Write about your position regarding the study of language change

Write about your position regarding the study of language change; the comparative approach to language study (possibly with reference to the reconstruction of PIE); the English languages; translation and communication; translating Old English and/or engaging with the original in modern editions and/or in medieval manuscripts.
To support your thesis, examine at least ONE primary text from Weeks 1 and 2; and incorporate claims or information from at least THREE secondary sources included in the Weeks 1 and 2 Reading/Viewing Assignments (my lectures count as secondary resources too).
Make sure to incorporate evidence from at least 1 primary text and 3 secondary resources.
Consider how your ability to communicate in modern “standard” English, difficulties you have experienced with “standard” English, and/or your stance regarding the importance of (clear) communication influences the way you think about varieties of English. For this topic, you might take into consideration “Darmok,” Star Trek The Next Generation. Keep in mind that standard English is considered to be one dialect among many valid dialects, and that linguists eschew the hierarchizing of dialects and do not label dialects not designated “standard” as broken or incorrect English. Dialects that are not designated “standard” are typically not departures from or ungrammatical variants of the standard dialect; rather, they develop apart from and alongside the dialect that ends up being designated “standard.”
Make sure to incorporate evidence from at least 1 primary text and 3 secondary resources.
Important:
Please make sure that your essay presents your perspective on what you have read or seen. You should prepare an analytical paper, not a summary of what we have covered so far on the topic you choose. Any summary or facts that you include in your paper should be there only to support your claims. Summary and facts should be carefully subordinated to your claims.
Make sure that you present a thesis for the paper and a thesis (topic sentence) for each paragraph. You want your ideas to be the main focus of your reader’s attention, so your ideas should be more prominent than the summary, paraphrase, or quotations you include in support of your ideas. In other words, don’t just summarize or paraphrase or quote Captain Picard of the Enterprise Star Ship; provide your reader with your thoughts regarding your source(s) of information, and explain how and why a source has influenced your stance on the issue at hand.
MLA Style, 3-5 pages, Times New Roman 12, double spaced, thoughtfully titled, and carefully proofread.

Required Sources:

http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2012/12/24/utopian-for-beginners


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Below is my discussion about the Darmok from class to use as a reference on my view point:
In “Darmok,” the Starship Enterprise’s universal translator translates the Tamarians’ statements into English, but the Enterprise’s crew still do not comprehend the Tamarians’ meaning until near the end of the episode. Taking into account specific details from this episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation, consider what the episode suggest about language and communication.

The “Darmok” episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation discusses language and its subjectivity and relativity. The governing idea explores how language can evolve in different ways through the shaping of cultural norms. It also hints at the power of mythology and stories and its lasting impact on a culture on a day to day bias. Predominantly, this episode deals with the intricacies of language and other non-verbal ways of communication to exchange ideas.

The episode explores the idea of storytelling as a cultural tie and the transformation of the abstract into concrete (stories into language) and the concrete into the abstract (stories for universal ideas). The Tamarian language is comprised mostly around their mythos (myths) and uses story imagery to convey certain ideas. It also suggests the power of connection through a shared communal experience. The Tamarians, largely incomprehensible to humans, were used largely as a vehicle to contrast and depict human interaction with the unknown.

Our human society has become so dependent on exact verbal communication, we are almost deafened to unspoken and abstract communication, such as the body language that the Tamarians use. The inability of two civilizations to communicate with one another prompts questions of “nonthreatening or war seeking?” It makes a person question who is advanced and who is primitive? The shared communal experience of the two captains draw them together. Picard is able to find a link between the two languages through storytelling and imagery and thus able to communicate with the other captain. Joshua Foer’s article in The New Yorker “Utopian For Beginners” he mentions Marina Yauello, author of “Lunatic Lovers of Language,” that developing a new form of communication is like “an ambivalent love-hate –relationship.” Meaning that people who desire to communicate but cannot hate it so much that they eventually will find a way to form a new way to communicate. Picard was so determined to communicate with the Tamarian Captain to prevent any bloodshed that he took the time to work through their language barrier and understand him.

I do not believe the Tamarians were primitive next to the humans just that their verbal communication appears to be very basic, they are able to reach a much deeper emotional complexity with their stories than English can get with the same amount of words. This is validated by Counselor Troi when she said “Imagery is everything to the Tamarians. It embodies their emotional states, their very thought processes. It’s how they communicate and it’s how they think.” I believe that Tamarians developed their own language as a way of communication described by John McWhorter’s video. In his video Are Elvish, Klingon, Dothraki and Na’vi Real Language, McWhorter mentions that a language does not need to have many words. The Tamarians did not have many words however they added actions with a great deal of emotion to their language to communicate.

At the end of the episode there was a universal tie between all civilizations through mythology. Through the parallels between the stories of Gilgamesh and Darmok, it is seen that some ideas transcend cultural boundaries and unite societies. As Picard reads the ancient hymns at the end, he explains that a familiarity with our own mythos can help us relate to others’ much more easily.

Sources:
The New Yorker, “Utopian For Beginners”, Dec 24, 2012.
McWhorter, J, “Are Elvish, Klingon, Dothraki and Na’vi Real Languages” web January 17, 2016.