Писане на английски език? / Let's write English ;)

Дом на екипа, който превежда, популяризира и продуцира български художествени текстове в чужбина.

Писане на английски език? / Let's write English ;)

Postby Ани Илиева » Thu Oct 20, 2011 4:59 pm

Здравейте, момичета и момчета,

От доста време следя форумите, почти от самото им създаване, но досега се въздържах от участие.
Силно се интересувам от евентуална възможност да се включа в работилница по писане на английски език. Не открих информация да се провежда такава, но реших все пак да попитам дали бихте обмислили възможността да се организира. Равнището ми на владеене на английски език е някъде между "посредствено" и "отчайващо". Опитите ми да напиша нещо направо на английски са около два и половина и резултатите са лоши. Жанровете, в които съм опитвала са "презентация" и "академично есе", т. е. някъде покрай художествената словесност. Жанрът на академичното есе е този, в който много бих искала да задобрея.
Напълно си давам сметка, че ако не опитвам, положението няма как да се промени. Съзнавам, че ще бъда слаб и непълноценен участник, но много ще се старая. Готова съм да участвам в пряка или задочна форма на работилница (т.е. на живо или чрез интернет) и съм готова да си заплащам разумна сума като такса за участие.

Благодаря предварително, независимо от отговора :)
Поздрави и успех!
Last edited by Кал on Tue Apr 24, 2018 5:46 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: сливам теми
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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Кал » Fri Oct 21, 2011 6:25 am

Ани, много ми е драго! :)

Премествам темата в крилото на ФПШ, понеже така като я мисля, е най-близо до преводаческите работилници, които почваме в момента. Тоест: можем да ти възлагаме задачи за писане на акад. есета на английски, а после да редактираме есетата и да ги обсъждаме.

Имаш ли нужда от някаква предварителна теория, а ла "теза, 3 или повече примера, заключение"? Ако си наясно със структурата, направо си избирай тема, пиши и качвай тук резултата. Може да ползваш и нещо вече готово.

Струва ми се, че при теб ще работим само по езика... но да не прибързвам. ;)

За парички ще говорим, като видим колко е същинската работа.
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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Jane Undead » Fri Oct 21, 2011 9:41 am

Няма ли да е добре да се запишеш на някой езиков курс успоредно с работата тук? Щом казваш, че основния проблем ти е езика, няма да е лошо да го понаучиш първо.
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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Ани Илиева » Fri Oct 21, 2011 12:29 pm

Jane Undead wrote:Няма ли да е добре да се запишеш на някой езиков курс успоредно с работата тук? Щом казваш, че основния проблем ти е езика, няма да е лошо да го понаучиш първо.

Предложението е много разумно и логично.
При мен обаче има три проблема, които е добре да си ги призная още в началото: 1. На сериозна възраст съм; 2. Филолог съм; 3. Пиша добре на български език.
Принадлежа на онова поколение, което не порасна потопено в англоезична среда и което завърши гимназия отлично обучено да чете в оригинал руските класици. Английски уча сама, спорадично посещавайки разни курсове. По принцип възрастен човек, който работи и посещава вечерни и събото-неделни курсове, учи чужд език много бавно, много трудно, пропуска часове, не пише домашни, прескача или повтаря нива и въобще е кауза пердута.
През последните години разполагах свободно с времето си и посетих няколко курса. Всеки път попълвах тест за входящо ниво и в зависимост от това колко ме боли глава и кога за последно съм преговаряла граматика ме слагаха в някакво ниво, по някаква система. Първия курс го завърших с изпит, на който изкарах 96 от 100 възможни точки и така автоматично ме записаха за следващото ниво, което не доживях да се организира. Смених езиковата школа. Там обаче на входящия тест нещо много ме мързеше и ме сложиха в ниво, дето месец и половина ходих, пък стигнах до извода, че вкъщи се дреме по-комфортно. Пак смених школата, обаче там пък на входящия тест изкарах максимума точки и ми казаха, че няма какво да ми предложат. Прави бяха - няма какво да предложи която и да е езикова школа на филолог, който едва снощи е преговорил всичките употреби на герундия.
Страничният ефект на филологията е в това, че поражда парадокси - за части от секундата различаваш перфект от аорист на всеки индоевропейски език, но ти отнема цял следобед да натъкмиш в мейл трите прости изречения между "Dear Sir" и "Sencerely" :(
Последно се бях записала на индивидуални уроци, имах ужасно симпатична преподавателка и двете си изкарвахме знаменито. Обаче тъкмо тогава загубих възможността да разполагам с времето си, така безславно приключи всичко.
В момента не разполагам с време, което да инвестирам в посещаване на курс и правене на граматически упражнения. Освен дето ми се свърши и мотивацията. Когато съчиня два абзаца на английски език и ги дам за редакция от английски филолог, той сменя половината глаголни времена и всичките предлози. Каква е ползата да си шампион по решаване на входящи и изходящи тестове, ако нищо от тях не е попило в естествения поток на изказа ти?

