Here be the thread about the Belarusian language
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Osweo
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RE: Here be the thread about the Belarusian language
(2012 Sep 19 13:39)Sun Wrote:  But they seems to want be different and instead of simple cirilic Y they write it with French nuance;)

Absolutely! Big Grin

It's more a 'B' (Cyrillic) than a 'У', etymologically speaking though. It's in the word 'all', i.e. BCE, which is Y'CE or something like that in their version (I think you have 'CBE').

In other words, they use the same word as Great-Russians, but pronounce their 'v' a bit differently. I'm a Severnoanglichanin, and we pronounce 'U' differently to Jugoengly. We still use the same written character though! Just about being 'different' as you said... ;)

Weissruthenien, I would like to ask, does this orthography conform to the texts written in your language in the Polsko-Litovskie times? Or did you just write 'all' with a normal Cyrillic 'V' back then?

"And now if a whole nation fell into that? In such a case, I answer, infallibly they will return out of it. For life is no cunningly-devised deception or self deception, it is a great truth that thou art alive, that thou hast desires, necessities: neither can these subsist and satisfy themselves on delusions, but on fact. To fact, depend on it, we shall come back: to such fact, blessed or cursed, as we have wisdom for."
Thomas Carlyle
2012 Sep 19 22:00
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Post: #12
RE: Here be the thread about the Belarusian language
(2012 Sep 19 22:00)Osweo Wrote:  It's more a 'B' (Cyrillic) than a 'У', etymologically speaking though. It's in the word 'all', i.e. BCE, which is Y'CE or something like that in their version (I think you have 'CBE').

Correct. It should be mentioned that this sound is also found in the place of the etymological “L” as well: воўк, поўны, чытаў, etc.

(2012 Sep 19 22:00)Osweo Wrote:  Weissruthenien, I would like to ask, does this orthography conform to the texts written in your language in the Polsko-Litovskie times? Or did you just write 'all' with a normal Cyrillic 'V' back then?

Normal Cyrillic “Вв” was enough. In the old texts it is found basically everywhere where “Ўў” is written now. However it made sense to introduce the new letter for two reasons: 1) it is reasonable to write different sounds with different letters; 2) the Russian and Polish orthoepic rules could misguide peoples who would have tried to read Belarusian texts. In the Russian and Polish languages there is the alternation of sounds [v] – [f], where in Belarusian there is the alternation [v/w] – [ŭ], like this:

Russian: кровь [кроф’] – крови.
Polish: krew [kref] – krwi.
Belarusian: кроў – крыві.

If we did as our glorious ancestors used to do and wrote “кров”, then someone educated in a Russian or in Polish school might read the word as [кроф], which is incorrect. Glorious ancestors didn’t have this problem because they didn’t go to Polish/Russian schools. Smile

Although the main reason was obviously reason 1).

(2012 Sep 19 13:39)Sun Wrote:  hahah I like this "internet" pronounciation tryings...It is uuuuuu...Smile

Man, you are mistaken. It is not "u-u-u-u...". One vowel - one syllable. Words like "кроў", "воўк" are one syllable words, words with one vowel only. Ўў is a consonant.

Some may say that оў here is a diphthong, but traditionally it is not interpreted as such.

P. S. The letter Ŭŭ in the alphabet is called "nonsyllabic U", as Jj is called "nonsyllabic I".

[...] just as it is not left unto us to choose our ancestors, so we may not choose our nation; we can only fulfil, or not fulfil, the obligations that come from being a member of our people’.
© Dr. Jan Stankievič ‘From the History of Belarus’

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2012 Sep 20 17:39
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RE: Here be the thread about the Belarusian language
(2012 Sep 21 19:00)Dussander Wrote:  
(2012 Sep 21 18:37)Whiteruthenian Wrote:  Saved it from cache just in case because something happened to the Apricity where it was posted first and I can no longer find it there.

Hmm, I don't remember reading that post. Perhaps you could share it in the thread about Belarusian language?

I am doing it right now. Although I am sure Dussander read it. Big Grin


Belarusian, motherfucker! Do you speak it?!


http://www.theapricity.com/forum/archive...15138.html
http://www.theapricity.com/forum/showthread.php?t=15138

Whiteruthenian
04-25-2010, 09:02 AM


The text below glorifies such an ideology as Belarusian Grammar Nazism. I hope it can induce an interesting discussion, but if not, at least after having read it you will know more about Belarus, there is nothing bad about it.

