Re: We don't learn language

Subject: Re: We don't learn language
From: Jane Bergen <janeb -at- COMPUTEK -dot- NET>
Date: Fri, 8 Dec 1995 23:03:55 +0600

Loryn writes:
> And yes, just so you're all aware of my philosophical bias, I think many of
> Chompsky's imperatives are **CRAP**. If you want an excuse for being
> racist, just think about where Chompsky's theories could logically end:
> people biologically determined in their abilities and capabilities,
> (biologically, racially ...)

> This is an extremely interesting topic. For humans. For techwriters. Those
> who wish to gag the debate, and force us into accepting *a* particular
> philsophy do us disservice.

> Loryn Jenkins
> BA Linguistics
> Contract Technical Writer

I find it hard to believe that you have read much of Chomsky at all,
or that you have a BA in linguistics and misspell his name! It casts
shadows on your credibility, Loryn, especially since everyone else
contributing to this discussion spells it correctly!

Although I do not subscribe wholeheartedly to Chomsky's theories,
they can hardly be called "crap." Many of them are no longer favored
as they were in the 60s and even Chomsky has questioned some of the
early theories. That's the way academics work....they constantly
question, test, prod, and develop new theories.

As for your other rantings: How is it "racist" to propose that all
humans have the same language-forming ability? Any linguist worth
his or her salt will fight anyone who devalues any language group.
And who is forcing anything on this group? It's an honest and
stimulating discussion, worthy of time and thought by technical
writers. That's all.

Jane Bergen, Technical Writer
janeb -at- computek -dot- net
janeb -at- answersoft -dot- com

"Life is a process, not an event..."

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