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#3839: Poincy replies to DeGraff




From: Jean Poincy <caineve@idt.net>

At first I somewhat misinterpreted DeGraff's statement (I conceded) and
now I made a booboo for wrongly choosing my words. I am sure that
DeGraff knows well that I did not mean learning a language, but learning
how to read in a language that one already knows how to speak. I have no
excuse. However, the issue remains that there is no explanation for
dropping the accent off "" to have "e" while the same sound is
conserved. How does the "e" in Ayitian differ phonetically from the "e"
in French? That's the simple question being asked to DeGraff.

DeGraff's analogy with "de l'eau" does not hold at all. The language can
do without the word itself but not without "" and "e". Where the
spelling of "de l'eau" can be accepted with no quarrel, the latter needs
explanation if an audience is wondering. It's unfortunate that DeGraff
decides to throw in the towel when I am sure some members of the list
are begging for answers from an expert. Again I am not questioning the
validity of such and such sound or such and such spelling (because I do
embrace the current spelling of the language), but the approach used by
linguists to arrive at their conclusion. If it is explained
convincingly, there is nothing I can do but agree with it. 

DeGraff's duty as a linguist is to clear up those mines. Reducing the
list to me because I am fervently and overtly in disagreement with
DeGraff is not fair to the list. That way the list remains in darkness.
Yes, DeGraff provides references which unfortunately do not explain the
logic behind the state of the accent on the letter "e". I am sure among
some 800 list members, there are some who are really interested in
knowing why, but don't have the time nor an interest to read linguistic
books to find out something that can be learned probably in one
sentence. For the benefit of the list, I want to accept that I refuse to
do the homework assigned. 

Maybe I did, but did not find the answer. Maybe I did and was
unsatisfied with the answer. Maybe I simply did not do it. Either way,
if DeGraff wishes to convince or inform the list of his knowledge or the
evolution of Ayitian, he can simply explain in just a few words the
logic behind the change mentioned above. I think others others might
really wish to know? Hower, if DeGraff would stand by his decision, it
would be very kind of any linguist to provide an answer to the question.
I am sure silent members of the list who are interested in
finding out would appreciate it.


Ayiti has lived, lives and will live
Mozeb