Кал,
Да знаеш, че онова, което се случва, след като невинният нов потребител опита да пусне тема във форума, е щураво.
Добре, нека да е преводаческо.
Ще си избера готов мой текст (или ще напиша чисто нов :) ) на български език, след което ще започна абзац по абзац да го превеждам. Ще ми назначите редактор, готов да си отрови живота с мен. Имай предвид, че академични текстове на български пиша добре. Сиреч разликата между българския и английския вариант ще бъде не просто космическа, а направо комическа. След първите две страници ще се споразумеем и за сумата, която жертвата ще получава за труда си. Какво ще кажеш за това?

P. S. Както ти споменах на Фантастивала, тази нощ пътувам за чужбина, така че има малко време за размишляване по предложението.
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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Mokidi » Fri Oct 21, 2011 7:49 pm

Веднага се обаждам: НЕ, НЕДЕЙ да се самопревеждаш!
Три големи недостатъка: познат текст на български, който ще си склонна да превеждаш буквално дума по дума (и ще се дразниш, че не става); вероятно СЛОЖЕН текст, който при по-несигурен език не става да се преведе... и третото: единственият начин да се "пропише" на чужд език е човек да почне да мисли на чуждия език, което с превод НА езика и още по-зле, собствен превод, не става.
от едно ниво нататък език не се учи с курсове.
Език се учи с:
- четене в оригинал
- превеждане ОТ езика
- гледане на филми/сериали без субтитри
Както за руския, така и за английския важи: трябва да се мисли на тоя език, за да се получи текст на него.
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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Кал » Fri Oct 21, 2011 9:18 pm

Аз пък, Ани, няма да ти давам никакви теоретични съвети. :)

Хващай избрания бг текст, почни превода му, прати ми го. (На мене лично. Аз ще съм ти редактор. Би могъл да бъде и Trip, но той е твърде взискателен за някои неща. ;))

Имам чудесното чувство, че много бързо ще научиш хватките. (Академичният английски, за разлика от художествения, има ограничен брой хватки. Да, да, чух ви - най-добрият академичен английският е неотличим от художествения... но нека почнем по-скромно. ;))

Междувременно сипвам един образец от (добре оценен) мой академичен английски:

The Role of Active Listening in Conflict Resolution: An Interpersonal Communication Perspective

За загрявка. ;)

NB! Тогава пишех доста по-тежко от сега. Без излишни стряскания, нали.
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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Trip » Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:24 am

Хващай избрания бг текст, почни превода му, прати ми го. (На мене лично. Аз ще съм ти редактор. Би могъл да бъде и Trip, но той е твърде взискателен за някои неща. )


Не съм, бе! Да знаеш колко неща си задържам за себе си, в сравнение с тия, дето ги казвам :D
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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Кал » Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:29 am

Скрит текст: покажи
Мога да предположа. :) И аз бях такъв години наред, и аз карах девойките да ронят безутешни сълзи, само щото са сбъркали да ми поискат критичното мнение...

(Тази история я разказвах на работилницата в Китен, ама не помня в кой от записите. Заслужава си да се чуе, а пък не ми се разказва отново...)

