From: Doug Ewell (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Thu Jul 08 2004 - 17:13:54 CDT
RE: Looking for transcription or transliteration standards
latin->arabicMike Ayers wrote:
>> it would
>> definitely be completely unacceptable to write e.g. Hašek's name
>> (a famous Czech satyrist) as Hasek.
> When transcribing to English, however, removal of the caron
> (macron? Apologies, but I tend to forget the names of most accents)
> would be most acceptable (for American English, at least).
Caron, or more commonly hacek. A macron is a shortish overline.
English-speaking classical music buffs quickly learn to associate the
diacritic-free spelling "Dvorak" with the (approximate) pronunciation
/'dvɔrʒɑk/. Whether "Dvorak" is an acceptable way to spell "Dvořák"
probably depends on who's doing the accepting. For the computer
columnist and the keyboard layout inventor, whose names are apparently
pronounced /'dvɔɹæk/ anyway, it's fine.
>> Once we got into this debate, let me quote an example where
>> distinguishing between diacritics as "familiar" and "unfamiliar" may
>> lead to undesirable results.
> Interesting case, and one reason why diacritic stripping,
> although brutal, may be desireable - it doesn't pretend to be
> accurate. Accuracy can be very hard to achieve when transcribing,
> especially since diacritics can be used to indicate very different
> things in different languages.
"Desirable because it doesn't pretend to be accurate." That's a useful
philosophy at times, but I have to admit I'm surprised to see it
expressed on the Unicode list.
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