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Stage of Fools is a fic exchange for the plays of William Shakespeare (with the exception of the Histories). Sign-ups are now open!




Stage of Fools on LJ | Stage of Fools on Dreamwidth

Sign-up post on LJ | Sign-up post on Dreamwidth


Schedule:

Sign-ups: July 22 through August 18, 2017
Assignments go out: around August 20, 2017
Assignments due: October 20, 2017
Madness/prompt claiming time: October 20 through 31 - as soon as all assignments are in, all unwritten prompts will be revealed for everyone to write fic of any length. You don't have to sign up as a Stage of Fools participant to participate in Madness.
Go-live: November 1, 2017
Author reveal: November 5, 2017
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[personal profile] yatima posting in [community profile] 50books_poc
(Hi! I'm new here. Let's jump in.)

Kel Cheris is a gifted mathematician underemployed as an infantry officer. Shuos Jedao is the technological ghost of a genocidal general. Together, they fight crime, where "crime" is defined as heresy against the calendar. In Yoon Ha Lee's brilliant device, a calendar is a social contract from which physics - and hence, weaponry - flow. Calendrical heresy disables these weapons and thus undermines the power of the state.

If you love bold, original world-building, reflections on colonialism, and complicated relationships between clever protagonists who have every reason to distrust one another, you'll eat up the Machineries of Empire series as avidly as I did. If military SF and n-dimensional chess sound like a bit of a slog, see if you can stick with it anyway. The language and imagery are utterly gorgeous, and these very timely stories have a great deal to say about complicity, responsibility, and the mechanisms of societal control.
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Fandom Growth Exchange Banner

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Nominations are now open for the Fandom Growth Exchange! The Fandom Growth Exchange is a multi-fandom exchange for fandoms, relationships, and characters that have ten or fewer complete fics (or five or fewer contributing authors) on AO3. Check out the tagset!

Nominations close: July 31st at 11:55 PM UTC
Sign-ups open: August 3rd at 11:55 PM UTC
Sign-ups close: August 17th at 11:55 PM UTC
Assignments sent: August 22nd at 11:55 PM UTC
Default deadline: October 8th at 11:55 PM UTC
Assignments due: October 22nd at 11:55 PM UTC
Works revealed: November 3rd at 11:55 PM UTC
Authors revealed: November 8th at 11:55 PM UTC

(no subject)

Jul. 17th, 2017 07:52 am
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[personal profile] lakeeffectgirl
This August, [personal profile] rsadelle and I are finally going to power through that 90's fan favorite: Once a Thief. Both of us purchased the DVD set when it was released, watched a few episodes, and never finished. (I'm sure we got distracted by other, more contemporary things? Possibly this was something I planned on finishing while I was on medical leave but then I just watched all of Futurama and half of Arrow instead. Speaking of: I need to finish Arrow one of these days, too.) Anyway, if you'd like to join us in watching Ivan Sergei be confused, Sandrine Holt by annoyed, and Nick Lea be grumpy, here's a tumblr post with details and a sign-up link.

So far no one has signed up but us buuuuuuuuuuuuut I remain optimistic.

Currently I'm watching Daredevil (the show) because I keep thinking that I want to write Matt/Foggy one of these days (or Matt/Foggy/Karen!), so I need to wrap that up before this OaT extravaganza starts.

Went to see Spiderman: Homecoming yesterday and it was delightful. I remain baffled by how much Tom Holland (still?) looks like Jamie Bell.

Remix Revival 2017!

Jul. 15th, 2017 09:20 am
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[personal profile] unforgotten posting in [community profile] yuletide
 Link: Remix Revival on AO3; follow us on Dreamwidth or Tumblr for reminders and updates.

Description: Remix Revival is a new panfandom remix exchange, welcoming both authors and artists! If you're unfamiliar with remix exchanges, the idea is that you take someone else's fic or art and write/draw it the way you would have. To qualify for Remix Revival, you must have three 500 word fics, five 100 word fics, or three completed drawings in each fandom you request. The minimum wordcount for assignments is 1k, while art must be a complete piece. There will be a Madness round that allows sketches and shorter fics running from September 10-25.

Dates:
Signups begin: July 15 (ongoing now!)
Signups end: July 30 11:59 PM ET
Assignments out by: August 5
Assignments due: September 10, 11:59 PM ET
Collection goes live: September 17
Remixers revealed: September 24


"the" Americanization of English?

