Re: [OT] Re: the Ethnologue

From: Doug Ewell (
Date: Sun Sep 17 2000 - 16:28:52 EDT

Michael Kaplan <> wrote:

>> Spaniards generally refer to their national language as "castellano,"
>> not "espaņol,"
> FWIW, I do not know of any Spaniards who object to "espaņol" for the
> generic language spoken by everyone around the world.... Castilian
> they reserve for their own (pure) Spanish....

Well, perhaps this is another, unintended example of a problem with
incorporating the Ethnologue linguistic distinctions into other
standards without serious review. If Spaniards consider their language
sufficiently different from the Spanish spoken by Latin Americans,
should there be separate codes for the two, or not? What about similar
concerns with French vs. Canadian French, American vs. British English,
etc.? How does this map intelligently to the existing (like it or not)
ISO 639 standard? Standards intended for widespread use should address
issues like these explicitly.

-Doug Ewell
 Fullerton, California

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