Закачам те, де. :)
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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Trip » Mon Oct 24, 2011 11:45 am

Скрит текст: покажи
Е, аз не мисля да се променям :) Все още нацелвам педагогическия метод, по който да се изразявам, но няма да си променям изискванията :)


По темата:

Ани, академичното писане е различно от художественото по един ясно отличим маркер - преобладаващо присъствие на сложното изречение с множество вметки. В тоя смисъл, понеже ще боравиш с английски, може да ти убягнат някои основи на подреденото писане, които на български вероятно са ти вградени.

Една от клопките е употребата на verbal false limbs, както им вика Оруел в Politics and the English Language: всякакви неща от сорта на "On the one/other hand, moreover, on the contrary, it is evident, from the aforementioned it is clear that" и т.н. Когато човек развива сложна мисъл, понякога просто ги лепи където свари в опит да среше текста си, тък че да изглежда повърхностно подреден. Друга клопка е злоупотребата със страдателния падеж, който - подобно на художествената литература, - не работи добре и в академични текстове. Трета е затъването в уточнения, неща в скоби, между тирета и т.н. Аз ползвам проста система: винаги поставям разните обстоятелствени пояснявания колкото е възможно по-напред в изречението и винаги преди разните допълнения - ако по някаква причина не е възможно, слагам ги в края, пак преди допълненията и разните prepositional phrases. Във всеки възможен случай подлогът и сказуемото стоят заедно.

Тия неща са универсални и винаги ще направят текста ти по-подреден - мисля, че когато човек ги спазва, лексиката също му върви по-лесно.

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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Кал » Mon Oct 24, 2011 12:07 pm

Trip wrote:Една от клопките е употребата на verbal false limbs, както им вика Оруел в Politics and the English Language: всякакви неща от сорта на "On the one/other hand, moreover, on the contrary, it is evident, from the aforementioned it is clear that" и т.н. Когато човек развива сложна мисъл, понякога просто ги лепи където свари в опит да среше текста си, тък че да изглежда повърхностно подреден.

Интересното е, че още като се готвех за изпита си по литература в седми клас, преподавателят ми (Стефан Пеев, който сега прави Knigite.net) нежно ми наби в главата да не ползвам „патерици“ в съчиненията си разсъждения (пък сега им викаме „есета“ ;)). Никакви „В тази връзка“ и „Следователно“, ако самата мисъл може да се подреди достатъчно логично, та следствията и връзките да се виждат с просто око.

Та – и нашата школа не е проста. Само някои школари, дето са ни се случвали по школата. :/

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Re: Писане на английски език?

Postby Trip » Mon Oct 24, 2011 12:12 pm

Мхм.
Веднъж, не помня къде, четох една много яка мисъл: добрият език идва както в главата на дете, дума по дума, а не в буци, отложени от ежедневието и от немара. Това важи за всеки език и всяка негова употреба.

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Let's write English ;)

Postby Лъч » Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:21 pm

To begin with, I'm placing here a link to one very useful (as it seems:) site where one can find many DailyWritingTips :) And here is what I found, searching for an answer to this: “Yours faithfully” or “Yours sincerely”?

I might have as well quoted the author here, but... alright - if anyone prefers the important information to be here also, they may just do it, may they not? Well, well, well.. here comes my first question to the English speakers here: How to use "may" in the following construction:

"Someone can do something, can't they?"

Is it right to say "...they may just do it, may they not?" as I did several lines back?

Onward! ;)
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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Лъч » Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:49 pm

Another one:

"If I am to do something..."
- I have problem understanding this expression. Does it mean literally "If I do something..." or is more like "In order to be able to do something...", or "If I have to do something..." (with an obligatory meaning)?
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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Люба » Thu Jan 24, 2013 2:53 pm

За may/might, можеш директно пита Гугъл. Ето уики-то какво наставлява и потвърждава, че правилно си си задал въпроса, само требе да дадеш съкратената отрицателна форма в "опашката".
Макар че е куцовато като ползване, както си казва и Гугъл

"May" is rarely used in tag questions. Where may means permission, mayn't is sometimes used for the tag, but it is very formal or dated. Where may means probability, mightn't is usually used for the tag. "May not" is used in the statement clause, rather than "mayn't".
I may (do s/t), mayn't I? - Request for permission
I may not (do s/t), may I?
I may (do s/t), mightn't I? - Ex.- The flight may be delayed, mightn't it?
I may not (do s/t), might I?

