a {text-decoration: none; } En la punta de la lengua: Pirahã in contrast to other languages

10 oct 2012

Pirahã in contrast to other languages

If there is something we have to understand while we’re living on Earth is that there is never going to be a rule without an an exception  nor a theory or law that can explain everything that surrounds us. 
There was a lot of chaos trying to figure out why this indigenous culture which developed in the Amazons did not have a linguistic operation called recursion that according to renown linguists all human languages have, but why does everything have to be the same?  Isn’t humanity heterogeneous?  If so, why can’t human languages be diverse as well?

If Pirahã has no words for numbers, colors, quantifications terms etc. maybe it’s because they don’t need them. I think that as students of language we have to understand that there is always going to be exceptions and we cannot expect everything to be always clear and uniform.

We have to go deeper to understand the culture that surrounds a certain language and maybe that way we’ll understand why there are certain things some languages don’t have and vice versa. “Cada cabeza es un mundo” and by quoting this we have to learn to tolerate differences. Let's start by stop judging anything that is different from our culture or language and putting them in boxes. Everyone despite his culture, language, family etc. sees life different and obviously every civilization, tribe or nation is going to have a shared perception of the world that is around them, so why make such a big deal out of a difference instead of the similarities?

I don’t want to diminish the work all these linguists did while researching and experimenting with the Pirahã,  but I think that is way better to try to find the cultural meanings and understand that perhaps this tribe  doesn’t  need  recursion so badly as we do. Maybe we are the weird ones that are incapable to live without quantities, colors or time.

No hay comentarios :

Publicar un comentario