Constructed Languages: Between Entertainment and Idealism (LIN4106.01)

Thomas Leddy-Cecere

This course will explore the world of artificial or constructed languages (“ConLangs”), and examine their characteristics, their use, and the motivations behind their development.  ConLangs have captured the public imagination as a creative product in literature, film, television, and gaming; this enriches the lesser known but equally engrossing history of artificial languages as (intended) engines of idealistic social change: as a means to reformulate nationalisms, enable universal communication, and even optimize the efficiency of the human mind.  Through this course, discussion and study of existing constructed languages will provide context and guidance as students work to create and refine their own nascent ConLang, and to articulate their motivations and goals in doing so.  Through guided discovery and frequent peer conferencing, this creative-cum-analytic exercise offers participants an opportunity to reinforce and expand their understanding of critical tenets of typological, descriptive and documentary linguistics as they work to faithfully re-envision the essential properties of human languages — natural and artificial — and the ways in which these influence and reflect the lived experiences of their users.

Delivery Method: Entirely remote (synchronous)
Prerequisites: LIN 2101: Language as System and Social Behavior.
Course Level: 4000-level
Credits: 4
W 2:10PM - 5:50PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 12
Course Frequency: Every 2-3 years

Categories: All courses , Sociolinguistics , Entirely Remote
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