Meanderings of an Amateur Linguist

Just me and my languages – a dangerous combonation

Language Family Moods

Posted by ILuvEire on November 23, 2008

I for some reason seem to get into “language family moods.” For some reason, I’m just randomly attracted to a particular language family for a few months. It doesn’t even have to be a language family! It can just be an “area.” Like right now, I’m studying Vietnamese, and am very interested in Cantonese, Mandarin, Korean and Japanese.  Right before this I was in the mood for “Mediterranean” languages, you know Greek, Italian, French, Turkish etc. Before that I was interested in Baltic(ish) area languages, like Finnish, Lithuanian, Latvian, Estonian, and Saami.

I think that’s the main reason I have so many languages of differing families on my list. Just watch, in a couple of days I’ll be switching to Scandinavia, learning Norwegian and Icelandic (and trying in vain to learn Faroese). Then I’ll switch to the Bantu languages – Swahili, Zulu, and Xhosa.

Does anyone else do this? Leave me a comment! I’m pretty sure I have anonymous commenting allowed on here.

2 Responses to “Language Family Moods”

  1. Danny said

    This happens to me too! I’ll be totally enthused about learning like Scandinavian languages one day and the next I’m wanting to learn Hebrew or Arabic. Don’t worry, you’re not alone.🙂

  2. Psi-Lord said

    That’s a lot like what happens to me, too. And it was actually Vietnamese that drew me out of an Eurocentric view, and eventually led me to Korean, Thai, Khmer, Chinese, and Japanese (if you’ll excuse me grouping all these languages geographically instead of the traditional, genetic way).

    Sometimes I even step outside such groupings, but keep an element in common taking me from one to another (such as going from Arabic to Persian and then to Urdu using the Perso-Arabic script as pathway). So, while my language choices may seem chaotic and random to some, they’re usually bound somewhere.

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