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TED2013

John McWhorter: Txtng is killing language. JK!!!

John McWhorter: 簡訊謀殺語言?開什麼玩笑!

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簡訊是否代表寫作技巧走到了盡頭?John McWhorter認為,簡訊超乎我們想像-不管是語言學上,還是文化方面-而且,簡訊帶給我們的都是好處。

- Linguist
Linguist John McWhorter thinks about language in relation to race, politics and our shared cultural history. Full bio

We always hear that texting發短信 is a scourge災害.
我們總是聽說手機簡訊是個禍源
00:12
The idea理念 is that texting發短信 spells法術 the decline下降 and fall秋季
傳簡訊代表一種能力的退化
00:15
of any kind of serious嚴重 literacy讀寫能力, or at least最小 writing寫作 ability能力,
不管是任何正常的識字能力,還是寫作能力
00:20
among其中 young年輕 people in the United聯合的 States狀態
美國以至於全世界的年輕人
00:23
and now the whole整個 world世界 today今天.
都有退化的現象
00:26
The fact事實 of the matter is that it just isn't true真正,
事實上並非如此
00:28
and it's easy簡單 to think that it is true真正,
但很容易讓人信以為真
00:32
but in order訂購 to see it in another另一個 way,
為了要以另外一種角度來看這件事
00:34
in order訂購 to see that actually其實 texting發短信 is a miraculous神奇 thing,
為了要證明傳簡訊是件神奇的事
00:36
not just energetic有活力, but a miraculous神奇 thing,
不僅充滿活力,而且非常神奇
00:40
a kind of emergent應急 complexity複雜
這一種新興的複雜性
00:43
that we're seeing眼看 happening事件 right now,
就在我們眼前發生
00:44
we have to pull the camera相機 back for a bit
我們必須回顧一下
00:47
and look at what language語言 really is,
看看語言到底是怎麼一回事
00:49
in which哪一個 case案件, one thing that we see
在這種情況下,我們會知道
00:52
is that texting發短信 is not writing寫作 at all.
傳簡訊跟寫作完全不同
00:55
What do I mean by that?
這是什麼意思呢
00:59
Basically基本上, if we think about language語言,
基本上,我們想一想
01:01
language語言 has existed存在 for perhaps也許 150,000 years年份,
語言已經出現了約15萬年
01:04
at least最小 80,000 years年份,
至少也有八萬年
01:07
and what it arose出現 as is speech言語. People talked.
而它的起源是說話—人類開始交談
01:09
That's what we're probably大概 genetically基因 specified規定 for.
那可能是我們與生俱來的能力
01:14
That's how we use language語言 most.
說話是我們最常使用語言的方式
01:17
Writing寫作 is something that came來了 along沿 much later後來,
寫作很晚才出現
01:19
and as we saw in the last talk,
而就像上次提到的
01:22
there's a little bit of controversy爭議 as to exactly究竟 when that happened發生,
寫作到底何時出現仍有爭議
01:24
but according根據 to traditional傳統 estimates估計,
但傳統估計
01:27
if humanity人性 had existed存在 for 24 hours小時,
如果人類存在了 24 小時
01:29
then writing寫作 only came來了 along沿 at about 11:07 p.m.
那大概晚上11:07寫作才出現
01:33
That's how much of a latterly近來 thing writing寫作 is.
由此可知寫作是很晚才有的
01:38
So first there's speech言語, and then writing寫作 comes along沿
因此,先有談話才有寫作
01:42
as a kind of artifice技巧.
這樣的小把戲
01:45
Now don't get me wrong錯誤, writing寫作 has certain某些 advantages優點.
別誤會,寫作有它的優點
01:47
When you write, because it's a conscious意識 process處理,
寫作是一種處理意識的過程
01:51
because you can look backwards向後,
而且之後可以再回顧
01:53
you can do things with language語言 that are much less likely容易
比起談話,寫作對語言
01:56
if you're just talking.
