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Thread: Racist spelling bee

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    Почтенный гражданин LXNDR's Avatar
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    Racist spelling bee


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    Завсегдатай chaika's Avatar
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    why is that racist?

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    Почтенный гражданин LXNDR's Avatar
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    if you're not familiar with the word and don't read it from the screen all you hear is niggas

  4. #4
    Hanna
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    I agree that it sounds like Niggas.
    I think I might possibly have read the word once or twic myself but i am not even completely sure. How is a ten year old supposed to have heard about it?
    Who here was familiar with that word?

    These "spelling bees" must be something uniquely American. I really don't think they exist this side of the Atlantic. I don't quite see the point in them, although I suppose anyone who aces them is bound to do well in the English "SAT" in the future.

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    Завсегдатай chaika's Avatar
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    The point is that English spelling is absolutely awful, unlike just about any other European language. We even have jokes about spelling, such as: How do you pronounce GHOTI?

    the answer is "fish": GH as in ROUGH, O as in WOMEN, and TI as in NATION.

    how do you pronounce the sequence OUGH in these words: rough, through trough, drought, thorough.
    all different.

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    Почтенный гражданин LXNDR's Avatar
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    how about French spelling?
    how about Russian a/o, е/и, д/т, б/п, г/к, з/с ?

    I don't think English spelling is all that awful, there're some principles to it which you can detect and follow

  7. #7
    Hanna
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    No it's the Pronunciation that is awful.
    I don't find the spelling particularly hard to remember once I am familiar with a word.

    But there is often no logic to how words should be pronounced. In many cases you have to have heard the word before, or look it up to know. With British surnames and names of cities it gets even worse.

    In Russian, the only challenge is to know which syllable the accent should be on.
    Everything else is usually quite clear from the spelling, although some words look a bit scary to pronounce - i.e. tongue twisters! This could not be said for English.
    There are several examples of words that are spelled very similarly and pronounced wildly differently.

    I can never remember examples about stuff like this, but here is one:

    thought
    though

    but there are thousands more!

    Then there is the situation whereby there is quite a big difference between prononunciation between British English and other variations, like American etc. But there is very little difference in spelling.


    Quote Originally Posted by Mark Twain
    A Plan for the Improvement of English Spelling

    For example, in Year 1 that useless letter c would be dropped to be replased either by k or s, and likewise x would no longer be part of the alphabet. The only kase in which c would be retained would be the ch formation, which will be dealt with later.
    Year 2 might reform w spelling, so that which and one would take the same konsonant, wile Year 3 might well abolish y replasing it with i and Iear 4 might fiks the g/j anomali wonse and for all.
    Jenerally, then, the improvement would kontinue iear bai iear with Iear 5 doing awai with useless double konsonants, and Iears 6-12 or so modifaiing vowlz and the rimeining voist and unvoist konsonants.
    Bai Iear 15 or sou, it wud fainali bi posibl tu meik ius ov thi ridandant letez c, y and x — bai now jast a memori in the maindz ov ould doderez — tu riplais ch, sh, and th rispektivli.
    Fainali, xen, aafte sam 20 iers ov orxogrefkl riform, wi wud hev a lojikl, kohirnt speling in ius xrewawt xe Ingliy-spiking werld.
    Mark Twain

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    Завсегдатай chaika's Avatar
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    The difference between Russian and English spelling is that you can pretty much figure out the pronunciation of any Russian word when you see it spelled out. For ex., everyone knows that код and кот are pronounced the same because there is a simple pronunciation rule. But you have to look in a dictionary to find out how to pronounce rough, through trough, drought

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    Почтенный гражданин LXNDR's Avatar
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    had Mark Twain's plan been realized it would make English research harder for philologists and linguists because this reform would break away the spelling from the words Latin roots

  10. #10
    Hanna
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    Quote Originally Posted by chaika View Post
    The difference between Russian and English spelling is that you can pretty much figure out the pronunciation of any Russian word when you see it spelled out.
    No not completely! Sure you can read the word, but the stress might be different from what you are guessing.
    There are a few examples of words which are spell identically, but mean different things depending on where the stress is. Right?

