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Lingo: Around Europe in Sixty Languages af…
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Lingo: Around Europe in Sixty Languages (original 2014; udgave 2016)

af Gaston Dorren (Forfatter)

MedlemmerAnmeldelserPopularitetGennemsnitlig vurderingOmtaler
3491457,782 (3.73)22
Welcome to Europe as you've never known it before, seen through the peculiarities of its languages and dialects. Combining linguistics and cultural history, Gaston Dorren takes us on an intriguing tour of the continent, from Proto-Indo-European (the common ancestor of most European languages) to the rise and rise of English, via the complexities of Welsh plurals and Czech pronunciation. Along the way we learn why Esperanto will never catch on, how the language of William the Conqueror survives in the Channel Islands and why Finnish is the easiest European language. Surprising, witty and full of extraordinary facts, this book will change the way you think about the languages around you.… (mere)
Medlem:nancybent
Titel:Lingo: Around Europe in Sixty Languages
Forfattere:Gaston Dorren (Forfatter)
Info:Grove Press (2016), Edition: Reprint, 304 pages
Samlinger:Dit bibliotek
Vurdering:
Nøgleord:living room end table

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Lingo af Gaston Dorren (2014)

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» Se også 22 omtaler

Engelsk (12)  Hollandsk (1)  Alle sprog (13)
Viser 1-5 af 13 (næste | vis alle)
A good book for any amateur language lover/linguist.

The section on Esperanto was a little pessimistic and maybe not entirely correct, but hey I'm no Esperantist... Since I read the Norwegian translation it could just have been a weird translation that skewed some original sense of humour.

Otherwise a good read indeed.
( )
1 stem arthurnoerve | Sep 19, 2021 |
A literal crash course on all languages you may find in Europe. Very, very easy to read and understand, except for a few chapters heavy in grammar, but otherwise a fast, enjoyable read. Would have appreciated more thorough information, but otherwise it’s a great first book if you’re looking into learning about the language diversity in the European continent. ( )
  carrotchimera | Jun 29, 2020 |
A fun little book. A trip through all the European languages using each one to illustrate language families, how they evolved, how they influenced each other and the many oddities and similarities between them. Not an in-depth analysis by any means, but full of interesting points and well written. ( )
1 stem espadana | Apr 29, 2019 |
Excellent and fun look at European languages. We learnt all sorts of things about how different languages work that I wish I could now remember. I do now know why Scottish mountains are so difficult to pronounce and wonder if anyone can get it right. This is a well written (as you would expect) and engaging book covering all sorts of European languages. ( )
  CarolKub | Nov 3, 2017 |
De-accessioned and bookcrossed July 2017

(29 December 2015)

Purporting to be a romp (OK, an “intriguing tour”) through the main and minor languages of Europe, this translated book is a bit of an oddity. It’s often simultaneously two detailed and not detailed enough, going into linguistic subtleties but then laughing at linguists, and then skating across whole languages and only giving them a paragraph at the end of their own chapter.

Then there were some big problems. It made a little more sense when I realised on reading the Acknowledgements that the author is Dutch and the book has been translated, because it’s a well-known fact that humour is practically untranslatable, but the chapter on Belarus(s)ian, made up of two invented addresses from the different sides of the dispute about which form of the language to adopt seemed in very poor taste, inflammatory and at best misguided. This was followed by a chapter on Luxembourgish written in the form of a fable, which was confusing and never actually explained which languages the author was talking about. Then there was a section later very carefully explaining how to read the Cyrillic alphabet based on the Greek, which even I, someone who likes an alphabet, skimmed.

There were good bits, and a nice pairing of a loan word plus a not-directly-translatable word that would be useful to have in English at the end of this chapter, but this was a bit patchy and in places downright uncomfortable.
1 stem LyzzyBee | Jul 22, 2017 |
Viser 1-5 af 13 (næste | vis alle)
Are some languages worse than others? The question might sound silly, but in this entertaining exercise in "language tourism" (the book's original Dutch title), the author isn't frightened of making judgments. He thinks lenition – the habit in Welsh of "changing a word's first letter for no apparent reason" – is just "mindboggling", and generally that "Gaelic spelling is flawed … wasteful, arcane and outdated". The "ludicrous" variety of cases in Slovak amounts to "chaos", while Breton's system of naming numbers makes mental arithmetic unnecessarily difficult.

In the author's native Dutch, the gendering of nouns is changing in what he calls "a blatant act of linguistic sexism". (Everything that is not obviously a female living thing is a "he".) Nor will Anglophone readers of this edition feel smug after Dorren's excellent dissection of the illogicality of English, with its 20 different vowel sounds, impossible spelling and idiosyncratic formations. (Very reasonably, Dorren wonders: "Why does English say 'I want you to listen' rather than the more straightforward 'I want that you listen'?")
tilføjet af Cynfelyn | RedigerGuardian, Steven Poole (Nov 28, 2014)
 

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"Two languages in one head? No one can live at that speed! Good Lord, man, you're asking the impossible." " But the Dutch speak four languages and they smoke marijuana." "Yes, but that's cheating." —Eddie Izzard 'Dress to Kill'
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Introduction
The attitude of English speakers to foreign languages can be summed up thus: let's plunder, not learn them.
Once upon a time, thousands of years ago (nobody knows quite when), in a faraway land (nobody knows quite where), there was a language that no one speaks today and whose name has been forgotten, if it ever had one.
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Welcome to Europe as you've never known it before, seen through the peculiarities of its languages and dialects. Combining linguistics and cultural history, Gaston Dorren takes us on an intriguing tour of the continent, from Proto-Indo-European (the common ancestor of most European languages) to the rise and rise of English, via the complexities of Welsh plurals and Czech pronunciation. Along the way we learn why Esperanto will never catch on, how the language of William the Conqueror survives in the Channel Islands and why Finnish is the easiest European language. Surprising, witty and full of extraordinary facts, this book will change the way you think about the languages around you.

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