有更大的自由度
01:58
For example, imagine想像 a passage通道 from Edward愛德華 Gibbon's長臂猿的
例如,愛德華 · 吉本
02:01
"The Decline下降 and Fall秋季 of the Roman羅馬 Empire帝國:"
《羅馬帝國的衰亡》當中有一段:
02:05
"The whole整個 engagement訂婚 lasted歷時 above以上 twelve十二 hours小時,
”兩軍相峙超過十二小時
02:09
till直到 the graduate畢業 retreat撤退 of the Persians波斯人 was changed
直到波斯人的隊伍慢慢撤退,
02:12
into a disorderly flight飛行, of which哪一個 the shameful可恥 example
以可恥的眾首領和Surenas為首
02:14
was given特定 by the principal主要 leaders領導者 and the SurenasSurenas himself他自己."
最終兵荒馬亂的逃跑。“
02:17
That's beautiful美麗, but let's face面對 it, nobody沒有人 talks會談 that way.
寫得真美!但說真的,沒人這樣講話
02:20
Or at least最小, they shouldn't不能 if they're interested有興趣
或者至少,我們不該這麼講話
02:24
in reproducing再現. That --
如果我們對繁衍後代還有興趣的話
02:28
(Laughter笑聲)
(笑聲)
02:31
is not the way any human人的 being存在 speaks說話 casually胡亂.
沒有人平常會那樣講話
02:33
Casual隨便 speech言語 is something quite相當 different不同.
口語和書面語完全不同
02:36
Linguists語言學家 have actually其實 shown顯示
語言學家實際上告訴我們
02:39
that when we're speaking請講 casually胡亂 in an unmonitored不受監督 way,
我們平常講話沒有注意的時候
02:41
we tend趨向 to speak說話 in word packets of maybe
我們傾向於使用大概
02:43
seven to 10 words.
七到十個字的意群
02:46
You'll你會 notice注意 this if you ever have occasion場合 to record記錄
如果你們有機會錄下
02:48
yourself你自己 or a group of people talking.
自己或一群人的談話
02:51
That's what speech言語 is like.
你們會注意到,這才是口語
02:54
Speech言語 is much looser寬鬆. It's much more telegraphic電報.
口語要寬鬆得多,也更簡潔
02:55
It's much less reflective反光 -- very different不同 from writing寫作.
它沒那麼多深思熟慮的痕跡—跟寫作截然不同
02:59
So we naturally自然 tend趨向 to think, because we see language語言
所以我們自然地會認為,因為常常看到書面語
03:03
written書面 so often經常, that that's what language語言 is,
那麼這就是語言本身
03:06
but actually其實 what language語言 is, is speech言語. They are two things.
但實際上語言是口語。它們是兩種東西
03:08
Now of course課程, as history歷史 has gone走了 by,
現在當然,隨著時間流逝
03:12
it's been natural自然 for there to be a certain某些 amount of bleed流血
口語和寫作之間
03:16
between之間 speech言語 and writing寫作.
自然產生了一些「混血」
03:18
So, for example, in a distant遙遠 era時代 now,
所以比方說,古時候
03:21
it was common共同 when one gave a speech言語
人們講話像書面語
03:26
to basically基本上 talk like writing寫作.
是很常見的事
03:29
So I mean the kind of speech言語 that you see someone有人 giving
所以我的意思是,你們在舊電影裡面看過的演講
03:32
in an old movie電影 where they clear明確 their throat, and they go,
他們清清嗓子,然後說:
03:34
"Ahem咳咳, ladies女士們 and gentlemen紳士," and then they speak說話
「嗯,女士們先生們」之後的演講
03:37
in a certain某些 way which哪一個 has nothing to do with casual隨便 speech言語.
與口語已經八竿子打不著
03:39
It's formal正式. It uses使用 long sentences句子 like this Gibbon長臂猿 one.
