[b-hebrew] Explain it please

David Kummerow farmerjoeblo at hotmail.com
Mon Dec 10 23:09:49 EST 2007


Hi Isaac,

It puzzles you, I think, because you seem to be unfamiliar with basic 
linguistic principles and methodology, even though you yourself propose 
something "linguistic".

Am am unsure what you mean by "Where is the single vowel". It was you 
who proposed this idea that BH has only one vowel 
(http://lists.ibiblio.org/pipermail/b-hebrew/2007-November/034625.html). 
Are you now suggesting that there are no vowels? or that there are more 
than one vowel and that you are retracting your previous assertion?

I say it is "impossible" because human language requires more contrast 
for linguistic production than what a single vowel can provide. Known 
human languages around the world only minimally have two vowels, so the 
burden of proof rests with you. Further, not every theoretical vowel 
combinations are possible, but those with greater contrasts are 
preferred. See Björn Lindblom, "Phonetic universals in vowel systems," 
in Experimental phonology (John Ohala and Jeri Jaeger, eds.; Dordrecht: 
Foris, 1986), 13-44.

Regards,
David Kummerow.


> David,
> 
> I am really puzzled by your statement:
> 
> your contention -- again without adduced evidence -- that BH has only a
> single vowel is linguistically impossible
> 
> Where is the single vowel and why is it linguistically impossible?
> 
> Isaac Fried, Boston University
> 
> On Dec 10, 2007, at 3:45 AM, David Kummerow wrote:
> 
>>
>> Hi Isaac,
>>
>> You wrote this:
>>
>>> 2. Even though -AH is in my opinion but a contracted HI) it may refer
>>> to various agents and objects in various relationship modes. We have
>>> YALDAH, 'girl, child-she', YALDAH, 'she gave birth, produced-a-chid-
>>> she' and YALDAH, 'her boy, boy-she'.
>>
>> and this:
>>
>>> 4. In the adjective TOBAH, 'good', -AH refers to the feminine bearer
>>> of the attribute, but in the noun TOBAH, 'favor, goodness', -AH
>>> refers to the thing itself. Incidentally it is "female", as is
>>> autostradah.
>>> 5 The counterpart to MAR, 'mister' is MAR-AT, where -AT is surely the
>>> personal pronoun AT, 'you'. MARAH is 'bitter'. Such is also the
>>> relationship between GEBER and GBER-ET.
>>
>> What is the evidence for these assertions?
>>
>> What is your evidence for equating what has traditionally been analysed
>> as gender marking to actually be speech-participant marking? I've
>> already demonstrated that your methodology is without linguistic
>> support, viz. 1) that you eschew any essential phonemic analysis which
>> allows you to basically propose anything you want to as it is then up to
>> the imagination and so is without any constraints; and 2) your
>> contention -- again without adduced evidence -- that BH has only a
>> single vowel is linguistically impossible. These two issues lead
>> ultimately to a fanciful analysis which no one is taking seriously.
>>
>> You would do well to read monographs which relate to your above
>> assertions such as the following:
>>
>> Corbett, Greville G. 1991. Gender. Cambridge Textbooks in Linguistics.
>> Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
>>
>> Corbett, Greville G. 2000. Number. Cambridge Textbooks in Linguistics.
>> Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
>>
>> Siewierska, Anna. 2004. Person. Cambridge Textbooks in Linguistics.
>> Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
>>
>> Regards,
>> David Kummerow.
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
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>>
> 
> 




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