Stranger In An Even Stranger Land - blog by Gurdur


A blog of random jottings on events, science, renfairs, travel, reading, music, humanism, religion, atheism, and even the odd spot of gardening.


The politics of pronouns, the language of abuse and democracy

Posted 19-May-2016 at 09:32 PM (21:32) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)

You can make anything political, from cheese to pronouns. Whether you can do that in any worthwhile way is a different matter. An exchange on Twitter caught my eye, since it touched upon linguistics. The New York City Commission on Human Rights (NYCCHR) is demanding that employers, landlords, professionals and 'all businesses' in New York City ask people their preferred gender pronoun from their first interaction. It appears the NYCCHR is also prescribing what pronounds can be used; in other words,...
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Views 11342 Comments 1 Gurdur is offline

Musings on gender & cultural differences in the narrative

Posted 05-Feb-2012 at 12:05 AM (00:05) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 05-Feb-2012 at 01:43 AM (01:43) by Gurdur

The narrative is more controversial than you might think; there's one of those periodic spats about using narrative going on at the moment in the blogosphere in relation to history of science, and some still do not see that narrative pretty much underlies every way humans talk about anything - even the argumentive and demonstrative rhetorical modes have their own narrational structure and premises. Peter Medawar famously pointed that out for science in his "Is the scientific paper a fraud?". This...
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Rating: 3 votes, 5.00 average.

Of false friends, and also of linguistic bloopers caused by globalization

Posted 15-Aug-2009 at 06:12 AM (06:12) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 25-Mar-2010 at 09:16 AM (09:16) by Gurdur

I've blogged a tiny bit about linguistics before. For someone who was supposed to be a linguist, I am actually very bad at learning languages. One problem you can easily run into with learning other languages is the problem of "false friends"; words in that other language that look like words you know in your first language, but unbeknowest to you actually mean something quite different. I live now in Germany, though as a legal alien resident, and learning German was tough for me. There are German...
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Views 4428 Comments 7 Gurdur is offline
Rating: 2 votes, 3.00 average.

On The Joys Of Swahili

Posted 14-Aug-2009 at 01:57 AM (01:57) by Gurdur (Stranger In An Even Stranger Land)
Updated 25-Mar-2010 at 09:14 AM (09:14) by Gurdur

I know I have to get cracking on the Apocalypse, and on the humanist meet-up in Scotland, and now even on intervensionism, and so on, but I like to work in a haphazard fashion, and I want to make some blog posts that will refer back to this one, so here's The Joys Of Swahili. After all, if it can be done for sex, and done for Yiddish, why not Swahili too?

You see, Nahemah came up with a new word on the Hub, "fakelore", so later I want to do a blog post on "Fakelore, Folklore, Cultures...
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Views 3008 Comments 0 Gurdur is offline

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