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Re: [ANE-2] Reading revolutions

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  • Peter T. Daniels
    Thoroughly refuted, see Lingua Posnaniensis 42 (2000): 43-55. Because of Gelb s fallacious Principle of Unidirectional Development, he had to claim that
    Message 1 of 42 , Oct 3, 2010
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      Thoroughly refuted, see Lingua Posnaniensis 42 (2000): 43-55.

      Because of Gelb's fallacious "Principle of Unidirectional Development," he had
      to claim that Ethiopic/Indic are "alphabets" because he knew perfectly well that
      they developed out of the consonantary, which he had labeled "syllabary." He
      also said that Ethiopic/Indic "presents some difficult problems" (186). Only to
      his "theory."

      What is "Winkeralphabet"? In English, "semaphore" is sending visual signals over
      a distance, usually by an alphabetic code using signal flags, or Morse code from
      a beacon, or similar schemes. 
      --
      Peter T. Daniels grammatim@...
      Jersey City


      >
      >From: R. Lehmann <lehmann@...>
      >To: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com
      >Sent: Sat, October 2, 2010 2:52:59 PM
      >Subject: Re: [ANE-2] Reading revolutions
      >

      >But what about Gelb’s earlier statement that all West Semitic scripts were not
      >alphabets, but rather syllabaries? (Daniels 1990, Gelb 1963, see also Powell
      >1991:238-245)?
      >
      >"Semaphorics" is the "Winkeralphabet". Admittedly, I was a little bit kidding.
      >
      >¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨¨
      >Reinhard G. Lehmann
      >Johannes Gutenberg-University of Mainz
      >
      >Am 02.10.2010 um 05:02 schrieb Peter T. Daniels:
      >
      >> I refer you to Alfred Schmitt, *Die Erfindung der Schrift* (1980), aposthumous
      >
      >> collection of papers, and also to various articles of mine going back to
      1992.
      >>
      >> What is "semaphorics"? --
      >> Peter T. Daniels grammatim@...
      >> Jersey City
      >>
      >> ----- Original Message ----
      >> > From: R. Lehmann <lehmann@...>
      >> > To: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com
      >> > Sent: Fri, October 1, 2010 8:39:09 AM
      >> > Subject: Re: [ANE-2] Reading revolutions
      >> >
      >> > ... syllabaries?
      >> > An all-too simplistic kind of view. Gelb re-activated?
      >> >
      >> > Maybe syllabaries.
      >> > maybe logograms.
      >> > maybe semaphorics,
      >> > or maybe something else.
      >> > Nobody will know for sure how the mind of mankind would have gone.
      >> >
      >> >
      >> > ииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииииии
      >> > Dr. Reinhard G. Lehmann
      >> >
      >> > > What is "it"?
      >> > >
      >> > > It's certainly true that there's nothing intuitive about the alphabet -- or
      >>
      >> >it
      >> >
      >> > > would have been invented lots of times around the world. Instead, what gets
      >>
      >> > > invented when people know nothing about writing except that it exists is
      >> > > syllabaries. --
      >> > > Peter T. Daniels grammatim@...
      >> > > Jersey City
      >> > >
      >> > > >
      >> > > >From: Graham Hagens <rgrahamh@...>
      >> > > >To: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com
      >> > > >Sent: Thu, September 30, 2010 3:23:19 PM
      >> > > >Subject: Re: [ANE-2] Reading revolutions
      >> > > >
      >> > > >
      >> > > >But it was a 'functional' communication medium which was able to
      >>effectively
      >>
      >> >
      >> > > >compete with the alphabet for several centuries.

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    • Graham Hagens
      Peter - thanks for your insightful responses to what Brian called by enigmatic note. It is probably time to stop before I get into more trouble. But just a
      Message 42 of 42 , Oct 27, 2010
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        Peter - thanks for your insightful responses to what Brian called by 'enigmatic' note.
        It is probably time to stop before I get into more trouble.
        But just a couple of remarks:
         
        Peter Daniels wrote:
         
        >And a Chinese person tells us that he can _get a general idea of_ a Japanese
        >newspaper article even though he knows no Japanese. In neither direction are
        >they _reading_ in the other language.

        Precisely my point: they are not reading the other language, they are absorbing the information in their own.
        As you know various trades achieve this all the time by means of technical symbolism. 
        In my profession I am frequently required to understand chemical data embedded within a text written in any one of a number of languages with which I am unfamiliar. 
        It is surprisingly easy to do.
        In the case of mathematics even more so.  Marshall McLuhan famously stated that the medium is the message: in technical literature symbolism becomes the medium.
         
        >>This carries the implication that humans would have kept looking for something
        >>like the alphabet for a long long time had it not emerged when it did.

        >Sorry, I cannot fathom this statement. What is "something like the alphabet"
        >that could have been "looked for"? Seems like _you're_ suggesting some sort of
        >superiority for an alphabet!
         
        Exactly.  And why not?
        Don't you think it's a little odd that such an idea might appear so out to lunch that an exclamation mark is required?
        What if we could design a system which would allow us all to communicate in our own languages and have others anywhere in the world absorb the information in theirs?
         
        Anyway, as I said.  Probably time to stop, we're a long way from the ANE now
         
        Graham Hagens
        Hamilton, ON 
         




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