它很正式,它用很多像吉本那樣的長句
03:43
It's basically基本上 talking like you write, and so, for example,
它基本上是講話像寫作一樣,所以,例如
03:46
we're thinking思維 so much these days about Lincoln林肯
因為最近那部同名電影
03:50
because of the movie電影.
我們時常想起林肯
03:52
The Gettysburg葛底斯堡 Address地址 was not the main主要 meal膳食 of that event事件.
葛底斯堡的演講其實沒什麼大不了
03:55
For two hours小時 before that, Edward愛德華 Everett埃弗雷特 spoke
在那之前兩個小時,愛德華‧艾維雷特
03:58
on a topic話題 that, frankly坦率地說, cannot不能 engage從事 us today今天
發表了一篇演講,老實說,主題我們現在不會有興趣
04:02
and barely僅僅 did then.
當時的人也不感興趣
04:05
The point of it was to listen to him
重點是,聽他發表
04:06
speaking請講 like writing寫作.
書面語般的演講
04:09
Ordinary普通 people stood站在 and listened聽了 to that for two hours小時.
普通百姓站在那聽演講,長達兩個小時
04:10
It was perfectly完美 natural自然.
在當時卻是再自然不過的事了
04:13
That's what people did then, speaking請講 like writing寫作.
古代人就是這樣,說話跟書面語一樣
04:14
Well, if you can speak說話 like writing寫作,
好吧,如果你們可以說話像寫作一樣
04:17
then logically邏輯 it follows如下 that you might威力 want to also
那邏輯上,你們有時候
04:19
sometimes有時 write like you speak說話.
可能也想像口語一般來寫作
04:23
The problem問題 was just that in the material材料,
問題就在於,從材料、技術的角度來說
04:26
mechanical機械 sense, that was harder更難 back in the day
當時這很難辦到
04:28
for the simple簡單 reason原因 that materials物料 don't lend themselves他們自己 to it.
原因很簡單,當時的材料並不適合
04:31
It's almost幾乎 impossible不可能 to do that with your hand
手工記錄幾乎是不可能的
04:34
except in shorthand速記, and then communication通訊 is limited有限.
除非速記,但溝通就變得有限
04:37
On a manual手冊 typewriter打字機 it was very difficult,
以手動打字機來記錄口語非常困難
04:40
and even when we had electric電動 typewriters打字機,
即使我們有了電動打字機
04:42
or then computer電腦 keyboards鍵盤, the fact事實 is
甚至電腦鍵盤,事實上
04:45
that even if you can type類型 easily容易 enough足夠 to keep up
即使打字已經容易到能夠
04:47
with the pace步伐 of speech言語, more or less, you have to have
跟上口語的步伐,多多少少還是要
04:49
somebody who can receive接收 your message信息 quickly很快.
有一個人可以迅速收到訊息
04:52
Once一旦 you have things in your pocket口袋 that can receive接收 that message信息,
一旦口袋裡有可以接收訊息的東西
04:54
then you have the conditions條件 that allow允許
才有條件
04:58
that we can write like we speak說話.
像口語一樣寫作
05:00
And that's where texting發短信 comes in.
而那就是簡訊的由來
05:04
And so, texting發短信 is very loose疏鬆 in its structure結構體.
所以,簡訊的結構非常鬆散
05:07
No one thinks about capital首都 letters or punctuation標點 when one texts文本,
傳簡訊的時候沒人關心大小寫跟標點符號
05:11
but then again, do you think about those things when you talk?
但話又說回來,誰說話的時候會注意這些
05:15
No, and so therefore因此 why would you when you were texting發短信?
沒有人會,所以為什麼傳簡訊的時候要注意呢
05:17
What texting發短信 is, despite儘管 the fact事實 that it involves涉及
雖然簡訊涉及到
05:21
the brute畜生 mechanics機械學 of something that we call writing寫作,
某項我們稱為寫作的野蠻技巧
05:24
is fingered多指 speech言語. That's what texting發短信 is.
