Conlanging Features you Avoid

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Shemtov
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by Shemtov »

Salmoneus wrote: 07 May 2022 13:26
teotlxixtli wrote: 07 May 2022 04:17 Masculine/feminine gender always seemed pedestrian to me, but I’d include them if the culture that spoke the language had more than two (either a third gender or distinct category for trans folks or something)
Just to be clear, because this is a common misconception: cross-linguistically, "gender" in the linguistic sense has nothing to do with "gender" in the sociological sense.

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I'm bringing up Religion here to show an example of how grammatical gender systems may result in the opposite of what one would expect from social gender. I am also being anthropologically descriptive in this post and am purposefully avoiding modern politics.
Both Christian and Jewish Ecclesiastical/Religious Law has traditionally recognized only Biological Gender, yet the treatment of Intersex people is different. Jewish Law recognized them as a Third Biological Gender, while (AFAIK) Christian Canon Law forced them to choose a Binary Gender.
Now, if grammatical gender was correlated to social gender, one would expect Medieval Christianity, whose language of education was Latin, which has a neuter gender, to be more accepting of Intersex, while Judaism, whose language of education was Hebrew, having only grammatical Masc and Fem to be less so, and yet we find the opposite.

EDIT: I am also tempted to bring up Tamil, since it has Human Msc, Human Fem, Animal, and Inanimate grammatical genders, and yet Tamil culture has recognized a class of people who are basically Intersex+Non-Binary (Possibly +Trans, the term does not seem to map well on Western terms) called Tirunar/Aravaani. However, it seems that the Tolkāppiyam mentions a special grammatical gender for "Aravaani" people, though on second thought, the Tolkāppiyam may be being perscriptive, not descriptive, in this case. I would need to see further clarification.
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by lsd »

Shemtov wrote: 08 May 2022 18:09 if grammatical gender was correlated to social gender, one would expect Medieval Christianity, whose language of education was Latin, which has a neuter gender, to be more accepting of Intersex, while Judaism, whose language of education was Hebrew, having only grammatical Masc and Fem to be less so, and yet we find the opposite.
it is true, the Sapir Whorf hypothesis having never been validated on this point...
and linguistic reforms have no real basis, but building prohibitions and practicing social re-engineering is a goal in itself
which allows to set up self-censorship which are the auxiliaries of totalitarian states...
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by Omzinesý »

Shemtov wrote: 08 May 2022 18:09 Now, if grammatical gender was correlated to social gender, one would expect Medieval Christianity, whose language of education was Latin, which has a neuter gender, to be more accepting of Intersex, while Judaism, whose language of education was Hebrew, having only grammatical Masc and Fem to be less so, and yet we find the opposite.
Just waiting for this discussion be moved to another thread :)


Correlation is a quantitative term not a qualitative term. If you have a sample of 1000 languages without genders and 1000 languages with genders, the cultures whose language lacks genders could be 2 % more liberal on average, other relevant variables controlled. I don't know how one could study that in practice. Having an example of two languages/cultures says nothing about correlation.

Second
Latin neuter is used for things. I don't think Latin gender system is more liberal than that of Hebrew.

Ancient Israeli society recognizing a third social gender was interesting info.
My meta-thread: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=5760
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Shemtov
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by Shemtov »

Omzinesý wrote: 09 May 2022 11:20

Ancient Israeli society recognizing a third social gender was interesting info.
I said "Jewish" and not "Israeli" since I'm basing it on texts that date from a span of 100-500 CE, and in that period, many Jews lived in Modern Day Iraq and SE Syria, and were granted semi-autonomous status, and it seems within those communities the idea that "Intersex= Third Gender" would have applied.
Also, I'm not sure if "social gender" is appropriate in regards to projecting modern ideas back- it was indeed biological, but those born Intersex were considered to be a third biological gender, which had social implications, contrasted to a biological binary of "intersex are really deformed males or females, but they need to choose" that I mentioned existing in Medieval Christianity, compare the Islamic opinion of the Ummayad period that Intersex people are "deformed females".
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KaiTheHomoSapien
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by KaiTheHomoSapien »

I guess one thing I avoid is an overly-complex phonology that I myself can't even pronounce. I like the idea of tones, for example, but I doubt I'll ever create a tonal language unless I can really master pronouncing different tones.

There's not too much else that I consciously avoid. But it's always been a strict policy of mine that I have to be able to pronounce my own conlangs with some degree of proficiency, so I avoid sounds that I can't pronounce well.
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by LinguoFranco »

I generally don't use SVO word order unless I am making an analytic conlang. I'm a native English speaker, so I avoid it because my own language uses it. I am trying to change that, though.

Also, I dislike consonant clusters at the start of words, but I am okay with them in the middle of words.

I'm probably in the minority in that I don't like putting the stress on the first syllable of a word, at least not if it is a fixed stress.

- Fusional morphology and masculine/feminine gender. I have against these things, I just don't think it's that common outside of IE and Afro Asiatic languages.

- I hate ejectives. They're too much.

- Grammatical case. I like rich verbal morphology, thus I mark most of the important stuff on verbs, so I don't see a need for cases in my conlang. I get why they are a thing in many natlangs, just that they don't work for my conlangs.

-/r/ mostly because I can't pronounce it.
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by Lorik »

LinguoFranco wrote: - Fusional morphology and masculine/feminine gender. I have against these things, I just don't think it's that common outside of IE and Afro Asiatic languages.
Literally all of my conlangs have fusional morphology. I guess it's because my native language is fusional.
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eldin raigmore
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by eldin raigmore »

Affricates and diphthongs, so far. Maybe I’ll include more later.
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by Salmoneus »

LinguoFranco wrote: 11 May 2022 16:30 - Fusional morphology and masculine/feminine gender. I have against these things, I just don't think it's that common outside of IE and Afro Asiatic languages.
A slight correction: the fusion of case marking with number marking is almost unique to IE and Uralic. Other types of fused markers are rare, but seem to crop up fairly reliably everywhere around the world, presumably accidentally. It seems that fused markers tend to stick around in a family once developed, but very rarely spread to neighbours and aren't innovated that often.

However, WALS doesn't have a category for fusion of root and marker, which I suspect is more common than polyexponence in marker affixes.
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by Creyeditor »

Is fusion of root and marker (in a general sense) maybe covered by the chapter on suppletion in verbal paradigms (feature 79A and 79B) in WALS?
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Re: Conlanging Features you Avoid

Post by eldin raigmore »

Creyeditor wrote: 12 May 2022 18:07 Is fusion of root and marker (in a general sense) maybe covered by the chapter on suppletion in verbal paradigms (feature 79A and 79B) in WALS?
I would guess “no”.
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