Two Proposals Regarding Language-Related Subforums

Submitted by yaaqov in meta

Spurred by the post here—the likes of which have no obvious home—as well as a general interest in seeing more language-related posts here on Raddle, I am hoping to get y'all's feedback on the following proposed changes/additions to the current collection of language-related subforums.

  1. To create a forum, f/language, which would encompass posts like the one linked to above, as well as all other thoughts, articles, and discussions concerning (but not limited to) the following topics: linguistic imperialism (e.g., English's spread); the role language plays in politics, society, oppression, and justice (e.g., how language is a part of, for instance, classism and anti-Blackness); anything about language in of itself (e.g. its nature, its history, the relationships between languages), as well as its roles in the world that are less directly political (e.g., poetry, typography, etc). In other words, anything concerning language that does not fall under the other two main categories of language forums, namely, language-learning practice and community (as represented by f/LanguageBuddies) or recreational language invention (as in f/glossopoeia or f/Conlangs).

Justification: Mainly, there is no clear place for discussion of this nature. f/languages gets some use along these lines, however: it is currently billed as a language-learning forum. (It would be the second on Raddle, if it were used for this purpose. Looking at the posts, however, it has already begun to be used for some of the discussion I hope to see in the proposed f/language). Further, its sole moderator is not an active user. As for not just changing the description of f/languages, I think the name itself, as opposed to "language" in a more general sense, discourages discussion of anything within a language/language community, or that's about language in the abstract. As for whether a new forum should be created or f/languages renamed to f/language, I have no argument one way or another.

  1. To merge the two recreational language invention forums, probably into a forum with the name f/Conlangs.

Justification: While the original mod of f/glossopoeia, u/shanoxilt, has seemed to be vehemently against the moniker "conlang" (short for "constructed language"), I have never heard their reasons why. I am under the impression that "conlang" is a significantly more widely circulated and understood term for this practice than "glossopoeia". In any case, as it currently stands, the overlap between the forums seems like it would be quite high. (I say "would be" because the newly created f/Conlangs doesn't have any posts yet.)



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shanoxilt wrote


I support the word "glossopoeia" because it has a longer history and its derivation is much more transparent to Westerners.

It is also a nod to Tolkien (one of the most famous language-makers) who coined the term "mythopoeia".

The shortened form of "constructed language" is both ugly and has some awkward socio-linguistic connotations.


yaaqov OP wrote

Ugly it is. Though I'd be hard-pressed to concede that 'glossopoeia' is any less opaque...

Anyway, I'd love to hear your thoughts on the sociolinguistic consequences of "conlanging", and how glossopoiesis differs!

A particular subquestion I have as well, is, do you feel that glossopoeia encompasses languages that are not created for artistic/aesthetic purposes? My understanding is that, in addition to these, "constructed language" also encompasses auxiliary languages, philosophical languages, arguably model languages created by linguists to test particular hypothesis of acquisition, and potentially even some cases of natural language engineering and reform.


shanoxilt wrote

In my view, yes, it does encompass the other genres but it does most immediately connote art for art's sake.