How far Language involving Typography ?

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Adien Gunarta's picture
Joined: 28 Jan 2011 - 2:02am
How far Language involving Typography ?


Riccardo Sartori's picture
Joined: 13 Jul 2009 - 4:20am

I’m afraid you should articulate the question a little bit more.

John Savard's picture
Joined: 23 Nov 2009 - 8:42pm

Well, there are languages, and then there are writing systems.

The question of the relationship between a language and its writing system is generally dealt with in connection with linguistics (although the tendency is to view linguistics proper as dealing only with the spoken language).

The relationship between alphabetic scripts, abugidas, and syllabaries and their languages, though, is usually almost trivial. Syllabaries may reinforce the limitation of a language to a fixed set of syllables, and an imperfect orthography, like that of English, may end up changing how some words are pronounced if people see them written more than they hear them spoken.

The Chinese writing system probably has had some effect on Chinese speech, by infusing its individual syllables with meaning.

As for typography, the goal is to match the writing system as closely as possible. Technical limitations of typography sometimes have affected the writing system. Thus, Ethiopian writing was modified so that it could be reproduced on a conventional typewriter. While Nakshi can be reproduced reasonably well using "simplified Arabic" with two, rather than four, forms of each letter, the form of Arabic script still preferred in Pakistan - Nastaliq - is difficult to reproduce even with a computer - and there has been some discussion of that in these forums.