jbocradi remo'o

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Hello, and welcome! This is Lojban Radio! coi fi'i .i ti jbocradi

I'm your host Matt Arnold, mi'e mat.arnold

known to the Lojban community as Eppcott. poi la .epkat cmene mi le lojbo cecmu

This is a computer audio periodical .i ti skami sance karni

for speakers and enthusiasts fo lo tavla je se cinri

of Lojban, the logical language. po la lojban po'u le logji bangu

September 27, 2005. detri li so pi'e reze pi'e renonomu

This episode will feature:

Pronouncing "o"

The Holoalphabetic Sentence

Phrasebook Part 2

Lojban As An International Auxiliary Language

Thank you to the listeners for the interest and encouragement you've all expressed since the first episode. Of course, with this attention on audio, came a renewed emphasis on pronunciation-related questions. Many of you noticed that when I used one Lojban word in the middle of an English sentence, I tended to Anglicize the pronunciation. For instance, I pronounce the "o" in Lojban with an American English accent whenever I drop it into an English sentence. I can adopt a correct accent when speaking an entire Lojban phrase, but it's extremely difficult to switch between accents from one word to another.

One thing we learned was that the pronunciation instructions in Lojban learning materials are interpreted differently by British Lojbanists than by Americans. In England, the words top, bottle, flop, and pot are pronounced with a sound similar to "aw" in law. In America, they are like the "ahh" that you say for the doctor. The book "What Is Lojban" makes it clear that the "a" is pronounced as in father or the American pronunciation of "top" and that "o" is pronounced as in "joke" or "note." CLL says on page 12 it's pronounced as in "dome." This is to keep the vowel sounds as easily distinguishable as possible.

So what is the correct way to pronounce "o" in Lojban? Here are some samples. First "o" as it is pronounced in English. Notice that it was rounded into an "oo" sound at the end. That's incorrect. The Lojban "o" is pronounced as in Spanish, as heard here. French speakers also pronounce "o" purely. Here are the sounds back-to-back for comparison. The distinction of a pure vowel is that the mouth holds still while pronouncing it and there is a crisp break in sound instead of a blend.

Fortunately Lojban does not use the "o" "u" combination, so the mispronounciation of "o" is unlikely to be misinterpreted. The only important thing in pronouncing Lojban is to keep the vowels from sounding like each other so that you don't speak the wrong word. Beyond that, anything goes. A spectrum of accents is inevitable, and the global diversity should be welcomed.

With this in mind, I wanted Lojbanists to record themselves speaking the same sentence. It didn't take long before a short text was found that uses all the sounds in the language. Since Lojban is a phonetic language, this means a text which uses every sound also uses every letter. This is called a holoalphabetic sentence, or pangram. English speakers are familiar with the pangram, "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog." The Lojban pangram which has been chosen is {.o'i mu xagji sofybakni cu zvati le purdi}. This means, "caution: five hungry Soviet cows are in the garden." The following speakers are Theodore Reed, Christopher Zervic, Bruce Webber, Pierre Abbat, Hal Fulton, Adam Raizen, and xorxes.

.o'i mu xagji sofybakni cu zvati le purdi

Phrasebook Part 2 - Talking about languages

In Lojban, the root word "glico" means "x1 pertains to English-speaking culture in aspect x2" and should be interpreted in the broadest possible sense. The English language is "glibau." "bau" is from "bangu" meaning "language". "glibau" is a compound word. Most language names are spoken as compound words formed in this way. The name of a nation is a compound word including "gu'e" from "gugde" meaning "country." So, French is "le fasygau" and France is "le fasygu'e".

Do you speak Lojban? .i xu do se bangu le lojban

Do you speak English? .i xu do se bangu le glibau

French le fasybau

German le dotybau

Spanish le sambau

Italian le banrtalia

Chinese le jugbau

Japanese le ponbau

Hindi le xinbau

Russian le rukybau

Arabic le rabybau

I don't speak Lojban. mi na se bangu la lojban

Where is the phrase in this book? .i ma ju fragi'e sa vanbi le vi cukta

Wait, I'll see if I can find it in this book. i .e'o ko denpa .i mi troci co tolcri fi le vi cukta

I understand. .i mi jimpe

I don't understand .i mi na jimpe

Could you talk more slowly please? .i .e'o ko skusno zenba

Do you understand me? xu do jimpe fi mi

Lojban As An International Auxiliary Language

This episode we have a segment submitted by Christopher Zervic about Lojban as an international auxiliary language:

Most constructed languages that are put forth come in two varieties. There are fictional languages such as Klingon and the Tolkien languages, which are adjunct to science fiction and fantasy literature. There are other languages that are put forth as a potential solution to the international language problem, such as Volapuk and Esperanto. In Lojban literature such as i la lojban ma (What Is Lojban?), Lojban is presented as something a little bit different-- a language whose main aims are scientific and educational. It's almost as a side note that Lojban has been mentioned as an international auxiliary language.

In order to be of value as an international auxiliary language, a language must meet multiple criteria. It must be culturally neutral, it must be flexible, and it must possess the ability for a large range of expression.

But the one true criterion is ease of learning. If Lojban is to be a realistic option as an international language, then it must be able to be acquired with relative ease. At the very minimum, it must be easier than the national languages. In some areas, such as orthography, Lojban is terrifically simple. Overall, the facility in learning by people with an average education is something of an unanswered question.

An important place to look is teaching methods. The bulk of the extant literature for teaching Lojban is fairly academic. What is missing is a quality textbook that teaches conversational Lojban. Ideally, this would be available in multiple languages and distributed internationally; and keep in mind that this was the first move made by Esperanto's creator, Dr. Zamenhof. The right teaching tools would help to extend the community and increase their knowledge and desire to learn more, and we shouldn't forget that doing so would further Lojban's scientific and educational goals as well.

fe'o mi'e .kris.

Thanks, Chris! Send your contributions to matt.mattarn@gmail.com. This episode is brought to you by the following gismu:

zvati x1 is at, attending, or present, at x2

bangu x1 is the language or dialect used by x2 to express or communicate x3

gugde x1 is the country of peoples x2 with land or territories x3

... and by the following cmavo:

mu five

o'i caution

xu true-or-false question

Please e-mail questions or corrections to the Lojban main mailing list at lojban-list@lojban.org. For more information, see the Lojban website at www.lojban.org. Thanks for downloading Lojban Radio! 'Til next time, this is epkat saying: co'o!