Re: Human language (long)

Gregoire (
25 Jan 1997 00:12:02 GMT

In article <>, wrote:

-> John A. Halloran wrote:
-> >
-> > In article <> (Gregoire) writes:
-> > >->
-> > >Apparently, the passive voice--not centered in the self as chief
-> > >controller of events--was common in many tribal languages (like Dakota)
-> > >[see Werner M€ller,
-> > >"The 'Passivity' of Language amd the Experience of Nature: A Study in the
-> > >Structure of the Primitive Mind" (1968). It's old and but one example.]
-> >
-> > Thanks for the reference - by passive voice do you mean the same as the
-> > ergative construction?

Active (western European): "*I* killed the buffalo."

Passive (indigenous or participatory): "The buffalo was killed by
my hand." Or even "The buffalo accepted its death from me."

The difference in feeling as a piece of larger natural forces and
the self-inflation of doing it all (western colonial entrepreneurialism)
is enormous, if not unspeakable.

Greg Nixon <>

"Creation is thus nowever, coming straight out of the Voidness of this timeless Moment€and thus creation is not the creation of things, of material, or of substance, but the creation of dualisms."
(Ken Wilber, The Spectrum of Consciousness, p. 100).

"Be cheerful while you are alive."
(Ptahhotpe, 24th century B.C.E.)