Ani's 2017 Log

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Ani
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby Ani » Mon Dec 25, 2017 10:05 pm

MorkTheFiddle wrote:Pardon the belated interruption. You may say more about this topic later in your log, so I'll save commenting until I finish it. But what a stimulating set of observations and questions.


I'm so glad you stopped by and brought this up. I had forgotten that I posted about coming back to talk on this theme, actually. I keep thinking about it though, especially as we study history chronological and see what was happening all over the world at different times. It's love to hear your thoughts and if we have any others interested in the discussion maybe we can port my original thoughts into a discussion thread.
MorkTheFiddle wrote:Well, this is odd. I'm following my own post.
So, anyway, I just caught up with your log. Like some other folks on this forum, you routinely run up Mt Everest dressed only in a jogging outfit and with no oxygen. In about 30 minutes. Every day. I mean language-learning wise. If I wanted to find someone else who does everything that you do, I would need to find at least four other persons, not just one.
Congratulations on everything that you have accomplished.


That's such a sweet compliment. I'm not sure it's deserved but it sure gave me a smile! :)

Gutenberg wrote:Reading this makes me want to read the Harris books in French. I have a problem where I tend to only go for the heaviest/most difficult books and therefore finishing relatively few of them, especially in French which I don't speak well.


Do it!! They are fantastic for vocabulary and ordinary speech. And reading through a few thousand more pages will surely make whatever hard stuff you are interested in seem easier.

-------

Merry Christmas everyone!! Hope you are all having a wonderful time with family and friends.
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby Ani » Mon Dec 25, 2017 11:58 pm

Oh I forgot I wanted to throw a bunch of things into my log..

So.. I've been living for a few weeks now in this teeny place in interior Alaska. Actually it's not teeny by Alaska standards because there's probably like 1000 people living within a 75 mile radius. And there's like three stores, a school, and a real library. I went to an event last week and, as luck would have it, I met the only French speaker for 100 miles around (as far as she knows). The upside is, I met her. The down side is her kids don't really match up in age with mine and I have no excuses to make her my new best friend :( We mostly talked in English which also wasn't so great but I think next time it would be not awkward to start off right away in French so maybe that's good.
There seems to be a really nice community of people up there. (I'm confusing myself with heres and there's.. I'm home in my regular house in AK for Christmas but then we go back for another 6 weeks)

On another topic, it was my birthday a couple days ago and DH got me some books -- some of Einstein's lectures on relativity and a Gary Taubes book. But you know you're a language nerd when your DH tacks on, "but they are in English so I wasn't sure if you'd want them" lol ( I do want them. He knows me so well)

And finally, I'm looking at correspondance school courses for ds3 in French. There is at least one school that offers a maternelle petite section for his age and I'm trying to decide if it makes sense to try it out. I'm on the fence because I could easily make up my own things to work with him on and Lord knows I am not short on books and resources and all kinds of nonsenses around here. But, it could be educative for me to be integrated into an actual program with actual contact teachers. One of the program's I am interested in a couple years for him requires Skype interviews with the parent to set everything up, which sounds very intimidating right now so maybe I should jump in to the system right now to force myself to be better prepared in two years...idk.
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby Peluche » Tue Dec 26, 2017 4:05 am

You're a Physicist Ani?
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby Ani » Tue Dec 26, 2017 7:25 am

Gemuse wrote:You're a Physicist Ani?

No, my degree is in math. I've just been a little obsessed with physics this year and day dreaming about a graduate degree in theoretical physics or maybe astronomy and astrophysics at the Sorbonne UPMC.. not like that's remotely realistic or anything but it combines my (current) two favorite things : French and physics :)
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby DaveBee » Wed Dec 27, 2017 8:46 am

Ani wrote:No, my degree is in math.
I've been reading about Raymond Queneau this morning, there might be something there that would interest you.
La curiosité de Queneau s'étend à tous les domaines de la science, notamment aux mathématiques. C'est d'ailleurs avec un mathématicien, son ami François Le Lionnais, qu'il fonde l'Ouvroir de Littérature Potentielle en 1960; ce groupe se propose de créer de nouvelles structures poétiques et romanesques. Mais plus qu'un simple club littéraire, l'Oulipo veut dépasser la conception traditionnelle de la littérature pour lui reconnaître une vocation à créer de nouveaux langages.

À l'instar des mathématiques, la langue est à chaque instant pour Queneau un objet d'expérience, un champ d'application, un territoire illimité d'exploration. Curieux de tout, Queneau s'intéresse à tout; cette disposition encyclopédique combine chez lui deux penchants complémentaires : le goût pour l'acquisition du savoir et l'intérêt pour les méthodes de découverte.

http://classes.bnf.fr/dossitsm/b-quenea.htm

https://fr.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oulipo

http://oulipo.net
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby jeff_lindqvist » Wed Dec 27, 2017 6:17 pm

DaveBee wrote:http://classes.bnf.fr/dossitsm/b-quenea.htm


You know you're a language nerd when...
...you misinterpret this as a French website with lessons in Quenya. :ugeek:
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby MorkTheFiddle » Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:16 pm

Ani wrote:
MorkTheFiddle wrote:Pardon the belated interruption. You may say more about this topic later in your log, so I'll save commenting until I finish it. But what a stimulating set of observations and questions.