Jul. 14th, 2017 12:20 am
[syndicated profile] acommonlanguage_feed

Posted by lynneguist

from the Guardian
Today the Guardian reported on a new study by Bruno Gonçalves, Lucía Loureiro-Porto, José J. Ramasco, and David Sánchez (you can get the pdf here) entitled The End of Empire: the Americanization of English. There are interesting things to find in this study, but I'm taken back to a panel that Sandra Jansen, Mario Saraceni and I presented on 'problems in predicting the linguistic future' last week in Newcastle. The focus of our talks was how the media present change in the English language and how linguists  sometimes contribute to skewed presentations of past, present and future—taking part in the very linguistic ideologies that academic linguists should be regarding with a critical eye. We're now working on making our panel contributions into an article, and I think it'll be a good one.


It's perfectly clear that many originally-American words and spelling standards have spread elsewhere. It would be surprising if they hadn't, since the US has a large population that mostly (and mostly only) speaks English, as well as a very big and very international economy. For me, the problem comes
    • (a) when "Americanization" becomes the whole story (because life and language are more complex than that),
    • (b) when the story depends upon informational/logical fallacies, and
    • (c) when that story is pitched as a story of winners and losers (because language doesn't have to be a competition, and because that winner-loser narrative is often heavily dependent on the simplifications of (a)).
    Though I've label(l)ed those points as a/b/c, part of the task I have in writing up the paper is that it's hard to pick apart and label those points—they're very interrelated and also they hide a lot of detail. Here was my first draft—a slide from my talk last week. It's called "panic tools" because I am considering how Americani{s/z}ation* news stories might sit within "moral panic" about language change in Britain—a panic that Deborah Cameron wrote about in her 1995 book Verbal Hygiene.
    Slide from Is the future American? (Murphy 2017)

    Anyhow, I was heartened to see that the Guardian article is by a data scientist, Mona Chalabi, and therefore it did something that popular news articles rarely do when talking about linguistic research—it sounded a note of caution concerning the data sources for the research: Google books data and Twitter.

    Both are problematic resources in terms of making sure the data is what you think it is (here's one of many Language Log posts about Google Books metadata). This is not a criticism of the paper—we linguists use what we can to find out about language. But then we give caveats about the data, as we should.

    But that note of caution is about where they've looked. There's also what you look for. Neither the Guardian article nor the paper give many caveats about that. The Google Books data was used to see what's happening in the US and UK over time, and the Twitter data to see what English is like across the world, and they searched for a specific list of "American" and "British" spellings and vocabulary.

    To give just some examples that deserved more caution (from the paper's appendix of the British and American vocabulary that the authors searched for).
    • AmE bell pepper is matched to "BrE" capsicum. But the usual term in British (as in AmE, really) is just pepper or a colo(u)r+pepper (green pepper, etc.) or sweet pepper. Capsicum is primarily Australian English.

    Capsicum the GloWBE corpus
    • AmE drug store and drug stores are matched to BrE chemist's. Why just the singular possessive? Why no plural? Looking at the same data set as they used (Google Books), it's clear that it's more common to get things from the chemist than from the chemist's. And often (maybe even usually) in contexts in which Americans would say drug store rather than pharmacist—e.g. The boy from the chemist is here to see you. But then, that leads us to another problem: does chemist's really match with drug store, when it also means pharmacist's and pharmacy?
    Click here to be taken to the interactive version


    And then there are the problems of polysemy (many-meaninged-ness) and variation, for example (but there are many examples):
    • The polysemy problem: in comparing BrE draughts and AmE checkers, are we sure that they're all about games? Some of the draughts will be AmE drafts (for beers or breezes). Some of the checkers could be checking things. If the frequency of use of any of these meanings changes across time, then that can interfere with answering the question of what people call the game. Elastic band is given as the BrE for AmE rubber band, but in my AmE, elastic band can be a name for the covered kind you make ponytails with (and then in the US there are also regional terms for both the stationery kind and the hair kind).
    • The variation problem: BrE plasterboard is given as equivalent of AmE wallboard, which I can't say I've ever used. It's drywall or Sheetrock to me in AmE. BrE spring onions is compared with AmE green onions (which, since that's the title of a song, might provide a fair amount of data "noise"), but AmE scallions is not included. BrE mobile phones is searched for, but not mobilesbut it looks to me (using GloWBE corpus) that about 1/3 of mentions of such phones have the shorter term. In the US, calling the phone by the shortened name cell looks to be less common than the equivalent shortened British form. So if you compare mobile phones to (AmE) cell phones, you might be missing a lot of BrE. (Then there's the problem of the not-uncommon spelling cellphones, which they didn't search for either.)
    • The vocabulary–spelling problem: AmE license plate v BrE number plate. If BrE or another English borrows license plate, they may very well adapt the spelling to their standard, so why not look for licence plate? What does it mean if that's found? Is it an Americanism or not?
    All of this is to say: comparing such things is hard to do well. If it's possible at all.

