Bram Pitoyo, Etc.

Apparently, The Pirahã Language Had Challenged The Notion That ‘Recursion’ Is Absolutely Necessary For Every Decent Human Grammar

That is because “…the tribe embodies a living-in-the-present ethos so powerful that it has affected every aspect of the people’s lives. Committed to an existence in which only observable experience is real, the Pirahã do not think, or speak, in abstractions—and thus do not use color terms, quantifiers, numbers, or myths…“When someone walks around a bend in the river, the Pirahã say that the person has not simply gone away but xibipío—‘gone out of experience,’ ” Everett said. “They use the same phrase when a candle flame flickers. The light ‘goes in and out of experience.’ ”

And thus we are free one more time from the tyranny of “one ring to rule them all”, that is, Noam Chomsky’s largely modernistic (if we speak it in design term) theory of universal grammar.

But here’s the most elegant thing that I humbly think modern society have miss greatly:
“[The Pirahã language] is not the kind of thing that you can write, and capture, and go back to; you have to watch, and you have to feel it. It’s like someone singing a song. You want to watch and listen and try to sing along with them. So I started doing that, and I began noticing things that I never transcribed, and things I never picked up when I listened to a tape of them, and part of it was the performance. So at that point I said, ‘Put the tape recorders and notebooks away, focus on the person, watch them.’ They give a lot of things using prosody that you never would have found otherwise. This has never been documented in any language I know.”

So profound.

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