Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

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Vlürch
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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby Vlürch » 2018-10-16, 12:01

voron wrote:You can find it for free on the net.

Ah, oh. Thanks, sorry for not even googling it first. :oops:

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voron
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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby voron » 2018-10-16, 12:16

Vlürch wrote:Ah, oh. Thanks, sorry for not even googling it first. :oops:

No problem.

I didn't know about Language Gulper so I took a look at its Turkish page,
https://languagesgulper.com/eng/Turkish.html

I realize it's not supposed to be the extensive description of the language, but still, we can see that it explains a lot about morphology, and just a tiny paragraph about syntax.

In the morphology part, while not a mistake per se, I noticed this overlook in section Voice.
The reflexive voice indicates that the performer of the action is also its recipient or beneficiary. To form the reflexive, the suffix -(I)n or the reflexive pronoun kendi are used.

It would be beneficial to mention that this suffix is not productive. That is, in practice, you just have to remember all the verbs which are formed with this suffix.

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby linguoboy » 2018-10-16, 14:32

voron wrote:However, there is an important exception to this rule. The accusative must be used when the object, whether indefinite or definite, is separated from the verb by another word or phrase (which usually means that the topic is shifted to that other word).

You're absolutely right: none of the self-instruction works for Turkish I have mention this exception.

Vlürch wrote:
linguoboy wrote:I was well into adulthood before I learned there was a rule on the alternation of the /ðiː/ and /ðə/ pronunciations of the.

I still don't know what the rule is, only that sometimes one sounds right and the other one sounds wrong... but I'm not a native speaker and I don't think I'd ever say it with a long [iː] but rather just short [i~ɪ], so...

It's as simple as voron's rule: /ðiː/ before vowel sounds, /ðə/ elsewhere. It's a rule I learned without thinking. I think I only violate it when imitating dialectal speech (and overgeneralising /ðə/) or overarticulating (and overgeneralising /ðiː/).

Vlürch wrote:Is there any site that explains them, or if you could you be arsed to post some?
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby Antea » 2018-10-16, 14:48

I don’t like grammar, these immutable rules :roll: But I suppose sometimes it’s necessary :roll:

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby linguoboy » 2018-10-16, 14:51

Antea wrote:I don’t like grammar, these immutable rules :roll: But I suppose sometimes it’s necessary :roll:

You it missing will and not there being it.
"Richmond is a real scholar; Owen just learns languages because he can't bear not to know what other people are saying."--Margaret Lattimore on her two sons

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby voron » 2018-10-16, 15:06

linguoboy wrote:You're absolutely right: none of the self-instruction works for Turkish I have mention this exception.

I know, right? And without knowing this rule, you would make a mistake even in a phrase as simple as:
I speak Turkish well.

It's "Türkçeyi iyi konuşuyorum", not *"Türkçe iyi konuşuyorum".

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby Antea » 2018-10-16, 15:42

linguoboy wrote:
Antea wrote:I don’t like grammar, these immutable rules :roll: But I suppose sometimes it’s necessary :roll:

You it missing will and not there being it.


No me importa
Impórtame, no
me importa: no :whistle:

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby Vlürch » 2018-10-16, 15:43

linguoboy wrote:/ðiː/ before vowel sounds, /ðə/ elsewhere

Are there really no exceptions? :?
linguoboy wrote:
Vlürch wrote:Is there any site that explains them, or if you could you be arsed to post some?

I know it's technically incorrect, but I like to use "arse" by itself as a verb with the implication that something is even more about volition than (not) being arsed. So, "if you could arse" is a level beyond "if you could be arsed" in that there's really no "urgency" at all behind the request. I've always assumed it's obvious, but maybe this is yet another matter where I should learn to not make assumptions... or maybe I should just stop butchering English. :para:

IpseDixit

Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby IpseDixit » 2018-10-16, 18:03

Vlürch wrote:
linguoboy wrote:/ðiː/ before vowel sounds, /ðə/ elsewhere

Are there really no exceptions? :?


AFAIK, /ðiː/ can also be used before consonants to emphasize something.

An example here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PsDVVH7ZhdU

-"Right, you're a DJ"
-"Not a DJ, the DJ"

Antea wrote:I don’t like grammar, these immutable rules :roll:


If they were immutable, most of us would still speak Proto-Indo-European or what came before that.

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby Antea » 2018-10-16, 18:27

IpseDixit wrote:
Antea wrote:I don’t like grammar, these immutable rules :roll:


If they were immutable, most of us would still speak Proto-Indo-European or what came before that.


Ok, you've got a point there :hmm: :yep:

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby Linguaphile » 2018-10-16, 23:37

IpseDixit wrote:
Vlürch wrote:
linguoboy wrote:/ðiː/ before vowel sounds, /ðə/ elsewhere

Are there really no exceptions? :?


AFAIK, /ðiː/ can also be used before consonants to emphasize something.

And some speakers definitely use /ðə/ before vowels, too. I often hear /ðə/ eggs, /ðə/ apple, etc. Although sometimes it's th' eggs, th' apple, and so on, with no vowel sound at all or a very indistinct one. Maybe that's unique to parts of the western U.S.? I rarely hear /ðiː/ unless it's for emphasis (before any sound) or very careful enunciation before a vowel.