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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Лъч » Thu Jan 24, 2013 10:25 pm

Now, let me share my most recent conversation with native English speakers (in that case - writers;):

today to Jack London Foundation I wrote:Dear Mr./Mrs.,

Since I am willing to participate in the writing contest you have launched, I found two details that confuse me and so I decided to write to you.

Firstly, can I participate via e-mail or it is necessary to send my writing printed?

Secondly, if it is possible to send my writin via Internet does the attached entry form have to be a scanned picture or it might as well be an Office document?

ThoseJoseph Lawrence two questions may seem a way strange to you but for me they are of enough concern to me so I kindly ask you to receive your answer before 31 of January.

Yours gratefully,

Lachezar Enchev


In bold red I've marked a mistake of mine that I found only after I received the so-much-expected answer:

today Joseph Lawrence wrote:Lachezar,

To enter the contest you must submit all the necessary paper work. If it
is sent via the internet, you must submit the entry form completed with all
information.

Joseph Lawrence
Secretary
Jack London Foundation


I'm posting this because for me it is a wonderful illustrations of how one's asking (for... whatever it be) can be neglected in a most inoffensive way... It's some kind of art, actually, and English people seem to be especially fond of using it.

Also, I'm sharing it so that there might occur at least a small chance of someone somehow decoding the hidden message in all that b-s**t they sent as an answer. For it they won't receive a single "thanks" from me. Oh, I forgot that I already gave it to them...:

I wrote:Yours gratefully,

Lachezar Enchev


Please, count it as a "Thank you!" to you, even if it is only for you reading this!
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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Лъч » Fri Jan 25, 2013 12:56 am

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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Лъч » Sun Jan 27, 2013 7:31 am

Another great site: Grammar Monster

...and a little exercise (-: the difference between adverse and averse
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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby AllyVRK » Mon Jan 28, 2013 12:36 pm

Лъч, с две думи, пича е казал:
може по имейл, обаче, формичката трябва да е попълнена и атачната с разказа ти.
тях не им пука дали си я попълвал на ръка и сканирал или си я попълвал в Уърд. На запад обикновено признават електронен подпис навсякъде, тъй че пращай смело и не се стряскай ;)

I've always said, if you want to reach a comfortable level of communicating in English, ain't nothing like reading the SAT II Writing textbook (the test doesn't exist anymore, but there are still some good books from 10 years ago.) ask me more if you're interested.
The hardest thing you'll ever learn to say is how to say 'goodbye'.

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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Лъч » Mon Jan 28, 2013 1:06 pm

AllyVRK wrote:На запад обикновено признават електронен подпис навсякъде, тъй че пращай смело и не се стряскай ;)


А какво ще рече в тоя случай "електронен подпис"? Просто да се подпиша като "Lachezar Enchev", или?

Е-подпис не беше ли чрез някаква програма да се регистрираш някъде си, пък след това не-знам-си какво да удостоверяваш...?

Това малко залита в друга тема, но... (-:
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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Лъч » Mon Jan 28, 2013 4:36 pm

somewhere over the Internet someone wrote:What does the term "street address" mean, as opposed to just "address"?


as an answer somebody wrote:An (unqualified) address can be a post-office box or APO address or the like — any place that can receive mail. People often use "street address" when they need to be able to find a person there, e.g. for packages that require signatures.


Source
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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby AllyVRK » Tue Jan 29, 2013 12:04 am

Лъч wrote:
А какво ще рече в тоя случай "електронен подпис"? Просто да се подпиша като "Lachezar Enchev", или?


Да. Означва буквално само да си напишеш името.

Това с регистрацията и получаването на не знам си какво си е простотия измислена в БГ, която уж добавя левъл оф секюрити за банков трансакции и т.н. колко е така - по мой опит само пречи на хората да си вършат работата с банки в бг, но това е отделен въпрос.

Стрийт адрес e буквално (както са обяснили) - физическия адрес на който живееш. На повечето места, вместо да даваш адреса си, можеш да си наемеш кутийка в пощенския клон и да си я проверяваш когато си искаш. тогава ти дават номерче - те и в бг го правят мисля. но когато пратките изискват подпис (примерно като пращаш нещо по куриер) те винаги изискват стрийт адрес.
The hardest thing you'll ever learn to say is how to say 'goodbye'.

