covid-19, academic conferences, nerds
I love that this is a thing.
(URL for convenience: https://exchanges.warwick.ac.uk/announcement/view/20 )
#introduction hallöchen! I’m a Brazilian trans woman living in Germany working on Japanese dialectal fieldwork (long story). Interests include fantasy fiction, imaginary languages, free software, comic books, intersectional veganism, cute cuddly things, and supporting anticapitalist revolutions to bring down the whole rotten edifice
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@Suplex you positively radiate womanhood congratulations on your great progress & enjoy the ride for all that's coming sis 👭
- celestial bodies are usually treated respectfully with honorifics in dialects (hi-sama, o-tsuki-sama, o-hoshi-san, gorogoro-san ('thunder' in Kumamoto)
- several of 'my' dialects have hayasi/hayasu for 'to cut'. This word appears in the Diccionario Latino-lusitanicum ad Japonicum (1595), marked as "ladies' speech".
done with this lexi gig ♪
things learned by accident:
- there isn't too much consistency in Tōhoku prenasalisation
- Akita ppl love to put the diminutive (-kko) *everywhere*
- Including manako, so if the etym. me-no-ko is correct, that would be me-no-ko-kko
- Akiyama has aomu 'to green' which totally should be a thing in SJ
- 'to fall' = ton-suru in Akiyama babytalk
- Akiyama ~doesn't~ have 13124 words for snow
- Akita danjagunja = stubborn
every time I want to look up the dictionary via crossasia
- open crossasia
- drop-down "login"
- select login method on very long drop down list
- send credentials cached in browser
- filter by "Japanese" (faster than typing JapanKnowledge on search field)
- click JapanKnowledge on list
- wait for magic redirects to work
- click JK "login"
- select Daijiten
I do this whole dance several times a day.
@bgcarlisle have you looked into federated blogging platforms? I've been thinking about it…
large scale IPA data entry things
I feel like if I type the character 'j' while in IPA input method, it should be read [j].
If I type the exact same unicode codepoint on the same ("IPA") column but with the IPA input method turned off, my intuition is that it is now read (Japanese) /ʑ/.
@bgcarlisle mfw watching movie ☝️
mechakucha vs. muchakucha
@skalyan both exist! and "mecha" individually, just like "mucha". they are phonetic variations of the same word. mecha is attested fairly late on the Daijiten (1894), and is written in ateji variously as 滅茶 or 目茶.
you can make them even more emphatic with chacha-muchakucha or chacha-mechakucha
kanji ideology and minority speakers (10/10)
@wim_v12e yeah doesn't make sense but that's ideology for you I guess 🤷 in my experience nationalists have no problem downplaying the Chineseness of Chinese chars and treating them as a "special Japanese thing" even though the word kanji means literally "Chinese characters" & many kango are straight-up Chinese.
Like etymology, you can use the kanji as a *hint* for the meaning of an unknown word and it usually works, but not always (e.g. 馬鹿 or 寿司).
kanji ideology and minority speakers (10/10)
The meanings of words – and of word-pieces – are not decided by government committees mandating official orthographies for standardised schooling. They are decided by the whole speaking community, every time they use the words. How words are used is what they mean.
In the case of mucha-kucha, the orthography is ateji anyway, so not even the govt is claiming it's a tea idiom. But in every case, living orality always trumps kanji-based interpretation.
kanji ideology and minority speakers (9/?)
In understanding the Japanese language, it is helpful to keep in mind that it existed before kanji, is independent of kanji, and would keep existing without it. It is fully communicable by sound, and learned by all native speakers from sound, before they're put on the educational system. Many fully valid native speakers (the blind, rural etc.) never use kanji at all.
Look at sounds and meanings first, and then it will make sense how kanji represent both.
kanji ideology and minority speakers (8/?)
so the only reason why anybody would ever think that mucha-kucha means "no tea, bitter tea" is if they extrapolated meanings from the orthography – which is a historical accident. This kind of folk etymology happens often to literate J speakers who absorbed the nationalistic ideology that kanji are a special, unique translinguistic meaning-writing, free from the taint of sound and orality.
(I suggest DeFrancis' "Visible Speech" to demythologise kanji.)
kanji ideology and minority speakers (7/?)
etymology does not necessarily coincides to current meanings, any more than kanji does. but for what it's worth, the etymology doesn't support the "bitter tea" analysis either. while the origin of the word is unclear, current analysis (cf. Kokugo Daijiten) point to the Buddhist term musa, no-action. it is used in Middle Japanese in the sense of modern mucha, as musa-to and musa-kusa. at no point musa or *kusa were used for tea-related things.
kanji ideology and minority speakers (6/?)
there is in fact a word "mucha", but it is never used to mean "no tea". instead it means much the same as mucha-kucha: absurd, excessively.
this is where the Japanese feature of reduplication comes in. Japanese words can be echoed for emphasis, as in samu-i "cold" → samu-samu "wintry", or yabure "failure" → yabure-kabure "desperation".
we don't need neither kanji nor etymology to figure out that in the living language, mucha-kucha is an emphatic mucha.
kanji ideology and minority speakers (5/?)
what about the analysis of mucha-kucha as "no tea, bitter tea?"
*kucha "bitter tea" doesn't occur in the language at all. the normal way to describe bitter tea is shibu-cha. no one says *"kore, kucha datta" ("this was bittertea").
mucha "no-tea" isn't really a thing either. while the morphemes exist, nobody says *"mucha datta" ("I was chaless") in the way you might say e.g. "mukizu datta" ("I was unharmed").
kanji ideology and minority speakers (4/?)
Chinese has a form of idioms condensed into compound words (chéngyǔ), which Japanese inherited and used as a model. a J example is temae-miso "oneself-miso paste" = tooting one's own horn.
how do we know it's an idiom? it is made of readily recognisable J words; temae "before oneself, I" (now often "you"), and miso "soybean paste". these words occur in other contexts with these meanings.
notice we don't need kanji to know this, just the living orality.
kanji ideology and minority speakers (3/?)
how can you tell if kanji are representing sound or meaning?
to do that you have to go back to what oral language is: sounds with meanings, learned by babies. you have to remember that langs exist independently from writing or govt standards.
put yourself in the shoes of a child, a blind person, disabled, a rural speaker who doesn't do kanji like many of my informants, or a Brazilian-Japanese native speaker who learned it orally like many of my friends.
Brazilian trans woman researching Japanese linguistics in Germany. Anarchist pro-intersectional vegan.
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