簡訊事實上是手指的對話
05:27
Now we can write the way we talk.
現在我們可以用說話的方式來寫作
05:30
And it's a very interesting有趣 thing, but nevertheless雖然
而這非常有趣,但是
05:34
easy簡單 to think that still it represents代表 some sort分類 of decline下降.
我們仍然會認為,它還是代表著某種墮落
05:36
We see this general一般 bagginessbagginess of the structure結構體,
我們看到簡訊結構鬆散
05:41
the lack缺乏 of concern關心 with rules規則 and the way that we're used to
忽視語法規則,那些我們曾經
05:45
learning學習 on the blackboard黑板, and so we think
在黑板上學到的語法規則,所以我們就覺得
05:48
that something has gone走了 wrong錯誤.
一定哪裡出了差錯
05:50
It's a very natural自然 sense.
這是很自然的反應
05:53
But the fact事實 of the matter is that what is going on
但事實上,這一切都是
05:56
is a kind of emergent應急 complexity複雜.
一種新興的複雜體
06:00
That's what we're seeing眼看 in this fingered多指 speech言語.
這才是我們在手指對話中所觀察到的
06:04
And in order訂購 to understand理解 it, what we want to see
為了瞭解它,我們需要了解的是
06:07
is the way, in this new kind of language語言,
以簡訊,以這種新的語言
06:10
there is new structure結構體 coming未來 up.
新的結構如何誕生
06:15
And so, for example, there is in texting發短信 a convention慣例,
所以,例如,在簡訊界大家公認的—
06:18
which哪一個 is LOL大聲笑.
LOL
06:24
Now LOL大聲笑, we generally通常 think of
現在我們通常認為lol
06:27
as meaning含義 "laughing out loud."
意思是「放聲大笑」(laughing out loud)
06:29
And of course課程, theoretically理論上, it does,
當然,理論上,確實是這麼回事
06:32
and if you look at older舊的 texts文本, then people used it
如果你們看看舊的簡訊,那人們確實曾經用它
06:34
to actually其實 indicate表明 laughing out loud.
來表示「放聲大笑」
06:37
But if you text文本 now, or if you are someone有人 who
但如果你們現在有傳簡訊,或如果你是一個
06:39
is aware知道的 of the substrate基質 of texting發短信 the way it's become成為,
意識到簡訊的基礎如何演進的人
06:43
you'll你會 notice注意 that LOL大聲笑
你們會注意到 LOL
06:47
does not mean laughing out loud anymore.
不再意味著「放聲大笑」
06:48
It's evolved進化 into something that is much subtler微妙.
它演變成一種更微妙的意思
06:51
This is an actual實際 text文本 that was doneDONE
不久之前有一則簡訊
06:54
by a non-male非男 person of about 20 years年份 old
是兩位20 歲左右的女性互傳的
06:58
not too long ago.
內容如下:
07:02
"I love the font字形 you're using運用, btw順便說一句."
蘇珊:「順便說一句,我喜歡你用的字體。」
07:03
Julie朱麗葉: "lol大聲笑 thanks謝謝 gmailGmail的 is being存在 slow right now"
朱莉:「lol 謝謝, gmail 現在好卡。」
07:06
Now if you think about it, that's not funny滑稽.
現在你們想想,其實那並不是很有趣
07:10
No one's那些 laughing. (Laughter笑聲)
沒有人笑(笑聲)
07:12
And yet然而, there it is, so you assume承擔
但是大家就這麼用LOL,所以假如
07:15
there's been some kind of hiccup.
這裡有人打嗝
07:16
Then Susan蘇珊 says "lol大聲笑, I know,"
然後蘇珊說:「LOL,我知道」
07:18
again more guffawing哈哈大笑著回到 than we're used to
這也比我們談到網路不順這種不方便的事時
07:20
when you're talking about these inconveniences不便之處.
