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  1. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    Learning Fictional Languages ~ Na'vi, specifically

    Discussion in 'The Lounge' started by cruciFICTION, Jun 2, 2011.

    I'll be honest from the get-go. I am NOT a fan of Tolkien, and would prefer if we keep his Elvish out of it. I don't know why, but it doesn't strike me as being very ordinary or something. I think it's my general dislike of stereotypical high fantasy.

    So, lately I've been thinking that I'd really like to learn to speak and type in Na'vi. Several months ago, I found the linked website, which I thought was pretty great. Only recently did I realise that there's actually guides (some are parts of incomplete series') on there for download that will teach you the grammar and syntax of Na'vi.

    What I find extremely interesting is the syntax. Paul Frommer, the creator of Na'vi, really outdid himself, I think.

    A few examples follow.

    That's two mostly related sections.


    What I'm wondering is whether any of you have taken the time to learn fictional, or, rather, constructed, languages (Tolkien's English aside) fluently? Particular examples (others found on this Wiki article) are Na'vi from James Cameron's Avatar, Nadsat from Anthony Burgess's A Clockwork Orange, or even Loglan and Lojban, the logical languages.

    Discussion commence.
     
  2. Jessica_312
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    Jessica_312 Contributing Member

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    I am entirely too lazy, and I'm not good with foreign languages LOL... I took a total of seven years of Spanish between grade school, high school and college, and while I can read it, I still can't speak it fluently or understand it being spoken (not very well, at least).

    Though I give kudos to anyone who can do it - additionally, I give major kudos to anyone who can invent an entire language, that takes a lot of skill :D
     
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  3. Link the Writer
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    Link the Writer Flipping Out For A Good Story. Contributor

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    I'm not that good at languages. I just interpret it as: "Make up sentences that sound phonetically correct like 'Ashwa lebitha nuevas...'"

    I just made that sentence up. I will soon forget how to write it once I move to a different page.

    It takes skill to create a made up language and actually memorize it. Me? Just go the easy way and have the narrator character go "WTF is that dude(tte) saying?" and the others translate.
     
  4. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    I'm the same. I used to speak and read French fluently as a child, but I think I've spent so many years working toward bettering my English grammar that I just don't retain foreign languages very well.

    Still, I think I'll be able to learn Na'vi well enough if I persist. And then, when I'm happy with it, I'll write a novel in Na'vi, just because. =D

    I think you misunderstand the point of the post. I'm talking about actually learning a fictional language that someone else has made. Like Na'vi. Like Lojban. Like Nadsat. Learning it for the sake of learning it or for whatever.
     
  5. SteamWolf
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    SteamWolf Senior Member

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    Just a question - why learn a fictional language at all? Why not an Aboriginal language for example? At least you would be helping to keep alive a language that will be lost, rather than learning a fictional one that will be forgotten and redundant when the Avatar hype wears off.
     
  6. Trish
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    Trish I've been deleted.. again Contributor

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    While I understand the draw of being able to say "hey, I can speak Na'vi" and that it sounds cool, I have to agree with SteamWolf.

    I learned Cheyenne and Lakota myself, through online study, and though I'm probably not perfect (actually I'm sure I'm not) I've done the best I can, because it's important to me.

    By that same token, I guess if it's important to you, you should do whatever you like. Most people ask me why the hell I taught myself Cheyenne instead of something "useful", like French, Russian, or Spanish. Maybe someday I will, but those weren't important to me.

    So I agree with SteamWolf but I also think you should do whatever makes you happy. (Aren't I all helpful and stuff?)
     

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