tlhIngan-Hol Archive: Sun Apr 14 01:44:19 2002

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Re: "be'be'" - double negation

At 01:28 2002-04-14 -0400, wrote:
>Do you really think Dr. Okrand considered this when he chose how to 
>describe points  of grammar in TKD?  He was writing a book that he knew 
>would in fact be read by laymen of the _20th_ century, and that's just how 
>his explanations sound.

I would be greatly surprised if Okrand thought the book's target audience 
was monolingual English speakers who'd never been in a foreign language 
class for more than the few weeks necessary to find out that language X
(where X is anything but English) doesn't have a "negatives cancel" rule.

His assuming the reader reads English is one thing; his assuming that his 
reader will look at the words, note that they're in English and thus 
suppose "He means me to assume Klingon is like English in all points not 
demonstrated otherwise" is another.
In my experience, linguists just don't do that.

Sean M. Burke

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