Friday, March 21, 2014

The Greeks understood: Happy is the enthusiast

"The Greeks understood the mysterious power of the hidden side of things. They bequeathed to us one of the most beautiful words in our language—the word ‘enthusiasm’—en theos—a god within. The grandeur of human actions is measured by the inspiration from which they spring. Happy is he who bears a god within, and who obeys." ~Louis Pasteur""

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

What Languages Sound Like To Foreigners

This is hilarious and intriguing and maybe even useful for studying prosodics. The Daily Mail 19-03-2014 said: "A young woman has filmed herself speaking gibberish in a string of different accents to show how people speaking foreign languages sound - at least to her. Nineteen-year-old Sara from Finland uses her remarkable skill for mimicry to show what different languages sound to foreigners who don't understand them. Her caricatures are so good that, to anyone who doesn't know the languages she is imitating, she could almost be a fluent speaker." See also at YouTube and her second one on YouTube: What Languages Sound Like To Foreigners #2 The pumped up emotional reactions in the comments themselves show something: how much people care about the sound of their languages, and get defensive even about a joke, when they would normally not think about it consciously. (Same girl displaying her singing range: One Girl, 14 Genres - Remix by Manu) Career in linguistics, translation, film making or singing? Which one will pay best, I wonder?