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby księżycowy » 2018-10-17, 0:13

Personally I tend to use /ðə/ across the board unless I'm trying the stress the article for some reason.

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby Vlürch » 2018-10-17, 10:35

IpseDixit wrote:AFAIK, /ðiː/ can also be used before consonants to emphasize something.

That's kinda what I thought too, or that there are some contexts where it's used for some inexplicable reason. I could've sworn I'd say something like "under the burning whatever" with [ði~ðɪ] because that's how I automatically read it in my head, but actually saying it out loud it does come out with something closer to [ðə] after all, maybe something weird and intermediary like [ðɪ̞]... :para:

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-11-05, 19:50

voron wrote:What most courses still seem to underestimate greatly is syntax

I'm not sure I agree, especially since the line between morphology and syntax isn't clear-cut and there are languages where almost all the syntax is encoded in the morphology. It sounds to me like what you're thinking of is the general problem with teaching languages, namely that it's impossible to access all the information (not just about syntax, but about anything, even phonetics to some extent) that we have encoded in our brains as native speakers and then impart it to a non-native speaker/learner.

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby linguoboy » 2018-11-05, 21:00

vijayjohn wrote:
voron wrote:What most courses still seem to underestimate greatly is syntax

I'm not sure I agree, especially since the line between morphology and syntax isn't clear-cut and there are languages where almost all the syntax is encoded in the morphology.

Are you thinking of polysynthetic languages? Because in all other inflected languages I know word order plays an important role.

vijayjohn wrote:It sounds to me like what you're thinking of is the general problem with teaching languages, namely that it's impossible to access all the information (not just about syntax, but about anything, even phonetics to some extent) that we have encoded in our brains as native speakers and then impart it to a non-native speaker/learner.

That's a major challenge with all languages, but I've used a number of grammars over the years that covered the inflection of particular word classes in terrific detail but still gave you only the vaguest hints when to use each inflectional category.
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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-11-05, 22:10

linguoboy wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:
voron wrote:What most courses still seem to underestimate greatly is syntax

I'm not sure I agree, especially since the line between morphology and syntax isn't clear-cut and there are languages where almost all the syntax is encoded in the morphology.

Are you thinking of polysynthetic languages?

Yes (more specifically, Cup'ik).
Because in all other inflected languages I know word order plays an important role.

Hindi/Urdu is pretty free with word order.

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby linguoboy » 2018-11-05, 22:39

vijayjohn wrote:
Because in all other inflected languages I know word order plays an important role.

Hindi/Urdu is pretty free with word order.

Linguists who have worked with languages claimed to have "free word order" have almost always discovered that the word order is not truly "free" but reflects pragmatic considerations. That is, sentences will be judged "incorrect" or at least "unusual" by native speakers if the order is not what they expect based on the larger context of the utterance. Just because an element can occur in any position doesn't mean that all possible placements are equal or communicate the same information.
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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby Saim » 2018-11-20, 18:57

linguoboy wrote:
vijayjohn wrote:
Because in all other inflected languages I know word order plays an important role.

Hindi/Urdu is pretty free with word order.

Linguists who have worked with languages claimed to have "free word order" have almost always discovered that the word order is not truly "free" but reflects pragmatic considerations. That is, sentences will be judged "incorrect" or at least "unusual" by native speakers if the order is not what they expect based on the larger context of the utterance. Just because an element can occur in any position doesn't mean that all possible placements are equal or communicate the same information.


I wouldn't even say Hindi has free word order if we were to consider only fully 'grammatical' sentences (rather than 'contextually appropriate' or 'natural' ones). It's certainly much more strict than Slavic in this regard (although in Hindi-Urdu this breaks down a lot in poetry and music, as I think you've also talked about in the past).

The only thing that I can think of that creates variance in word order in colloquial Urdu is topic fronting (although there are probably plenty of things I just haven't come across yet):

میں اسکول گیا

mai~ iskuul gayaa
I went to school. [neutral]

اسکول گیا ميں

iskuul gayaa mai~
I went to school. [answering a question about where you went]

Even here I don't think the following sentences would be grammatical in normal speech:

اسکول میں گیا
ميں گیا اسکول

iskuul mai~ gayaa
mai~ gayaa iskuul

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby Widukind » 2018-11-20, 20:14

I used to hate learning grammar. At some point, I realized that I could turn it into a game of sorts. Like a puzzle. I like puzzles...

Anyways, I found that when I first started learning some languages, the grammar made itself a bit obvious. Mennonite Low German (Plautdietsch) was like that, as I simply learned a bunch of phrases and such to see how that approach would work out.

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Re: Why so many courses seem to hate teaching grammar?

Postby vijayjohn » 2018-11-21, 4:22

Saim wrote:I wouldn't even say Hindi has free word order if we were to consider only fully 'grammatical' sentences (rather than 'contextually appropriate' or 'natural' ones).

What does "fully grammatical" mean?


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