Language, Technology, and Society by Richard Sproat PDF

By Richard Sproat

ISBN-10: 0199549389

ISBN-13: 9780199549382

This ebook strains the heritage of language expertise from writing - the 1st expertise in particular designed for language - to electronic speech and different modern language platforms. The ebook describes the social impression of technological advancements over 5 millennia, and addresses themes corresponding to the ways that literacy has prompted cognitive and clinical improvement; the social effect of contemporary speech know-how; the effect of assorted printing applied sciences; the makes use of and boundaries of desktop translation; how a ways mass info entry is a method for exploitation or enlightenment; the interpreting of historic scripts; and technical aids for individuals with language disabilities. Richard Sproat writes in a transparent, readable variety, introducing linguistic and different medical thoughts as they're wanted. His e-book bargains attention-grabbing analyzing for everybody attracted to how language and expertise have formed and proceed to form our daily lives.

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The two middle categories distinguish the ways in which the components are used. Meaning compounds combine the meanings of the two components to make a third meaning. The example that is commonly given—though DeFrancis points out that this analysis is probably wrong—is 明 mı´ng ‘bright’, composed of two parts 日 rı` ‘sun’ and 月 yue` ‘moon’. Phonetic compounds consist of one piece that contributes something about the meaning, and another that contributes information about the pronunciation. For example, 橡 xia`ng ‘oak’ is composed of (on the left) 木 mu` ‘wood, tree’ and on the right 象 xia`ng ‘elephant’.

In this particular case, the phonetic information is perfect because (in Mandarin) both 象 and 橡 are pronounced the same. Most of the time the match is not so good. For example, the character 鴨 ya¯ ‘duck’ is composed of (on the right) 鳥 niaˇo ‘bird’ and (on the left) the phonetic indicator 甲 jiaˇ ‘carapace’. In this case, the pronunciation match (for Mandarin) is pretty poor. Part of the reason for the poor representation of sound is that many of the characters were developed thousands of years ago, when Chinese pronunciation was quite diVerent from any of the modern Chinese languages.

One of the diYculties of reading Japanese is Wguring out in any given case how a character should be read. A wonderful example is the beautiful temple in Kyoto 清水寺 (Clear Water Temple) whose name uses native Japanese words (kiyo mizu dera), whereas another Kyoto Temple 大德寺 (Great Virtue Temple) is read as a sequence of Chinese-derived words (dai toku ji) note that both names end in character 寺, pronounced differently in each case. 1 Japanese kokuji or ‘national characters’ 働 凪 凧 峠 颪 怺 毟 聢 躾 鴫 嬶 鱈 person + move wind + stop wind + cloth mountain + up + down down + wind heart + forever few + hair ear + certain body + beautiful field + bird female + nose fish + snow hataraki nagi tako touge oroshi koraeru mushi shika shitsuke shigi kaka¯ tara ‘eVort’ ‘lull, calm’ ‘kite’ ‘mountain pass’ ‘mountain wind’ ‘endure’ ‘pluck’ ‘clearly’ ‘upbringing’ ‘snipe’ ‘wife’ ‘codWsh’ Notes: The second column gives the meanings of the components that make up the character.

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Language, Technology, and Society by Richard Sproat

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