Presentation on theme: "Let’s Talk About Sex (and turnips). All the World’s a Turnip Masculine Turnips Feminine Turnips Le navet - French El nabo - Spanish O nabo - Portugese."— Presentation transcript:
Let’s Talk About Sex (and turnips)
All the World’s a Turnip Masculine Turnips Feminine Turnips Le navet - French El nabo - Spanish O nabo - Portugese Die Rübe - German La rapa - Italian Rapa - Latin ТУРНЕПС - Russian
A-Sexual Turnips Turnip - English Kabura - Japanese Like English, these languages have no gender systems, a trait they share with a surprising number of languages. Nauris - Finnish Arbi - Basque Singkamas – Tagalog Petrezselyemgyökér - Hungarian
A-Sexual Languages Afrikaans Armenian Azeri Basque Bengali Bislama Bugis Burmese Cebuano Central Yup’ik Chinese Chol English Estonian Finnish Georgian Guaraní Hawaiian Hungarian Ilocano Indonesian
What is Grammatical Gender? ● Grammatical gender is a form of noun classification ● “Gender” from Latin Genus meaning “Kind/type” ● Most languages don’t associate grammatical gender with biological gender
What is a Noun Class? ● A noun class is a grammatical distinction between nouns in a language. ● Not all linguists make a distinction between Grammatical Gender and Noun Class. ● This can be based on: – Animate/Inanimate – Rational/Non-rational – Human/Non-human – Male/Other – Masculine/Feminine/Neuter – Strong/Weak – Augmentative/Diminutive
Why Gender/Noun Class? Theories ● Initially biological- males and females. ● Expansion to sexless objects by association through myth or religion. ● A way of identifying and differentiating nouns- different “its”.
You think 4 noun classes is confusing? ● Swahili has 8 noun classes ● Fula has 26 ● Navaho has 10, including: – Human Beings – Liquids – Round Things – Long Stiff Things – Long Floppy Things
And also… ● The aboriginal Australian language Dyirbal has four noun classes: Class 1Class 2Class 3Class 4 MenWomenEdible PlantsBody Parts KangaroosDogsMeat PossumsPlatypusSound Most FishDangerous Animals Language Most SnakesFire, waterWind Hunting Weapons War WeaponsNon-edible, non- harmful plants
English – The Linguistic Eunuch It’s known that English is one of those odd languages that has no gender system. Old English, however, did. Therefore, at some point, the genders fell out of use, or were eroded out of the language.
Traces of Gender There are, in fact, some traces of gender left over in the English language. For example, we still utilise “he”, “she”, “it” to distinguish between male and female humans, animals and inanimate objects.
Gender Confusion in the Netherlands As we all know, the English language has lost its gender system. We can see this happening in the Dutch language.
Gender Systems Dutch used to maintain a gender system similar to German i.e. masculine, feminine and neuter. However, the distinction between masculine and feminine is becoming more and more vague.
Dutch Genders ● Dutch has two articles, “de” and “het”. ● “De” is used for both masculine and feminine, while “het” is used for neuter. ● Dutch appears to have experienced an erosion of gender similar to the one experienced by English. ● As a result, “de witte zout” (the white salt), is identifiable as neither masculine or feminine.
Swedutch? This erosion that Dutch is experiencing is causing it to reach a stage that is similar to Swedish which has neuter and common gender. Perhaps these are the final days of genders in Dutch.
Just to confuse you: a different type of confusion, particularly regarding milk and eggs Lac Masculine Le lait Il latte O leite Feminine La leche La llet
Eggs…and the mysterious ‘IT’ Italian eggs L’uovo Le uova FrenchCelui-ciCelle-ciCeciSpanishÉsteÉstaEstoItalianGliLeCi
And finally, for your entertainment… We were going to give you a quiz. We’ve decided against that, so instead, here are some of the titles we came up with: ● A Question of Sprout ● The Weakest Leek ● I’m a Celery, Get Me Out of Here ● Who Wants to Be a Potato-aire (we think this one’s stupid as well) ● 24 Carrot Quiz ● Uni-broccoli Challenge Turnip, or not turnip? That is the question.
Mark Twain – Without whom this presentation would not exist. “In German, a young lady has no sex, while a turnip has.” – The Awful German Language