Talk:Auxiliary languages

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Travel relevance?[edit]

I can clearly see how this could be a travel topic, if it focuses on the practical utility of these languages. But this doesn't seem travel-relevant at all:

Perhaps the most convincing answer lies in the relation of values and hegemony to the languages we speak. While English, French, Chinese, or Spanish may be some of the most widely spoken and learned languages in the world today, some people may object to their ubiquity on the grounds that having everyone learn a given lingua franca imposes the values and culture associated with that language upon those who must learn it.

Indoctrination is definitely not a function of Wikivoyage. Ikan Kekek (talk) 03:56, 21 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]

Liberscriptus19, your participation in this thread would be helpful. Ikan Kekek (talk) 02:22, 22 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
Ikan Kekek Sorry if this seemed like indoctrination. I just saw that it was a requested article and thought I'd try to add what information I could regarding the topic. Liberscriptus19 (talk) 03:33, 22 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
If we're going to have an article on this topic, I think the quoted material is appropriate (though perhaps could be rephrased) as an explanation of one of the reasons why someone might want to learn an international auxiliary language.
That said, I'm skeptical about whether this is a workable travel topic. Esperanto is only useful for a few very limited travel situations, Ido has some speakers but isn't realistically useful for any practical purposes as far as I know, and the rest are basically only of interest to enthusiastic hobbyists and maybe a few linguists and historians. I would be interested to hear from User:Liberscriptus19 or anyone else about how this is supposed to become a worthwhile article. I know a moderate amount about the topic, so I'd be happy to help once I understand where the article is going. —Granger (talk · contribs) 04:24, 22 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
I disagree that the quoted passage is helpful. I don't think we want to be talking about hegemony or claiming that if you speak a language, you somehow conform to the "culture associated with that language", whatever that means. If you're a North Korean and learn English, are you suddenly English in culture? That's nonsense. Ikan Kekek (talk) 23:22, 22 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
Of course not, but it does mean that that culture is being imposed, in the sense that most of the English learning materials available are at some level based on the cultures of the UK and its former colonies. As an English teacher in China I've been struck by how many of the materials available are noticeably foreign and removed from my students' lives (surely that's even more true in North Korea, to use your example). Many aspects of this are debatable, but reasoning along these lines is used by many of those who learn and promote Esperanto and Ido, so I think it's worth an acknowledgement in the article. If we're going to have this article at all, that is. —Granger (talk · contribs) 23:46, 22 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
OK, now you're talking about teaching materials. I'm not very familiar with Esperanto teaching materials. Are they more culturally relevant to, say, New Guinea Highlanders and Chinese people than English teaching materials are? Anyway, I think that is not about the language in either case and is really very far afield from travel relevance. English teaching materials could be developed by the Chinese government if they want to do so. I took English as a subject in my Sekolah Kebangsaan (Malay primary school) in a village in Terengganu, and the textbook was published by Dewan Bahasa dan Pustaka, the Malaysian government publishing house. Shall we discuss something else, please? Ikan Kekek (talk) 00:19, 23 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
Sure. I'm still hoping for someone to explain how we can turn this into a travel article. —Granger (talk · contribs) 00:38, 23 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
Sure. User:Liberscriptus19 wasn't around for Wikivoyage:Votes for deletion/June 2018#Esperanto phrasebook, but you and I were. And here's where I ultimately came down: I'm going to reluctantly come out in Weak Opposition to deleting this phrasebook, based on the issue of Pasporta Servo. However, I think that the phrasebook probably should not include more or less unusable phrases, like those one would use in a restaurant or with a police officer, and my weak opposition to outright deletion should not be misunderstood as disapproving of instead folding the phrasebook into an "Esperanto travel" travel topic article.
So, therefore, I think that an Esperanto travel topic that focuses on Pasporta Servo and Esperanto conferences would be the way to go, if that provides enough content (I don't know if it does). I suppose, if we really want to make this an "Auxiliary languages" topic, we should include conferences for Elvish and Klingon, too. But still, is that enough content? Ikan Kekek (talk) 01:26, 23 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
I agree with you about what the focus of the phrasebook should have been. I can imagine an Esperanto travel topic and can help write the article if it's desired (though it'll probably be low on my priority list because I think information about that topic in English is useful to a pretty small number of people, and because I'm kind of disillusioned about the Esperanto phrasebook being deleted against the wishes of the community).
A Constructed languages travel topic, including languages like Elvish and Klingon, seems possible to me as well. I think Klingon, Elvish, Lojban, and the Game of Thrones languages have significant followings, but I don't know if there are events for all of them. There are also conlanging events. In contrast, the landscape of international auxiliary languages (a narrower term which usually excludes Klingon and the like) is so dominated by Esperanto nowadays that I don't see an "Auxiliary languages" article making sense. —Granger (talk · contribs) 14:33, 23 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]
The Esperanto phrasebook wasn't quite deleted, but was ultimately moved to a user page. Ikan Kekek (talk) 17:34, 23 June 2019 (UTC)[reply]


