Most Popular Pages—Last 30 Days

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1. Vol CLXXIX, No 2 (386 visits)

Speculative Grammarian Volume CLXXIX, Number 2 ... Trey Jones, Editor-in-Chief Keith Slater, Executive Editor, Associate Editors, Pete Bleackley Jonathan Downie Mikael Thompson, Assistant Editors, Virginia Bouchard Mark Mandel Yuval Wigderson, Editorial Associates, Adam Baker Florian Breit Bethany Carlson Madalena Cruz-Ferreira Anita G. Gorman Siva Kalyan Tel Monks Mary Shapiro Bill Spruiell Sheri Wells-Jensen, Joey Whitford, Comptroller General All the Theory You Can Eat June 2017 ... more ]

2. How Many Languages Do You Speak?Nate F. Spee-Curr & Nonné Divz Bīīqr (322 visits)

How Many Languages Do You Speak?. Nate F. Spee-Curr & Nonné Divz Bīīqr, X. Quizzit Korps Center for Advanced Collaborative Studies. It’s an age-old question, and despite our field’s best efforts, it’s also one that won’t go away. So, instead of just complaining about the question, we decided to go out and find some actual answers. The results are provided below. Archi­phonemicist: I speak |language|that is, an appropriately underspecified version of all of them. Chomskyan: Universal Grammar shows that all languages are equivalent. Computational Linguist: There’s Basic, Fortran, Matlab, C++, VHDL, Java, Python, Javascript and, ... more ]

3. A Natural History of the WugRodabaugh Venditto (195 visits)

A Natural History of the Wug. Rodabaugh Venditto, Natural Language History Unit. The Wug, or Papuan White Quail (Coturnix neologistica), is a small, white or pale blue, ground-dwelling bird from the Old World Quail (Coturnix) family. It is found only in the highlands of Papua New Guinea. Being of a timid disposition, and living in dense undergrowth, it has rarely been seen by outsiders and almost never photographed. Its appearance is known to the outside world mainly by the simple line drawings made of it by the Nappaholi people, for whom it is a totemic animal. Wugs mate for life, and pairs are inseparable, so much so that on sighting a wug, the next thing you are likely to say is “Now there are two ... more ]

4. The Language PoliceAnita G. Gorman (194 visits)

The Language Police. By Anita G. Gorman. For quite some time Letitia Archbold had been concerned about the decline in proper English. All sorts of errors were creeping into the language, whether in its spoken or written form. Each day, it seemed, brought yet another example of ignorance, sloppiness, or even overcorrection, the tendency of some people to want to sound erudite even though they had no idea what they were doing and thereby committed an even more egregious error. “Between you and I” was such an example of overcorrection. Those who used this solecism thought they were sounding educated, but they were wrong, wrong, wrong. “Between you and me” is correct, as Letitia would tell herself and ... more ]

5. The Γραμματο-Χαοτικον Long-Term Care Facility for Decommissioned Mad Social ScientistsAdvertisement (162 visits)

ADVERTISEMENT The Γραμματο-Χαοτικον Long-Term Care Facility for Decom­missioned Mad Social Scientists. Has your linguist, anthropologist, or historian gotten to be too much for you to handle at home? We at the ΓΧ Facility understand your mad social scientist’s needs and desires. They just want someone to appreciate that their theories are just so perfect, and that if the data doesn’t fit, the world must be changed to make it fit. We know. We understand. And we can help. Our highly trained staff will implement as many of your mad social scientist’s desired real-world changes as is feasible, ... more ]

6. Linguimericks, Etc.Book ४२Triolet: The Grudge Match (162 visits)

Linguimericks, Etc. Book ४२. Triolet: The Grudge Match. A limerick’s not hard to write, One needs no skill at scansion fleet; Unlike a sonnet, to indite A limerick’s not hard. To write One well though’s not a task so light, And there’s no fun in verse to beat A limerick’s. Not hard to write, One needs no skill at scansion fleet —Hester Fester-Münsterfenster, It’s not easy composing a triolet, For indeed it’s much more than a trialit Has effects that are frightful, Yet most efforts will rightful- ly end up just tossed in the toilet —Pumptilian Perniquity, I don’t mean to sound like a snob But your toilet rhyme’s a ... more ]

