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Trek Literature "...Good words. That's where ideas begin."

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Old January 2 2009, 05:31 AM   #121
Sci
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

Trent Roman wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post
For all that Trek goes out of its way to have ethnic diversity, we rarely see any Earth Human characters who have any non-American accents other than the British. Chekov is the only one I can think of, in point of fact.
There's also O'Brien, whose accent wasn't strong (at least, not by the standards of Scotty or Chekov), but still detectable.

Fictitiously yours, Trent Roman
Ah, thanks for pointing that out -- my own cultural bias; in my head, for some reason, when I was going through the main characters, I categorized O'Brien and Bashir together as Brits, simply because they're both from the same series of islands! My bad.
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Old January 2 2009, 07:19 AM   #122
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

Sci wrote: View Post
For all that Trek goes out of its way to have ethnic diversity, we rarely see any Earth Human characters who have any non-American accents other than the British. Chekov is the only one I can think of, in point of fact.
I believe Geologist Jäger spoke with what was supposed to be a German accent in The Squire of Gothos.

TGT
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Old January 2 2009, 03:07 PM   #123
Baerbel Haddrell
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

I think it makes a lot of sense that English is the dominant language in Starfleet. It is very wide spread today and compared to other languages relatively easy to learn. Well, and of course, Star Trek was born in America and it makes more sense to tell the audience that the main language Starfleet has is English instead of, for example, Spanish or even an alien language like Vulcan.

Nevertheless, although I see the need for a common “business” language there is no reason why languages like French and German aren`t spoken within the family environment, for example. Just relying on the universial translator is not a good idea. I agree that it is necessary for people joining Starfleet who don`t speak English that they should learn the language. Getting at least a basic education in other main languages is a good idea, too. At least the former must be the case or people like Chekov and O`Brien wouldn`t be shown with accents. A universial translator wouldn`t leave accents behind and people wouldn`t have foreign accents if such languages aren`t used any more.

No, we don`t know how the use of a language will change because language is a living thing that develops. But I know that Germans, for example, will never use the ridiculous Marvel English (as I call it), also not in a few hundred years! There is no reason to think that “Scheisskopf” will become a German swear word. Germans also won`t say that it rains cats and dogs one day.

Yes, strictly speaking “Scheisskopf” is not the correct spelling. “Baerbel” is not the correct spelling either. But my keyboard here in Britain hasn`t got the correct keys and although I know that there are ways around it, to substitute the extra letters in German language like that is acceptable practise.
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Old January 2 2009, 04:10 PM   #124
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

There is no reason to think that “Scheisskopf” will become a German swear word.
There's no reason to think a guy in Montana will invent faster-than-light drive 52 years from now either, or that aliens on other worlds look like humans with bits of rubber on their heads. Indeed, there's abundant reason not to think those things. So I don't understand this objection. Fiction is not limited to things that we can prove will happen. It's about things that are possible, and sometimes even things that are impossible. So it's really, really strange to get so preoccupied with the supposed improbability of a single neologism, when there are far, far more absurd things that have to be taken for granted when reading Trek fiction.
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Old January 2 2009, 06:00 PM   #125
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

But those other absurd things are integral parts of Trek and a good chunk of Sci Fi in general. And I don't see us getting preoccupied that much. It was just pointed out as a case of weird/broken German. And that's what it is, plain and simple. No retconning is necessary in this case and as I said, there are worse cases out there.
I guess, what Bärbel wanted to say is that the examples she used would violate our feel for language. I believe we're all aware of the fact that languages change. That much is evident when reading Goethe which is still done in school today. Still, even though he occasionally uses grammar that sounds weird to us today it doesn't sound as wrong as some of the "denglish". (Some English expressions have better chances than others, though. For example we now rather use "Sinn machen" (from "to make sense") than the original version "Sinn haben/ergeben")
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Old January 2 2009, 06:32 PM   #126
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

Given this conversation, it seems clear to me that it is now our duty, as Trek fans, to bring "Scheisskopf" into the German and international vernacular, and to use it as often as possible, in any context possible. So, come on, you Scheisskopfs, who's with me?
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Old January 2 2009, 06:59 PM   #127
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

^^Yeah... we need to make up for our failure to get a book called Chicago Mobs of the Twenties published in 1992. And to launch the Nomad probe and four more Voyager probes.
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Old January 2 2009, 07:04 PM   #128
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

And we have to compensate for the Eugenics Wars that didn't happen and the generational space ships we didn't launch...
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Old January 2 2009, 07:18 PM   #129
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

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And we have to compensate for the Eugenics Wars that didn't happen and the generational space ships we didn't launch...
^^I think we can skip the first one, thanks...
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Old January 2 2009, 08:36 PM   #130
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

Christopher wrote: View Post
Count Zero wrote: View Post
And we have to compensate for the Eugenics Wars that didn't happen and the generational space ships we didn't launch...
^^I think we can skip the first one, thanks...
Well, okay... but the World War we have in 44 years is going to really have to kick ass to make up for it...
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Old January 3 2009, 12:05 AM   #131
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

William Leisner wrote: View Post
So, come on, you Scheisskopfs, who's with me?
The plural would be Scheißköpfe.
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Old January 3 2009, 02:57 AM   #132
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

Sci wrote: View Post
For all that Trek goes out of its way to have ethnic diversity, we rarely see any Earth Human characters who have any non-American accents other than the British. Chekov is the only one I can think of, in point of fact.
Amsha Bashir and Fleet Admiral Shanthi are the first two that come to my mind...
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Old January 3 2009, 03:15 AM   #133
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

TheAlmanac wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post
For all that Trek goes out of its way to have ethnic diversity, we rarely see any Earth Human characters who have any non-American accents other than the British. Chekov is the only one I can think of, in point of fact.
Amsha Bashir and Fleet Admiral Shanthi are the first two that come to my mind...
So we have a grand total of how many non-British-accented or non-American-accented Human characters so far...?
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Old January 3 2009, 04:52 AM   #134
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

The God Thing wrote: View Post
Sci wrote: View Post
For all that Trek goes out of its way to have ethnic diversity, we rarely see any Earth Human characters who have any non-American accents other than the British. Chekov is the only one I can think of, in point of fact.
I believe Geologist Jäger spoke with what was supposed to be a German accent in The Squire of Gothos.

TGT
If he had an accent, I didn't notice it. If not for his name, I would never have guessed he was German.

Me, I would love it if we had Trek characters with New York or Boston accents. Imagine...a captain whose catch phrase isn't "Make it so" or "Engage" but rather "Wicked pissah".

Or perhaps one with a Philly accent. He could go up to the food replicator and order a cheesesteak, 'provo widdout'.
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Old January 3 2009, 06:03 AM   #135
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Re: German expressions in recent Trek novels

Sci wrote: View Post
So we have a grand total of how many non-British-accented or non-American-accented Human characters so far...?
Well, there's Khan... a Sikh with a Mexican accent.
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