    (If the authors read this and want to correct me on any points in the comments, please do. I may have misread something in my haste.) 

    I'd also like to sound a note of discomfort and caution regarding talking about AmE and BrE  "around the world". This involves a leap of thinking that bothers me: that AmE and BrE are used outside the US and UK. To be fair, the authors mostly talk about BrE or AmE forms being used. But for us to claim national ownership of those forms is to take a particular nationalist-political stand on English, I think.

    It's a common way to talk about English. People in, say, India or Korea might say "I/we speak British English" or "I/we speak American English". But what people generally mean is "I/we use the British (or American) spelling conventions."

    If you're learning English as a foreign language (e.g. in Korea), you may well use learning materials that are from the US or the UK. (Your teacher may well be from somewhere else.) You may aim for a particular kind of accent (though a number of studies show that learners are often not very good at telling the difference between the accent they're aiming for and others). What you speak will be English, but it won't particularly be "American English" or "British English".  You may aim for a certain pronunciation convention, you may get certain vocabulary. But your English has not developed in Britain or America. It's developing right now where you are. It's absolutely related to British and American English. But it is neither of those. (Glenn Hadikin's your linguist if you want to know about Korean English.)

    In a place with longstanding English usage, like India, the language has been going in its own direction for some time. The fashions for UK or US spellings may change, and the language will take in new English words from the US and other places, but it also makes up its own, has its grammatical idiosyncrasies, etc. If you look at whether people in India use off-licence or liquor store (as this study did), then you're missing the fact that the Indian English liquor shop is more common than either the American or the British term. (And, interestingly, it looks like a mash-up between American liquor store and the British use of shop for retail places.) I don't know what the alcohol-selling laws in India are, but if they're not like Britain's then the British term off-licence would make no particular sense in India. Instead, Indian English has a nice descriptive phrase that works for India. But what a study like this will find is that there are a few more uses of liquor store in their Indian data than off-licence —who knows, maybe because they're talking to Americans on Twitter or because they're talking about American films in which people rob liquor stores. (Spare thought: are there UK films where people rob off-licences?) The study then completely misses the point that, for this particular word meaning, Indian English is Indianized, not Americanized.

    The most interesting thing about the study (for me), but not one that gets a mention, is what happens to their data in the Internet age. After 1990, we see the gap narrowing. This does not come as a surprise to me—this is also the point at which Britain falls out of love with the -ize spelling and starts preferring the -ise one (having allowed them co-mingle for centuries). In the internet age, we also are seeing grammatical changes that set British and American on different paths (you're just going to have to wait some months for my book for those details).

    From Gonçalves et al. 2017

    This graph is based on Google Books data from the US and UK (or at least, that's what Google Books thinks). The yellow line is BrE vocabulary and the black line is BrE spelling (of the particular vocabulary and spellings they were looking for—which include no words with -ise/-ize). Those lines are fairly steady--though you can see that the two world wars did no favo(u)rs to British book publishing. You can also see dips in the American lines after WWII. The authors attribute this to European migration to the US after World War II.  I'd also wonder about American contact with Britain during the war.

    But after 1990, those British lines are going up—the spelling one quite sharply. In the paper I gave last week, I talked about (what I've decided to call) contra-Americanization—British English changing or losing old forms because they look like they might be American. There seems to be a backlash to (perceived and real) Americanization.

    I've  congratulated the Guardian author on the note of caution. I don't want to congratulate the headline writer, though. Nor the researchers' title for their paper.

    The paper's title, setting the end of Empire against Americanization, implicitly feeds into that "it's a two-way competition" story.

    The Guardian headline 'Do you want fries with that? Data shows Americanization of English is rising' includes an Americanism that wasn't part of the study. The implication that Americanization means de-Briticization (which falls out from the competition story) doesn't work for fries. British English now has fries, but it has very Britishly made it mean something different from what it means in America, since in Britain it contrasts with (rather than replaces) chips. But the bigger problem in the headline is that "is rising". Given what we've seen in the post-1990 graph line, is that true?

    These kinds of things also raise the question: what is meant by Americanization? Apparently it means non-Americans having the words fries and cookies in their vocabulary. But if those words don't mean the same thing to them that they mean to Americans, what does Americanization mean here?

    The moral of this story: talking about "the Americanization" of English makes a lot of assumptions—including that "Americanization" and "English" are each one thing. They ain't.


    *I'm too tired to keep up the marking of the s/z contrast here, so I'm going with the z because it's Oxford spelling, good in Britain and America. Don't let any contra-Americanizer tell you otherwise!

