Peer review and Salo's "Gateway to Sindarin"
- From Dorothea Salo's blog of this date
> David's book got peer-reviewed; I watched the process. It's a muchJust who, we wonders, were these "peer reviewers"? Did anyone with
> better book because of the reviewers.
sufficient competency in Tolkienian linguistics review this book?
(Aside, perhaps, from Helge Fauskanger, who we already know parrots
David Salo in all things "Sindarin", and so hardly constitutes an
objective reviewer.) Or was it simply a matter of the press lobbing the
book at some random non-Tolkienian academics, who might easily be
impressed by the form and (apparent) scope of the book, but have
insufficient familiarity and competency with the facts and literature
of Tolkienian linguistics to make any relevant criticism of David's
methods and conclusions? As Dorothea herself goes on to note:
> peer review substitutes somebody else's reputation andSo did David get merely someone's less-than-informed, and
> hastily-formed-and-delivered opinion for the wretched and impossible
> task of going over the author's work with a microscope
"hastily-formed-and-delivered opinion"; or did someone both objective
and competent actually "go over" his work? In other words, did David's
book receive an actual review by actual peers, or was it basically
rubber-stamped by unknowing academics outside the field?
Dorothea claims to have "watched the process", and that it is "a much
better book because of the reviewers"; inviting the question: how so?
Did David actually modify his ideas about "Sindarin" in any way as a
result of the reviews? Or did he merely correct typos and fix awkward
wordings to better accommodate a lay audience? Perhaps Dorothea could
enlighten the rest of us as to its nature, so that we could judge its
Carl F. Hostetter Aelfwine@... http://www.elvish.org
ho bios brachys, he de techne makre.
Ars longa, vita brevis.
The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne.
"I wish life was not so short," he thought. "Languages take such
a time, and so do all the things one wants to know about."
- It could be that it was actually reviewed by qualified linguists rather than hobbyists?
> > David's book got peer-reviewed; I watched the process. It's a much
> > better book because of the reviewers.
> Just who, we wonders, were these "peer reviewers"?
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- Perhaps, as I in fact allowed. But that's rather my point, isn't it?
Being a "qualified linguist" does not mean that one has any familiarity
at all with the scope, data, and literature of Tolkienian linguistics.
And anyone without these qualifications can hardly qualify as a "peer
reviewer" for a work on Tolkienian linguistics.
On Aug 30, 2004, at 8:23 PM, <finsen@...> wrote:
> It could be that it was actually reviewed by qualified linguists
> rather than hobbyists?
>>> David's book got peer-reviewed; I watched the process. It's a much
>>> better book because of the reviewers.
>> Just who, we wonders, were these "peer reviewers"?
- --- In firstname.lastname@example.org, <finsen@p...> wrote:
> It could be that it was actually reviewed by qualified linguistsrather than hobbyists?
>I think that a qualyfied linguist isn't the same that a person who
knows about Tolkienian languages: you don't need to be a lingüist to
know about them.
The only work that a linguist could make there is to correct
ortographic errors from the english text, so the tolkienian texts
should be overviewed by someone else than David Salo