顯得更好笑
07:22
So Julie朱麗葉 says, "I just sent發送 you an email電子郵件."
所以朱莉說:「我剛寄給你一封電子郵件。」
07:25
Susan蘇珊: "lol大聲笑, I see it."
蘇珊:「lol,我看到了。」
07:28
Very funny滑稽 people, if that's what LOL大聲笑 means手段.
如果這就是 LOL 的意思,那這些人真搞笑
07:30
This Julie朱麗葉 says, "So what's up?"
這個朱莉又說:「那妳最近如何啊?」
07:33
Susan蘇珊: "lol大聲笑, I have to write a 10 page paper."
蘇珊:「lol,我要寫 10 頁作文。」
07:35
She's not amused. Let's think about it.
她並不覺得好笑。讓我們想想看
07:38
LOL大聲笑 is being存在 used in a very particular特定 way.
LOL的用法很奇特
07:40
It's a marker標記 of empathy同情. It's a marker標記 of accommodation住所.
它是移情作用的標記。也是調節的標記
07:43
We linguists語言學家 call things like that pragmatic務實 particles粒子.
我們語言學家稱這種東西叫做「實用顆粒」
07:47
Any spoken language語言 that's used by real真實 people has them.
任何真人使用的口語當中都有
07:50
If you happen發生 to speak說話 Japanese日本, think about
比方說如果你們會講日語,想一下
07:54
that little word "neNE" that you use at the end結束 of a lot of sentences句子.
那個「ね」字,很多句子的結尾都會使用
07:55
If you listen to the way black黑色 youth青年 today今天 speak說話,
如果你們聽現在的黑人青年如何說話
07:59
think about the use of the word "yo."
想想「yo」這個字
08:01
Whole整個 dissertations論文 could be written書面 about it,
關於它的用法可以寫一整篇論文
08:03
and probably大概 are being存在 written書面 about it.
或可能已經有人寫過了。
08:05
A pragmatic務實 particle粒子, that's what LOL大聲笑 has gradually逐漸 become成為.
LOL 已經逐漸成為這樣的「實用顆粒」
08:07
It's a way of using運用 the language語言 between之間 actual實際 people.
它是人與人之間使用語言的方式
08:11
Another另一個 example is "slash削減."
另一個例子是「/」
08:15
Now, we can use slash削減 in the way that we're used to,
現在,我們可以繼續使用斜線本來的意義
08:18
along沿 the lines of, "We're going to have
比方說「我們要開一個
08:21
a party-slash-networking黨斜線聯網 session會議."
派對 / 社交聚會。」
08:23
That's kind of like what we're at.
這就很接近我要表達的了
08:26
Slash削減 is used in a very different不同 way
年輕人現在傳的簡訊中
08:28
in texting發短信 among其中 young年輕 people today今天.
斜線有了新的用法
08:32
It's used to change更改 the scene現場.
它用於轉換場景
08:35
So for example, this Sally出擊 person says,
例如,莎莉說:
08:37
"So I need to find people to chill寒意 with"
「那我要找人一起玩」
08:40
and Jake可靠的人 says, "Haha哈哈" --
然後傑克說:「哈哈」
08:41
you could write a dissertation論文 about "Haha哈哈" too, but we don't have time for that —
你們也可以寫一篇關於「哈哈」的論文,
但是時間不夠了
08:43
"Haha哈哈 so you're going by yourself你自己? Why?"
「哈哈,那你要自己一個人去嗎?為什麼?」
08:46
Sally出擊: "For this summer夏季 program程序 at NYUNYU."
莎莉:「因為今年紐約大學的暑期班。」
08:48
Jake可靠的人: "Haha哈哈. Slash削減 I'm watching觀看 this video視頻 with suns太陽 players玩家
傑克:「哈哈/現在在看一個太陽球員
08:51
trying to shoot射擊 with one eye."
單眼投籃的影片。」
08:54
The slash削減 is interesting有趣.