This term is used in the article but I don't see it defined. Without looking it up, I'd guess it may stand for "international auxiliary language", but I think it would be best to define it, with the initials in parentheses, the first time it's used. Ikan Kekek (talk) 04:34, 22 July 2020 (UTC)[reply]

Auxiliary languages vs pidgins[edit]

I'm not the most familiar with the topic, but would it be useful to write a short explanation about the differences between the two? The dog2 (talk) 18:46, 1 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Pidgins are often spoken natively, I think? Ikan Kekek (talk) 18:56, 1 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Anyway, that seems quite ancillary for an "Understand" section. The problem with this article right now is that it has no travel focus and very little travel relevance. Ikan Kekek (talk) 18:57, 1 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
If I'm not wrong, pidgins are languages that develop when people who speak different languages are forced into a situation where they have to find some way to communicate with each other, and are a way for those people to "meet halfway" between their respective native languages. That's pretty much what happened with the slaves brought over to the Americas from Africa, since they would have spoken numerous mutually unintelligible languages. When the children of those people grow up speaking that pidgin natively, then it becomes a creole, which is what you described. The dog2 (talk) 19:44, 1 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Maybe technically, but see w:Tok Pisin:
"Many now learn it as a first language, in particular the children of parents or grandparents who originally spoke different languages (for example, a mother from Madang and a father from Rabaul). Urban families in particular, and those of police and defence force members, often communicate among themselves in Tok Pisin, either never gaining fluency in a local language (tok ples), or learning a local language as a second (or third) language, after Tok Pisin (and possibly English). Perhaps one million people now use Tok Pisin as a primary language."
See also w:Hawaiian Pidgin:
"It has 600,000 native speakers and 400,000 who speak it as a second language."
And w:Cameroonian Pidgin English:
"About 5% of Cameroonians are native speakers of the language, while an estimated 50% of the population speak it in some form."
I'm not going to do an exhaustive search, but I think the point is very effectively made. Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:43, 1 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
In the way specialists use the term, pidgins don't have a population of native speakers. There is a lot of confusion about this because a number of creoles have "pidgin" in their name, like Hawaiian Pidgin and Cameroonian Pidgin English. —Granger (talk · contribs) 07:51, 2 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
Exactly, and this is not a technical linguistics site, so we largely go by the names. Ikan Kekek (talk) 08:57, 2 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
We should not add to the confusion. Probably it is best to say that we don't make the distinction between pidgins and creoles, perhaps explaining the difference and the confusion in a sentence or three. –LPfi (talk) 11:36, 2 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
What this article needs is a travel focus. More space spent on non-travel-related side topics surely won't improve this as a travel article, will it? Ikan Kekek (talk) 12:04, 2 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
OK. I thought there was some discussion on pidgins and creoles in the article already. In the articles current state, you are right. Marginal topics should be added when there is a clear layout of the main topics. Pidgins and creoles could be mentioned, but the discussion is probably more useful in Talk, along linguae francae. –LPfi (talk) 12:38, 2 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]

──────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────────── Of course, we don't have to go into too much detail, but I think we can briefly explain the differences. Basically, once a pidgin starts getting native speakers, it becomes a creole, at least according to Wikipedia. On that note, maybe we can merge this article into Talk, and just leave a few key points in. If more travel-related content gets added to the section, and it becomes too long, we can always branch it off again. The dog2 (talk) 16:54, 2 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]

Esperanto should be mentioned in Talk, but as it is of little relevance anywhere in contact with random locals, I don't think it deserves enough space for merged content. Instead I think this article should change focus, and tell about meetings, possibility of home stays, and strategies to make friends with Esperanto speakers at one's destination. After rewrite I think it could certainly be a worthwhile travel article. –LPfi (talk) 18:50, 2 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]
I agree with this. Ikan Kekek (talk) 20:04, 2 March 2021 (UTC)[reply]