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Na Kladne +chat

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  • Melvyn Clarke
    Hi Kostas, ... professor) saying that grammar is just a set of plain dump rules. ... Psychology from Harvard, teaching at MIT since 1982) says: Many
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 26, 2000
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      Hi Kostas,

      >Do you remember when I quoted couple of months ago that PhD linguist (MIT
      professor) saying that grammar is just a set of plain dump rules.


      Yes indeed Kostas:

      >In the Language International, vol 10.6 (1998), p. 23, Steven Pinker (PhD
      >in
      Psychology from Harvard, teaching at MIT since 1982) says:
      "Many prescriptive rules of grammar are just plain dumb and should be
      deleted from the usage handbooks"



      At the time, we were discussing some of the fine semantic differences
      between "It always
      rains in Manchester' and 'It is always raining in Manchester', not with the
      aim of establishing
      any 'correct' form but simply to identify the various shades of meaning
      involved, because
      every grammar book had its own particular take on this point. I couldn't
      really see the
      relevance of your observation in this context but I couldn't be bothered to
      ask at the time.

      When we are discussing the difference between 'v Kladne' and 'na Kladne', (a
      lexical point,
      not a grammatical one BTW:)) I would again try to take it in the same
      descriptive and not
      prescriptive spirit (perhaps it was wrong of me to use the word 'spravny',
      Tomas). I am
      pointing out that popular usage is one thing and official usage is another.
      I notice, for
      example, that articles written by the staff at Kladno Research Library,
      prefer 'v Kladne' but I
      am sure the same people would use 'na Kladne' at home. The rights and wrongs
      of such
      stylistic differences both in Czech and English are something we could
      complain about for a
      long long time but I just think that as translators we have to be aware of
      such differences.
      For example, I personally would never hesitate to use a fused participle in
      English ('Would
      you mind me opening the window?') but I still have to be aware in my
      translation work that
      some people consider this to be not quite au fait.
      -----------------
      Ahoj Bobe,

      >sedim a ctu si digesty, ktery se mi nashromazdily za celou tu dobu, kdy
      jsem byl na
      dovoleny.

      Rad Te vidim zpatky doma a doufam, ze jsi si pekne uzil :)


      > Gratukuji k velmi plodnym debatam! Dovolena byla skvela,
      ale styskalo se mi po Czechlistu a vasem povidani.

      No je to jako mydlova opera, ze jo? Ale pozor, muze to byt nebezpecny navyk!
      8 X

      Melvyn


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