The Belarusian language is dying being replaced by the Russian language. What and who is to blame? First and foremost it is the weak national identity (the first part of the text is about it). The vast majority of Belarusians still remain “West Russians” (I already wrote about this situation in detail). It is simply stupid to expect from West Russians (including the West Russians who are in power here) any significant support for the Belarusian language.

I also “blame” the language itself, or rather its speakers. In the text I write how the Belarusian language is becoming primitive. You see, in present situation of the total domination of the Russian language the Belarusian language experiences both “quantitative” and “qualitative” losses. Its sympathizers more often pay attention to its “quantitative” losses (decreasing percentage of schools teaching pupils in Belarusian, for example), but few people worry about the qualitative losses. The text below is mainly about them.

I am a supporter of the “controlled” way of development of the Belarusian language. The Belarusian language now has to survive in the difficult circumstances, and as long as the Russian language is not driven out of our beloved Weissruthenien, the Belarusian language must be kept up and receive all care it needs. 

There are plenty of texts which tell about the “qualitative” losses of the Belarusian language, but (surprisingly!) they all are in Belarusian. But if you read Belarusian then I’d suggest that you read them. Here they are:

Kuźma Čorny, “Non-Belarusian language in the Belarusian literature”

Jury Paciupa, “The orthographic symptom of the language disease” (!!!)

For further reading:

Stanislaŭ Stankievič, “Russification of the Belarusian language in the BSSR and the struggle against the process of Russification”

Kastuś Ćvirka, “The blight of the language – calque”


Pavieł Ściacko “Calques the cripples”

1. THE IDENTITY AND THE LANGUAGE

When talking about the situation with the Belarusian language one should take into account the situation with the Belarusian identity. The revival of the Belarusian language must not be expected as long as most Belarusians remain mentally West-Russians. What I wrote in my text on the Belarusian identity is not especially original, many people who have some information about the history of the Belarusian nation have come to the same conclusions, and sometimes they use the same terms.

One can say that the Belarusian nation is schizophrenic. The West-Russianness and Belarusianness manage to coexist somehow on this territory, but unfortunately the West-Russianness dominates. Too many times I have heard the words "our" and "Russian" used as synonyms. "Our good Russian film", for example. For me (because I am Belarusian) it is like saying "potato chips made of apples" or something like that. It is especially abnormal, since by the Belarusian national movement Russians (and also Poles) have always traditionally been seen as sort of “antipodes”, and the West-Russianism as antipodal ideology. It is indeed "schizophrenia", that there exists a nation with two national ideologies hostile to each other. Really hostile. For example, if a Belarusian nervously reacts to another Belarusian speaking to him Belarusian, you can be sure, that the first one is "West-Russian" while the second one is "Belarusian".

It can be understood better if one takes the Ukraine as an example. The Ukraine consists of the two parts, of the Ukrainian speaking West (with strong national identity) and "surzhyk" speaking/Russian speaking East. And there exist certain hostility between them, or at least tension. Of course only generally speaking but still. And still in the Eastern Ukraine one can find a Ukrainian who could react to the Ukrainian language nervously.

Unlike in the case of Ukrainians Belarusians do not have their "Piedmont" (Western Ukraine, Lviv), and the Belarusian identity is weaker. The West-Russians are in power here after Łukašenka was elected. sad Sad but true. Belarusians are a minority.

It must be said that it is not acknowledged "officially" that the two identities coexist. Both Łukašenka and, say, Zianon Paźniak regard themselves Belarusian, but their understanding of the Belarusian history, of what the Belarusian culture is, what place should the Belarusian language take etc. is totally different.

For example, for West-Russian Łukašenka (who also happened to mix up the words "our" and "Russian") the Belarusian language is just something "local", which can be taken seriously only by "nationalists", ant it doesn't need neither special care, nor protection. It exists in some "reservation" and it is enough. While for Zianon Paźniak it is the national language, which must be the main language of Belarus and the only state language, and it does need care and protection.

2. WHY THE BELARUSIAN LANGUAGE MUST BE KEPT PURE

In the middle of XX century Dr. Jan Stankievič (being an immigrant in the USA) wrote that the Belarusian language of Soviet newspapers could only frighten Belarusians off. People love what is natively theirs. They could love the Belarusian language too (even West-Russians), but not if it were nothing but a caricature of itself or the Russian language. Unfortunately that is what it became to turn into during Soviet times. Dr. Jan Stankievič once used the term “the terrible Belarusian-Soviet-Russian jargon”. It happened to me (once or twice) that people refused to speak to me in Belarusian because “the Belarusian language is not what it is supposed to be”. Now I think I know what they meant. They talked about this “jargon”.

