Re: Bantu click letters

From: Michael Everson (
Date: Thu Jun 10 2004 - 11:22:20 CDT

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    At 08:51 -0700 2004-06-10, Patrick Andries wrote:

    >>Not if you wanted, as an Africanist, to be able to represent the
    >>text as it was originally written.
    >Could you please explain this, how would using PUA characters
    >prevent the text to be represented as it was originally written ?

    What would the value of that be? Doke was an important Africanist.
    His characters have specific (very, very specific) phonetic values.
    Why shouldn't a Khoisan database be able to represent these
    characters as written? Why should the PUA be proposed for these?

    Some formerly-used click letters are encoded and available for use.
    Why shouldn't these, in principle? Many of the UPA characters are not
    used productively today, but they remain important for citation. As
    does the LATIN SMALL LETTER INSULAR G for that matter, and other
    archaic phonetic characters which have been encoded.

    >If these symbols are indeed used in a single book and by a single
    >author, I would put them in the PUA, I don't see any interchange
    >requirement to do otherwise. If letters unique to an author may now
    >be encoded in Unicode, I have many to propose to the enabling
    >technology that Unicode is and people will be free to use them or

    I have an offprint of Doke's article in Bantu Studies. We have noted
    that 70 years later Pullum and Ladusaw cite a word (the word
    stretchedc-h-utildecaronbelow-triangularcolon chu:) in Doke's
    orthography. Isn't that an indication that the work and its
    characters have not been lost to history?

    It's a little peculiar to suggest that data has to be printed in two
    books in order to be considered "interchangeable". Books don't
    interchange data between themselves. Users do. ;-)

    Michael Everson * * Everson Typography *  *

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