7. On the Proper Form of Authorial AdjectivesSkip Rufus Fuller (161 visits)

On the Proper Form of Authorial Adjectives. Skip Rufus Fuller, Professor of English Literature, Fuller College, Fuller, TX. It is common practice to use etymologically half-informed and quarter-baked adjectival forms of certain authors’ names. This has led to discussions among specialists that are only occasionally enlightened or enlightening. Thus, when referring to the theories of Michel Foucault, certain scholars and other scoundrels use Foucauldian. The basis for this quarter-restoration is unclear: There is no reason to restore the original d without restoring the rest of the name to something like Folkwaldian, but the restoration of only one phoneme among the many that changed ... more ]

8. You Win Some, You Lose SomeA Letter from Associate Editor Mikael Thompson (159 visits)

You Win Some, You Lose Some*. A Letter from Associate Editor Mikael Thompson. As part of Speculative Grammarian’s ongoing commitment to public service to the best of our abilities, on 1 March 2017 Editor-in-Chief Trey Jones signed a contract with the ... for delivery of a new super-uncrackable secret language for confidential government communications. Speculative Grammarian is pleased to announce delivery of the language today. “The trouble with many codes is they are, like Chomskyanism, incorrigibly anglocentric. By not basing our code on English, we have made brave advances into the world of the future,” Jones announced at a press conference in the lower ... more ]

9. Linguistics Nerd CampBethany Carlson (148 visits)

Linguistics Nerd Camp. Bethany Carlson. Marty’s long nights doing syntax homework finally catch up with him. ... more ] Book!

10. From the Archives!SpecGram Propaganda XIThe SpecGram Archive Elves™ (144 visits)

From the Archives!SpecGram Propaganda XI. The SpecGram Archive Elves™. A recent expedition into the SpecGram archives turned up a sheaf of early 20th century SpecGram propaganda posters, which were used during the Great Linguistic War and the Second Linguistic War to encourage linguists everywhere to keep a stiff upper lip and a sense of humor during those trying times. This eleventh batch of posters from that collection has been digitized and presented here for you, dear reader, to enjoy, retrospect on, and share. The full collection, which will continue to grow, is available from the SpecGram Ministry of Propaganda in an easily browsable and sharable format. ... more ]

11. Letters to the Editor (CLXXIX.2) (144 visits)

Letters to the Editor. Dear Speculative Grammarian, If those fine fellows at the CLAP were to extend their system beyond the limits of kinship systems, they could place the whole of language on a logical, or even philosophical basis. Hopefully some linguists of real character will be able to take up the challenge. J. Wilkins ... Dear John-Boy, We’ve heard rumors from one of our more reliable sourcesJorge Luis of the Borgthat such a system is being developed by a group of philologists and philosophers in China. It is to be entitled Celestial Emporium of Benevolent Language, and the first draft is scheduled to be completed in Juneor possibly July if there are ... more ]

12. Frog and Toad Teach LinguisticsKeith Slater and Kean Kaufmann (143 visits)

Frog and Toad Teach Linguistics. Found among the papers of Arnold Lobel by Keith Slater, Illustrated by Kean Kaufmann. Frog was sitting in his office. He looked at his watch. He saw that it was 10:00. “This is a fine time for a morning coffee,” said Frog. “I will invite Toad to join me in the faculty lounge.” Toad was working at his desk. He noticed the clock. It was 10:00. “I think this is a good time to drink coffee,” said Toad. “I will ask Frog to go with me to the faculty lounge.” Frog and Toad met in the hallway. They were happy. They went to the faculty lounge together. The coffee pot was empty. ... Toad glanced at Frog and said, “Frog, I am afraid that one of your ... more ] Podcast!

