Cainntear wrote: Sae wrote: Cainntear wrote:
Whilst aye, there is no guarantee on what a Chinese Zamonhof would do but you can at least ascertain what is likely based on his philosophy. They're not directly comparable scenarios.
But what was
his philosophy? What we've seen here is other people's assumptions and assertions of his philosophy, not references to what he actually said and why.
His purpose was to create an easy to learn & flexible language that serves as a Universal second language, without delving into anyhing else we know that much and I don't think we need to know more for my point to stand. Using the Chinese script would be contrary to this goal.
"1) Zamenhof wanted to do good.
2) I know that isn't good.
Therefore Zamenhof wouldn't have done it.
That's a bigger leap of logic than you think.
Your understanding of the issues isn't universal and there's no guarantee that Zamenhof would have seen it that way. Zamenhof was a doctor, he was natively bilingual, and his high school language list would be considered fairly average if he was a member of this site today. The state of the art in linguistics then was far less advanced that what even the most basic member here would know (have you heard talk of "subject and predicate", for example?)
Zamenhof didn't do everything right, hence Volapük being a better language. Esperanto only won out because Zamenhof presented a fixed target that would never change.
To an extent, Esperanto's success is a case of "don't let the perfect be the enemy of the good", and if Esperantists could say as much, I'd have a lot more time for their views. The way I see it, they're more likely to say that it's perfect, which it absolutely is not.
I mean this doesn't really show me why it's a leap of logic. I've already accepted there is no guarantee
he would see it that way, because we are talking about something hypothetical here about a guy we don't personally know, I just think it given motives we do know about it'd not make a good case for a Chinese Zamonhof to stick with a Chinese script. A guy wants to simplify language, we throw in a variable that means his native or preferred script is not simple, and it's a question of whether he'd stick to it, and based on what we know, there's no shortage of simpler scripts available to him and a good incentive to not use his native script and also options to do what a neighbouring country did.
Unless I am wrong about this motive, but everything I read about him and Esperanto says it was as such. He wanted a simple and flexibile language. Nobody has presented a reason why this would plausibly be different when approaching the script of the language without making additional assumptions about him. Unless I'm missing something?
I'm not saying he'd get it perfect or do everything right. I just don't think it's a good comparison when it's more likely he'd not adopt a Chinese script if his goal was to create something simpler and growing up in China at the time would not make him ignorant of alternative systems, especially as a multilinguist (which Zamonhof was).
Whereas, with the Chinese script, you'd have to have a pretty stubborn and unwavering cultural bias to not see that using it would be counter to the purpose behind the language you're creating. And I've not seen anything to suggest that Zamonhof was this. A Chinese Zamonhof would be aware there's simpler systems than the Chinese script.
Have you seen anything to suggest he wasn't? So far you've just given an opinion, which doesn't strike down the question.
We know his goal with Esperanto was to be simple and flexible.
We don't know that he was so stubborn and unwavering of a cultural bias that he would refuse to give up a difficult-to-learn script that would hinder not help his goal with Esperanto. His cultural bias was to Europe, a culture bias to East Asia would still give him such scripts.
And "you don't know he wasn't" is not so effective as a counter. If we don't know this information about him, we would not make this assumption about him.
Fortunately we have occam's razor, we'd only need to entertain the idea if there was something to suggest that okay he might.
What we do know is that it wouldn't be simpler to go with this writing system. But we don't have a like-for-like comparison here.
Of course, it makes this comparison trickier, but then my view is that it's not a good comparison.
But I think there is a fair argument to be made between chosing Latin & Cyrillic. I don't think me saying Latin was widespread is me having a Western European bias, it's more that Western Europe had colonized much of the world.
Ah, so you're saying that Latin is a more neutral character set because the colonial powers that invaded lands and enslaved the local populace brought Latin characters with them...?
Faaaaaaaaaaar from it. Colonialism is something I hate about this country's past.
I am saying it is widespread because of it. It's not a judgment on whether or not it should be used, but it is a reason to pick a script, but not the only one and is maybe the one I can see comparison against Chinese script, but the point is that the biase here would have to be strong enough to trump your goal of making a simple-to-learn flexibile language. Not that I think it is more neutral. I was on the side that doesn't think Esperanto is neutral in one of the other discussion and I agree it has European biases. And yes, there would be biases if Zamonhof was Chinese.
But I do not agree that if your goal is to simplify a language that you wouldn't do it when the script isn't simple, especially when you'd be aware of alternative scripts that are easier and alternative approaches to scripts. But all in all, that it's not a good comparison.