這個斜線很有意思
08:56
I don't really even know what Jake可靠的人 is talking about after that,
我不知道傑克之後還說了什麼
08:57
but you notice注意 that he's changing改變 the topic話題.
但你們可以注意到他的話題改變了
09:00
Now that seems似乎 kind of mundane平凡,
這聽起來似乎沒什麼大不了
09:05
but think about how in real真實 life,
但想想在現實生活中
09:07
if we're having a conversation會話 and we want to change更改 the topic話題,
如果我們在談話中想要轉移話題
09:08
there are ways方法 of doing it gracefully優雅.
其中不乏許多優雅婉轉的方式
09:11
You don't just zip壓縮 right into it.
不會只是硬生生插入新的話題
09:12
You'll你會 pat your thighs大腿 and look wistfully望眼欲穿 off into the distance距離,
你們可能會拍拍大腿,意味深長地看著遠方
09:14
or you'll你會 say something like, "Hmm, makes品牌 you think --"
或者可能會說:「嗯,讓人想起 ...」
09:18
when it really didn't, but what you're really --
其實根本沒有想起什麼,只是想要
09:22
(Laughter笑聲) —
(笑聲)
09:25
what you're really trying to do is change更改 the topic話題.
只不過是想要轉移話題
09:27
You can't do that while you're texting發短信,
傳簡訊就不能這樣
09:30
and so ways方法 are developing發展 of doing it within this medium.
於是在這種媒介中,也發展出轉移話題的方式
09:31
All spoken languages語言 have what a linguist語言學家 calls電話
所有口語的語言都有語言學家稱之為
09:35
a new information信息 marker標記 -- or two, or three.
「新資訊標記」的東西
09:37
Texting發短信 has developed發達 one from this slash削減.
它在簡訊中,由斜線衍生出來
09:41
So we have a whole整個 battery電池 of new constructions建設
所以我們眼前有一整套新的結構
09:45
that are developing發展, and yet然而 it's easy簡單 to think,
正在發展,而我們卻容易認為
09:48
well, something is still wrong錯誤.
嗯,這還是不對勁
09:51
There's a lack缺乏 of structure結構體 of some sort分類.
還是缺乏某種結構
09:53
It's not as sophisticated複雜的
它跟華爾街日報的語言比起來
09:57
as the language語言 of The Wall Street Journal日誌.
還是不夠華麗漂亮
09:59
Well, the fact事實 of the matter is,
嗯,事實上
10:01
look at this person in 1956,
看看此人,在1956年的時候
10:03
and this is when texting發短信 doesn't exist存在,
這時簡訊並不存在
10:05
"I Love Lucy露西" is still on the air空氣.
電視上還在播「我愛露西」
10:08
"Many許多 do not know the alphabet字母 or multiplication乘法 table,
「許多人不知道字母表或乘法表
10:09
cannot不能 write grammatically語法 -- "
無法以語法來寫作
10:13
We've我們已經 heard聽說 that sort分類 of thing before,
我們之前也聽說過類似的事情
10:14
not just in 1956. 1917, Connecticut康涅狄格 schoolteacher教師.
不只是在 1956 年。1917 年,康乃狄克州有一名教師
10:17
1917. This is the time when we all assume承擔
1917年,那是一個我們假設
10:21
that everything somehow不知何故 in terms條款 of writing寫作 was perfect完善
大家的寫作技巧都很完美的時代
10:23
because the people on "Downton Abbey僧院" are articulate說出,
因為《唐頓莊園》的人都口齒伶俐
10:27
or something like that.
講話就是那樣
10:29
So, "From every一切 college學院 in the country國家 goes up the cry,
他說:「國內每所大學都有這樣的呼聲
10:30
'Our freshmen新生 can't spell拼寫, can't punctuate圈點.'"
『新生不會拼寫,不會用標點符號。』
10:33
And so on. You can go even further進一步 back than this.