13. L’Ishing du Gwujlang XLusrveerDorothea Dorfman and Theodora Mundorf (135 visits)

L’Ishing du Gwujlang XLusrveer. by Dorothea Dorfman and Theodora Mundorf, with additional assistance from Bob Kinnick and Dee Reed. Mindful readers will by now be familiar with l’ishing from our earlier research (SpecGram CLXXVII.4, etc.). Though giving the impression of being parallel to French verlan, l’ishing connects words that can be made to correspond to one another. Prior to the present discussion we have surveyed dialects of l’ishing that are based on moving sounds or letters from one end of a word to the other. We have recently come across another novel dialect, called lusrveer, in which paired words are each the phonetic reversal of the ... more ]

14. About Us (135 visits)

Speculative Grammarian and Our Story. The august journal Speculative Grammarian has a long, rich, and varied history, weaving an intricate and subtle tapestry from disparate strands of linguistics, philology, history, politics, science, technology, botany, pharmacokinetics, computer science, the mathematics of humor, basket weaving, archery, glass blowing, roller coaster design, and bowling, among numerous other, less obvious fields. SpecGram, as it is known to devotees and sworn enemies alike, has for centuries sought to bring together the greatest yet least understood minds of the time, embedding itself firmly in the cultural and psychological matrix of the global society while ... more ] Podcast!

15. Archives (131 visits)

SpecGram Archives. A word from our Senior Archivist, Holger Delbrück: While bringing aging media to the web and hence the world is truly a labor of love, SpecGram tries the passion of even the most ardent admirer. Needless to say, we’ve fallen behind schedule. At every turn, the authors found in the pages of this hallowed journal stretch credibility with their gratuitous font mongeringfirst it was the IPA, then a few non-standard transcription systems, then Greek, and not just the alphabet, but the entire diacritical mess, and now I’ve got some god-forsaken Old Church Slavonic glyph sitting on my desk that no one can even name, and which would give the Unicode Consortium ... more ]

16. Podcast—Language Made Difficult, Vol. L (124 visits)

Language Made Difficult, Vol. L — The SpecGram LingNerds are on their own this time. After some Lies, Damned Lies, and Linguistics, the LingNerds discuss the dangers of mispronouncing the names of Canadian provinces, and then advise students as to what they should *not* do. They also fail to celebrate the 50th episode. Many outtakes are provided. ... listen ]

17. The Original English MovementAnnouncement (115 visits)

Announcement The Original English Movement. For decades descriptive linguists and professional prescriptivists--technical writers, editors, and English teachers--have been at war. As most linguists know all too — The Original, English Movement, seeks to resolve the, conflict between, descriptivists and, prescriptivists by, fully embracing the, notion that English, should not, change--not now, not in the future, not even in the past. — well, the prescriptivists say that descriptivism is at best a weak philosophy of usage, and at worst an invitation to grammatical chaos. However, too many prescriptivists maintain what is, to descriptivists, an illogical position: ... more ] Podcast!

18. The Speculative Grammarian Essential Guide to Linguistics (100 visits)

The Speculative Grammarian Essential Guide to Linguistics . For decades, Speculative Grammarian has been the premier scholarly journal featuring research in the neglected field of satirical linguisticsand now it is available in book formboth physical and electronic! We wish we were kidding, but no, seriously, we’ve published a large collection of SpecGram articles, along with just enough new material to force obsessive collectors and fans to buy it, regardless of the cost. From the Introduction: The past twenty-five years have witnessed many changes in linguistics, with major developments in linguistic theory, significant expansion in language description, and even ... more ]

19. Naggu Rotteya and the Grammarian’s StoneAnnouncement from Scholartastic Books (98 visits)

ADVERTISEMENT, Naggu Rotteya and the Grammarian’s Stone, by J. K. Poyjnhr, ––– Now Available! –––. Published 2009 by Scholartastic Books. 365 pages. Fans of Russian literature have been waiting more than 20 years for this, the English translation of the first installment of the famous Fantasy Linguistics series, which tells the story of a young linguistic wizard, Naggu Rotteya (Russian “Наггу Роттэя”), and his turbulent and troubled life as he attempts to fulfill the destiny that has been thrust upon him. There have been many accusations by the author, J. K. Poyjnhr (Russian “Д. ... more ]

20. An Introduction to Linguistics in Haiku FormAnonymous (94 visits)

An Introduction to, Linguistics in Haiku Form. Anonymous. linguistic theory, hidden representations, to surface structures phonology is, sound patterns of languages, phonemes, allophones phonetics is sounds, articulation of them, acoustics, hearing comp. linguistics is, theory into efficient, implementation morphology is, if same structure, same meaning, then it’s a morpheme syntactic theory, blah blah chomsky chomsky blah, blah chomsky blah blah ... more ] Podcast! Book!

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Last updated Jun. 26, 2017.