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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Лъч » Wed Jun 18, 2014 9:17 pm

Хехехеее... малко повече от година е минала, а вече се смея на това, което съм писал тук. :D :D

Все пак ще съживя темата с една фразичка, която ми попадна в една онлайн игрица (с карти и думи) в sharedtalk.org.

Израза е "to egg (someone) on" и от дадените възможности избрах "to urge (someone)", което се оказа и правилното синонимно. :)

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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Люба » Wed Jun 18, 2014 9:36 pm

Виж как ме подсети ме да споделя един идиом, който прихванах от един филм наскоро
To throw/pitch the curve ball = (slang)
1. To mislead; deceive.
2. To cause to be surprised, especially unpleasantly so

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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Кал » Tue Jul 01, 2014 12:24 am

In Memories of Ice, Steven Erikson wrote:Standing before another triangular doorway – this one directly opposite the entrance – stood a huge figure in arcane, black-wrought armour.


Something bothering you in this sentence?

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Re: Let's write English ;)

Postby Trip » Tue Jul 01, 2014 11:45 am

Rereading some Eriksson passages, I'm bothered by a lot of sentences there. Almost sure line-editing was non-existent.
Apart from the obvious problem, the whole spatial-orientation fussing-about is really annoying. Not only a problem with Eriksson btw.
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Re: Писане на английски език? / Let's write English ;)

Postby Кал » Fri Jul 05, 2019 2:26 pm

Did anyone ever tell you English word order is strictly fixed? And you can almost never have verb before subject in a non-interrogation?

In The Riddle-Master of Hed, Patricia A. McKillip wrote:To the south lay, like a boundary line between lands, the dark line of a vast forest.

(...) It was a cut jewel the size of his palm, and through it flowed, as he turned it, all the colors of the sea.


(Still, don't use this in your everyday communication. ;) )

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Re: Писане на английски език? / Let's write English ;)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Thu Jul 18, 2019 8:02 pm

Dan Simmons used similar (albeit vastly more simplistic) reversed structures in the Hyperion Cantos.

Instead of - "Take the next shuttle to the skyport," she said - he'd write sometimes "Take the next shuttle to the skyport," said she.
It was mildly baffling for me, because one of the first things that I had to struggle with when I started first transitioning into English writing, were the post-line dialogue markers, and how they were opposite to those in Bulgarian.

- Давай напряко през гората - каза той с насочен пръст.
"Go right through the forest," he said, his finger pointed.

Really, "grokking" how dialogue was done in English (especially after I had just gotten the hang of it in Bulgarian) was a significant deal for me.
One example is, to this day I'm not sure which quotation marks should actually be used - saw that The Dresden Files used the double-marked version, and just went on with it.
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: Писане на английски език? / Let's write English ;)

Postby Кал » Thu Jul 18, 2019 11:25 pm

Double quotation marks are the general rule in American English; single quotation marks, in British English. (And then there's the rule of quotes within quotes.)

This discussion seems to explain the "she said/said she" case both correctly and concisely.

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Re: Писане на английски език? / Let's write English ;)

Postby Radiant Dragon » Fri Jul 19, 2019 7:33 pm

Thanks for the links. This cleared things for me, and now I totally know that the pro-American propaganda I was constantly blasted with as a kid is still lurking deep into my subconscious. :D

Because there was a second sub-link in the first one, discussing punctuation in the English language, I read that too, and found out the "rules" were surprisingly reasonable (not convoluted or contrived as in Bulgarian, for instance), and it resonated almost perfectly with what once a lecturer at university told my class: "An easy way to write good enough [punctuation] grammar is to read the text out loud - and figure out where you, as a speaker, would make the pauses in the narrative."
I've since taken this advice to heart, and I can testify that it works as a perfect rule of thumb when you can't remember/find the actual rule. :)

The "they said/said they" stuff was somewhat less useful, since I already knew Simmons was (trying) using "flowery" language, but at least it confirmed my observation. So that's that.
(And yeah, I've long since adopted the "singular they" address, ever since I found it out in Eclipse Phase. It's super useful and parabolic in, like, 95% of the cases I need it. :) )
IN ORDER TO RISE AGAINST THE TIDE, ONE MUST FIRST BE BELOW IT.