Besides it is obvious (at least for me), he-he, that the Belarusian language with all its dialects is a separate system, a separate organism. The separate organism cannot develop normally if it is so much infected by foreign vocabulary, syntax, and sometimes morphology; and even phonetics! Yes, I am not exagerrating! The foreign influence is so big and harmful, that it distorts the Belarusian language even at the phonetic (most resistive) level! mad

[Image: 2gvoabc.jpg]

The Belarusian language must be kept pure if we want it to develop normally. The foreign influence must be removed. That means there must be at least certain areas where it doesn’t have to coexist with Russian. Ideally whole Belarus must be such an area of course…

Below I’m going to write about some diseases of the Belarusian language.

3. SOVIET BELARUSIAN LANGUAGE

During the Soviet era the Belarusian language had both achievements and losses. On the one hand there was a short Belarusization in 1920s and the Belarusian language developed as a state language of the BSSR, on the other hand – its development was greatly influenced by the Russian language and communist ideology. In Soviet dictionaries you can find both the native Belarusian words and obvious Russian calques which contradict the spirit of the Belarusian language.

To give a couple of examples: Belarusians don’t say “Good morning”. I don’t know why. They just don’t. They say either “Good day” or “Good evening”. I can bring two witnesses. The first one is Dr. Jan Stankievič himself; the second one is my grandmother. Really, I just can’t imagine my grandmother saying “Good morning”, because… she just does not use this expression. But unfortunately in many dictionaries this unnatural form can be found.

Another example: “How are you doing?” In Russian: “How are businesses?”/”Kak dieła?”

It is not correct to ask “How are businesses?” in Belarusian. In Belarusian you have to ask (literally) “How do you have yourself?” – “Jak maješsia?”.

If one asked "Jak sravy?" (Kak dieła?), that would mean that he/she would use a Russian expression, replacing Russian words by Belarusian ones. But again, I can’t imagine my grandmother using this strange Belarusified Russian expression, despite the fact that the Soviet Belarusian language could see it as acceptable.

In his article “Non-Belarusian language in the Belarusian literature” Kuźma Čorny parodied and mocked this language, by putting “Soviet Belarusian” words in a mouth of a rural woman: “U čym sprava? Biezumoŭna, niemetazhodna…” Despite the fact that you can find such words and expressions in dictionaries, they sound funny when said by a rural woman: they all are calques. U čym sprava? – Russian “V čiom dieło?” (literally “In what is the business?” (What’s the matter?)); biez-umoŭ-na – Russian “biez-uslov-no” (unconditionally), nie-meta-zhod-na – Russian “nie-cele-soobraz-no” (inexpediently)… Belarusians do not speak like this! Well, as long as they don't learn this “jargon”. mad

4. THE SIMPLE BELARUSIAN LANGUAGE

This is another kind of disease plaguing the literary Belarusian language.

I remember myself reading “New Land” by Jakub Kołas at school. And I remember envy that I felt: his language was very “light” and natural. I thought I was not able to write like that, my language was (and is) much poorer than Jakub Kołas’. That kind of envy that I felt when reading “New Land” as a pupil, now visits me very rarely, because the beautiful Belarusian language now is rare too… Once I happened to write an article about the language of the newspaper “Naša Niva”. I pointed out there obvious language mistakes of “NN”. But in fact even if they had corrected all the mistakes, the language of the newspaper would have remained insipid anyway. 

Today people who nominally are Belarusian speakers live in the world where there is too little Belarusian language (especially of good quality). Unfortunately in most cases because of these circumstances their language remains quite insipid and underdeveloped. Even when they are journalists... or even writers! Of course they can say “this is a car” or “I want beer” without any mistakes, but if one is for example a writer his/her language is supposed to be... well, full of colours, shades and nuances. “The simple Belarusian language” is not enough.

A characteristic illustrative detail: some people with whom I communicate in Belarusian even tend to confuse “tabie” with “ciabie” and “sabie” with “siabie” all the time! It is like a German confusing “dir” with “dich” and “mir” with “mich”. Enough said.

