LINGUIST List 3.183

Thu 27 Feb 1992

Disc: Copacetic, E-prime, Burps

Editor for this issue: <>


Directory

  1. , Re: 3.169 Queries: Chinese, Dictionary, Final Devoicing
  2. "Barbara.Abbott", 3.169 Queries: Copacetic
  3. Robert D Hoberman, Copacetic
  4. , Re: 3.167 Queries: Data, Texts
  5. BROADWELL GEORGE AARON, e-prime

Message 1: Re: 3.169 Queries: Chinese, Dictionary, Final Devoicing

Date: Mon, 24 Feb 1992 11:11 CSTRe: 3.169 Queries: Chinese, Dictionary, Final Devoicing
From: <FIONAkuhub.cc.ukans.edu>
Subject: Re: 3.169 Queries: Chinese, Dictionary, Final Devoicing

To Ron Southerland:
Regarding your query, this book may be of interest to you, although it
deals with a specific historical period.

Fabian, Johannes. 1986. Language and Colonial Power: The Appropriation
of Swahili in the Former Belgian Congo 1880-1938.
Cambridge UP has it in hard back and U of California has it in softback.
					Fiona Mc Laughlin
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Message 2: 3.169 Queries: Copacetic

Date: Mon, 24 Feb 92 08:36 EST
From: "Barbara.Abbott" <ABBOTTmsu.edu>
Subject: 3.169 Queries: Copacetic

Was the famous, now dead, PBS commentator on words John Ciardi?
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Message 3: Copacetic

Date: Mon, 24 Feb 1992 12:49 ESTCopacetic
From: Robert D Hoberman <RHOBERMANccmail.sunysb.edu>
Subject: Copacetic


 State University of New York at Stony Brook
 Stony Brook, NY 11794-3355

 Robert Hoberman
 Comparative Studies Dept.
 516-632-7462, -7460
 24-Feb-1992 12:25pm EST

It's been suggested that "copacetic" is from the Hebrew /hakOl be-sEder/
'everything's OK', literally 'everything in-order' (capitals indicate stress,
and the /h/ is variably elided). The Hebrew expression is a calque on European
ones like "Alles in Ordnung". Where this modern Israeli Hebrew expression
could have gotten into American Black (?) slang I can't imagine. Lots of
YIDDISH expressions, some of them ultimately derived from Hebrew, have gotten
into English slang, but /hakOl be-sEder/ was never borrowed into Yiddish.
HArdly any colloquial Israeli Hebrew was known by American Jews, even those who
knew literary Hebrew, until the 1970's, and copacetic, no doubt, was old by
then.

Bob Hoberman
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Message 4: Re: 3.167 Queries: Data, Texts

Date: Mon, 24 Feb 92 08:50 EST
From: <KINGSTONcs.umass.EDU>
Subject: Re: 3.167 Queries: Data, Texts

Reply to Aaron Broadwell's question about burps:
I would guess, but don't know, that the sound produced in a burp is
from the bubbling of the stomach gas through the upper opening of the
esophageus (into the pharynx). If this is correct, then it is the
same mechanism essentially as used by what are called "esophageal"
speakers. These are people who have learned to swallow air into the
stomach and then control its expulsion through the upper esophageal
opening so as to cause the edges of that opening to vibrate, thus
providing a sound source for vocal tract resonances. (These are people
who have had to have their larynges removed.) The mechanism that causes
this vibration is identical to that that causes vocal fold vibration;
the only essential difference being that the vibration is much slower,
yielding a "voice" with a much lower pitch.
John Kingston
kingstoncs.umass.edu
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Message 5: e-prime

Date: Thu, 20 Feb 92 12:16:52 -0e-prime
From: BROADWELL GEORGE AARON <gb661csc.albany.edu>
Subject: e-prime


There is a (possibly unintentionally) amusing discussion of e-prime in this
month's Atlantic. E-prime is English without the verb 'to be', and it is
one of the components of General Semantics. GS was invented by someone
Polish (Korbynski??) but its best known advocate in the US is S.I.
Hayakawa.

General Semantics is based on a strong version of the Whorfian hypothesis,
and believes that by changing our language to avoid `sloppy thinking'
we can eliminate many social problems like racism/anti-Semitism/sexism,
etc. I occasionally have students who have been influenced by
Hayakawa in my classes.
******************************************************************************
Aaron Broadwell, Dept. of Linguistics, University at Albany -- SUNY,
Albany, NY 12222 gb661thor.albany.edu
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