    I am taking a break from my Russian studies at the moment.... but when I was doing it, i always looked up words in a dictionary with accents.
    There might be some logic to where the accent goes, or some kind of "feel" which native speakers have, even for words they are not familiar with...
    but I am not there yet, and I have made mistakes with this several times, including when speaking with Russian speaking people (and that is in addition to all the grammatical mistakes I no doubt make...)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Hanna View Post
    No not completely! Sure you can read the word, but the stress might be different from what you are guessing.
    There are a few examples of words which are spell identically, but mean different things depending on where the stress is. Right?

    I am taking a break from my Russian studies at the moment.... but when I was doing it, i always looked up words in a dictionary with accents.
    There might be some logic to where the accent goes, or some kind of "feel" which native speakers have, even for words they are not familiar with...
    but I am not there yet, and I have made mistakes with this several times, including when speaking with Russian speaking people (and that is in addition to all the grammatical mistakes I no doubt make...)
    Yes, and sometimes different forms of the same word differ only with stress. The same can be said about the letter ё.
    In Russian there are situations when you must use a rule, you cannot learn the spelling. раненый/раненный, не большой/небольшой.

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    Завсегдатай chaika's Avatar
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    за́мо́к

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    Quote Originally Posted by chaika View Post
    The difference between Russian and English spelling is that you can pretty much figure out the pronunciation of any Russian word when you see it spelled out. For ex., everyone knows that код and кот are pronounced the same because there is a simple pronunciation rule. But you have to look in a dictionary to find out how to pronounce rough, through trough, drought
    I will not pronounce them the same. I will pronounce "д" in "код" as a voiced sound, similarly to how it is spelled.

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    Почтенный гражданин LXNDR's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anixx View Post
    I will not pronounce them the same. I will pronounce "д" in "код" as a voiced sound, similarly to how it is spelled.
    this is wrong pronunciation, it's inconvenient and runs counter Russian phonetic principles

    vocalizing devocalized consonants sounds like an accent in Russian

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    Quote Originally Posted by LXNDR View Post
    this is wrong pronunciation, it's inconvenient and runs counter Russian phonetic principles

    vocalizing devocalized consonants sounds like an accent in Russian
    No. Anybody I know (I live in Moscow) will pronounce them vocalized. Pronouncing "код" as "кот" would sound plainly wrong and indeed confusing.

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    I think it's unnatural for Russian speaker to vocalize "д" in "код". We may force this sound sometimes to distinct between these words, but in relaxed speech there is no difference in pronunciation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by xdns View Post

    I think it's unnatural for Russian speaker to vocalize "д" in "код". We may force this sound sometimes to distinct between these words, but in relaxed speech there is no difference in pronunciation.
    In quick speech there may indeed be no difference (in such speech the vocalization most likely depends on the following word). But in slow, distinct speech there is certain difference. Example of pronounciation of "код" in Russian at 1:03 here: Генетический код - YouTube

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    Well I have just re-analyzed myself and actually I can say that I will vocalize the final "т" in "кот" if it is followed by a voiced consonant. Like in "кот занимался" or "кот добежал". That said the pronunciation of the words may depend on the following word, but separately of any context or at the end of a speech the words would be pronounced differently.

    If an English speaker it told to always pronounce "т" even before a voiced consonant he would be sounding very weird. I advise just to forget about this rule as non-constructive and not helping.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anixx View Post
    If an English speaker it told to always pronounce "т" even before a voiced consonant he would be sounding very weird. I advise just to forget about this rule as non-constructive and not helping.
    can you give an example of a phrase where this rule in your opinion is counter productive?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Anixx View Post
    Well I have just re-analyzed myself and actually I can say that I will vocalize the final "т" in "кот" if it is followed by a voiced consonant. Like in "кот занимался" or "кот добежал". That said the pronunciation of the words may depend on the following word, but separately of any context or at the end of a speech the words would be pronounced differently.

    If an English speaker it told to always pronounce "т" even before a voiced consonant he would be sounding very weird. I advise just to forget about this rule as non-constructive and not helping.
    Вы как говорите: "гот от года" или "год от года"? Наверное, первое. Вы пишете неправильные утверждения под влиянием орфографии.

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