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May 10, 2012

Is Your Language Agglutinative?

Even though I might seem to complain about how difficult - and sometimes confusing - the English language might be, believe it or not, there are languages that...

...are even more complicated, at least in some areas.

Here's just one example; some languages are agglutinative. Even if you have never seen the word "agglutinative" before (and, I must admit that prior to reading this online article, I had not ever seen that word before). You can see the article here - http://aimdanismanlik.wordpress.com/2012/04/24/do-you-want-to-learn-an-agglutinative-language-think-twice/.

The root word of "agglutinative" is "glu" which, of course, is where we get our English word "glue". So to be "agglutinative" means to "glue" words together. I would guess that every language does this, some more than others. English does it sometimes, German does it a bit more, but look at the website above to see how "agglutinative" Turkish is!

The writer of that article says he is a native speaker of Turkish, and he says that in his language it is possible to write a complete sentence with one word. And he does not mean an English style one-word sentence with an understood subject like "Stop" - he means a full sentence with a subject and verb and the expression of a complete thought.

Take a look at the website; it just might convince you that English is not so difficult after all.

It's been a while since I told you about writing contests. If you have a story to tell, be sure to explore these publishing opportunities.

Chicken Soup for the Soul has an ongoing need for uplifting stories for their anthologies (pays $200.00, plus 10 free copies). http://www.chickensoup.com.

Thrive in Life (online publication) publishes stories on "how people thrive" (pays $75). http://www.thriveinlife.ca.

God Makes Lemonade publishes stories of how "something unexpectedly good happens that never would have happened without something painful happening first" (pays $250 plus 10 free copies): http://www.godmakeslemonade.com.

Thin Threads publishes stories of "moments, events or decisions, each showing how the course of our lives can be redirected for the better" (pays $100): http://www.thinthreads.com.

As always, send us any words or phrases that make you crazy and be sure to let us know what it is about English and language learning that you find confounding, infuriating or endlessly intriguing.

Listen, read and speak. Make your new language your own.

My best to you as you make your way through this intriguing , constantly shifting linguistic landscape.


Also, Morf just might be available to visit your school or agency this coming summer. You can contact him at mmorf@mail.com.

Posted by mmorf at May 10, 2012 10:20 PM


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