    (to) each (to) their own

    Jul. 12th, 2017 10:51 am
    [syndicated profile] acommonlanguage_feed

    Posted by lynneguist

    Today's post, I'm happy to say, is a guest post by Maddy Argy, an A-level student who's doing (BrE) work experience with me at the University of Sussex. I've asked her to find American-British differences that she could research and have introduced her to some of the tools we linguists use. I'm happy to introduce her first post! 


    To Each His Own 1946
    When reading a blog post written by an American English speaker, I noticed she used the phrase to each their own which didn't sound natural to me. Previously, having lived in Britain all my life, I have primarily used and heard only each to their own.

    The phrase is used in both American and British English, however most likely originated from Latin.





    In the Corpus of Global Web-Based Englishto each their own is heavily used in American English, with a total of 418 in all its forms. In British English however there is a total of only 105.

    Meanwhile here it's clear that each to their own is more commonly used in British English with a much larger total of 365, and only 68 of this form in American English.


    So why is there such a significant difference?


    In the table above from the Corpus of Historical American English we're looking at 'each to their own', which is most heavily used by speakers of British English. At a stretch it could go back as far as the 1820s, but only seems to be in popular use around the 1860s.



    When looking at the American English version, it comes into scarce usage around the 1880s, but seems to gain popularity around the 1940s. After looking into where the phrase was actually used, it was all down to the release of the (BrE) film/ (AmE) movie,  'To Each His Own' in 1946 which might be able to explain the later difference considering this is how the phrase was brought to attention in America early on. 

    The older British English version seems to be in most popular use in the US until around the 1980s, at which point it becomes less used and the American English version becomes more common, so this would explain why to each sounded so foreign to me.



    --M.A.










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    Final schedule for Yuletide 2017


    Nominations Friday Sept 8 - Saturday Sept 16
    Sign-ups Sunday Oct 1 - Monday Oct 9
    Assignments out by Sunday Oct 15
    Default deadline Monday Dec 11
    Assignment deadline Monday Dec 18

    Please note that this is a week earlier than the draft schedule we previously posted.

    New Year’s Resolutions notification


    If you took part in Yuletide and defaulted after the default deadline, or you submitted an incomplete story at the posting deadline, or you defaulted in Yuletide twice in a row, we ask you to complete a New Year’s Resolution story before you sign up again.

    We have just sent an email to everyone who was added to our NYR list after Yuletide 2016. We don’t want you to get to Yuletide 2017, try to sign up, and realise at this late juncture that you are under a restriction.

    The email we use is the one currently associated with your AO3 account. If you have any doubt about whether you fulfilled the Yuletide challenge last year, please check your AO3 account details to see what email address the message was sent to. It’s also possible that our message has gone to your spam folder.

    You are welcome to comment here or to email yuletideadmin@gmail.com and ask if you are on the list of people who need to complete a New Year’s Resolution fic.

    If you defaulted in a previous year, you may still be on our NYR list.

    More information about New Year’s Resolutions


    New Year’s Resolution fics written for the purpose of re-qualifying for Yuletide must be posted to the New Year's Resolutions 2017 collection before you sign up to Yuletide 2017. They must be over 1,000 words and written to a previous Yuletide prompt. You can write for a Yuletide 2016 prompt, or you can choose an older Yuletide prompt as long as the fandom in which you write is small enough to still qualify for Yuletide (that is: when adding the total fics on AO3 and ff.net, there are fewer than 1,000 fics that are in English, complete, and over 1,000 words long).

    The New Year’s Resolution system exists for several reasons:
    • It's an incentive to encourage people either to default early, or, to push on through and post something

    • It works as a warm-up, or as practice, or as a way of proving to yourself you can finish a story to a prompt

    • It's a contribution to the project of getting more stories written in tiny fandoms

    • It's a way of ensuring that past prompts don't get entirely forgotten.


    If you had to default in a past year, we are aware that this may have been for a carefully-considered reason or in a difficult time. Needing to complete a NYR does not mean we think you're a terrible person. We hope you use it as an opportunity to write something you enjoy.

    You are also welcome to submit a NYR story if you just feel like writing one! The collection will stay open for late fills until Yuletide 2017 assignments are sent out.

    Writers are especially encouraged to write stories for prompts that were not filled during the main Yuletide run.

    2016 prompts on AO3
    Google spreadsheet of all prompts (thank you to Min)
    Database of 2016's Dear Author letters (thank you to lsellersfic)
    2016 prompts as a text file
    Prompts from 2016's non-signed-up pinch hitters on LJ and on DW
    Some Day My Fic Will Come mini-challenge - This challenge is for prompts that are posted year after year after year - see more info at the link!

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