Аз съм графист, а не кечист.
(Ама вече разбирам и от кеч, ако трябва)
Аз съм. Това ми стига.

'Tis I, master of the first floor, aspirant to the last, the Radiant Dragon.


Accepting reality since 2017

And loving it since 2021


And now, I step fully into the Light, complete and replete. The way to Ascension is open.
-- some Dude, circa 2022

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Re: Писане на английски език? / Let's write English ;)

Postby Кал » Tue May 05, 2020 4:05 pm

My review of Word by Word: The Secret Life of Dictionaries:

A priceless weapon in the war against linguistic pedantry. (But not much use to a professional linguist: it's mostly 101 and 201.)

Behold:

~ For fun, I'm going to list here all the words and phrases I've learnt from this book:

chaw
board book
scleroderma
cacafuego
kegger
brownnoser
lickspittle
lexophile
colloq
soap (= soap opera)
tweedy
(at) full tilt
blither
flop sweat
want ad
to deadpan
oriel (window)
echoic
fusty
glut
to bung
the heebie-jeebies
taupe
echoey
bugger all
minyan
sprachgefühl
advisedly
flash-fry
whoop it up
swank
a foil (~ contrast)
go/run to seed
finagle
get bent
whip-smart
cri de coeur
shake out
foofaraw
scare quotes
onymous
chancery
level best
a lick of
like gangbusters
transmission error (= scribal error)
issuance
foreignism
the whole (kit and) caboodle
solecism
ne plus ultra
of-the-moment
snoot (= snob)
poniard
dubiosity
complainant
button it, button your mouth/lip
yap (= mouth)
unthaw
no dice
fustigate
potamology, potamologist
Ebonics
uptalk
bête noire
pre-trial deposition
claims adjuster
cromulent
dog whistle
nebbish
down-home
meet (= suitable)
nutbar
ravening
neck and neck
a gas (= a delight)
epistemophilic
edge out
whiffle
sniffy
chisel in
squidgy
bear out
hazing
logophile
youngie
horndog
muckety-muck
spackle
hot rod
drivetrain
ga(c)k
ho-bag
copy (-> copywriter)
hangnail
fustian
give sb the side-eye
strains [of music]
cover one's ass
lightfaced, lightface
megillah
Do you even English?
oenophile
staying power
snollygoster
trot sth out
jugate
remit (~ designated area of activity)
ostensive definition
snickerdoodle
piece (= female sexual partner)
bupkes
futz
chesterfield
davenport
settee
squab
precis
postpositively <-> prepositively
holdover
wheelhouse
fascinator
scuff
pant-hoot
pack in
miserere
gobs of
tromp
rhadamanthine
vecturist
ticker-tape
put sth to bed
sphygmomanometer
unrufflable
whelp
liner notes
mash note
linguistic reclamation (= reappropriation, resignification)
squonk
all wet
hedge (~ dodge)
gussy (up)
rando
beige (= vanilla)
deep waters
originalism
trick sth out
dickishness
when the rubber meets the road
truck in sth
buck against sth
au courant
blench
wend
beyond the pale
squiggly
arrant
imprimatur
passel
double-dome
pearl clutching
make it snow
have it in for sb
shit/turd-stirrer
burn the biscuits
dope slap
read sth into sth
wevs (= whatever)
obvi (= obviously)
noogie
jimmies
cosset
diddly-squat
herd cats
obelus
metathesis (NB stress)
anecdata
bubba
mush mouth
malamute
be cooking (with gas)
put one's oar in
brainpan
retronym
tired: beat, wiped, whipped, laid out, done in, dead
make the big leagues
hootamaganzy
jerkery
encomium
faff (about/around)
borborygmus
dead-cat bounce
rassle
unkenned
cultivative
that's/them's the breaks
like calls unto like, deep calls unto deep
jiggery-pokery

~ In case the above words haven't been fun enough, Stamper smites with sentences as well:

Lexicography moves so slowly that scientists classify it as a solid.