I'm so glad you stopped by and brought this up. I had forgotten that I posted about coming back to talk on this theme, actually. I keep thinking about it though, especially as we study history chronological and see what was happening all over the world at different times. It's love to hear your thoughts and if we have any others interested in the discussion maybe we can port my original thoughts into a discussion thread.

Merry Christmas everyone!! Hope you are all having a wonderful time with family and friends.

First of all, I hope the Christmas season is going well for you and yours.

Second, as for my "thoughts." First, I'll bring in Whitehead's overworked remark,
The safest general characterization of the philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato.
That used to mean to me that Plato was the more important part of the equation. But lately I wonder if the "footnoters" aren't the more important part. Plato may have laid the first course, but the rest of the building belongs to his footnoters. Without the intervening 2500 years of explanations and interpretations, how important would Plato be? Some of what Plato has Socrates say is downright nonsense. Socrates's "proof" of the immortality of the soul in the Phaedo is ridiculous (I'll look up the exact reference when I get through with this: it is Phaedo 70c-72a; there are so many editions of Plato, but here is one, starting at 70c: http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus%3Atext%3A1999.01.0170%3Atext%3DPhaedo%3Asection%3D70c). Further, though I have not read a great deal of Plato in the Greek (or any of the other Ancient Greeks or the Bible), I have read enough to believe that nothing gets lost in translation. Plato's style of writing does get lost, and he is a masterful writer, to which some of his longevity can be attributed, but not the ideas. I would leave aside the poetry, but I think what I have said about Plato is true for all the other prose writers and "thinkers" (excepting maybe Thucydides, but with him what gets lost is his lack of clarity :) ).
As for Latin, I must confess a bias here. I'm surprised that Latin literature has survived at all. But leave that aside, are there any ideas from Latin secular literature that we use unadulterated in their original form? Is what the Romans called a republic what we would call a republic? Haven't their ideas like the ideas of the Ancient Greeks substantially mutated with the passage of time and the application of interpretations?
And in that case, do we really need to learn Latin and/or Ancient Greek in order to understand their thinking and concepts? My answer would be no. The quantity of their literature is low, indeed, as you allude to, so if you spend 4 or 5 or 6 years mastering the languages, where are you and what do you read next? What is the point of it all? I have made a couple of serious attempts to learn Latin. I would be especially interested in being able to read Tacitus in the original. But Tacitus is so very difficult and there is so little else of Latin I want to read, that I just quit. I am in a similar position with Ancient Greek, except with Greek there is enough, just barely enough, to keep me interested and to keep me going.
Very recently a doctor told me he missed not knowing Latin for the help it would have given him learning medical terminology. So there is one reason to study Latin. Another would be just the pure simple pleasure of learning the language, which would apply to Greek as well, of course. But barring those two reasons as well as a religious reason, I can see no point in anyone's labor--hard labor indeed--learning either language.
I have a tendency to say too much, but I'm going to stop here(I haven't forgotten the reference to Phaedo; I'll come back with it once I find it in an English version).
It would be great to hear more of your opinions about this as well as the opinions of others. Thanks for inviting me in.

Edited once to provide the reference to Phaedo.
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby Systematiker » Thu Dec 28, 2017 1:14 am

I have an awful lot I'd like to say in this, but as it's in the middle of Ani's log, I'd like to have her permission first, or, as she's suggested, take it to another thread - as she decides.
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby Ani » Thu Dec 28, 2017 2:59 am

Systematiker wrote:I have an awful lot I'd like to say in this, but as it's in the middle of Ani's log, I'd like to have her permission first, or, as she's suggested, take it to another thread - as she decides.


Please go ahead. I love this discussion. I only feel a little bit guilty for keeping the fun content in here and not sharing with everyone else :)
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Re: Ani's 2017 Log

Postby Ani » Thu Dec 28, 2017 3:15 am

MorkTheFiddle wrote:
Ani wrote:
MorkTheFiddle wrote: The quantity of their literature is low, indeed, as you allude to, so if you spend 4 or 5 or 6 years mastering the languages, where are you and what do you read next? What is the point of it all?


I think you hit at least one of the nails on the head here. I'm interested to know what the actual corpus size is for Latin in different periods.

I also agree with you about the need to understand the language not to miss the sense of the ideas. My impression is that what is translated is usually translated quite well. Further, for important works, you can usually find long expositions that containing all the analysis and translational considerations.


** Just to clarify for anyone that reads in, I'm not saying anything at all against learning Latin or ancient Greek for love or by choice of profession.
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