Mon and the U+1000-U+109F block: Historical, Political and Linguistic Issues
Christian Bauer - Humboldt University, Berlin
The aim of the presentation is
Burmese (Myanmar) script was adapted in the 12th century AD from Mon script which in turn had been in use in Thailand and Burma since the 6th century AD.
Common sense, linguistic principles and encoding practices would have called for the implementation of a Myanmar block in Unicode 3.0 to take this historical fact into account. The complexities of Mon phonology would have required a different encoding scheme under which Burmese could have been easily subsumed.
Furthermore, it is to be expected that other Mon- and Burmese-derived scripts of major regional languages in Burma (especially Shan and various Karen languages) are to be added, presumably as an extension set to the "Myanmar block".
The paper features an historical outline of the development of Mon script from its beginnings to the present.
The second part deals with the necessity of providing an encoding scheme for Mon - instead of relegating it to "Private Space".
In the third part I shall discuss shortcomings of the current Myanmar encoding scheme for providing extensions for Mon, based on phonological issues.
My presentation will also be relevant to current discussions concerning the Khmer block (U+1780-U+17FF).
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