~ Brethren and sister...n(?) linguists! Have you ever shed blood and tears in the war of prescriptivism against descriptivism?

Well, even if so, you've shed nothing. The mighty go straight for the fire and brimstone:

In a letter to his publisher, E. B. White, the second half of the famous Strunk and White responsible for the best-selling writing guide The Elements of Style, beautifully expresses the modern complaint against descriptivism:
I have been sympathetic all along with your qualms about “The Elements of Style,” but I know that I cannot, and will-shall not, attempt to adjust the unadjustable Mr. Strunk to the modern liberal of the English Department, the anything-goes fellow. Your letter expresses contempt for this fellow, but on the other hand you seem to want his vote. I am against him, temperamentally and because I have seen the work of his disciples, and I say the hell with him.

Descriptivists, those anything-goes hippies: we have seen their work, and right-thinking people everywhere say to hell with them.
Now, as a lexicographer, you are one.


Скрит текст: покажи
Yes, the wrong-thinking hippie that I am, I find it hilarious that people still look up to The Elements of Style.


~ So, all written languages pass through that, eh?

In the sixteenth century, English was established as a language of record; now it was time to make it a fully literary language.
The problem was that plenty of England’s best writers thought English wasn’t quite up to the task. This wasn’t anything new: complaints about the fitness of English have practically been a national pastime since at least the twelfth century, and if the written record were more complete, I’m sure we’d find scrawled in the corner of some Old English manuscript a complaint that English is horrible and Latin is way better. John Skelton wrote a poem that most likely dates to the early sixteenth century in which he claims that “our naturall tong is rude” and really not up to the task of poetry, and he was the damned poet laureate of England. If English was going to be a literary language, it had a lot of work to do.


Скрит текст: покажи
And eventually they come to this:

Езикът ни, брато, е адски готин.
Езикът ни направо е трепач.
От кеф чак под небцето си се потим,
затапиме ли някой натегач...


(Да можех сега и да намеря кой го беше писал...)


~ Grammar nazis ain't gonna like this book:

So where do these rules come from, if not from actual use? Most of them are the personal peeves, codified into law, of dead white men of yore.
Take, for example, the rule that we’re not to end sentences with prepositions. It’s one that is drummed into most young writers at some point in their careers, and failing to heed it will result in some teacherly knuckle smacking (literal or figurative). If you ask a modern adherent to this rule why, exactly, you aren’t supposed to end a sentence with a preposition, they merely goggle at you as if you had just asked why you aren’t supposed to lick electrical sockets. Because it’s objectively better not to, that’s why.
The rule itself was first articulated by the seventeenth-century poet and literary critic John Dryden. (...) Dryden was a son of the Renaissance, and as such was a fan of all things classical: a classical liberal arts education, which placed an emphasis on grammar and rhetoric; the classical (and mostly Latin) authors; the elegance, concision, and precision of Latin itself. It wasn’t just a passing fancy: Dryden often translated his sentences into Latin to see how concise and elegant they were, then translated them back into English with Latin’s lovely grammar in mind. This is likely what led Dryden to deplore the terminal preposition—in Latin, prepositions can’t come at the end of sentences, and Latin is the ne plus ultra of elegance, refinement, and—most important—longevity. Dryden’s distaste for the terminal preposition was repeated and reinforced by usage writers of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries until it became a rule.
The problem with this rule is a familiar one: English grammar is not Latin grammar. The languages are cousins, but not close ones, because they come from different branches of the Indo-European language tree. English has a grammatical structure similar to other Germanic languages, and Latin has a grammatical structure similar to other Italic languages. Blending grammatical systems from two languages on different branches of the Indo-European language tree is a bit like mixing orange juice and milk: you can do it, but it’s going to be nasty.