等等。我們甚至可以再倒帶
10:36
It's the President主席 of Harvard哈佛. It's 1871.
哈佛大學校長,1871年
10:38
There's no electricity電力. People have three names.
那時沒有電,每個人還有三個名字
10:41
"Bad spelling拼字,
「拼字不佳
10:44
incorrectness不正確 as well as ineleganceinelegance of expression表達 in writing寫作."
錯誤百出,而且寫作的表達不夠優雅。」
10:46
And he's talking about people who are otherwise除此以外
他所說的正是任何
10:50
well prepared準備 for college學院 studies學習.
有大學學歷水準的人
10:52
You can go even further進一步 back.
我們甚至可以再倒帶
10:54
1841, some long-lost久未 superintendent所長 of schools學校 is upset煩亂
1841 年,學校某位不知名的院長感到很不安
10:56
because of what he has for a long time "noted注意 with regret後悔
因為他長久以來「遺憾地發現
10:59
the almost幾乎 entire整個 neglect忽略 of the original原版的" blah胡說 blah胡說 blah胡說 blah胡說 blah胡說.
幾乎整個忽視原來的⋯」等等之類的
11:03
Or you can go all the way back to 63 A.D. -- (Laughter笑聲) --
我們還可以一路追溯到西元 63 年 (笑聲)
11:06
and there's this poor較差的 man who doesn't like the way
有個可憐人並不太喜歡
11:11
people are speaking請講 Latin拉丁.
大家講拉丁文的方式
11:14
As it happens發生, he was writing寫作 about what had become成為 French法國.
那時,他寫的東西後來演變成法文
11:15
And so, there are always — (Laughter笑聲) (Applause掌聲) —
所以,總有 (笑聲)(掌聲)
11:18
there are always people worrying令人擔憂 about these things
總有人擔心這些事情
11:25
and the planet行星 somehow不知何故 seems似乎 to keep spinning紡織.
然而地球似乎不受影響繼續轉動
11:27
And so, the way I'm thinking思維 of texting發短信 these days is
所以,我認為現在的簡訊
11:30
that what we're seeing眼看 is a whole整個 new way of writing寫作
是年輕人正在發展的
11:35
that young年輕 people are developing發展,
一種全新的寫作方式
11:38
which哪一個 they're using運用 alongside並肩 their ordinary普通 writing寫作 skills技能,
他們在日常寫作技巧之外也能使用
11:40
and that means手段 that they're able能夠 to do two things.
這意味著他們能夠同時擁有兩種寫作方式
11:44
Increasing增加 evidence證據 is that being存在 bilingual雙語
越來越多證據顯示
11:47
is cognitively認知 beneficial有利.
雙語有利於認知上的能力
11:50
That's also true真正 of being存在 bidialectalbidialectal.
能駕馭兩種說話方式亦是如此
11:52
That's certainly當然 true真正 of being存在 bidialectalbidialectal in terms條款 of your writing寫作.
能駕馭兩種寫作方式尤為正確
11:54
And so texting發短信 actually其實 is evidence證據 of a balancing平衡 act法案
所以說,傳簡訊其實是一種現今年輕人
11:57
that young年輕 people are using運用 today今天, not consciously自覺, of course課程,
使用平衡藝術的證據,當然,是不知不覺地
12:02
but it's an expansion擴張 of their linguistic語言 repertoire劇目.
簡訊擴展他們的語言能力
12:05
It's very simple簡單.
這很簡單
12:09
If somebody from 1973 looked看著 at
如果生活在1973 年的人
12:10
what was on a dormitory宿舍 message信息 board in 1993,
去看 1993 年學生宿舍的留言板
12:14
the slang俚語 would have changed a little bit
跟《愛情故事》的時代 (1970) 相比
12:18
since以來 the era時代 of "Love Story故事,"
俚語會有些改變
12:20
but they would understand理解 what was on that message信息 board.
