Conlangery #81: Tone
January 21, 2013 7 Comments
It took us two tries, but we managed to record an episode focusing entirely on tone systems. Learn about how tonal languages work, how they develop historically, and a few little bits you can play with.
Top of Show Greeting: Frenkisch
Links and Resources:
- Thai writing system
- IPA Tone Markings
- Gwoyeu Romatzyh (Yes, that is how it’s spelled. Characters: 国语罗马字 )
- WALS on tone
Hi George & co
After several months, I have finally caught up with all the Conlangery podcasts. I’m very impressed that you’ve kept them going so long and kept the standard up.
Can I suggest another area you might like to look at – language contact, particularly creoles and pidgins. A lot of conlangers model change within a family but there’s not many conlangs with more than one ancestor. Creoles and pidgins with their restricted vocabulary, morphology and word order might be good for beginners or for someone looking for a quick, fun project. Yet they can form larger projects to, e.g. if different registers are taken into account. You could base one on real world languages or on conlangs.
There’s some theoretical debate to be had there, too – Bickerton and other universalists versus those who favour socio-cultural explanations.
<Removed some links from the email for brevity, though those may surface in a future episode on creoles and pidgins>