
Author: Fully (Sic)

Key Ideas:

  •  Trying to bring back lost aboriginal dialects through government programs (awesome)
  • There are no teacher degrees for teaching aboriginal as a language. (not awesome)
  • Technology could save endangered languages, if it actually taught the language, other than showing it to the viewer (online dictionaries for eg)
  • There’s no simple or easy way to learn a language. It takes time, and it can’t be learnt by looking at a book.
  • What’s the point of having multi-level English classes when the country speaks the language well. (OH THE IRONY)
Language Features: Prescriptivism / Descriptivism, Identity, Learning Languages, Endangered languages, language loss
Course Aspects: Unit 4 - AoS 1: How Australian English varies according to geography, including national and regional variation, How and why Australian English varies according to culture, including Aboriginal English and ethnolects, the role of language in constructing national identity

Personal Opinion: I think it is an awesome idea that new ways are forming to bring back endangered languages, just like a species, language is a living thing that works through everyone’s lives and I hope it gets out of the “endangered” status and more people start learning the language.

“Quotes”:

  • “Those with teaching skills and those with language knowledge are often not the same people, if the language is being spoken outside schools at all.”
  • “But just being able to tweet or friend someone online in your own language won’t save it. (language)”
  • “Another popular place to look for miracle cures is overseas. The Maori and Hawaiians have had some major success; can’t we just copy from them? If we had the luxury of a single language, substantial native speaker populations and legislative reinforcement, following closely in their footsteps might be a good look.”
  • “More and more Australians are embracing the idea that our first languages should be taught in schools.”
  • “Language teaching requires not only time and hard work but, most of all, well-trained teachers.”
  • “Likewise technology isn’t going to replace teachers of endangered languages – at least not any time soon. If it was, we’d already have world languages like English routinely being taught without human involvement, and there’s not much sign of that, just yet.”

This is Helpful

Click here for the Article.

Name: Avoiding Americanisms when using Australian/British English
Date: 2/4/13
Author: ???

Key Ideas:

  •  Difference between Australian and American word conventions, like “Learned” and “Learnt”
  • American Language can be very different from Australian language, and using Americanisms in essays is dangerous as it might be marked wrong.
Language Features: Word change between countries, Australian identity, Essay Writing
Course Aspects: Exam revision - Units 3 & 4

Personal Opinion: I think this will help be a lot in my Essay writing, as reading through this post, I saw that I used nearly all the Americanisms that were there. I will use this for my end of year exams. It’s also very interesting how little a difference things can be between two countries Englishes.

“Quotes”:

  • “By keeping just these few differences in mind while writing, you will dramatically reduce the number of stylistic errors in your text caused by confusion between the conventions of American and Australian English.”

Even 100 words is too much..

Click here for the Article.

Name: From Riddle to Twittersphere: David Crystal tells the story of English in 100 words
Date: 14 Oct 2011
Author: David Crystal

Key Ideas:

  •  The English language is different in the way that it spreads and changes so quickly.
  • David Crystal wrote a book about the English language in 100 words. (you can read the article)
  • Basically everything about the English Language is awesome, and that new words are being made all the time and it’s a fun new thing that is happening.
  • Origins of words can be surprising, as they may not mean what it already meant in the past.
Language Features: Etymology - word origins, lexicon, vocabulary, spread of English, jargon
Course Aspects: UNIT 4 - AoS 1: Language Variation in Australian Society - characteristics of Australian English in contrast to Englishes from other continents, in phonological, lexical, prosodic, and/or grammatical patterns, the role of language in constructing national identity

Personal Opinion: I think this article is very cool, David explains how the English language is one of the most innovative and different languages in the world and explains why, this is interesting as he explores many different ways that words can go in terms of word-building, swearing, other languages turning into English etc. It’s really interesting reading his point of view.

“Quotes”:

  • “The most interesting side to vocabulary, I find, is when the exploration of word origins (etymology) brings to light results that are unexpected or intriguing.”
  • “English is also a playful language, whose speakers love to use their imaginations in creating new vocabulary, and who are prepared to depart from tradition when coining words.”
  • “Vocabulary is a matter of word-building as well as word-using. Most words in English are in fact derived from other words. We start with one word, such as nation, and generate a word family: national, nationalise, nationalisation, denationalisation, antidenationalisation…”

 

Introvert: “Don’t talk to me please” not “omg gAmingg”

Click here for the Article.

Name: Comment: What an introvert sounds like
Date: 19/8/14
Author: Olga Khazan

Key Ideas:

  • Introverts use words related to anime and emoticons, whereas extroverts use words like “party” “baby” and “ya”
  • People that are “open” are intelligent, and talk about “dreams” and the “universe” (apparently), using descriptive words, and people that are “not open” are unintelligent, and use words like “u” “wat” “gud” “wen”
  •  Words change as we age, 15 y.o.s talk about getting drunk, whereas 55 y.o.s talk about wine.
  • “Money makes you happier”
Language Features: -Neologisms-, Individual Identity, Group Identity
Course Aspects: Unit 4 - AoS 2: Individual and Group Identities: Social and personal variation in language according to factors such as age, gender, occupation, interests, aspiration and education, the ways in which the language of individuals and the language of groups is shaped by social expectations and community attitudes

Personal Opinion: I think that this article and the study in the article is absolute bull#$!^. Being an introvert is a personality where the person doesn’t care about other people as much as themselves, and the study basing someone being an introvert by liking anime, playing video games and using emoticons is ridiculous.

“Quotes”:

  • “Neurotic people disproportionately use the phrase ‘sick of’ and the word ‘depressed.’”
  • “males use the possessive ‘my’ when mentioning their wife or girlfriend more often than females use ‘my’ with ‘husband’ or ‘boyfriend.’”
  • “introverts make heavy use of emoticons and words related to anime, but extroverts say “party,” “baby,” and “ya.””

 

I believe Diversity is a very large wooden ship…

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Name: Diversity is Australia's strength and that's worth celebrating together
Date: 26/1/13
Author: Rauf Soulio

Key Ideas:

  •  Our nation is one of the most diverse places in the world in terms of language and heritage.
  • It has sparked from immigrants who settled here and built their lives.
  • Many people are getting their Australian citizenship.
  • Our national identity is changing drastically and ‘being Australian’ is constantly being redefined.
  • Freedom of speech is a crucial part of Australian identity, as there are so many different races in the country.
Language Features: Australian Identity, Exclusive Language (code switching (a little bit)), Individual identity
Course Aspects: Unit 4 - AoS 1 - Language Variation in Australian Society: The role of language in constructing national identity, the role of Standard and non-Standard English in Australian society

Personal Opinion: I believe that Australia’s identity is all about multiculturalism and that freedom of speech for ALL Australians is an amazing thing to have in this country. Many races who live in other countries don’t have as many opportunities to speak out or do anything that can show their own identity.

“Quotes”:

  •  “We have accepted the continuing development of our national identity and successfully engaged in more than six decades of constant redefinition of what it means to be Australian. This isn’t about discarding elements of who and what we are – there will always be a place for the indigenous and British heritage of this country – but it means our traditions are changing, and embracing the best of what the world has brought to our door.”
  • “In contrast, offending or insulting people because of race, colour, national or ethnic origin or religious beliefs sends a message that such people are not welcome members of our society.”
  • “Our nation has been energised by the immigrants who have settled here and demonstrated the greatest of enterprise.”