但他們會明白留言版上的內容
12:22
Take that person from 1993 -- not that long ago,
假如讓1993 年的人— 不算很久以前
12:25
this is "Bill法案 and Ted's特德 Excellent優秀 Adventure冒險" -- those people.
那是《阿比阿弟大冒險》的年代
12:28
Take those people and they read
讓這些人去讀
12:31
a very typical典型 text文本 written書面 by a 20-year-old-歲 today今天.
現在二十歲青少年傳的簡訊
12:33
Often經常 they would have no idea理念 what half of it meant意味著
很有可能一半都看不懂
12:36
because a whole整個 new language語言 has developed發達
因為一種全新的語言已經誕生在年輕人的世界
12:39
among其中 our young年輕 people doing something as mundane平凡
他們正在做著一些不足掛齒的事
12:43
as what it looks容貌 like to us when they're batting棉絮 around
我們看他們好像只是在亂敲
12:45
on their little devices設備.
手機鍵盤的時候
12:48
So in closing關閉, if I could go into the future未來,
所以總結來說,如果我可以先到未來
12:49
if I could go into 2033,
如果我可以去到 2033 年
12:53
the first thing I would ask is whether是否 David大衛 Simon西蒙
我會問的第一件事就是大衛 · 西蒙
12:57
had doneDONE a sequel續集 to "The Wire." I would want to know.
他的《火線》有沒有出續集,我想知道
13:00
And — I really would ask that —
我真的會問這個問題
13:04
and then I'd want to know actually其實 what was going on on "Downton Abbey僧院."
然後,我會想知道《唐頓莊園》後來劇情如何發展
13:07
That'd那會 be the second第二 thing.
這是第二件事
13:10
And then the third第三 thing would be,
然後第三件事是
13:12
please show顯示 me a sheaf of texts文本
請給我看一段
13:14
written書面 by 16-year-old-歲 girls女孩,
16 歲女孩所寫的文本
13:18
because I would want to know where this language語言
因為我想知道,我們這個時代發展的語言
13:19
had developed發達 since以來 our times,
走向了何方
13:22
and ideally理想 I would then send發送 them back to you and me now
如果可以,我會把它寄來給現在的我們
13:24
so we could examine檢查 this linguistic語言 miracle奇蹟
讓我們可以檢視
13:28
happening事件 right under our noses鼻子.
這個發生在我們眼皮之下的語言奇蹟
13:30
Thank you very much.
謝謝大家
13:32
(Applause掌聲)
(掌聲)
13:34
Thank you. (Applause掌聲)
謝謝(掌聲)
13:39
Translated by June He
Reviewed by Iris Chung

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About the speaker:

John McWhorter - Linguist
Linguist John McWhorter thinks about language in relation to race, politics and our shared cultural history.

Why you should listen

John McWhorter is Associate Professor of English and Comparative Literature at Columbia University, teaching linguistics, Western Civilization and music history. He is a regular columnist on language matters and race issues for Time and CNN, writes for the Wall Street Journal "Taste" page, and writes a regular column on language for The Atlantic. His work also appears in the Washington Post, the Chronicle of Higher Education, Aeon magazine, The American Interest and other outlets. He was Contributing Editor at The New Republic from 2001 until 2014.

McWhorter earned his PhD in linguistics from Stanford University in 1993 and is the author of The Power of BabelDoing Our Own ThingOur Magnificent Bastard TongueThe Language Hoax and most recently Words on the Move and Talking Back, Talking Black. The Teaching Company has released four of his audiovisual lecture courses on linguistics. He guest hosted the Lexicon Valley podcast at Slate during the summer of 2016.

Beyond his work in linguistics, McWhorter is the author of Losing the Race and other books on race. He has appeared regularly on Bloggingheads.TV since 2006, and he produces and plays piano for a group cabaret show, New Faces, at the Cornelia Street Cafe in New York City.

More profile about the speaker
John McWhorter | Speaker | TED.com