Let me say that again: Standard English as it is presented by grammarians and pedants is a dialect that is based on a mostly fictional, static, and Platonic ideal of usage. Under this mentality, the idea that the best practices of English change with time is anathema. It doesn’t preserve English so much as pickle it. It’s a circle unbroken: in every age, some learned pedant discovers all over again that English is a clunker, and they race to the rooftops to shout it to the unwashed, stupid masses and begin fomenting for a walkback. (...)
We think of English as a fortress to be defended, but a better analogy is to think of English as a child. We love and nurture it into being, and once it gains gross motor skills, it starts going exactly where we don’t want it to go: it heads right for the goddamned electrical sockets. We dress it in fancy clothes and tell it to behave, and it comes home with its underwear on its head and wearing someone else’s socks. As English grows, it lives its own life, and this is right and healthy. Sometimes English does exactly what we think it should; sometimes it goes places we don’t like and thrives there in spite of all our worrying. We can tell it to clean itself up and act more like Latin; we can throw tantrums and start learning French instead. But we will never really be the boss of it. And that’s why it flourishes.


~ My own treatment when I entered high school (and brought along my mutt of a Bulgarian accent) wasn't nearly that bad, but I can definitely sympathize:
As careful as I was, my dialect still betrayed me when I relocated to New England for college. The way I spoke sounded completely normal to my ears, but drop that dialect smack into the middle of Massachusetts and suddenly I was a big ol’ hick. My roommate used to make fun of how flat and wide my vowels were; I spoke so slowly that one classmate assumed I had a speech impediment. I said “howdy” often, and in response one deeply stupid (or cruel) woman asked if I rode a horse to school and had electricity where I grew up.


The snobbery can get real ugly or plain dangerous:
Jeantel is black, and she natively speaks Haitian Creole as well as English. Throughout her testimony, the defense kept asking her if she understood English or if she was having a difficult time understanding the questions put to her. She consistently objected: she understood the questions just fine, and she was answering them honestly and completely. The problem was that she was answering them in AAVE, a dialect whose speakers are often painted as ignorant and uneducated. The white jury interrupted proceedings several times and claimed they could not understand her, and the defense attorney questioned one part of a pretrial deposition she gave concerning what she heard during the struggle. During that interview, she said she heard someone yell, “Get off!” and when she was asked, “Could you tell who it was?” the transcript indicated that she first answered, “I couldn’t know Trayvon,” and later, “I couldn’t hear Trayvon.” But Rickford points out that, even in Haitian Creole, those answers make no sense in context. “When another linguist and I listened to the TV broadcast of the recording played in court we heard, instead, ‘I could, an’ it was Trayvon.’ ” Rickford notes that he’d need to listen to a better recording of the initial interview that was transcribed. “But,” he goes on, “she definitely did not say what the transcript reports her to have said.”
It’s hard to jump to the conclusion that the jury would have decided differently had the interview been transcribed differently. But the “mights” weigh very heavily: had a native speaker of AAVE been on the jury or in the courtroom, Jeantel’s testimony might not have been discredited, and the verdict might have been different. That is, as we say in my native dialect, worth reckoning.


~ The secret life of dictionarists:
You must also excise all potential double entendres from the book; they say that the best editors have a sharp, sharp eye and a filthy, filthy mind, and they are right. Editors are, at heart, twelve: if we can construe something as a fart or sex (or a fart and sex) joke, we will. This is a double-edged sword as you write verbal illustrations: the elevation of your adult duty is constantly pulling against the gravity of your native gutter thinking. Duty must prevail because duty ostensibly pays the bills, and so [ I think we should do it ] gets changed to [ I don’t want to do that ]; [ That’s a big one! ] becomes [ That’s a big fish! ]; [ He screwed in the lightbulb ] becomes nothing at all.


~ Recently, I had this concept on the tip of my tongue (which, oddly, is as far from the tip of my fingers as possible):
One part of many identity movements is linguistic reclamation. This is a process by which a maligned group—women, gay men, people of color, the disabled, and so on—take an inflammatory slur that’s been directed at them as a group and begin using it themselves as an identity marker of pride. It’s done to remove power from the oppressor, the linguistic version of catching an arrow shot at you in flight.


~ Another slippery slope gets slipped upon:
(...) we really do love acronyms, and especially acronymic explanations for words. “Constable on patrol,” “to insure promptness,” “gentlemen only, ladies forbidden,” (...) “fornication under consent of the king” (or “for unlawful carnal knowledge,” or “forbidden under charter of the king,” or “file under carnal knowledge”): all of them are the punch line for excellent stories about the supposed origins of those words, and they are all complete “ship high in transit.”

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