5. IDIOTIC “PURISM”

Some Belarusian speakers tend to chose words which are dissimilar with the respective Russian ones. But in fact this tendency is just another example of the (indirect) Russian influence. Some examples:

“To help” in Russian is “pomogat’”. In Belarusian one can say or “pamahać” or “dapamahać”, with no difference in meaning. Linguist (and purist) Dr. Jan Stankievič would use “pamahać”, this is the only form to find in his dictionary. He believed that the form “dapamahać” is influenced by Polish.

But very many Belarusian speakers see “dapamahać” as “more Belarusian” form, because it is less similar to Russian “pomogat’”. Google gives these results: about 378,000 for “dapamahać” and only about 8,400 for “pamahać”! In fact “pamahać” is being forgotten only because it appears to be more similar to its Russian equivalent. Pure idiocy.

Another example, even sadder. There are two words in Belarusian for “to know”: “znać” and “viedać”. Russians have only “znat’”. Similarly as in case with “dapamahać”, some Belarusian speakers tend to use “viedać” exclusively.

What is especially sad here? The words “znać” and “viedać” have slightly different meanings. For example one can say that a dog does not bark at a postman because it “znaje” him, “recognises” him. If you say, that the dog “viedaje” him, you will mean that the dog knows some things about the postman, for example his habits, his way of life etc.

If “viedać” starts being used instead of both “znać” and “viedać”, that means that the Belarusian language becomes poorer, because these “shades and nuances” of the meanings disappear. What is to blame? The idiotic “purism” and also the lack of the “language feeling” (Sprachgefühl). sad

6. UNDER DR. JAN STANKIEVIČ’S BANNER FORWARD TO THE GRAMMAR NAZI DICTATORSHIP!

Jury Paciupa (there is no other Grammar Führer but Dr. Jan Stankievič and Jury Paciupa is His Prophet) compared once his work to the work of creator of Nynorsk Ivar Aasen and reviver of the Hebrew language Eliezer Ben-Yehuda. I think the situations are quite comparable indeed. Just “down with Russian, let’s speak Belarusian because we are Belarusians” is not enough. Quality of the language is also very important. All the elements of “the terrible Belarusian-Soviet-Russian jargon” that poison the organism of the Belarusian language must be eliminated, and it must have all the care and protection it needs.

[...] just as it is not left unto us to choose our ancestors, so we may not choose our nation; we can only fulfil, or not fulfil, the obligations that come from being a member of our people’.
© Dr. Jan Stankievič ‘From the History of Belarus’

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2012 Sep 21 19:46
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RE: Here be the thread about the Belarusian language
(2012 Sep 21 19:46)Whiteruthenian Wrote:  Besides it is obvious (at least for me), he-he, that the Belarusian language with all its dialects is a separate system, a separate organism. The separate organism cannot develop normally if it is so much infected by foreign vocabulary, syntax, and sometimes morphology; and even phonetics! Yes, I am not exagerrating! The foreign influence is so big and harmful, that it distorts the Belarusian language even at the phonetic (most resistive) level! mad

I can relate to this. The once vibrant non-standard dialect of my city practically doesn't exist anymore. What people now speak is some sort of hybrid between the indigenous dialect and standard language. As you said, phonetics seems to be most resistant to change and it has remained largely intact.

We must dissent.

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2012 Sep 21 21:30
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RE: Here be the thread about the Belarusian language
(2012 Sep 21 19:46)W. R. Wrote:  There are two words in Belarusian for “to know”: “znać” and “viedać”. Russians have only “znat’”. Similarly as in case with “dapamahać”, some Belarusian speakers tend to use “viedać” exclusively.

What is especially sad here? The words “znać” and “viedać” have slightly different meanings. For example one can say that a dog does not bark at a postman because it “znaje” him, “recognises” him. If you say, that the dog “viedaje” him, you will mean that the dog knows some things about the postman, for example his habits, his way of life etc.

If “viedać” starts being used instead of both “znać” and “viedać”, that means that the Belarusian language becomes poorer, because these “shades and nuances” of the meanings disappear.

Here is an article from 1940-ies that exlpains the correct use of znać and viedać (curiously, also by comparing them to the German verbs kennen and wissen).

[Image: YOp58jKcMXI.jpg]

[...] just as it is not left unto us to choose our ancestors, so we may not choose our nation; we can only fulfil, or not fulfil, the obligations that come from being a member of our people’.
© Dr. Jan Stankievič ‘From the History of Belarus’

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2019 Mar 10 11:34
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