13 May, 2011

I was a dreamer, staring out windows


As if George Bernard Shaw read my mind before I'd even had the thought.

'The English have no respect for their language, and will not teach their children to speak it. They cannot spell it because they have nothing to spell it with but an old foreign alphabet of which only consonants -- and not all of them -- have any agreed speech value. Consequently no man can teach himself what it should sound like from reading it; and it is impossible for an Englishman to open his mouth without making some other Englishman despise him. Most European languages are now accessible in black and white to foreigners: English and French are not thus accessible even to Englishmen and Frenchmen.'

'Preface: A Professor of Phonetics', taken from Pygmalion, George Bernard Shaw (1913)


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